I am fresh from LA after attending the D23 Expo. I shared last week that I was one of 25 bloggers selected to attend this biennial event that brings together the ultimate Disney fans from around the world (this year people came from all 50 states and 33 countries).
Disney Pixar Animation kicks us off with a bang!
Over the next several weeks beginning today, I’ll be sharing all of the exclusive news and surprises that we experienced during this past epic weekend. I shared a ton of stories on Instagram and also a couple of Periscope broadcasts. This post will particularly go over all of the upcoming Disney Pixar Movies shared during D23 Expo.
A huge perk about being at D23 Expo is that you get to hear exclusive news and see exclusive footage for upcoming films and projects in the works. So here is everything we learned about what’s coming to Pixar Animation Studios and Walt Disney.
Pixar Animation Studios + Walt Disney = Pixie Dust Heaven
It’s really hard to pick a favorite moment from this weekend so I won’t (for now). And while I can’t quite paint the picture to equal the excitement I experienced first-hand, I’m going to try my best.
Disney Pixar Animation Presentation
John Lasseter, chief creative officer of Pixar and Walt Disney Animation Studios, teamed up with the stars and filmmakers from both studios to present new details, footage, behind-the-scenes looks and images from a host of upcoming films. “I’m so excited about our upcoming movies; they are all hilarious, emotional, beautiful and make you think,” said Lasseter, who serves as executive producer on all animated titles.
Following, in the order of release, are the films that were presented on behalf of both studios during D23 Expo.
New Pixar Movies Coming Soon
If you remember, we recently wrote about Coco in this post and before that in a roundup at the beginning of the year highlighting Disney movies for 2017. So being able to see the reveal and some of the cast members up close was a treat.
About the film:
Coco is about a little boy named Miguel. Desperate to prove his talent and follow in the footsteps of his idol, Ernesto de la Cruz, Miguel makes a fateful decision and finds himself in the Land of the Dead, where he meets his extended family and charming trickster Hector (voice of Gael García Bernal).
Together, they set off on an extraordinary journey to unlock the real story behind Miguel’s family history.
After the animation presentation, the grand finale featured more than 160 performers. It was truly a beautiful sight to see.
About “Coco” director Lee Unkrich says, “Our film embraces a broad landscape of music…it embodies the key theme in our story: the importance of remembering loved ones both in life and beyond.”
Coco opens in theaters nationwide on November 22nd.
Olaf’s Frozen Adventure
Everyone who has kids (especially little girls) has probably been singing “Let it Go” since Frozen came out in 2014. And it hasn’t died down. So while Frozen 2 (actual title TBD) won’t be hitting theaters until at least 2019, at least we have a little treat to hold us over with this adorable holiday featurette.
Surprises from Kristen Bell and Josh Gad
One of the surprises during this presentation was getting to hear from Kristen Bell, the voice of Anna, who introduced us to the new “Olaf’s Frozen Adventure.”
But what was even more fun is that Josh Gad, the voice of Olaf, surprised everyone with a live performance of the all-new original song “That Time of Year,” written by Elyssa Samsel and Kate Anderson. The song is part of Walt Disney Animation Studios’ new 21-minute featurette, which hits the big-screen in front of Disney•Pixar’s “Coco” on Nov. 22, 2017.
We also saw a behind-the-scenes video showcasing the filmmakers’ recent research trip to Norway, Finland and Iceland. Apparently Josh Gad was not invited on those trips but believes he should’ve been LOL
During this presentation, we got to take a close-up look at what the fashion world thinks of super-suit stylist Edna Mode—the petite-but-powerful character introduced in Pixar Animation Studio’s 2004 Oscar®-winning feature. Showcasing fashion phenoms from Heidi Klum to Zac Posen and Rachel Zoe, the hilarious video can be viewed below.
“Incredibles 2” director Brad Bird—who lends his voice to Edna (I had no idea!)—joined Lasseter on stage to welcome to the festivities the voices of Mr. and Mrs. Incredible (Craig T. Nelson and Holly Hunter), Violet (Sarah Vowell), Dash (newcomer Huck Milner) and Frozone (Samuel L. Jackson).
“Incredibles 2” hits theaters on June 15, 2018.
Wreck it Ralph 2 (Ralph Breaks the Internet)
Directors Rich Moore and Phil Johnston hit the stage at D23 Expo 2017, introducing Emmy®-winning actress and comedian Sarah Silverman, who returns as the voice of Vanellope von Schweetz.
Being at D23 Expo, we were the first to see the global debut of a scene from the film that pays hilarious homage to the Disney Princesses. Trust me when I say, this.was.EPIC! Yeah, this was definitely my favorite part of this presentation.
They took turns introducing one princess after another. This is one of the reasons my throat is hurting now. Actually, I don’t think there was a point in any of these presentations where I wasn’t screaming/yelling with excitement! How amazing is this?
Disney Pixar brings together the largest gathering of Disney Princesses
Lasseter revealed that filmmakers had asked the original voice actresses behind the Princesses featured to reprise their roles for the sequence, and in a moment no Disney fan will forget, Auli‘i Cravalho (“Moana”), Kristen Bell (Anna in “Frozen”), Kelly MacDonald (Merida in “Brave”), Mandy Moore (Rapunzel in “Tangled”), Anika Noni Rose (Tiana in “The Princess and the Frog”), Irene Bedard (“Pocahontas”), Linda Larkin (Jasmine in “Aladdin”), Paige O’Hara (Belle in “Beauty and the Beast”) and Jodi Benson (Ariel in “The Little Mermaid”) were welcomed on stage.
You just had to be there! The little girl inside of me definitely was having several moments.
About the film
Walt Disney Animation Studios’ follow-up to 2012’s “Wreck-It Ralph” leaves the arcade behind, venturing into the expansive universe of the internet—which may or may not survive Ralph’s not-so-light touch.
Filmmakers revealed a new character, Yesss (yup, spelled exactly like that; although I vote that it should be spelled Yasss), an algorithm who plays an important role in Ralph and Vanellope’s journey within the internet. Golden Globe®-winning actress Taraji P. Henson (yaaassssss — see how that gives more emphasis?) lends her voice to the character.
“Yesss is a new character who owns the website Buzzaholic,” said Henson. “Yesss knows about everything cool and on trend. And she does spell her name with a triple ‘s.’ Yesss is very savvy, smart and sexy.”
Wreck-It Ralph 2” hits theaters on Nov. 21, 2018
In more exciting film news, John Lasseter kicked off the presentation by announcing Disneytoon Studios’ original new animated movie, “Untitled DTS Film.” The theatrical feature film explores the future of aviation—taking moviegoers to the edge of discovery in the air—and beyond. It will open in theaters on April 12, 2019.
Toy Story 4
First of all, I can’t believe we are on number four. Our family loves Toy Story and have watched them all. Lasseter invited Pixar’s Josh Cooley (“Riley’s First Date?” short) to the stage, revealing that Cooley has assumed full director responsibilities for “Toy Story 4. which is slated for release on June 21, 2019.
Dan Scanlon Movie (Official title TBD)
Director Dan Scanlon, who helmed Pixar’s “Monsters University,” joined Lasseter to share a few details about an all-new original feature film currently in production at Pixar Animation Studios. According to Scanlon, who lost his father at a very young age, the film is inspired by the question he’s always asked: who was my father? The story is set in a world with no humans—only elves, trolls and sprites—“anything that would be on the side of a van in the ’70s,” said the director. “In the film, we’re going to tell the story of two teenage elf brothers whose father died when they were too young to remember him. But thanks to the little magic still left in the world, the boys embark on a quest that will allow them a chance to spend one last magical day with their father.”
Kori Rae (“Monsters University”) will produce.
D23 Expo Presentation for Upcoming Disney Pixar Movies:
Here’s a quick recap by video of everything I just shared above. Enjoy!
Disclosure: This trip to the Disneyland and D23 Expo was sponsored by Walt Disney World. As always, the thoughts and opinions are my own. For more information about #D23Expo click here.