November 22, 2009 |
The Disney animation team of Ron Clements and John Musker wrote and directed the 1989 blockbuster musical fairy tale "The Little Mermaid," and followed that up with 1992's "Aladdin" and 1997's "Hercules." Seven years after their last Disney film, 2002's "Treasure Planet," the two are back with the new musical fairy tale, "The Princess and the Frog," set in New Orleans in the 1920s and featuring the studio's first animated African American heroine. Randy Newman supplies the lovely ballads and swinging ragtime jazz score.
May 7, 2006 |
JOHN LASSETER holds the keys to the kingdom. He really does. As part of the Disney-Pixar deal, the "Cars" director and Pixar executive vice president now has creative control not only over Disney's feature animation division but also its theme parks. Having worked on Disneyland's Jungle Cruise ride as a young man, the Magic Kingdom is familiar territory to Lasseter. Still, changes at the theme parks may take months to spot.
December 9, 2009
With its critically acclaimed new release "The Princess and the Frog," Disney returns to its hand-drawn animation heyday. The man making that push? The same guy who helped usher in the computer animation takeover with the 1995 blockbuster "Toy Story." John Lasseter, the guiding force at Pixar Animation Studios, admits he was dismayed when Disney and DreamWorks and other studios decided to close up their 2-D hand-drawn divisions earlier this decade after several such films performed poorly.
June 18, 2013 |
It wasn't that long ago when Disney was struggling to revive a moribund animation division while its powerhouse subsidiary Pixar was on a serious roll. Things look a little different these days. “Cars 2” and “Brave,” both released under the Pixar name, were just decently received and not considered the home runs that their predecessors were. “Monsters University,” a sequel out this month, is shaping up as a movie with some similarly mixed reactions. Meanwhile, Disney's own animation division - admittedly with the help of John Lasseter and Pixar brass - is coming off a major hit with last fall's “Wreck-It Ralph.” The company will look to repeat the feat this year with the 3-D “Frozen” a movie co-directed by the writer of 'Wreck-It Ralph,” Jennifer Lee. The Disney film reimagines Hans Christian Andersen's “The Snow Queen” as an animated tale about a girl (voiced by Kristen Bell)
March 19, 2014 |
A decade after the titular superhero family of "The Incredibles" donned their spandex suits to save the day, Disney announced that its animation studio Pixar is working on a sequel to the Oscar-winning movie. The sequel was announced by Disney Chairman and Chief Executive Robert Iger during the company's annual shareholder meeting in Portland, Ore. Iger also revealed that Pixar is planning a third movie in the popular "Cars" franchise. Written and directed by Brad Bird, "The Incredibles" tells of a superpowered-family living in a world where superheroes have been banned from fighting crime.
December 17, 2012 |
Hollywood isn't seeing as much green in 3-D re-releases as it had hoped. Considered an easy new revenue source after the 3-D re-release of Walt Disney Studios' "The Lion King" popped out of the screen and grossed nearly $100 million last year, most such follow-ups have landed with a thud in 2012. Disney's "Beauty and the Beast" and "Finding Nemo" were both disappointments, grossing $47.6 million and $40.7 million, respectively, in the U.S. and Canada. Twentieth Century Fox and Lucasfilm's "Star Wars: The Phantom Menace" took in a similarly unimpressive $43.5 million in February.
June 27, 2011 |
Pixar, arguably Hollywood's most admired movie studio, has made its first lemon as far as the critics are concerned. "Cars 2," director John Lasseter's sequel to his 2006 ode to gearheads, has collected the worst reviews of any of the 12 films in the animation studio's 25-year-history. "It actually hurts to knock one of [Pixar's] movies — something I've never done before," wrote Indiewire critic Leonard Maltin. "But then, I've never gotten a headache watching any of their previous films.
January 15, 2013 |
Long stuck in low gear, Walt Disney Co.'s video game division is aiming for infinity. The entertainment conglomerate on Tuesday unveiled plans for a high-stakes initiative called Disney Infinity that could determine the success or failure of its video game business over the next few years. Infinity will enable players to buy toys based on famous Disney characters like Mr. Incredible and "Pirates of the Caribbean's" Jack Sparrow and “scan” them into a game. Each character can have adventures in his or her own environment - like Sparrow on the high seas -- or together in a "playground" mode where players create new worlds.