Monday, October 27, 2014

Super Hero Studio

WDAS (and Big Hero 6 producer) Roy Conli tells us:

... I love Thor. But we’re [Walt Disney Animation Studios] not going to make Thor, because Thor’s already in that Marvel Universe in live action.

But what Disney animation does is tell stories in a wide variety of worlds in a wide variety of ways. Look, Don Hall came off Winnie the Pooh to then do a superhero tale in San Fransokyo. So we’re always looking for different things, really starting with the world. Taking this into a more Disney animated world rather than the Marvel world gave us the freedom to explore things in a different way. Again, if the directors want to try a Marvel thing that can work, we’re happy to do that. But we’ll never become exclusively a superhero studio, either. ...

Let's be crystalline about this: Disney owns Marvel, and Disney is going to exploit and maximize the content it's bought and paid for.

If Big Hero 6 makes several oil tankers of money, there will likely be a Big Hero 7 and Big Hero 8 in our entertainment futures. In fact, we can probably count on it.

But Mr. Conli's separation of animated super hero movies from live-action super hero movies is increasingly pointless, because the distinctions between "live action" and "animation" have become muddier in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Iron Giant could have been a CG-live action epic; The Mask with Jim Carrey could have been animated. (In fact, chunks of it were animated).

When Gravity -- created almost entirely inside computers -- is labeled a live-action movie, we have burst through the looking glass into a reality where the words "animation" and "live action" are pretty much meaningless.


Stephen said...

I personally want to see a Disney animated Howard the Duck movie. Wouldn't it be so ironic? A character made to mock one of their characters ends up in a movie made by that company. Then again, Disney is no stranger to self-parody, so I think it could work well. It would certainly be better than the 80s movie even if it was terrible.

Floyd Norman said...

I see the Motion Picture Academy eventually retiring the "Animated Film" category. Honestly, is there really that much of a difference in todays live-action and animated films? I don't see all that much.

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