Wednesday, March 20, 2013

March Animation News Roundup

The month isn't over yet, but I thought I'd cover a few things I missed over the last few weeks. It's a been rather slow month for the blog, so I apologize. Been toying around with a new one that's not necessarily meant to be like this. This one is what I call the "extra rambly" blog, where stuff I deem not so suitable for this blog goes...

Anyways, what's my take on a few new things?

First up, the official trailer for DreamWorks' Turbo! Just in time for The Croods too, which is getting positive reception. The Chris Sanders-Kirk DeMicco film looks like another winner for the studio.

Since it's not on YouTube yet (DreamWorks is removing trailers that anyone is posting on copyright grounds for some reason), you can watch it on iTunes Movie Trailers.

What do I think of this trailer? I can buy the silly premise. Some have said that this film is essentially Cars and Ratatouille combined... Yeah, maybe the film has similar plot elements to Pixar's rat tale but it seems a little simpler. The snail just wants to go fast and race with cars, unless the movie reveals that there is more to that. Nice animation, good color scheme and some surprisingly funny parts. Yes, this film actually looks decent! I'll gladly take back any skepticism I had towards it.

The release date of the film was also changed. Originally set to open on July 19th, it's been moved two days forward, so you can catch this new DreamWorks film on a Wednesday!


Next up... A new trailer for Despicable Me 2!

I will be honest, I enjoyed this trailer as well. Sure it looks a bit generic and it will be harmless at best, but it looks funny and cute like its predecessor. I'm also glad that it has a decent plot too. This ought to be an enjoyable flick at best.


Who is scoring Pixar's The Good Dinosaur? Looks like John Powell is no longer onboard, this time it's none other than Thomas Newman!

Newman also provided the scores for Finding Nemo and WALL-E. Both scores are pure excellence. I have no doubt that his Good Dinosaur score will also be fabulous. I was really excited to see what John Powell would bring to the table for a Pixar film, but I'm fine with Newman assuming the job.

And of course, The Good Dinosaur opens on May 30, 2014.


Last but not least... The piece de resistance of recent animation news... A new hand-drawn Mickey Mouse short!

I could probably ramble about this for paragraphs and paragraphs... Let's just put it this way: I'm glad to see that Disney is bringing Mickey and friends back in a proper fashion. They haven't gotten such treatment since House of Mouse, and that was over a decade ago. If you ask me, this is the best Mickey short since 1995's Runaway Brain. The design... The design is great.

It mixes the look of the original shorts (down to the title cards, too!) with a minimalist new style. This style has already gotten praise, but it's also gotten a lot of detractors. It certainly is a lot more modern, but I think it does its job. It's modern enough for today's audiences while still having a classic feel to it.

The short was designed by Paul Rudish, who worked with Genndy Tartakovsky on his three animated shows: Dexter's Laboratory, Samurai Jack and Star Wars: Clone Wars. He is also the co-creator of Tartakovsky's unfairly canceled Sym-Bionic Titan. I always admired Tartakovsky's style, so it was nice to see Disney Animation try it on for a Mickey short. This is actually the first in a series of 19 new shorts which will air on television.

If anything, Disney should attach one of the shorts to their upcoming Frozen or maybe another film on their slate. People need to see good hand-drawn animation like this, and I could care less what Bob Iger said at the shareholder meeting concerning traditional animation... It's coming back. It may take some time, but it is coming.

Aside from the design, the short itself is funny. The lack of dialogue made it work for me, proving that you can still entertain without exposition. Everything else works well... The Cinderella bit was also priceless.

The series starts on June 28th on the Disney Channel. Definitely looking forward to this...


What's your take on this news? Did you like the trailers for Despicable Me 2 and Turbo? Or not? Do you think the new Mickey Mouse short is genius? Or is it the opposite? How do you feel about Thomas Newman providing the score for Pixar's upcoming film?

Sound off below!

1 comment:

  1. It's fun to see Mickey at work again, but I can't help but wish it was in glorious full animation like RUNAWAY BRAIN and his class shorts. Still, the look is unique and the humor is wonderful.