Tuesday, April 21, 2015

What To Expect From Disney At CinemaCon... (And D23, Too)

Walt Disney Pictures will be holding their usual presentation tomorrow at CinemaCon, which occurs in Las Vegas every spring. Usually they make something of a splash there, revealing things and whatnot...

Actually, let's reminisce about Pixar's 2012 presentation at CinemaCon for a little bit. That week, they gave us the full trailer for Brave (the "Families Legend"), the title and release date for The Good Dinosaur, the release date for what would later be known as Inside Out, and info on what Lee Unkrich's film was going to be about. 'Twas an exciting time for all, and Disney brought some other goods from the Disney Animation, live-action, and Marvel end.

According to CinemaCon's site, the studio's presentation tomorrow (I won't be able to live-blog it) will include a screening of Inside Out, so we'll somewhat know what the consensus will be on that film nearly two months in advance. Disney also screened Pixar's previous film, Monsters University, at CinemaCon in 2013 to great reception. The film ultimately didn't end up getting such reception when released, but early word on Inside Out has been so great and I'm sure it'll be another 90%-er on Rotten Tomatoes.

What else will they present here?

Well, D23 is not too far away, so I can imagine them dropping some hints and bits... But not too much, they'll save that for the big shindig. Tomorrow could possibly give us an appetizer, while the main course will be some crazy-good or crazy-exciting news...

I was discussing this with a fellow animation fan, he thinks that big slates will be unveiled. He also thinks that Pixar will give updates on their slate, instead of leaving the expo with an Inside Out screening and a slate that consists of only one original and two sequels, not to mention the existence of two more sequels. Remember, sequels are icky when it comes to Pixar, so announcing more originals or hinting at more originals is a good way to smooth ruffled feathers. So why not do that at an event like CinemaCon?

(There shouldn't have been any ruffled feathers in the first place, but...)

He also reckons that we'll hear more about what Brad Bird is directing next, be it a Pixar original, The Incredibles 2, or another live-action film. I sincerely hope he'll be doing an animated original - at Pixar or somewhere else, but at the same time I would love to see him direct The Incredibles 2. That is his baby through and through...

I think Pixar will indeed reveal something, and maybe it'll pertain to Lee Unkrich's still-untitled and still-not-slated Day of the Dead project. From what I've heard, he's still going to do that film and Randy Newman hinted in a podcast that it'll be a musical. Word on it still moving forward occurred after the release of Reel FX's Day of the Dead animated musical The Book of Life, so it's safe to say that it's still happening. (Can we please quit with the "Pixar stopped Newt because of Rio" nonsense?) Maybe they'll wait things out and announce it when the time is right? So it doesn't seem like a knock-off to people who don't follow animation news...

Maybe they'll talk more about the upcoming sequels, but since the idea of "Pixar making sequels" tends to... Well... Start Internet pandemonium, maybe not. That being said, Finding Dory details sound about right since it opens after The Good Dinosaur. We still know little, we haven't seen any piece of concept art other than the murky one of Dory that was shown at the last D23 Expo in 2013, Pixar has been keeping a tight lid on it. Even the sequels get the secretive treatment!

The Good Dinosaur details are a given. Heck, they might even get a teaser. At the 2012 CinemaCon, the Monsters University teaser was shown, and those who didn't attend had to wait until mid-June to see it for themselves. My guess is that The Good Dinosaur's teaser might debut to the public as early as next month, since Tomorrowland opens Memorial Day weekend. However, I think it'll most likely debut before Inside Out in June. Pixar would probably want to focus on that film alone until it finally opens.

Now... As for Disney Animation, well... They don't have a film coming out this year. Even in years where they did have a film coming, they didn't present them. Big Hero 6 didn't show up at the 2014 CinemaCon, it instead made a splash at the 2013 D23 Expo. At the 2013 CinemaCon, Frozen wasn't even brought up. The 2012 CinemaCon? A screening of the six Wreck-It Ralph minutes that were shown at the preceding D23 Expo in August 2011. If we're lucky, we'll hear something about Zootopia or an upcoming film of theirs, otherwise I'm not holding my breathe. They'll probably save those goodies for D23.

For a while, I've been predicting this... At D23 this summer, they'll do exactly what they did at the last D23 Expo: Give details on the two announced Walt Disney Animation Studios films that have concrete release dates, then announce one that's opening in 2018 but doesn't have a concrete release date. In summer 2013, the two set-in-stone WDAS films were Frozen and Big Hero 6. Zootopia was unveiled to the world (and people who don't look at leaks) during that presentation, so I think they'll give us details on Zootopia and Moana, and then announce what one of their 2018 releases is going to be. (Giants, the Lorelay Bove/Brittney Lee project, Dean Wellins' film, whatever it may be.)

Marvel of course doesn't need CinemaCon or Comic-Con even. Last autumn more than proved that! Lucasfilm? Star Wars Celebration just happened.

Live-action will probably be part of the presentation, since it always seems to be at CinemaCon. We'll probably get updates on The Jungle Book and Alice Through the Looking Glass, and maybe, if we're lucky, the status on TRON 3. Or maybe the title of that threequel! It's rumored to be TRON: Acension, which is an awesome title, so maybe we'll get that and a logo even. Maybe a release date too! It begins filming this fall, so it could drop sometime in 2016 if Disney is willing to opt for September or October.

What do you think?

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