All new from Disney Pixar and Walt Disney Animation Studios this Fall is Coco and Olaf’s Frozen Adventure! Both the film and the short look like they are going to be fun to watch with the whole family. And I’m pretty sure Coco is going to aim for my heart so I will be bringing tissues too, just in case!
Despite his family’s odd generations-old ban on music, Miguel dreams of becoming an accomplished musician like his idol, Ernesto de la Cruz. One night, Miguel finds himself transported to the colorful Land of the Dead.
Along the way, he meets charming trickster Hector, and together, they set off on an extraordinary journey to unlock the real story behind Miguel’s family history and to return Miguel to the land of the living.
I love how the Land of the Dead looks more lively than our world!
Olaf’s Frozen Adventure
It is the first holiday season since the gates reopened in Arendelle. Elsa and Anna want to throw a celebration for the people but when they all leave to celebrate in their own way. The sisters realize they don’t have any family traditions of their own. Not to worry ladies, Olaf and Sven are on it! Our two favorite sidekicks team up to bring back the best traditions and save this first Christmas for their friends.
Great news Frozen fans: There are four new songs in this featurette!
See Coco and Olaf’s Frozen Adventure when they come to theaters November 22nd!
A month ago, I unapologetically broke the kids out of school to check attend the Road to the Races Tour. At the event, they showed us an exclusive clip from Cars 3. My son is all about cars and sat on the edge of his seat the entire time. It may have only been a 10 minute clip but I have heard about it every day since. Race down the road to June and the moment he has been waiting for finally arrived. Cars 3.
New Pixar Short: Lou
We previewed this short at Disney Social Media Moms and loved it. I was also thrilled that I got to meet Dave Mullins, the genius behind Lou. It is funny and definitely tugged at my heartstrings. I’m pretty sure Lou is now my favorite Pixar short. Just give it all the awards now because it deserves them!
Lightning is down but not out yet. All of his friends, the old school racers, are either retiring or getting fired. He is determined not to let anyone tell him when his racing days are over. But he also must realize that his way of doing things isn’t going to cut it anymore. McQueen must accept that change has come and you either adapt or get left in the dust.
Jackson Storm reminds the characters in the movie, and the audience, of a young Lightning McQueen. He’s great at what he does, but also arrogant and callous. To beat him, Lightning must give up the idea of being faster than Storm, and instead focus on being smarter.
Enter Cruz Ramirez. This energetic young trainer wants to help Lightning but he doesn’t think he needs her help. After all, he’s a Piston Cup winning star, what does this car know about racing? There are not shortcuts in life McQueen. Ain’t that the truth. This pair’s relationship changes throughout the film, and Lightning learns that being a great race car means so much more than winning races.
This film definitely gave us all the feels of watching the original. You can tell they went back to what made the first Cars such a lasting hit. We have all grown during Lightning McQueen’s life and Cars 3 matured right along with us.
The flashbacks to Doc Hudson were touching and yes had my eyes a bit teary. I could relate to McQueen missing Doc and wishing he was there. That’s how I feel about my grandmother.
We also learn more about Doc’s history, how he became the Fabulous Hudson Hornet, and what gave Doc a lot of joy. You might be surprised!
Sally is still her sharp witted, lawyer self who helps push Stinky, I mean Stickers into getting off his tires and doing something about his career after the crash.
Cruz isn’t just the fun sidekick. She embodies the struggle a lot of women face in male dominated spaces. She learns to believe in herself and not to let any man car stand in her way.
We even meet an older female race car who didn’t let the boys stand in her way. Life is too short to take no for an answer she tells Cruz!
Friendship and Acceptance:
It is important to surround yourself with people who believe in you. Lightning has the whole Radiator Springs crew, Doc had Smokey and his friends, and now Cruz has Lightning. There is such a big difference when someone believes in you, it helps you to believe in yourself. I think that lesson stuck out a lot for the parents. We are our children’s first cheerleaders and we need to take care that we are encouraging them, accepting of them, and helping them preserver through life.
What the kids had to say:
My son: You shouldn’t give up. You have to keep racing, like Lightning, and try hard. My favorite new character is Ms. Fritter. She is funny and cool. I would drive fast too if she was chasing me! I like that Lightning learned to be a good friend. Cars 3 is my new favorite Cars because I like Lightning McQueen and Cruz and all the new cars. They are so cool and the derby wow! Crash! Yes!
My daughter: I love love Cruz. She reminds me of me. Cruz is smart but sometimes doesn’t feel like she can do things but she can. She just needed some friends to tell her she can do it like you tell me that I can do anything I make my mind up to do. I really liked the movie and I want to see it again.
The Big Crash Scene:
When the teaser was released I read a lot online that the crash scene seemed graphic and traumatic. In the film, the scene doesn’t seem drawn out and you know quickly Lightning isn’t dead or horribly maimed.
Post Credit Scene:
Stay through the credits for a fun little scene with Mater.
In the end, the audience cheered. The kids talked about the movie the whole way home, and the next day and every day since. We are seeing it again this weekend and I hope you will too!
Cars 3 is in theaters everywhere!
Bambi is celebrating its 75th anniversary! It is the fourth movie to join the Walt Disney Signature Collection. To celebrate, you can bring home Bambi on Blu-Ray and Digital HD with all new special features that show you the rich history of this classic film.
Bambi was released in 1942 during World War II and has been loved by every generation since. It is one of the most treasured animated movies of all time, holding the No. 3 spot on the American Film Institute’s “10 Top 10.”
I was excited to be sent home with a copy of the Blu-Ray + Digital HD. Our other copy of Bambi is just a standard DVD. The quality of the Blu-Ray blows the other out of the water. It feels like new life was breathed into the animation and the intricacies of the characters and the environment are more pronounced. Bambi and his forest friends are moving along beautiful paintings as they tell the story of friendship, loss, and love.
Bambi is a must have for your Disney movie collection!
NEW Special Features:
The Bambi Effect– Bambi was full of innovations for its time. Take a look at how those past innovations affected future Disney animated titles, all the way up to today.
Studio Stories:”Bambi”– Listen in on intimate moments where Walt Disney discusses the challenges, pitfalls, and triumphs during production of Bambi.
Deleted Scenes– Bambi’s Ice and Snow & The Grasshopper
Bambi Fawn Facts- Think you know everything there is to know about Bambi and his friends? Discover fun real-life facts about the creatures that live in the forest he calls home.
Oswald The Lucky Rabbit- “Africa Before Dark” – Oswald Short
Celebrating Tyrus Wong (Digital Exclusive)- A heartfelt look at the man who played a key role in the success of Bambi. He had a unique signature style all to his own. The soft water-colored backgrounds and beautiful palettes in Bambi were inspired by Tyrus’ concept art paintings.
Classic Special Features:
Deleted Scenes- Two Leaves, Bambi Stuck on a Reed, Winter Grass, & Twitterpated
The Making of Bambi: A Prince is Born
Story: Telling the Tale
Characters: Drawn to Nature
Actors: Giving Voice to Animals
Art Design: Impressions of the Forest
Music: Nature’s Symphony
History: Back to the Beginning
Trick of the Trade
Inside the Disney Archives
The Old Mill- Animated Short
Original Theatrical Trailer
The Golden Age
While visiting the Walt Disney Animation Studios, I had the honor of speaking to Donnie Dunagan (young Bambi) and Peter Behn (young Thumper). It was amazing to hear their stories about what it was like making the movie and working with Walt Disney.
I remember as a kid, playing with the figurines of Bambi, Thumper, and Flower. My kids now play with their plushes and the new figurines available at the Disney Store. Just look at these two, you know you want to bring them home!
When I saw they had this adorable backdrop for us to play with, I knew exactly who I was going to be!
And with a little Disney magic…
Bonus: Disney Movie Rewards is offering an exclusive tank top, featuring the beautiful artwork of Paul Felix. Get it today with your purchase of Bambi. Visit Disney Movie Rewards for all the details.
Bambi is available today on Blu-ray!
I was invited by Disney for a special press trip to share my experience of Pirates and Bambi with my readers. All opinions are my own.
Lightning McQueen, Mater, and some new four wheeled friends are back in the all new Cars 3! To celebrate the upcoming release that my Cars fan cannot wait for, I’ve got some Cars 3 free printable activities! Ka-Chow!
- Race to the Finish Board Game
- Memory Game
- Spot the Difference
- Miss Fritter’s Corn Fritters
- Build Your Own Race Course
Cars 3 sees Lightning McQueen suddenly pushed out of the sport he loves thanks to a new generation of super-fast racers. To get back in the game, he will need the help of an eager young race technician, Cruz Ramirez, plus inspiration from the late Fabulous Hudson Hornet. Some unexpected adventures happen along the way, like a Crazy 8 demolition derby! It’s not over until Lightning strikes though, and #95 is going to prove he isn’t through yet!
Cars 3 Road to the Races Tour has been making stops all over the country in preparation for the premiere of Cars 3!
These free events are full of fun for every Cars fan in your family. We had an amazing time when Lightning McQueen, Jackson Storm, and Cruz Ramirez drove into town.
There are only a few stops left! Check here to see the full schedule.
Cars 3 is in theaters June 16th!
It was exciting sit down for an exclusive interview with Directors Joachim Ronning and Espen Sandberg! These guys took the helm for Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales and brought a freshness to the franchise we all know and love. I feel they made this movie with the fans in mind. Making it something we will all want to watch again and again.
Joachim and Espen wanted this film from the moment they heard it was being developed. Pirates reminded them of the movies that inspired them to become filmmakers in the first place.
Espen: We chased it. We really wanted to make this movie. I think the basic reason is, Joachim and I started making movies together when we were 10. Movies that inspired us back then were the Spielberg, Lucas films, and this franchise just reminds us of that. It has that unique blend of spectacle, humor, scary parts, and also a lot of heart.
Joachim: We both have kids. That was also a big part of why we wanted to do this. It is something they can relate to and be a part of. (We wanted) to make something that we saw ourselves in when we were kids and to make something for our kids.
The effects for the ghosts are pretty amazing. Who thought up the sharks?
Joachim: It was in the script. Huge inspiration. (Laughter) The look of the ghosts is something we did together with Javier Bardem, production designers, and the VFX supervisors. Going in and trying to find what can give a ghostly appearance without losing the actors.
On working together as co-directors:
Joachim: We only work every other day. (Laughter)
Espen: It’s very easy. (Laughter)
Joachim: We don’t really know another way of doing this. For us it’s a very natural process, a collaborative one. We include the actors, the crew, everyone is a part of the discussion. We try to create a safe work environment, where every idea is welcome. That’s important to us.
How did you guys meet?
Espen: Through dance. (Laughter) No really. We were breakdancers. (Laughter)
No they did not show us any of their dance moves. But maybe we can convince them if there is a Pirates 6. Just saying!
On the journey of making Pirates:
Joachim: This has been a very long journey for us. Almost four years we have been working on this movie. Which is long even for big movies. One of the things we had the most versions of, was Jack Sparrow’s backstory. We had 10/15 versions of that and it was a long a grueling process. The mythology of Pirates of the Caribbean, it is a complex mythology. There are a lot of fans out there that know everything. (Laughter) It was important for us to be ahead of that and not mess with any previous backstories.
Espen: We also wanted to blend that backstory of Jack with Salazar’s, so that their relationship and the revenge story became personal.
In Dead Men Tell No Tales, we see what Jack was like as a boy, but it was not the same process that was used for Princess Leia in Rogue One.
Joachim: The “youthification” that we call it. I’ve been misquoted in some newspapers saying “beautification”, it’s “youthification” (Laughter). We shot it with Johnny, then spent the year in the computer.
Espen: Now he can do 21 Jump Street again. (Laughter)
Joachim: He was thrilled when he saw the results.
What is it like working with Johnny Depp?
Espen: It’s amazing. He’s so funny. What you see with Jack Sparrow, it’s all Johnny. He’s a genius. For us he is up there with Chaplin because his timing is just perfect and he has such a weird imagination. He comes up with the craziest ideas.
The highlight was going into his trailer each morning and going through the scenes and the lines trying to come up with even more cool stuff to do to make it even more funny. Of course when we started shooting he would do something completely different. (Laughter) That makes it come alive.
Not only are they brilliant, Academy nominated filmmakers, but they are also Pirates fans. I think that brought a new level of connectivity for the audience and inspiration for the film itself.
Joachim: The origin story in the movie came from us. That is something we wanted to explore. As fans of the franchise ourselves, we were curious about Jack Sparrow. Disney liked it, Bruckheimer, and Johnny liked it too.
He was a little bit more reserved because he is very protective of this character. He (Jack Sparrow) is a tricky movie character because he doesn’t really have the character arc. He learns nothing (Laughter), he’s not richer for the experience. (Laughter) He (Johnny) was very curious where we would go with it (the backstory). When we presented it, he really embraced it and that was cool. That was a big part of what we brought to get the job in the first place.
Will these Pirates fans be back if there is another film?
Joachim: I hope so! (Laughter)
Espen: We are fans of the franchise so we certainly hope that it continues. Crossing fingers.
What do you want people to walk away with from this film?
Joachim: Something that was very important for us was the emotional core of the story, the family theme that the film has. Treasure is not always a chest of gold it can be other things even for a pirate. We were inspired by the first movie in the series that had a big heart. Then of course you have the adventure, scares, and comedy. I hope that the audience will be moved by it as well.
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales is in theaters everywhere!
I was invited by Disney for a special press trip to share my experience of Pirates with my readers. All opinions are my own. Interview photos courtesy of Louise of MomStart.com