Saturday, February 20, 2016

"Boy and the World" Director Speaks

Ale Abreau, the director of the Brazilian feature Boy and the World, notes the obvious:

Q: In the U.S., Pixar’s style of 3D animation rules the day. What are your thoughts on current trends in animation technique?

Abreu: I think animation is a big universe that is infinite. It doesn’t have an ending, but is a very beautiful, rich universe. What I see happening with the movies is that there has been a standardization of the movies itself, like all the movies came out from the same production company. And I think this is very poor, because if they are standard, they’re not taking advantage of the full scope; animation can be much more than that—can be much more than just technical. ...

Animation can come in many styles and approaches, but let's face the obvious: Most commercial animation, from the 1930s to the present, has followed the Disney model. First it was in the hand-drawn format; now it's in the CG format. Obviously Pixar led the way with CG features, but truth be known, the style was pretty much a descendant of the Walter Elias Disney sensibility. (John Lasseter, after all, spent the first half dozen years of his professional life at Disney).

Now that Pixar-is-Disney and Disney-is-Pixar, the reality is even plainer than before. Yeah, there are European features that break the mold, and the occasional brave indie, but it's all about the Disney model. The conglomerates believe that's where all the audience's dollars are, so Disney-style animated features are what roll down the pike. (And yes; Illumination Entertainment's and Blue Sky Studio's movies are a bit different, but not by very much.

The Walt approach still rules.


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