Monday, April 2, 2012

Brave

This is our first sort of fairytale,” John Lasseter told an eager crowd on the of Disney’s D23 Expo in Anaheim, California, “This is our first period piece. This is our first female main character. This is Brave.”
The first clip showcased featured the lead, Merida (Kelly Macdonald) riding on her giant horse through the forest, shooting down targets hanging from the trees with her bow and arrow. The horse stops short of a log, throwing her into the mud. In anger, she throws a clod of mud at the horse’s nose, and he snorts it back to his face. She approaches him, angrily, but then kisses his muzzle.
Lasseter was joined on stage by the film’s director, Mark Andrews (clad in a kilt) and producer, Katherine Sarafian. They pointed out that they had two different research trips to Scotland to get everything down.

“We’re inspired by all the stories that are already there,” Andrews told ComingSoon.net backstage after the presentation, “There are stories about every landscape and every tree and every rock. It was inspiring to try and fuse that idea of how it connects us all.”
Sarafian told the crowd that Scotland’s phenomena of blue bog gas, called Wil-o’-the-wisp, will feature prominently in the story. The wisps have the power to “change your fate”, and lead Merida to the cottage of a witch. Seeing this as an opportunity to get away from being married, she insists the witch cast a spell. Naturally, everything goes wrong and the spell starts a chain of events that brings the highlands closer to war.
Concept art for the witch in BRAVE
Macdonald and fellow voice talent Kevin McKidd then took to the stage. McKidd pulls double duty in the film, voicing both Lord. MacGuffin and his incomprehensible son, Young MacGuffin.

“He’s a lovely guy and his heart is in the right place,” McKidd told us, “but no one can work out what he’s saying because he has a strong Scottish accent.”

The next clip featured King Fergus (Billy Connolly), who has called Merida’s suitors together to compete in a game of her choosing, the winner will receive her hand in marriage.

“[Merida] is reeling against her mother,” Macdonald said backstage, “She doesn’t want a suitor. She’s quite happy and wants to live her life, but her mother is trying to create this perfect princess. It’s a bit of their battle and their reconnection.”
Concept Art for Queen Elinor

“Merida sees an opportunity here,” Andrews told the audience in reference to the clip, “Do you know what game she picks?”

To which the crowd shouted back, “Archery!”

Unfinished, the scene played with some parts featured only as animatics and others roughly rendered. Most of the parts with Merida in them played beautifully. As the suitors shoot their arrows, Merida and King Fergus laugh about their ineptitude.

First is Macguffin. He timidly shoots his arrow and barely hits the target. Next is the Gene Simmons-esque son of Lord Macintosh, who fares better than Macguffin but misses the bullseye. He angrily tosses his bow into the crowd, where a young girl shouts “I caught it! Yay!” Finally, the aptly named young Dingwall goes next, barely enough brains in him to knock the bow. King Fergus angrily shouts at him to get on with him, and the spooked by looses the arrow and miraculously gets the bullseye.
Enraged, Merida appears on the field and shouts that she will be competing for her own hand. As she gets a perfect bullseye in the first target, her mother screams at her to get stop. Merida ignores her, and goes to the second one. At Dingwall’s, she not only splits the arrow, but her arrow cuts all the way through to the scaffolding of the target. Merida then turns to face her furious mother and the clip ends.
“We have our own take on Scottish lore,” Sarafian said of the overall tone of Brave, “It’s really Pixar lore, but it’s set in Scotland and its inspired by Scottish storytelling and designed to be a story that’s perfectly set in that landscape.”

Brave hits theaters on June 22, 2012, right after Prometheus :)) Oh summer...how I love thee.

42 comments:

  1. I'm gonna love this movie!!! A Scottish lass with big blue eyes and long red hair??

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  2. This is going to be another hit for the studio. And rightfully so. I can't wait!

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  3. I can't wait to see this as well! (:

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  4. interesting B
    check out mine to at GAC a-z

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  5. So looking forward to this. Scotland is fantastic so a brilliant back drop for a movie.

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  6. Pixar is great. This looks like a good one. I also love your description of the "Gene Simmons-esque" character.

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  7. I have GOT to see this film. Thanks for the tip

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  8. I can't wait for Brave - it's looking for be an awesome movie, and possibly a contender for my favourite :)

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  9. This one is going to be cool! Can't wait.

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  10. I'm so excited for this movie!!!!!!!!

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  11. This looks like a great movie. The lead character has beautiful hair and seems to have a really interesting personality!

    Beautiful graphics!

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  12. I'm gonna definitely be seeing this one.

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  13. So is MacGuffin the MacGuffin on the movie? (To get that joke you need to know about that film device coined by Hitchcock.)

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  14. Hey, you've been nominated for an award on my blog. Just thought I'd let you know.

    -Matt (mattswritinglair.blogspot.com)

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  15. Now I want to see it! Can't believe how much work goes into making an animated film.

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  16. I'm really looking forward to this one, as are my girls. I think one could argue it's taken too long for Pixar to have a female lead, but I'm glad it's finally happening.

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  17. I am SO excited to see this movie. I want to my niece to see it but I'll go on my own if I have to.

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  18. I'm SO stoked for this!

    It's got all the key elements: Red hair, scottish accent, and... yeah, guess that's it. *winks*

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  19. Saw this trailer in the theatre...it looks so good! A Scottish fairytale, finally!

    When that one clan leader raises his kilt and yells, "Feast your eyes!" it cracked me up.

    It's going to be a great summer, and I can't wait to take my kiddos to see Brave.

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  20. Oh, looks like a fun one! I like the idea of a female lead with a theme of BRAVE, and I LOVE an incoherent old Scottish man *snort*

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  21. I'm excited for this movie! Thanks for the preview and information. Anything British already has my vote.

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  22. I have to see this! It sounds amazing.

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  23. I'll say I learned it first at Michael Offut!

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  24. I am so excited about this movie! Brave and ParaNorman are two of my most anticipated movies of 2012!

    AWESOME challenge theme! I love your A and B posts!

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  25. This is my kind of fairytale. My daughter needs more films like these. Thanks for the info!

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  26. This one looks good. There are way too many good movies coming out this summer. I'll never be able to see them all. I wish they would have released some of these awesome movies sooner to spread them out some.

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  27. OMG, she has great hair!!!!!!

    Haven't heard of this movie before--thanks for the info. Can't wait to see it! :)

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  28. I can't wait for this to come out! It looks so good! I'm hoping to take my kids on opening day!

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  29. I'm really looking forward to this one. I mean, really looking forward to it. I think I need to get in contact with m y contact at Pixar...

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  30. I have not heard of this movie! Thanks for the post, or I would have probably never knew about it!

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  31. This looks awesome. I love anything set in Scotland, there's something so fascinating about that place. Great post.

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  32. This will be one that I know the girls will go and see then tell me everything that happens before I ever get the DVD.

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  33. Brave looks like a movie that shouldn't be missed.

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  34. I so want to see this!

    You have the bestest A to Z posts, so far!!!

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  35. I love Pixar.

    I'd say more, but it's late and I only just got to read this.

    Also: Rusty really owes you -- and you'r in 4th place in the Star Wars Blogathon:

    http://www.troublewithroy.com

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  36. This looks interesting... something I'd love to watch.

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  37. I'm sold. Hope they show it in D-BOX.

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  38. I want to see this. Perhaps I can borrow the niece and nephew, although the niece might be too old for it. Then again, I did see WALL-E sans young ones, so who knows?

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  39. as you know I adore the film, it will be the best film of the year, I'm almost sure :) And I'm having a third spotlight on the film with some beautiful pics this Sunday :)

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