Finding Nemo

Marlin and Dory in Finding Nemo

As a parent, there are certain films that you commit to memory. This is not out of necessity, nor is it specifically out of desire. These movies burn their way into a mother or father’s memory banks because they are often set on constant repeat over the course of months – if not years – to keep the kids happy. The technology of home video systems allows movies like The Lion King and Finding Nemo to play on an infinite loop during the day. After watching a film like Andrew Stanton‘s Finding Nemo 186,000 times, a parent starts to look at it different. He or she will forget it’s a story of talking fish featuring sharks on a twelve-step program and surfer dude turtles. Parents will start to question the internal logic of the film and wonder whether any of it is actually possible. Spoiler alert: it’s just a cartoon, so it really doesn’t matter. Still, one can’t help but wonder if the story of a dedicated father clown fish named Marlin (Albert Brooks) would be able to do what he does in the movie. Forget probability odds of literally finding one fish in the massive sea. Watch it enough times on repeat, and you’ll get to thinking: Would Marlin really be able to find Nemo?

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Finding Nemo 3D

Well, I guess it’s really true that Dory the fish really does speak whale, because an insider at Pixar has revealed that the animation studio has decided to alter the ending to the script for 2015’s Finding Dory after viewing the documentary Blackfish. Blackfish focuses on the plight of orca whales kept in captivity, and skewers SeaWorld for keeping the majestic sea creatures in bathtub-like habitats. Though the overall plot line of Finding Dory, starring the voice talents of Ellen Degeneres and Albert Brooks, is still for the most part a mystery, early reports stated that the ending had the characters wind up at a marine park, happy as can be. Naturally, with the Blackfish controversy and the ongoing publicity battle the real-life SeaWorld is currently waging, Pixar decided to do some recon and restructure the ending so that the characters do travel to the marine park, but like any totally normal situation that would definitely happen, they have the option of leaving and going back out to the ocean if they choose. When you wish upon a star, etc. Granted, Pixar movie scripts change all the time while in production; this is nothing new. But in this case, the studio is making alterations in direct response to the documentary’s message – good for director Gabriela Cowperthwaite and writer Eli B. Despres.

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©2013 Disney•Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

There seems to be a lot of negative sentiment around the Internet regarding Pixar making sequels to all of their hit movies. The general opinion seems to be that Pixar’s great strength is its originality, so going back over material that it’s already covered is abandoning what brought it to the dance in favor of lazy coasting. That’s not a completely invalid argument, but the fact remains that millions of children all over the world are going to be ecstatic to hear that there’s a new Finding Nemo movie coming out anyway. Plus, if Andrew Stanton going back to his popular tropical fish property bothers you that much, Pixar seems to have you covered. According to a press release that officially announces their next project, if you don’t want to think of it as a second movie about Nemo and his dad, you can just think of it as the first movie about Dory. That’s because Stanton’s new film with Pixar is officially titled Finding Dory, and it’s officially set to get a November 25, 2015 release. As you’ve probably deduced from the title, the film is bringing Ellen DeGeneres’ forgetful fish character back, and this time they’re pushing her to the forefront. The reason for this? In the press release Stanton explains, “She won the hearts of moviegoers all over the world—not to mention our team here at Pixar. One thing we couldn’t stop thinking about was why she was all alone in the ocean on the day she […]

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Finding Nemo 2

Briefly: Despite his recent career resurgence thanks to outstanding supporting turns in films like This Is 40 and Drive, Albert Brooks is apparently still well-aware of the benefits of returning for some voice work in an animated sequel. Of course, this isn’t just any animated sequel, it is Finding Nemo 2, and with Brooks’ charming and neurotic work as Nemo’s dad Marlin proving to be such an important part of the first film, it’s no shock that Deadline Hollywood reports that he is back for more. Ellen DeGeneres is also reprising her role as the forgetful Dory, and director Andrew Stanton is also set to helm this new adventure. Finding Nemo 2 will hit theaters in 2016.

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Finding Nemo 3D

“It really is a huge project to do a 3D version of one of our films,” explains Pixar veteran and Finding Nemo co-director Lee Unkrich. “As opposed to just a 2D to 3D conversion that you typically see. Those are a lot of work as well, but that’s a lot of gimmickry and trickery to create the false illusion of depth. In our case, it’s kind of like going back in a time machine and getting to make the movie a second time.” It begs the question, especially as we find ourselves a week away from Finding Nemo swimming back into theaters with an additional dimension. A week that has seen the release of a new trailer for Monsters Inc. in 3D, a release that will take place in December. Hollywood has been in love with 3D for years, of that they’ve made no attempt at secrecy. And it isn’t just releasing new movies in 3D, but bringing back classics with an added dimension that’s got the number crunchers excited. From Titanic to The Lion King to Star Wars, no great property can escape the clutches of the third dimension. But as they are in so many ways, Pixar is different. Or at least they should be, right?

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Finding Nemo 2

Before there was the massive bust-a-roonie that was John Carter, Andrew Stanton was one of Pixar’s most essential and beloved filmmakers – he not only helped write and conceive of Toy Story and Toy Story 2, he also penned A Bug’s Life, Monsters, Inc., WALL-E, and Finding Nemo (all of which he directed or co-directed, save for Monsters, Inc.). However, despite his stand-out animation resume, Stanton (like so many other before him) itched to jump into live-action, which is how he ended up with John Carter, and well, we all know how that turned out. After this year’s live-action flop, some mused if Stanton would be put into “director jail,” barred from ever making anything of substance or note again. Yet, one massive misstep does not always spell disaster for filmmakers and, fortunately for Stanton, he still has that completely awe-inspiring resume to back up his work – particularly when it comes to animation. And, if Deadline Sydney is to be believed, Stanton is returning to his roots in more ways than one. The writer and director is now reportedly set to direct a Finding Nemo sequel for Disney and Pixar, and while that’s nice and everything, why the heck does Finding Nemo need a sequel, even with Stanton at the helm?

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Brave

Brave has already made a milestone for Pixar as it marks the 13th straight release to debut at #1. No surprise for a brand that’s loved around the world and continually crafts memorable movies that resonate with children and old children alike. But where does it rank against other Pixar openings? According to numbers from Box Office Mojo, The Movie Formerly Known as The Bear and the Bow made $66.7m domestically in its first weekend, making it the fifth highest in the production company’s history. Here’s the full ranking:

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Pixar Scenes We Love

The love of discussing movies is something you and I share, dear reader. Otherwise, what the heck are we doing here? And with few exceptions, there isn’t any kind of film that I love talking about more than the various works of animation created by talented artists, renderers and storytellers throughout the history of the medium. Few do it better and merit as much discussion as the folks from Emeryville, California’s own Pixar Animation Studios. And with the release of their 13th film this week, a princess story called Brave, it’s reason enough to discuss some of the best individual scenes from the Pixar catalog. Personally, I’ve never been hooked on franchise pieces like Toy Story or Cars, but have always loved Pixar’s more stand-alone efforts. Many of which, as you’ll see from the assembled list, come from visionary storytellers Brad Bird, Andrew Stanton and Pete Docter. These filmmakers and their teams have pushed the envelope, even inside the already expansive confines of Pixar’s world. From their films I’ve assembled six Scenes We Love from the films of Pixar Animation Studios. It may not be the definitive list, but it’s certainly the one that lives within my own movie-loving heart.

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For more than fifteen years, Pixar has represented the gold standard in computer generated films. Since the studio’s early days of making groundbreaking short films to producing Oscar-winning feature-length movies, Pixar has become a brand associated with quality animation and adorable characters. There have been some bumps along the road, from a love-hate-owner relationship with Disney to some questionable sequels, but few studios can boast such a consistent level of quality and innovation. This week, Pixar will be releasing its 13th full-length feature, Brave, with an entire new cast of characters different from any other Pixar film. This gives us a chance to look into Pixar’s past and remember some of the favorite characters from their films.

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What is Movie News After Dark? It’s a nightly movie news column that’s not usually quite this sexy. You might want to send the kids to bed early… It’s not every night that we begin with the objectification of a woman who poses in slim garb on magazines that don’t ever sell any swimsuits, but when said dames are Anne Vayalitsyna, the new addition to A Good Day to Die Hard, there’s now two ways about it. The babe goes up top.

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What is Movie News After Dark? It’s a nightly column that assembles the heroes of movie and entertainment news every night. Marvel has only assembled its team once. Take that, Marvel. We begin tonight with several items on The Avengers. First — embargo be damned — it’s so much fun. There is also a new image of the team completely assembled amidst the rubble of the film’s massive third act war scene. And then there’s the disappointing news of the day. Matt Singer reports on CriticWire about angry nerds attacking a female critic over a negative review of The Avengers. Not only did the lash out at the otherwise lovely Amy Nicholson of Boxoffice Magazine, they did so in a terrible, misogynistic way. If this was you, be very ashamed of yourself. Every critic gets their say, and just because she didn’t like the movie, that doesn’t mean you get to be a shit about it. It’s truly sad. Please grow up.

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Boiling Point

John Carter lightly transported itself into theaters this past weekend, securing a relatively meager $30m opening domestically, though it managed to secure another $70m internationally. While I will eventually make a defense of the economics at play here, it is hard to argue that John Carter isn’t a domestic failure, considering it came in second to The Lorax, which debuted a full week earlier. On top of that, John Carter has a suspected $250m budget with marketing costs guestimated in the $100m range, for a total investment of around $350m. The critics have been somewhat kind to the civil war veteran’s debut – while the average review seems to be “it’s alright,” there have certainly been some hyperbolic highs and very few hyperbolic lows. Consensus is you’ll probably think the movie is okay, but you might want to wait for DVD. Scattered among those are bold claims that film will live on with your children as a classic, which are probably a bit off the reservation. There is little doubt that in at least several ways John Carter failed, ways that were easily avoidable and ways that make me fairly angry with the system.

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Bruce Wayne in The Dark Knight Rises

What is Movie News After Dark? … um, it’s about movies. And it takes place after the sun goes down. We begin this evening with another new image from The Dark Knight Rises, one of several that worked their way onto the web today thanks to Entertainment Weekly. Unlike all the previously interesting shots from the film, this one does not involve Bane. It’s Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) standing in front of the bat-suit. I love that bat-suit.

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Disney’s limited engagement re-release of a 3D-ized The Lion King is poised to cross the $80m mark today, which means the latest news from the studio is essentially of the “what took you so long?” variety. Disney and Pixar have announced that they will give the 3D re-release treatment to (at least) four more titles over the next two years. You can start swinging your Nemo plushie around in a plastic bag right about now. And you want to put on your Ariel wig? Should I wait for you to sprout legs, too? Fine, I’ll wait. Disney and Pixar have picked Beauty and the Beast, Finding Nemo, Monsters Inc., and The Little Mermaid as their next titles to get an added dimension and a return to theaters. Beauty and the Beast will dance into theaters first (anthropomorphic tableware and all) on January 13, 2012. It will most likely demolish its mid-January competition, just like Simba snapped right through September. Pixar will join in on the re-release mayhem with Finding Nemo swimming back to theaters on September 14, 2012, followed by Monsters, Inc. on January 18, 2013. The long-awaited prequel to Monsters Inc., Monsters University, will open (in 3D!) later that year, on June 21. Disney will then re-release The Little Mermaid on September 13, 20123. As a kid, The Little Mermaid was tied with 101 Dalmatians as my favorite Disney flick, so the six-year-old in me is hysterically screaming on the heels of this news. All of the films will get […]

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The 3rd Swing, the Accounting Assistant and the Lead Greensman couldn’t be happier for the resurgence of the after credits stinger. Finally, rightful dues can be paid! Thanks in part to the continuing expansion of the Marvel Movie Universe, tagging on one more scene after the final spate of legalese climbs up the screen is becoming common practice. There are few better ways to rouse a crowd then zing ‘em with one more late-game joke or build early anticipation for a possible sequel with a teaser scene. Plus, you make them sit through all the “Thank Yous.” Everyone wins! The post-credit is a relatively new invention – most films weren’t obligated to list the crew members’ names until the ’70s – but in a short amount of time, filmmakers have already proved that the creative possibilities of a last-minute tag are endless. Check out a few of the best post-credit scenes from the past thirty years. All the clips are fast-forwarded to the good parts:

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As you may have noticed, the blogosphere is all a-twitter with Best of the Decade lists. To our credit, we here at FSR have published two lists. Now it is time to look at what everyone else is saying…

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johncarterdafoe

Willem Dafoe will need to paint himself green and add two more arms for his upcoming role in John Carter of Mars. Or maybe the make-up department can handle that for him.

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Wall-E

Check out this brand new 4-minute sneak preview of Pixar’s Wall-E which aired over the weekend on ABC’s Wide World of Disney.

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Kung Fu Panda Preview

With the release of Kung Fu Panda, Jack Black becomes just the next in a long line of comedic talents, both stand-up and otherwise, to take the lead in a major animated film. So how does he compare to others who have come before him?

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published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.18.2014
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