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Lee Unkrich on His ‘Coco’ Collaborators and Similarities to Live-Action Jobs

Lee Unkrich on His ‘Coco’ Collaborators and Similarities to Live-Action Jobs
Lee Unkrich, director of Pixar’s “Coco,” says, “There are a lot of misconceptions about what goes into making an animated film.” Unkrich talks about several of his below-the-line collaborators and how their work has key similarities — and differences — to the job of their live-action counterparts.

Harley Jessup (Production designer)

“The film looks gorgeous, and a huge part of that is Harley. In animation, we don’t have the luxury of finding locations that have a patina and history; it has to be created from scratch. Harley went on many trips to Mexico, took hundreds of thousands of photos and was able to create all that texture, all the layers of history. It was his responsibility to guide various teams, overseeing everything that went into the on-screen images, to bring that specific culture to a world inspired by real places we’d seen in Mexico. He put in as much work as any production designer on a live-action
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Oscar Voters: Don’t Forget ‘Mother,’ Ridley Scott and 2017’s Other Unsung Heroes

Oscar Voters: Don’t Forget ‘Mother,’ Ridley Scott and 2017’s Other Unsung Heroes
Lord knows, we don’t need another awards show. But the year in film has seen some extraordinary work and though the usual “for your consideration” conversations are valid, they seem insufficient in some cases.

There is a long list of people who are worthy of Oscar consideration, so don’t forget these people when filling out your Oscar ballots, which are due Jan. 12. But let’s also give them special recognition, a round of applause for doing work that was above and beyond.

Wind River

Writer-director Taylor Sheridan and his “Wind River” team deserve awards attention for delivering an entertaining and relevant film. Beyond that, they deserve a salute for wresting control of the movie away from the original distributor, the Weinstein Co. As soon as the story broke on Oct. 5 about that industry bully-rapist, Sheridan and Acacia Entertainment renegotiated everything and made sure that no profits will go to TWC, but instead
See full article at Variety - Film News »

'Dunkirk', 'The Post' among Art Directors Guild nominees

'Dunkirk', 'The Post' among Art Directors Guild nominees
Animated feature films were included for the first time this year, Coco among them.

The Art Directors Guild has announced nominations for the 22nd Annual Excellence in Production Design Awards in multiple categories including features, television, and commercials.

Nominees in the feature film categories include Darkest Hour, The Shape Of Water, Downsizing, Get Out, and Lady Bird.

Among the television nominees are this year’s Emmy stand-outs The Handmaid’s Tale and Game Of Thrones.

Animated feature films were included in the nominations for the first time this year and include top-earning titles Cars 3, Coco, and Despicable Me 3.

The Awards Gala is set for January 27 at the Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood and Highland.

Excellence In Production Design For A Feature Film Period Film

Darkest Hour, Sarah Greenwood

Dunkirk, Nathan Crowley

Murder On The Orient Express, Jim Clay

The Post, Rick Carter

The Shape Of Water, Paul Denham Austerberry

Fantasy Film

Beauty And The Beast, Sarah
See full article at ScreenDaily »

How 'Coco's' Imaginary "Land of the Dead" Was Influenced by Mexican History

How 'Coco's' Imaginary
In Coco, Disney's Nov. 22 release set on Mexico's Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, young Miguel (played by Anthony Gonzalez) is inadvertently transported to the "Land of the Dead." The vividly colored buildings he finds there are more than just Pixar eye candy. According to production designer Harley Jessup, the huge vertical towers actually reflect a carefully researched and "layered history of Mexico."

"At the bottom of each tower," explains Jessup, "are the Aztec and Mayan pyramids; above that, Spanish colonial period buildings; above that are Mexican Revolution era and Victorian era buildings; and then into the 20th century and modern day....
See full article at The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News »

‘Coco’ First Look: Pixar’s Multicultural Message Will Make Waves in Trump’s America

‘Coco’ First Look: Pixar’s Multicultural Message Will Make Waves in Trump’s America
Coco,” Pixar’s love letter to Mexico and the Day of the Dead festival, couldn’t come at a better time for the animation studio and the country. It’s Pixar’s first original movie in two years and offers a vital cultural remedy to Trump’s nationalistic fervor (with an all-Latino cast that includes “Mozart in the Jungle’s” Gael Garcia Bernal, Benjamin Bratt, Renée Victor, and newcomer Anthony Gonzalez).

“In a time when the political climate seems very much divisive, it fills my heart with hope that a masterful filmmaker like Lee Unkrich is using his and Pixar’s considerable talents to showcase the people and culture of our beloved Mexico,” said Jorge Guitierrez, director of the first Day of the Dead animated feature, “The Book of Life,” produced by Guillermo del Toro in 2014. “I will be there on ‘Coco’s’ opening night with my whole family, living and remembered.
See full article at Indiewire »

Pixar’s Coco: 10 Things We Learned From Our Visit To Pixar!

Earlier this month, I had the great pleasure to head over to Pixar Animation Studios, where they’re hard at work finishing up their next feature film, Coco. Of course, as with most of their films, Pixar likes to push themselves in new and exciting directions. With Toy Story, they pioneered the computer animation technology, with A Bug’s Life, they brought more organic forms to life, and with Monster’s Inc, they pushed the envelope in terms of the different types of creatures they brought to the screen. With almost every film, you can seem the stretch themselves more and more as a creative entity.

This is a tradition that continues with Coco. For those who don’t know, Coco is their latest movie that will take audiences into Mexico and explore the holiday that is Día de los Muertos — or Day of the Dead. This will be Pixar
See full article at LRM Online »

Pixar dominates the 2016 Annie Award nominations

The nominations for the 43rd annual Annie Awards have been announced, with Disney-Pixar’s Inside Out and The Good Dinosaur dominating the field with 34 nominations between them (14 for Inside Out and 10 for The Good Dinosaur).

Both films will contest the Best Animated Feature Award alongside Shaun the Sheep Movie, The Peanuts Movie and Anomalisa. Check out a full list of the nominations here, via Variety…

Best Animated Feature

Anomalisa

Paramount Pictures

Inside Out

Pixar Animation Studios

Shaun the Sheep Movie

Aardman Animations

The Good Dinosaur

Pixar Animation Studios

The Peanuts Movie

Blue Sky Studios, Twentieth Century Fox Animation

Best Animated Special Production

“Elf: Buddy’s Musical Christmas”

Warner Bros. Animation

He Named Me Malala

Parkes-MacDonald / Little Door

I Am A Witness”

Moonbot Studios

“Kite”

Epic Games

Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck”

End of Movie, LLC

“Niko and the Sword of Light”

Titmouse, Inc. / Amazon Studios

Best Animated Short Subject
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

It's Pixar Vs. Pixar at 43rd Annie Award Nominations

The International Animated Film Society, Asifa-Hollywood, has announced the nominations for the 43rd Annual Annie Awards and "Inside Out" and "The Good Dinosaur," both Pixar movies, led the pack! "Inside Out" received fourteen nominations while "The Good Dinosaur" got nine.

My pick of the year for best animated feature is "Inside Out" but I love Charlie Kaufman's "Anomalisa" as well which picked five noms.

We'll find out the winners of the Annie Awards on February 6th!

Here is the full list of nominees in all categories of the 43rd Annie Awards:

Best Animated Feature

Anomalisa

Paramount Pictures

Inside Out

Pixar Animation Studios

Shaun the Sheep The Movie

Aardman Animations

The Good Dinosaur

Pixar Animation Studios

The Peanuts Movie

Blue Sky Studios, Twentieth Century Fox Animation

Best Animated Special Production

Elf: Buddy.s Musical Christmas

Warner Bros. Animation

He Named Me Malala

Parkes-MacDonald / Little Door

I Am A Witness

Moonbot
See full article at Manny the Movie Guy »

43rd Annie Awards nominations announced; Inside Out leads

The nominations for the 43rd Annual Annie Awards have been announced. The hot favourite is quite obviously Pixar’s Inside Out, which is not only one of the best animated movies of the year, but one of the best movies of the year. Period. The film bagged a total of 14 nominations through the field, closely followed by Pixar’s other movie that was released in 2015, The Good Dinosaur with 10.

Other movies nominated in the top award, Best Animated Feature are Shaun the Sheep: The Movie, The Peanuts Movie, and Anomalisa, with the likes of Minions, Home, Hotel Transylvania 2 and The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water nowhere to be seen.

Here’s the full list of nominees, which take in everything from movies to television, shorts and animated segments from TV or film productions. The list is very extensive.

Best Animated Feature

AnomalisaParamount Pictures Inside OutPixar Animation Studios
See full article at The Hollywood News »

‘Inside Out,’ ‘Good Dinosaur’ Lead Annie Award Nominations

‘Inside Out,’ ‘Good Dinosaur’ Lead Annie Award Nominations
For the first time ever, Pixar is getting awards competition from itself. The studio’s inventive summer blockbuster “Inside Out” and its warm-hearted recent release “The Good Dinosaur” led the nominees for animated feature at the 43rd annual Annie Awards slated for Feb. 6 at UCLA’s Royce Hall, with 14 and 10 bids, respectively.

Rounding out the field are the adult-themed stop-motion film “Anomalisa” from Paramount, Blue Sky’s nostalgic 3D reboot “The Peanuts Movie” and Aardman Animations’ “Shaun the Sheep the Movie,” a film based on the popular British TV series. All have five nominations.

Inside Out,” which had been an early favorite to sweep several awards this year, may face some serious competition not only from stablemate “Dinosaur,” but also from the edgy “Anomalisa,” which picked up several nominations for the independent Spirit Awards, including feature, director and screenplay.

Asifa-Hollywood, the organization behind the Annie Awards, split the animated feature category in two this year,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

How Pixar made you cry with that emotional ‘The Good Dinosaur’ scene

  • Hitfix
How Pixar made you cry with that emotional ‘The Good Dinosaur’ scene
The death of Disney characters — Disney parents especially — has left an indelible mark on kids for decades. Little Cinderella sobbing at her father’s bedside after his untimely death. Anna and Elsa’s parents’ ship getting swallowed up by massive waves. The thundering shot that echoes through the snow-covered forest, silencing Bambi’s mom’s cries of “Keep running!” A sudden flash of sharp teeth and big, heavy fins killing Nemo’s mom and hundreds of his brothers and sisters. The dust settling in the canyon, so quiet with the stampede gone, empty, save for little Simba, nudging Mufasa’s nose and tugging on his ear, begging, “Dad, we gotta go home” — to no response. The frequency with which Disney characters become orphaned or have just one parent has inspired countless memes and jokes and even research studies. So when the makers of Pixar’s newest film, “The Good Dinosaur,
See full article at Hitfix »

The Good Dinosaur: its five year path to the big screen

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We recently journeyed to Pixar to take a look behind the scenes of The Good Dinosaur. Ryan goes behind the scenes of Pixar's latest.

Over 20 years of feature filmmaking, Pixar has specialised in making us care about the unlikeliest of characters: toys, cars, fish, insects, the emotions rattling around inside the head of an ordinary school girl. It all began, of course, with Toy Story, the 1995 film which transformed the face of animated movies. Its humour, pathos and technical ingenuity were all so natural, so effortless, that it’s easy to forget just how ground-breaking John Lasseter’s film really was.

With each subsequent film, Pixar has explored different themes and set itself new challenges; it’s worth noting that, of the 15 feature-length movies Pixar has released so far, only four are sequels. Pixar’s most recent film, Inside Out, is the latest example of how adept
See full article at Den of Geek »

MPAA Highlights Unity With Tech, Not Divisions, at Creativity Conference

Washington — House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was a featured speaker at the MPAA’s Creativity Conference on Friday, and very diplomatically spoke about issues important to Hollywood (anti-piracy) and Silicon Valley (net neutrality).

But given the political environment, the event delved into the way that Hollywood is increasingly portraying women in positions of power, even as president, making it less of a novelty and more as a matter of fact.

“Women are great collaborators,” she declared, citing examples in which “it’s not [about] ego for women, it’s just how they get the job done….Let someone else take the lead. It’s easier for women to do.”

Pelosi suggested that the image of a woman as president should highlight that role as “a collaborator [who] is respectful of many other opinions, and has many other women in a collaboration. That doesn’t mean women’s thinking is any better than men.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

"Rango" Wins Big at Annie Awards! "Transformers," "Planet of the Apes" Receive Kudos! Check Out Complete List of Winners!

Jennifer Yuh Nelson's "Kung Fu Panda 2" dominated the Annie Awards nominations, but the International Animated Film Society decided to give its highest honor -- the Best Animated Feature award -- to Gore Verbinski's "Rango." Both films are from DreamWorks Animation and they still have to duke it out at the upcoming Oscars in the Best Animated Feature Film category.

Besides the Best Animated trophy, "Rango" also collected awards for Best Editing and Writing. But Nelson, the first woman to direct a feature film animation from a major Hollywood production company, won the Directing in a Feature Production award! Yay! (Check out my interview with Jennifer Yuh Nelson for "Kung Fu Panda 2" right here)

The Annie Awards winners were announced yesterday at the UCLA Royce Hall in Los Angeles.

Here's the complete list of winners (highlighted) and nominees of the 39th Annual Annie Awards (to see winners/nominees of other award-giving bodies,
See full article at Manny the Movie Guy »

Rango, Bill Nighy, Jennifer Yuh Nelson: Annie Awards Animated Feature Winners

Gore Verbinski's Rango, voiced by Johnny Depp Production Categories Best Animated Feature A Cat in Paris Arrugas (Wrinkles) Arthur Christmas Cars 2 Chico & Rita Kung Fu Panda 2 Puss in Boots * Rango Rio The Adventures of Tintin Best Animated Special Production Adventure Time: Thank You Batman: Year One Ice Age: A Mammoth Christmas * Kung Fu Panda: Secret of the Masters Prey 2 Star Tours Best Animated Short Subject * Adam and Dog I Tawt I Taw A Puddy Tat La Luna (Notes on) Biology Paths of Hate Sunday The Ballad of Nessie The Girl and the Fox Wild Life and Studio Gds Individual Achievement Categories Animated Effects in an Animated Production Can Yuksel, Puss In Boots Chase Cooper, Rango Dan Lund, Winnie The Pooh Dave Tidgewell, Kung Fu Panda 2 Eric Froemling, Cars 2 Jason Mayer, Kung Fu Panda 2 Joel Aron, Star Wars: The Clone Wars Jon Reisch,
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

Carlos Saldanha, Gary Oldman, Zach Galifianakis: Annie Award 2011 Nominations

Milou aka Snowy in Steven Spielberg's The Adventures of Tintin Annie Award 2011 Nominations Pt.1: Rango, Rio, The Adventures Of Tintin Directing in a Feature Production Carlos SaldanhaRio” – Blue Sky Studios Chris MillerPuss In Boots” – DreamWorks Animation Don Hall & Stephen AndersonWinnie The Pooh” – Walt Disney Animation Studios Gore VerbinskiRango” – Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies present a Blind Wink/Gk Films Productions Jennifer Yuh NelsonKung Fu Panda 2” – DreamWorks Animation Kelly Asbury “Gnomeo & Juliet” – Touchstone Pictures Music in a Feature Production Henry JackmanPuss In Boots” – DreamWorks Animation John WilliamsThe Adventures of Tintin” – Amblin Entertainment, Wingnut Films and Kennedy/Marshall Mikael Mutti, Siedah Garrett, Carlinhos Brown, Sergio Mendes, John Powell, “Rio” – Blue Sky Studios Zooey Deschannel, Kristen Anderson-Lopez, Henry Jackman, Robert LopezWinnie The Pooh” – Walt Disney Animation Studios Production Design in a Feature Production Harley JessupCars 2” – Pixar Animation Studios Paul Felix
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

39th Annual Annie Award Nominee's Announced

I'm a huge fan of animation, animated films are getting better and better. Not only is the look and animation getting ridiculously awesome, but I find that many of these animated films actually have incredibly good stories. Not all of them are good though, for example, Cars 2 and Rio sucked. It will be interesting to see who ends up taking home the awards this year. Out of the movies on the list that I've seen and liked we have Puss in Boots, Rango and Kung Fu Panda 2. I guess it's no surprises that Kung Fu Panda 2 is leading the nominations with 9. Check out the list and let us know what your favorite animated movies of the year are!

Production Categories

Best Animated Feature

A Cat in Paris – Folimage Arrugas (Wrinkles) - Perro Verde Films, S.L. Arthur Christmas – Sony Pictures Animation, Aardman Animations Cars 2 – Pixar Animation
See full article at GeekTyrant »

"Kung Fu Panda 2" Tops Annie Award Nominations!

"Kung Fu Panda 2" dominated the nominations for the 39th Annual Annie Awards. Given by the International Animated Film Society, the DreamWorks Animation sequel received 12 nods including Best Animated Feature. "Puss in Boots" and "Rango" each took nine noms. Pixar's "Cars 2" received seven nominations, while Disney's "Winnie the Pooh" took eight nods but was oddly missing in the Best Animated Feature category.

Winners of the 2011 Annie Awards will be announced on Saturday, Feb. 4.

Here's the complete list of nominees of the 39th Annual Annie Awards:

Production Categories

Best Animated Feature

A Cat in Paris . Folimage

Arrugas (Wrinkles) - Perro Verde Films, S.L.

Arthur Christmas . Sony Pictures Animation, Aardman Animations

Cars 2 . Pixar Animation Studios

Chico & Rita . Chico & Rita Distribution Limited

Kung Fu Panda 2 . DreamWorks Animation

Puss In Boots . DreamWorks Animation

Rango . Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies present A Blind Wink/Gk Films Production

Rio . Blue Sky Studios

Tintin . Amblin Entertainment,
See full article at Manny the Movie Guy »

'Kung Fu Panda 2' Leads the 2011 Annie Award Nominations

I don't put much stock in the Annie Awards and neither does Disney after withdrawing from the International Animated Film Society, Asifa-Hollywood back in 2010. I have personally never found them to be a good judge of quality and as such don't pay them any particular attention, though I will pass along the information as they have announced their 2011 nominees with Dreamworks' Kung Fu Panda 2 leading the way with 12 nominations, followed by Puss in Boots and Rango each with nine. Of course, while Disney has withdrawn from the Annies that doesn't mean they aren't considered for the awards as Cars 2, Gnomeo and Juliet and Winnie the Pooh are among the nominees. Last year How to Train Your Dragon reigned supreme over Toy Story 3 and I wouldn't be surprised to see Kung Fu Panda 2 take home plenty of hardware, following in the footsteps of its predecessor, which beat out
See full article at Rope Of Silicon »

Cars 2 Goes Under the Hood at Pixar

Cars 2 Goes Under the Hood at Pixar
When I first learned I was going back to Pixar a few months ago, a smile immediately crossed my face. I had been there just once before, a few years back, but the facility and people at this Emeryville, California animation studio are so amazing, I was hoping for the chance to come back... practically right after the first visit. In late March, I ventured up to the Northern California studio to learn more about their animated sequel Cars 2, which races into theaters nationwide on June 24.

After a nice reception for the massive press corps assembled for this event, we were in for a little treat. Anyone who is familiar with Pixar knows the studio is just as well-known for their animated shorts as they are their animated features. Before every Pixar movie, the studio debuts a new short film, and Cars 2 is no different. While most of
See full article at MovieWeb »
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