Despite their vast (and sometimes controversial) empire, I will always associate the name “Disney” with animation. As I’ve said many times before on this site, I grew up with some of Disney’s best animated features with Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, and The Lion King still being some of my favorite movies (and they need to be on Blu-ray, stat!).
But it all came so close to never happening. The upcoming documentary Waking Sleeping Beauty explains how Disney Animation went to the verge of being shut down after a string of flops to staging a resurgence that yielded some of the best animated movies of all-time. The trailer for the film has now come online and now I can’t wait to see this movie. It looks like a warts-and-all documentary mixed with a feel-good comeback narrative, and I already love honest behind-the-scenes docs of how movies, good or bad, get made.
Hit the jump to check out the trailer along with the official synopsis. Waking Sleeping Beauty hits theaters on March 26th.
Click over to Apple.com to see the trailer in HD.
From 1984 to 1994, a perfect storm of people and circumstances changed the face of animation forever.
Waking Sleeping Beauty is no fairytale. It is a story of clashing egos, out of control budgets, escalating tensions… and one of the most extraordinary creative periods in animation history.
Director Don Hahn and producer Peter Schneider, key players at Walt Disney Studios Feature Animation department during the mid1980s, offer a behind-the-magic glimpse of the turbulent times the Animation Studio was going through and the staggering output of hits that followed over the next ten years. Artists polarized between the hungry young innovators and the old guard who refused to relinquish control, mounting tensions due to a string of box office flops, and warring studio heads create the backdrop for this fascinating story told with a unique and candid perspective from those that were there. Through interviews, internal memos, home movies, and a cast of characters featuring Michael Eisner, Jeffrey Katzenberg, and Roy Disney, alongside an amazing array of talented artists that includes Don Bluth, John Lasseter, and Tim Burton, Waking Sleeping Beauty shines a light on Disney Animation’s darkest hours, greatest joys and its improbable renaissance.
An Official Selection at the 2009 Telluride Film Festival, Toronto International Film Festival and winner of the Audience Award at the Hamptons International Film Festival, Waking Sleeping Beauty is directed by Don Hahn, and produced by Peter Schneider and Don Hahn.