If you didn’t stick around in HALL H after the mostly-fantastic Warner Bros. presentation (sorry, Book of Eli but you made some really damaging mistakes), when you damn well knew that Disney-Pixar, the best folks making movies today, was following directly after, then there’s no hope for you. I don’t care if you were tired or if you had to be somewhere else or if you wanted to collect a rare item by fight monsters in random encounters. You should have glued your ass to your seat and stuck around because obviously, they had some amazing stuff.
Hit the jump to find out what they had and how great it was:
TOY STORY & TOY STORY 2 in Disney Digital 3D
The presentation opens right away with the opening of “Toy Story 2” except this time it’s in 3D. I’m sure you could show just about any scene from the first two movies in 3D and we would probably love it, but kicking off with such a fantastic action scene complete with a booming sound mix really highlighted how well they’ve pulled this off. Sitting at the front of Hall H, I could actually feel my clothes shake. But more than that, it immediately reminded me of how much I love that film. I can’t remember the last time I watched it but it’s always been one of my favorite films from them and seeing Buzz shout lines like “Not today, Zurg!” or hopping on floating plates to “Thus Sprak Zarathustra” transported me back ten years and I was a 15-year-old kid again watching one of the best movies I’ve ever seen during the Thanksgiving weekend with my parents.
The scene ends with the great reveal that it’s actually Rex playing a Buzz Lightyear videogame and complaining that he can’t work the controller with his tiny arms. The scene fades out, the lights come up, and Disney-Pixar Animation Chief Creative Officer and the audience applauds as loudly as they can. He tells us that Pixar movies have always been in 3D; it’s just that the theatres are finally catching up.
He tells us that we’re the first to see that trailer and that both films will play as a double-feature on October 2nd for two-weeks only. This is a fantastic surprise to me since I thought “Toy Story” was coming out in November of this year and “Toy Story 2” was coming out sometime in 2010. Oh, and they’ll be playing a double-feature (“With a bathroom break!” Lasseter assures us). Then Lasseter says what I’m already thinking: when you think of all the kids born in the last 14 years since “Toy Story” came out and all that may not have seen the films, they should all go this movie event. You might think it will be a little on the long side but trust me: after seeing the first “Toy Story” they won’t want to leave without seeing the next film and then asking why there isn’t another one and you have to explain that the next one will be available next summer. Then they’ll be really upset and you’ll have to buy them a bunch of “Toy Story” toys to calm them down (and maybe some for yourself as well).
Speaking of “Toy Story 3”, Lasseter then brought out the film’s director, Lee Unkrich and they talk at great length about how his name is constantly mispronounced as “Leon Krich” and no one in the audience cares because we want to see some damn “Toy Story 3” footage. Sadly, they have none of that but I think they had something even better but I’ll get to that in a moment.
First, the two talk about how they tried to find a story for “Toy Story 3” (trying to find a story first; absolutely incredible). They knew that at the end of “Toy Story 2” Woody had made peace with Andy going off to college. That’s where “Toy Story 3” begins as Andy goes off to college and Woody has to learn that just because you say you’ve made peace with something, it’s different when you actually have to face it. There’s a different emotional core at the heart of “Toy Story 3”, explains Unkrich, rather than just going on a new adventure (although I’m sure that will happen too).
They say the full voice cast is back (I almost want to shout out, “What about Jim Varney!” I know we’ve talked about the Pixar magic but if they brought that guy back from the dead we should be serious concerned that Pixar has turned to the dark arts because if they do that as well as they do movies, we’re all gonna die) and Barbie will have a much bigger role this time around. “But if you got Barbie…” says Unkrich, “you’ve got to have Ken.” He officially reveals that Michael Keaton will voice Ken and that when you hear it, you’ll never think of another voice for Ken ever again. And then we get to hear it in an amazing little short film.
While they didn’t bring any “Toy Story 3″ footage, they did bring a 70s/”Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous”-style video interview of Ken and even though it was in 2D (“Toy Story 3” is in 3D), it was absolutely hilarious. It hits almost every joke ever made about Ken from his silly accessories to his silly little smile. It’s almost “Robot Chicken”-esque except they don’t include the joke about Ken having no penis, but c’mon. They’re Pixar and there are kids in the audience! I imagine that the furthest they’ll take this is Ken trying to hit on Barbie and when she reciprocates, he retreats because of certain, shall we say, deficiencies. Oh wait, I already said it: he has no penis.
Ken ends the interview when the off-screen interviewer asks how Ken feels about claims he’s just a glorified Barbie accessory. I really hope that Pixar puts this footage online or show it in October with the 3D “Toy Story” double-feature (although I think they might have a full trailer for “Toy Story 3D” although that’s just speculation on my part).