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Sphero and Disney•Pixar Put Pedal to the Metal with App-Enabled Ultimate Lightning McQueen

Sphero and Disney•Pixar Put Pedal to the Metal with App-Enabled Ultimate Lightning McQueen

Sphero and Disney•Pixar Put Pedal to the Metal with App-Enabled Ultimate Lightning McQueen

Sphero announced Ultimate Lightning McQueen—an app-enabled, interactive race car that uses the newest advancements in technology to create the most lifelike Lightning McQueen product ever, just in time for Disney•Pixar’s “Cars 3” in theaters June 16. Packed with animatronic features that embody Lightning’s supercharged personality, Sphero’s Ultimate Lightning McQueen features hybrid performance specs including driving, drifting, racing and reactive touch, allowing fans to connect with the character like never before.

“From the beginning, we wanted to make Ultimate Lightning McQueen feel as real as he does in the film,” said Paul Berberian, CEO of Sphero. “In order to create a scaled down version of his big personality, we worked closely with the team at Pixar to ensure we were getting his nuances just right – such as leaning into turns and expressive facial and body movements.”

Fans can hit the gas with Ultimate Lightning McQueen by simply connecting to the car’s app (available on iOS and Android devices) and watch him respond to commands. With animated eyes, an animatronic mouth, and emotive suspension, users will train for their next big race by playing games and experiencing other interactive features. When not in training mode, users can relax while watching Disney•Pixar’s “Cars with Ultimate Lightning McQueen in “Watch With Me” mode, where he reacts to the movie in real-time.

Hybrid Performance Specs:

       
Driving     Emotive suspension allows Ultimate Lightning McQueen to move like a champion
Drifting     Drift and do donuts Ultimate Lightning McQueen-style with authentic movement
Reactive Touch     Master Ultimate Lightning McQueen’s latest moves with a simple tap
Build Strategy     Match wits with Ultimate Lightning McQueen and sharpen your skills through a pit stop-inspired mini-game
Acting Studio     Build custom scripts that bring existing animations to life
       

“Sphero continues to delight fans with their incredibly lifelike replications of our favorite characters,” said Josh Silverman, Executive Vice President, Global Licensing, Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media. “With Ultimate Lightning McQueen, “Cars” fans and families of all ages can interact with the character in a whole new way and experience the “Cars” story through technologies that weren’t even imaginable ten years ago.”

Under The Hood:

       

6 Motors

    One controlling the animatronic mouth, two for emotive suspension, two for the front tires and one for steering
5 Capacitive Touch Panels     Ultimate Lightning McQueen will physically respond to a tap on his roof, hood, both side doors and his rear window

3 Processors

    Bluetooth Smart and WiFi allow for updates and app control, while the main processor controls the eye animations and more
Custom- Built Trapezoidal Screen     Ultimate Lightning McQueen’s windshield eyes are actually an LCD screen, allowing for live animation renders
Automatic Head and Tail Lights     Ambient light sensor allows the front and rear LEDs to adjust based on the light in the room

Versatile Tires

    The tire materials allow Ultimate Lightning McQueen to drift on hard surfaces, average carpet conditions and at slow speeds
Custom Speaker and Speaker Box Design     Ultimate Lightning McQueen’s integrated speaker system creates crystal clear audio
Custom-Built Animations     Sphero created custom animations to make Ultimate Lightning McQueen’s eyes as emotive as the character in the movie
       

Ultimate Lightning McQueen is available starting today on Sphero.com, Disney Store.com and other select retail partners, MSRP $299.99.

DISNEY•PIXAR’S “CARS 3” Fuels TWO ALL NEW Soundtracks for the Film!

DISNEY•PIXAR'S "CARS 3" Fuels TWO ALL NEW Soundtracks for the Film!

DISNEY•PIXAR’S “CARS 3” Fuels TWO ALL NEW Soundtracks for the Film!

As Lightning McQueen heads to the big screen alongside his new tech-savvy trainer Cruz Ramirez, Disney•Pixar’s “Cars 3” fuels two soundtrack releases—both available from Walt Disney Records on June 16 as the film opens in theaters nationwide. The Cars 3 Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, features eight tracks—including original songs by Dan Auerbach and ZZ Ward, four covers by various artists, and two instrumental tracks from Brad Paisley. The Cars 3 Original Score Composed and Conducted by Randy Newman reunites the “Cars” franchise with the Oscar®-winning composer. Both soundtracks are available for pre-order tomorrow, May 19, 2017.

“Lightning McQueen is on the journey of a lifetime—traveling cross-country, revisiting the past and looking into his own heart and soul to answer some big questions,” said “Cars 3” director Brian Fee. “Just like the music in the first two ‘Cars’ movies, the songs and score in this film really help support the story we are telling.”

CARS MOTION PICTURE SOUNDTRACK
The Cars 3 Original Motion Picture Soundtrack features “Run That Race,” an original song written and performed by nine-time Grammy® winner Dan Auerbach that can be heard as the movie opens. “The song is about never giving up and always trying your best,” said Auerbach, who met with filmmakers prior to penning the song. “They showed me the storyboards and ran through the plot. I was able to read some of the dialogue and from there I had enough to piece together a story in my mind for the song.”

Auerbach will release Waiting on a Song, his second solo album, on June 2 via his new label, Easy Eye Sound.  

The soundtrack also features “Ride,” an original end-credit song performed by Hollywood Records artist ZZ Ward, featuring musician Gary Clark Jr. Written by Ward, Evan Bogart and Dave Bassett, the song was released by Walt Disney Records as a digital single on April 14. It was performed live by Ward April 17 on ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars.” Ward’s sophomore album, The Storm, will be released June 30.

The soundtrack also features four cover songs, including two bonus tracks.*

  • “Kings Highway,” originally released in 1991 by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, makes a comeback courtesy of 23-year-old British singer-songwriter James Bay.
  • Bruce Springsteen’s 1984 hit “Glory Days” gets a modern-day makeover by Grammy®-nominated performer Andra Day, who voices Sweet Tea in the film—a performer in the Cotter Pin with a hairstyle reminiscent of Day’s signature look.  
  • *The Beatles’ classic 1965 song “Drive My Car” is back on the road, compliments of Hollywood Records artist Jorge Blanco.
  • *”Freeway of Love,” made famous in 1985 by Aretha Franklin, is performed for the soundtrack by actress Lea DeLaria, who also provides the voice of Miss Fritter, a school bus-turned-demolition-derby-queen in “Cars 3.”

Three-time Grammy®-winning singer, songwriter, guitarist and entertainer Brad Paisley, who has 24 No. 1 singles under his belt, was called on to create two instrumental tracks that are featured on the Cars 3 Original Motion Picture Soundtrack. “Truckaroo” and “Thunder Hollow Breakdown” accompany the film’s action-packed Crazy 8 demolition derby sequence that puts Lightning and Cruz in the midst of total chaos. “Brad Paisley was part of both ‘Cars’ and ‘Cars 2,'” said Tom MacDougall, executive vice president of music at Disney. “We knew he could have some fun with a demolition derby, and he just killed it. His down-home country tracks really add to the scene’s action and humor.”

From Walt Disney Records, the Cars 3 Original Motion Picture Soundtrack is available June 16 and can be pre-ordered digitally HERE and via Amazon HERE.

CARS 3 ORIGINAL SCORE SOUNDTRACK
Newman, who was behind the Oscar®-winning music in Disney·Pixar’s “Toy Story 3” and “Monsters, Inc.,” composed the score for the first “Cars” movie and penned the Oscar®-nominated song “Our Town.” For “Cars 3,” Newman created a score that reflects the heart and high-octane action of the film—21 tracks are included on the soundtrack. “Randy has a real connection to the ‘Cars’ world,” says MacDougall. “His ability to capture the feeling of this film, its characters, locations and the Americana theme throughout is extraordinary—the music is so naturally fluid and inspired. It really feels like Randy is coming home with this score.”

Newman used a 110-piece orchestra to record the score. The Cars 3 Original Score Composed and Conducted by Randy Newman is available June 16 from Walt Disney Records and can be pre-ordered HERE.

Autotrader Announces Collaboration with Disney•Pixar’s “Cars 3”

Disney*Pixar's "Cars 3"

Disney*Pixar’s “Cars 3”

Autotrader, the most visited third-party car shopping site[1], launched a television advertising campaign in collaboration with the highly anticipated film from Disney•Pixar’s, “Cars 3,” which cruises into theaters nationwide in 3D on June 16, 2017.

In the spirit of the film and centered around Autotrader’s personalized search functionality, the 30-second Autotrader television spot features the well-known cast of characters from Disney•Pixar’s”Cars 3″ showcasing their distinctive personalities. Autotrader rallies viewers to find the car that best fits their lifestyle. The spot concludes with the tagline – “Every car has a personality. Find the one that fits yours at Autotrader.”

“Collaborating with Disney•Pixar’s ‘Cars 3’ was a natural fit for Autotrader for more than the obvious reason of the spotlight our iconic brands share within the automotive space,” says Jessica Stafford, vice president of marketing, Autotrader. “Much like the Cars franchise, Autotrader shares a personal connection with people of all ages and at all life stages, and we feel this is reflected in the playful content we developed with the Disney and Pixar teams to further drive excitement for our brand and the upcoming premiere of ‘Cars 3’.” 

As the industry’s most influential listing site[2], and with 4.5 million average daily vehicle listings[3], Autotrader is making it easier than ever for consumers to find the right car and the right deal. Whether shopping for a lightning-fast sports car or a reliable truck with a tow package, Autotrader is there to help consumers research and locate their next vehicle. Plus, with the brand’s easy and convenient Save Car tool, Autotrader keeps an eye on a car that a shopper has saved and will send email or text alerts with important details like if the price has dropped, if there are new incentives offered like cash back rebates, 0% financing and more, providing immediate notification if the deal has gotten even better.

The Autotrader “Cars 3” 30-second television spot will make its television debut during the 2017 NBA Playoffs on TNT, with subsequent national television advertising appearing across a number of sports and entertainment programs targeting key demographic groups, such as Millennials, Hispanics and families. In addition, the campaign will be supported through digital media and audio channels, including Hulu and ESPN Deportes Radio, as well as on the Autotrader.com homepage and the brand’s social channels.

For more information about Autotrader and the “Cars 3” promotion, visit Autotrader.com or like Autotrader on Facebook: Facebook.com/Autotrader.

Disney*Pixar’s “Cars 3” Fuels Up For Nationwide Tour and Kicks Off at Disney Springs

Disney*Pixar's "Cars 3" Fuels Up For Nationwide Tour

Disney*Pixar’s “Cars 3” Fuels Up For Nationwide Tour

Disney•Pixar’s “Cars 3” is hitting the road this month with Road to the Races, a nationwide tour inviting fans of #95 to gear up for the upcoming big-screen release. Life-size, character look-alikes of five-time Piston-Cup champion Lightning McQueen, tech-savvy trainer Cruz Ramirez and the sleek next-gen racer Jackson Storm will be rolling into 27 cities coast to coast to celebrate the new movie, which opens June 16, 2017.

“We are going to kick off the tour at Disney Springs in Walt Disney World on Thursday, March 23,” said Lylle Breier, senior vice president, worldwide marketing partnerships and special events for the Walt Disney Studios. “There will be fun activities for the whole family—plus a sneak peek of the movie.”

The roster of cities includes Miami, Dallas, Chicago, Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Denver and Los Angeles, among others—the full list is available at CARS3tour.com. The “Road to the Races” nationwide tour wraps up in California with a visit to NASCAR at Sonoma at the Sonoma Raceway June 24-25, 2017, and the life-size character cars will also roll onto the red carpet for the “Cars 3” world premiere on Saturday, June 10, 2017.

A host of sponsors have signed on to support the tour, which includes a variety of activities.

  • Alamo Rent A CarSM is hosting a street art booth and will bring “Cars 3” to life with a giant coloring mural featuring Lightning McQueen and friends, along with a color pencil pack souvenir.  Owned and operated by Enterprise Holdings, Alamo Rent A Car offers low rental rates and a hassle-free customer experience at the most popular travel destinations around the world. 
  • Coppertone® is creating a racer pit crew that encourages visitors to take part in a tire-changing activity and photo-sharing opportunity. A leader in the sun care industry, Coppertone is made by Bayer HealthCare, LLC.
  • Crest® and Oral-B® celebrate the Road to the Races tour, providing fans with an opportunity to create a digital postcard with Lightning McQueen and win “Cars”-themed oral care prizes from the Piston Cup prize wheel. Crest and Oral-B are the first step to enjoying a lifetime of healthy smiles.
  • Dole®, the leader in fresh, quality produce, invites visitors to fuel up and recharge their batteries, sample high-octane fruit and vegetable smoothies, collect “Cars 3”-inspired recipes and discover how Dole and Disney are working together to make healthy living fun and easy for families. For a chance to win “Cars 3” prizes this summer, check out www.dole.com/Cars3.
  • Mattel presents an interactive play area, which sends Lightning McQueen and other racers down the gravity drop and launches them into action in new play sets that feature locations from the movie. Also on display will be a collection of die cast racers from past and present. Mattel is the leading global childhood development and play company.

Fans will be able to catch a sneak peek of the movie in the Cinetransformer Mobile Movie Theater. Visitors will also be able to take photos with the life-size character cars.

In addition, the sports national youth program NASCAR Acceleration Nation will display the science behind NASCAR racing, and elements from the NASCAR Hall of Fame will allow attendees to get up close and personal with the history of NASCAR.  

Mack Trucks, Inc. will transport the life-size character cars on the coast-to-coast tour.  

Schedules are subject to change without notice, and attractions may be unavailable for unscheduled reasons.

Learn to Draw Dozens of Disney and Pixar Characters in Disney Art Academy

Learn to Draw Dozens of Disney and Pixar Characters in Disney Art Academy

Learn to Draw Dozens of Disney and Pixar Characters in Disney Art Academy

Calling all budding artists and Disney fans! In the Disney Art Academy game, launching exclusively for the Nintendo 3DS family of systems on May 13, you can use a wide variety of tools to learn to draw more than 80 Disney and Pixar characters in 2D. By setting your own pace through multiple easy-to-follow lessons, characters like Mickey Mouse, Nemo from Disney Pixar Finding Nemo, Elsa from Disney Frozen, Buzz Lightyear from Disney Pixar Toy Story and Simba from Disney The Lion King come to life on your Nintendo 3DS screen.

“Even if you don’t consider yourself an artist, you will be surprised by what you can create in Disney Art Academy,” said Scott Moffitt, Nintendo of America’s Executive Vice President of Sales & Marketing. “The game uses fun lessons to teach drawing skills to artists of all ages and skill levels.”

In Disney Art Academy, Disney and Pixar characters can be sketched or painted in many different ways. Using nine art tools like pastels, paintbrushes or markers, you can discover your inner artist by participating in lessons inspired by Disney art and animation. These art lessons are absolutely intuitive and, most importantly, fun! Each lesson guides you through a step-by-step progression to draw a single character. What starts as a series of lines and shapes will gradually evolve into a familiar character using your new art skills! If you ever want to take a break, lessons can easily be saved to continue from the same spot at a later time.

You can even add some extra flair with the Magic Brush, a new addition to the Art Academy series. With the Magic Brush, magical additions like stars, bubbles, and glitter can be added to your masterpieces – all easily accessed by using the touch screen on Nintendo 3DS.

Learn to Draw Dozens of Disney and Pixar Characters

Learn to Draw Dozens of Disney and Pixar Characters

As your art skills improve and you create more and more Disney and Pixar characters, you may very well want to share your creations with others. That can easily be accomplished directly in the game by connecting to the Internet and sharing through Miiverse or social media via Image Share. Completed artwork is also saved to the Nintendo 3DS system’s SD card, allowing you to upload your creations to a personal computer and print them out. Refrigerators around the country are about to get a lot more colorful (and a lot more magical!) once families start printing their favorite drawings.

If you want to create outside the game’s numerous lessons you’re in luck, as Disney Art Academy includes a Free Paint mode that lets you draw even more characters any way you choose. In Free Paint, you can put your newly learned skills to the test by drawing on a blank canvas, or you can select from more than 80 Disney images to use as reference as you add to your virtual gallery. All completed artwork can be viewed at any time in the game’s Clubhouse, where you can also select your favorite pieces to be viewed in a personal showcase slideshow.

Disney Art Academy launches on May 13, and can be purchased in stores, in Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3DS and at Nintendo.com at a suggested retail price of $29.99. For more information about the game, visit http://artacademy.nintendo.com/disney/.

Remember that Nintendo 3DS features parental controls that let adults manage the content their children can access. For more information about this and other features, visit http://www.nintendo.com/3ds.

‘Just Keep Swimming’ in Style with the Finding Dory Collection from Trina Turk

‘Just Keep Swimming’ in Style with the Finding Dory Collection from Trina Turk

‘Just Keep Swimming’ in Style with the Finding Dory Collection from Trina Turk

Celebrating Dory’s return to the silver screen this June in Disney∙Pixar’s Finding Dory, Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media has collaborated for the first time with Golden State designer Trina Turk to bring fans the Finding Dory Collection Trina Turk that will launch later this month. Featuring ready-to-wear beach apparel for women and girls, swimwear for the whole family, handbags and accessories, the collection is done in the classic beach style Trina Turk is known for, but with inspiration from Dory and her friends hidden amongst the custom oceanic print.

“Our brand’s Southern California vibe was a perfect fit with Disney∙Pixar’s Finding Dory,” said Trina Turk. “The inspiration for the print came from the film’s background art, with Dory and Nemo swimming through bright multicolored seaweed, coral and anemones against an aqua background. These cheerful surroundings provide the perfect backdrop for Dory and her friends in this exclusive print.”

Influenced by the California beach lifestyle and vintage looks of the ‘60s and ‘70s, designer Trina Turk’s collections are both casual and sophisticated. Trina’s designs reflect confidence and creativity, making Disney∙Pixar’s Finding Dory film the perfect muse for her bold colors and cheerful prints.

Finding_Dory_Hangtags_-_Final_Resized

Finding Dory and Trina Turk fans alike will look stylish with exclusive pieces from the twist bandeau bikini to the Mr. Turk swim shorts to the tote bag. The collection will be available in Trina Turk boutiques and on TrinaTurk.com and DisneyStore.com, as well as at Dillard’s, Macy’s, Lord & Taylor and a wide range of specialty boutiques. Prices range from $48 – $228.

“Our first designer beachwear collaboration inspired by the world of Disney∙Pixar delivers a colorful and stylish range just in time for summer,” said Josh Silverman, executive vice president, global licensing, Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media. “The Finding Dory collection from Trina Turk celebrates the much-loved characters from the movie through unique designs offering the perfect blend of fun and fashion.”

For more information, visit www.trinaturk.com.

DisneyBlu’s Disney on Demand Podcast Show #141 w/ Special Guest EMMA RIDLEY (Ozma in Disney’s Return to Oz, Goddess Dance) on DizRadio.com

DisneyBlu's Disney on Demand Podcast Show #141 w/ Special Guest EMMA RIDLEY (Ozma in Disney's Return to Oz, Goddess Dance) on DizRadio.com

DisneyBlu’s Disney on Demand Podcast Show #141 w/ Special Guest EMMA RIDLEY (Ozma in Disney’s Return to Oz, Goddess Dance) on DizRadio.com

DisneyBlu’s Disney on Demand Podcast at DizRadio.com

March 17, 2016 – Show #141

It’s Time D-Heads! This week we celebrate all things green for St. Patrick’s Day as we head out and Return to Oz with Special Guest EMMA RIDLEY (Ozma in Disney’s Return to Oz, Goddess Dance and more). Emma stops in and discusses playing Ozma in this classic Disney Live Action film that continues the adventures of Dorothy in the land of Oz. She talks about the role, fun on the set, her most memorable moment she will never forget, the dresses, passing it on to her children and more. She also brings us to date with her current venture, dance and so much more.

In addition we have the D-Team back as Jason goes deep into the archives and gives you a Blu-Ray and DVD that you must add to your collection in The Vault. Paige is coming to us live from the Walt Disney World Resort in the Magical Music Review. You have the questions and Erin has the answers in I Want To Know and Caitlin is here with the latest from the Walt Disney World Resort in WDW-In-2. Cody stops by and takes a stroll in this week’s Hollywood Walk and Nathan looks back at the books this week in This Week in Disney History. And let’s not forget Randy giving you the latest in Disney Multi-Media!

Special Guest EMMA RIDLEY (Ozma in Disney's Return to Oz)

Special Guest EMMA RIDLEY (Ozma in Disney’s Return to Oz)

There is news hot off the D-Wire with news covering Hollywood Studios, Harrison Ford, Indiana Jones, Pixar, Walt Disney Pictures, Share Your Ears, Make-A-Wish, Disneyland, Disney Springs, Girl Meets World, Walt Disney Executives, and more!

So it’s time to Put on Your Ears, Give it a Little Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo, and get ready to Relive the Magic, Memories and Appreciation from Your Lifetime of Disney with DisneyBlu’s Disney on Demand “A New Kind of Disney Show”!

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How To Use Disney•Pixar Movies To Teach Kids About Friendship

How To Use Disney•Pixar Movies To Teach Kids About Friendship

How To Use Disney•Pixar Movies To Teach Kids About Friendship

Disney•Pixar’s The Good Dinosaur, which is available today on Blu-ray Combo Pack, Digital HD and Disney Movies Anywhere, is a heartwarming adventure about the power of friendship and discovering who you are meant to be.

In this epic journey, a young apatosaurus named Arlo makes an unlikely human friend while traveling through a harsh and mysterious landscape. Arlo learns not only the value of friendship, but also how to confront his fears and discover what he is truly capable of.

For some young children, making friends and learning how to be a good friend can be especially challenging. The following are a half a dozen helpful tips many parenting experts agree can help pave the way to developing satisfying social interactions:

1. Set a friendly example for your child.
Kids definitely learn by watching their parents. Model social skills in your own day- to-day interactions — talk about your friendships in positive ways, and greet people with a warm smile. Let your children see you making time for friends, offering to help those in need and being a sympathetic listener to other’s problems. Think about the characteristics you value in good friends and consistently demonstrate them yourself.

The Good Dinosaur Teaches Friendship

The Good Dinosaur Teaches Friendship

2. Help your child identify his or her friendship style
There are almost as many styles of social peer interaction as there are types of children. Observing your child’s personality will help you work with him to identify what kind of social interaction is most comfortable for him. Some kids love being part of large groups, while others can only handle one-on-one interactions. Participating in active outdoor activities may be tons of fun for some, while others prefer quiet indoor diversions like playing games or solving puzzles with a single friend or two. What’s important is to let your child’s temperament be the guiding force, and not what you think he should be doing. Being involved and forcing your child are two different things. You could unknowingly limit your child if you assume he relates to friends the same way you do. Let your child show you what kind of social interactions work best for him, and don’t hesitate to back away.

3. Use stories/movies to help teach how to be a good friend
Films like The Good Dinosaur are wonderful conversation starters for families whose children are shy about communicating. Many kids find it easier to discuss real-life issues through fictional stories. For example, after you’ve watched the film together it’s a perfect time to ask what your child felt about Arlo’s friendship with Spot, about the difference friends could make in his own life and what he might do to make new friends.

4. Teach the Basics
Practice simple phrases that ease the way into conversations, such as “What’s your name?” or “What’s your favorite sport?” Teach your child how to join a group of kids on the playground, and tell them to allow other kids to join in. Just as important is to help your child interpret non-verbal cues. Learning to read body language and facial expressions can prevent hurt and disappointment ahead of time, as they’ll learn to anticipate whether they can expect a positive reception from a peer or not.

5. Arrange social activities
You can lay the groundwork for socialization by setting the stage in several ways. Get to know the parents of your child’s classmates and neighbors and open your home to friends for playdates. Encourage your child to participate in after-school activities as a way of broadening his social circle beyond the classroom.

6. Don’t Add Pressure by making a big deal out of it
Uncertainty about making friends is a common problem for young children so don’t be too heavy handed about it. Be supportive and let your child know you’re always there to support and advise, but tread lightly. You want to help, but don’t make it a big deal. Avoid bombarding them with questions about their social lives and allow some healthy alone time. Most importantly, let children develop their own comfort level. After all, it’s their life and they should be able to live it as authentically as possible.

The Good Dinosaur on Disney Blu-Ray and Digital HD

The Good Dinosaur on Disney Blu-Ray and Digital HD

Pixar Animation Studios Wins Big At 43rd Annie Awards

Pixar Animation Studios

Pixar Animation Studios

Pixar Animation Studios was the big winner at the 43rd Annual Annie Awards, Saturday evening at UCLA’s Royce Hall. ‘Inside Out’ won Best Animated Feature along with 11 other categories, including Outstanding Music – Michael Giacchino; Outstanding Editing – Kevin Nolting; Outstanding Production Design – Ralph Eggleston; Outstanding Voice Acting – Phyllis Smith as ‘Sadness’; Outstanding Writing – Pete Docter, Meg LeFauve and Josh Cooley; and Best Directing – Pete Docter. This year was the first for the new category Best Animated Feature, Independent with Filme de Papel’s ‘Boy and the World’ taking this top honor.

The Best Animated Special Production was awarded to ‘He Named Me Malala’ (Parkes-MacDonald/Little Door); Best Animated Short Subject ‘World of Tomorrow’ (Don Hertzfeldt); Best Animated TV/Broadcast Commercial ‘Man and Dog’ (Psyop); Best General Audience Animated TV/Broadcast Production for Preschool Children ‘Tumble Leaf’ – Mirror (Amazon Studios and Bix Pix Entertainment); Best Animated TV/Broadcast Production for Children ‘Wander Over Yonder’ – The Breakfast (Disney Television Animation); Best Animated TV/Broadcast Production for a General Audience ‘The Simpsons’ – Halloween of Horror (Gracie Films in Association with 20th Century Fox Television); Outstanding Achievement for Character Animation in a Live Action Production: ‘The Revenant’ – The Bear (Regency Enterprises, New Regency Pictures, Anonymous Content, M Productions, Appian Way, RatPac-Dune Entertainment; and Best Student Film ‘ed’ (Sheridan College – Taha Neyestani).

“The Annies are drawing more attention from both our industry and the general motion picture industry,” said ASIFA-Hollywood Executive Director, Frank Gladstone. “We wait all year for this event and it never disappoints! It was a fun evening looking back at our history and celebrating what we have accomplished over this past year.” 

Presenting the coveted Annie trophies this year were actor, producer & director Edward James Olmos with actress Rita Moreno; actor & writer Tom Kenny (SpongeBob SquarePants) with actress Laraine Newman (Dawn Of The Croods); actors Alexander Garfin and Hadley Belle Miller (“Linus and Lucy” from The Peanuts Movie) & Snoopy via Video; actress Kristen Schaal (Bob’s Burgers), composerChristophe Beck; Phyllis Smith (voice of ‘Sadness’ from Inside Out) with Bing Bong (Richard Kind) via video; Anomalisa co-directors Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson, John Musker and ASIFA-Hollywood President, Jerry Beck and Executive Director, Frank Gladstone.

This year’s Juried Award recipients included Winsor McCay lifetime achievement award – Joe Ranft (posthumously), Phil Roman and Isao Takahata. The Winsor McCay Award is one of the highest honors given to an individual in the animation industry in recognition for career contributions to the art of animation. Don Hahn was this year’s June Foray award recipient which honors an individual who has given significant and benevolent contributions to the art and industry of animation.

The Annie Awards™ honor overall excellence as well as individual achievement in a total of 36 categories from best feature, best feature – independent, production design, character animation, and effects animation to storyboarding, writing, music, editing and voice acting, and have often been a predictor of the annual Academy Award for Best Animated Feature. The ceremony was live-streamed again this year at www.annieawards.org/watch-it-live where animation enthusiasts and those unable to attend the event, could watch the show. A complete list of winners can be viewed at www.annieawards.org and highlights of the ceremony will be uploaded to the Annies website in the next few weeks.

Disneyland Resort Offers 16 Unforgettable Experiences To Brighten a Spring or Summer Visit in 2016

February 2, 2016 Disney News, Disneyland No Comments
Disneyland Resort Offers 16 Unforgettable Experiences To Brighten a Spring or Summer Visit in 2016

Disneyland Resort Offers 16 Unforgettable Experiences To Brighten a Spring or Summer Visit in 2016

Spring and summer at the Disneyland Resort will be more thrilling than ever this year with new family vacation fun and spectacular entertainment. Guests continue to discover the excitement of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration and its nighttime spectaculars, plus new and enhanced Star Wars experiences. At Disney California Adventure Park, Cars Land will soon debut its newest attraction, Luigi’s Rollickin’ Roadsters.

Guests planning a summer vacation at the Disneyland Resort also will enjoy a new “Frozen” musical, based on the blockbuster Walt Disney Animation Studios film, and the unforgettable, new Soarin’ Around the World attraction. Magic awaits guests of all ages in 2016, including these 16 special experiences.

At Disney California Adventure Park
Disney California Adventure celebrates its 15th anniversary Feb. 8, 2016, with adventures from Buena Vista Street to Cars Land, and something for guests of all ages, including the thrilling California Screamin’ coaster, the uplifting Pixar Play Parade and the high-scoring action of “Toy Story Mania.”

1.  The new live “Frozen” musical premieres in late spring 2016, immersing audiences in the emotional journey of Anna and Elsa with all of the excitement of live theater. The entertaining musical adaptation will include elaborate costumes and sets, stunning special effects, show-stopping production numbers and some unique theatrical surprises. The show will play at the Hyperion Theater.

2.  The fun-filled Luigi’s Rollickin’ Roadsters attraction, debuting soon at Casa Della Tires in Cars Land, is rolling with fun as Luigi’scugini (cousins) have come from Carsoli, Italy, to help celebrate Race Day in Radiator Springs. Park guests join in the fun by hopping aboard miniature Italian roadsters, in the style of late 1950s micro cars. The cars perform the traditional dances of their village, moving to upbeat music and Luigi’s singing in a precision-choreographed dance across what appears to be a trackless “dance floor.” Each car has its own routine, so guests will enjoy different ride experiences depending on which car they board.

At Disneyland Park
Exciting Star Wars experiences in Disneyland Park celebrate the Star Wars film saga.

3.  Star Wars Launch Bay invites guests to visit a Star Wars-themed cantina, discover authentic replicas of film props, and encounterStar Wars characters such as Chewbacca, from the light side, and Kylo Ren from the dark side.

4.  The Star Wars-themed transformation of Space Mountain into Hyperspace Mountain thrusts guests into an X-wing Starfigher battle as they race through the darkness. The experience is enhanced by a new soundtrack, inspired by the Star Wars films’ musical themes and re-orchestrated to match every move in the attraction.

5.  At the Star Tours – The Adventures Continue attraction, guests encounter a new adventure and characters from “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” while journeying aboard a Starspeeder 1000.

6.  Guests will relive stories from the Star Wars saga – or discover them for the first time – through the short “Star Wars: Path of the Jedi” film which connects iconic scenes from the iconic films in fun new ways.

7.  The popular interactive show Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple has been reimagined with Darth Vader and the Seventh Sister Inquisitor from the popular Disney XD series Star Wars Rebels.

8.  As preparations begin in 2016 for a new Star Wars-themed land, guests will enjoy unique limited-time opportunities to experience some of their favorite attractions in new ways. While the Disneyland Railroad is temporarily closed, guests at the Main Street and New Orleans Square Train Stations will be able to get up-close with the historic steam engines that have circled Disneyland park for decades and learn about them firsthand from Disneyland Railroad engineers. Limited-time experiences for the Mark Twain Riverboat and Sailing Ship Columbia will debut throughout the year.

9.  Super Hero fans will have their own special encounters at Super Hero HQ. They’re invited to learn more about their favorite Super Heroes, such as Thor and Spiderman, and meet some of them in person.

60th Anniversary Diamond Celebration Continues in 2016
The stunning entertainment found every year at the Disneyland Resort is now even more dazzling, with three nighttime spectaculars that are part of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, continuing through Sept. 5, 2016.

10.  The sparkling “Paint the Night” parade builds on the tradition of breathtaking nighttime parades in Disneyland Park that began with the “Main Street Electrical Parade.” Illuminated almost entirely by LED lights, “Paint the Night” is a state-of-the art, vibrant wonder that immerses guests in the magical, luminescent worlds of many Disney and Disney●Pixar characters, including Ariel, the Little Mermaid; Woody and Buzz Lightyear from “Toy Story”‘; Lightning McQueen from “Cars,” Disney Princesses and Mickey Mouse and his pals.

11.  The “Disneyland Forever” fireworks spectacular entertains guests from the tips of their toes to the sky high above, surrounding the audience with music, dazzling visual projections and other special effects that bring the pyrotechnics to life in surprising new ways.  Guests may enjoy the projections from multiple locations, including Main Street, U.S.A., and Small World mall.

12.  At Disney California Adventure, “World of Color – Celebrate! The Wonderful World of Walt Disneyis a fun-filled version of the popular, nighttime “World of Color” spectacular.  Award-winning actor Neil Patrick Harris joins Mickey Mouse on a magical water canvas, bringing to life the remarkable story of Walt Disney and The Happiest Place on Earth with animated imagery, live-action film, fountains, lasers, special effects and a stirring musical score.

Special Offer for Southern California Residents and Themed Dining
13.  Special two-day and three-day Southern California Resident tickets* make this an ideal time for Southern California residents to visit the parks. Purchase options include a two-day ticket with a choice of one park per day for $149, a two-day Park Hopper ticket for$189, a three-day ticket with a choice of one park per day for $179, or a three-day Park Hopper ticket for $219. These tickets are available through May 19, 2016 and valid through May 26, 2016. For details, visit http://Disneyland.com/flex

14.  Any visit to the Disneyland Resort becomes more special with themed dining and refreshments, and the resort presents some tasty new surprises in 2016. At Disneyland, the Star Wars-themed menu at Galactic Grill includes the Darth Tamale, a First Order Specialty Burger with Angus beef and chorizo on a dark bun, and The Pastry Menace éclair. Plaza Inn is ideal for family dining with a menu that features fried chicken, pot roast and made-to-order salads. Children and the young at heart are delighted to encounter Disney characters at the “Minnie & Friends Breakfast in the Park” at Plaza Inn, one of several character meals at the resort.

15.  At Disney California Adventure, guests will enjoy the recently opened Smokejumpers Grill, decorated with mementos from courageous, forest firefighters with a menu that features burgers and other favorites. The popular Cove Bar along Paradise Bay serves beverages and appetizers in an expanded patio area in 2016. The elegant Carthay Circle Restaurant continues to provide an ideal location for fine dining and adult relaxation in its lounge. And guests who want to meet Disney Princesses will find them at the character dining at Ariel’s Grotto.

16.  Hotel restaurants at the Disneyland Resort include Steakhouse 55 in the Disneyland Hotel, Napa Rose and Storytellers Café in Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa and Disney’s PCH Grill at Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel. For dinner at Disney’s PCH Grill, guests enjoy a menu inspired by the California beach scene, with smoked tri-tip, spice-rubbed ribs, fish and vegetarian tacos, fried chicken, and hot dogs right off the grill.

For more information about the Disneyland Resort, see www.Disneyland.com or visit www.DisneyParksBlog.com

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