Fans Rejoice – Pixar Isn’t Pulling a George Lucas

     September 28, 2008

Earlier this year, Pixar announced plans to re-release “Toy Story” and “Toy Story 2” in 3D. The plan is to release the first movie October 2nd, 2009 and the second on February 12, 2010. The purpose of this re-release is to get people ready for the third “Toy Story” movie – which arrives in theaters June 18th, 2010. In case you didn’t know, the third film is being done in 3D.

Anyway, while we all knew the films were coming, what no one knew was whether or not Pixar would be pulling a George Lucas and changing the movies for this special return to cinemas.

So when I visited Pixar the other day for a “Wall-e” home video push (much more on that later) and got to talk with “Wall-e” producers Jim Morris and Lindsay Collins, this question was high on my list, along with a few others.

As you can read below, Jim told me that the films are not being changed and “There’s no new shots. There’s no new nothing. It’s exactly the same movie you saw before.”

While cyberspace and fandom went crazy when George “I’m out of my mind” Lucas changed/tweaked/edited and pissed on his classic trilogy for it’s return to theaters and it’s home video release, I think it’s important for all of us to take a moment and commend Pixar for leaving their classic films alone. Thank you Pixar. We all appreciate it.

Anyhow, in the next day or two I’ll have more Pixar news, but you’ll have to wait for my big write-up until the first week of November, as they’ve asked us to hold off writing about our trip till closer to the DVD/Blu-ray release of “Wall-e.”

Finally, while this interview was done in roundtable form, I was the one who asked these questions…so I listed Collider…

Collider: There’s been a lot of talk about you guys retro-fitting older movies like “Toy Story” and “Toy Story 2” into 3D. And I wanted to know if you’ve seen any of the footage and what does it look like?

Jim Morris: I have. It looks great and one of the reasons it looks great is actually our renderers are much better now than when we made the movie’s originally, so they actually have a higher level of detail to them and so forth. Just the shaders and the way they render. Look, those movies weren’t originally 3D movies, of course, so to an extent we’re taking the opportunity of 3D to get them back out in theatres so people can see them and so forth. So in those particular movies we’re not exploring the aesthetic challenges of 3D or anything. We’re making…we’re sort of dimentionalizing those movies so they’re entertaining.

Collider: I have to ask you, George Lucas is famous for going in and completely changing and fixing things.

Jim Morris: Not a thing. We’re not changing a thing in the movies. We’re not changing the timing, story, pacing, the shots, anything and so what we’re doing is going in an making a 3D version because you can set the conversions and the ocular offset and there are a number of things in making a 3D version. We’re doing it that completely preserves the original movie in terms of everything about the story. There’s no new shots. There’s no new nothing. It’s exactly the same movie you saw before.

Collider: If I can ask one more thing? IMAX became a big thing after “The Dark Knight” this summer and really revolutionized what cinema going can be. Is there any thoughts at Pixar to incorporating the IMAX format into your movies, 3D all that other stuff in the future?

Jim Morris: Well, we’ve always talked about doing an IMAX stuff and never had it come quite to fruition. We’ve haven’t found the right thing. We’re not specifically talking about an IMAX release at this point in time but we would certainly agree with you that “The Dark Knight” stuff was really…great and innovative in that direction. 3D, you know “UP” is coming out as our first 3D film and is the first one to try to make I guess I’d say more aesthetic use of the stereo as opposed to…

Lindsay Collins: And “Toy Story 3”.

Jim Morris: Yeah and “Toy Story 3”.

Collider: So “Toy Story 3” is definitely 3D?

Jim Morris: Oh yeah.

Lindsay Collins: Both. I mean “Toy Story 1” and “2” are being re-released only in 3D. But “Toy Story 3” is being released both in standard def and 3D.

Unless there happened to be 6,000 screens by that time.

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