Directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller Provide an Update on the LEGO Movie

     March 3, 2012


In all honestly, I think Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is one of the most entertaining movies of the past few years. I was taken aback by how goofy, funny, and lovable the whole film was, and a great deal of credit goes to directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller. The duo recently made their live-action debut on the much buzzed-about comedy 21 Jump Street, and they’re set to next tackle a feature film version of everyone’s favorite construction toy, Lego. Warner Bros. greenlighted the project back in November with Lord, Miller, and Robot Chicken helmer Chris McKay set to direct. The film will apparently be an action-adventure animation/live-action hybrid with about 80% comprised of animation.

Steve got the chance to speak with Lord and Miller at the press junket for 21 Jump Street in New York City today, and the duo gave a brief update on where they’re at with Lego and what the development process has been like. Hit the jump to see what they had to say.

phil-lord-chris-miller-lego-movieWhen asked for an update on the status of Lego, Miller said that they’re getting ready to dive into production:

“We’re starting production on a Lego movie for Warner Bros. We’re working with this guy Chris McKay who directed Robot Chicken, and he’s our co-director and he’s amazing.”

Lord added that they’re gearing up to start casting their live-action characters, and spoke a bit about the ridiculously fun process of developing the movie:

“We’re going out to cast very soon. It’s just playing with LEGOs all day and basically our character design is ‘What if we put this head on this body, and we could give it these legs from this horse’ ”

Miller provided a brief “tidbit” about the film, confirming that we’ll see some familiar LEGO characters as well as original ones:

“I will give you one piece of tidbit which is that there are some IP characters, LEGO characters, but we can’t say who they are (laughs). That’s not really a tidbit, but it’s not just all original characters, there are some from other things that you might recognize.”

lego-movie-harry-potterThat’s not really much to go on, but with Lord and Miller at the helm of the project (and the addition of McKay), I think we’re probably in for a really fun movie. I’m not entirely sure what Miller means by IP characters, but I think he may be talking about the Intellectual Property characters like LEGO Star Wars, LEGO Harry Potter, etc. If that’s the case, I’d love to see LEGO Dumbledore or LEGO Batman randomly pop up in Lord and Miller’s Lego universe. Again, this isn’t confirmed, but with Warner Bros. behind both the Lego movie and Harry Potter it would make sense. When Steve previously talked to Lord, he said they were hoping to incorporate characters from properties like LEGO Star Wars and LEGO Harry Potter, so it sounds like they may have worked it out.

Lego-movie-imageAnimal Logic, the studio behind Happy Feet and Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole, is set to tackle the animation side of the film, so not only will Lego (hopefully) maintain the goofy sensibility of Lord and Miller, but we can safely assume that it’ll be a pretty fantastic visual ride. During Steve’s previous interview with Lord, he described their approach as “super charged stop-motion, something like if Michael Bay kidnapped Henry Selick to make a movie for him.” Furthermore, he previously said they plan on having the entire Lego world made out of LEGOs:

“I would say the vast majority of the film takes place in an immersive all-LEGO environment… It’s going to take place in a universe that’s made entirely out of LEGO to the point where if there’s water or clouds or like a big explosion, that will be made out of animated LEGOs.”

As the directors are gearing up to find their cast, hopefully we get some more information plot-wise soon. You can watch the portion of Steve’s interview where Lord and Miller talk about Lego below, and look out for the full interview closer to the release of 21 Jump Street.


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