What if the seven dwarfs had lived inside of Snow White's head? The next Pixar animated feature will kind of play on that idea, as Inside Out will focus on a little girl whose emotions are personified and put on display for the viewer. Her name is Riley, and the studio has given us our first look at the 11-year-old by way of a brief behind-the-scenes feature available on the Disney Movies Anywhere site (it's almost sort of hidden within a video labeled "1 Fact About Monsters University + a Peek at Inside Out").
In addition to the four seconds of Riley reading a book, looking unsure of something and then finally beaming with a joyous smile of apparent enlightenment, we also get more of those "dwarfs," as director Pete Docter (Up) likens the emotions to. There's only five of them, though: Anger (voiced by Lewis Black), Sadness (Phyllis Smith), Disgust (Mindy Kaling), Fear (Bill Hader) and Joy (Amy Poehler) -- the latter two of which we assume were duking it out inside her head in that introduction.
There's a clip where Anger's head is on fire and the others are roasting marshmallows with the flame. Before or after that (I'd say before, within the plot of the movie), they're throwing marshmallows at his noggin. Docter slows the scene down to show how cartoony the animation is while explaining that they wanted it to be like the elastic character stuff they grew up on -- bits of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Alice in Wonderland, Fantasia and Dumbo are played to illustrate some of his and producer Jonas Rivera's influences.
It's interesting how Docter and Rivera continue to stress that with Inside Out they're making something unlike anything they've ever done before at Pixar, but at the same time they're also noting heavy influence from the oldest of Disney classics. This sounds like a perfect blend of the past and the future of animation for something both familiar and innovative. I can't wait to see more.
Also, I love that in a way we're peeking inside the brain of Pixar for an inside-out look at the making of a movie about peeking inside the brain of a child's mind. How meta, guys! Go watch the video over on Disney's site (or on their Movies Anywhere app), and as the filmmakers urge, please don't pirate the thing!
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