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FALL SNEAKS | 'SHARK TALE,' 'THE INCREDIBLES,' 'THE
POLAR EXPRESS'

The season falls into an animatin' rhythm

September 12, 2004

For those of us who get that animation is not just for kids, fall '04 is blessed with not one but three high-profile animated movies, which is a rarity to say the least. Will DreamWorks' "Shark Tale" dominate the season the way "Shrek 2" ruled summer? Arriving Oct. 1, the movie directed by Vicky Jenson, Eric Bibo Bergeron and Rob Letterman features the voices of Will Smith, Robert De Niro, Renee Zellweger, Angelina Jolie and Jack Black, among others. Smith plays a smooth-talking fish in cahoots with a shark, Black, who'd rather play than prey.

A month later comes "The Incredibles," Pixar's first film since "Finding Nemo" and writer-director Brad Bird's first since the acclaimed "Iron Giant." The story of a family of superheroes living incognito (Dad's in insurance claims) it opens Nov. 5, with Mr. and Mrs. Incredible voiced by Craig T. Nelson and Holly Hunter.

Just five days later, director Robert Zemeckis' version of the Chris Van Allsburg book "The Polar Express," co-scripted with William Broyles Jr., pulls into theaters. One thing that sets the Christmas-themed "Express" apart from the other two computer-animated films is that the characters were animated using motion-capture technology that used actors wearing sensors to provide the basis for animation. In addition to five voice roles including the narrator, Tom Hanks also provided movement for five.

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