Sunday, August 16, 2015

D23 2015

What is the D23 Expo?

Its basically a big, Disney-themed Comic-Con event that takes place every year. Instead of focusing on all things geek and nerd, the D23 Expo focuses on everything pertaining to the world of Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse. There were some big announcements this year, and I can only imagine that with Star Wars and Marvel under Disney's banner, these events will be more exciting. There was some cool stuff that was announces this year and I can hardly wait to crack into any of it.

Moana Announcement
"Moana" will be Disney's big animated film next year that isn't connected to Pixar or Marvel or any other chains attached to the brand. This will be an original idea, and apparently it struck a chord with several attendees at the expo. It seems like typical Disney fair, a princess will go on daring journey to a chain islands set two thousand years in the past. She will be accompanied by voyager who will apparently be voiced by The Rock. New Princesses, daring journeys, underdogs proving their worth, celebrity sounds Disney enough. But apparently The Rock cried reading the script, so I bet Disney will be able to tuck on our heart strings a bit for this one. I will be keeping an eye out for trailers on this one, and it is set for release Thanksgiving next year.

Gigantic Announcement
Disney is known for its celebration of old school fairy tales. That will never change and that is what we love about them. As of late, Disney has always announced what they are going to do. We knew what to expect from films like "Alice In Wonderland," "Robin Hood," "Beauty and the Beast" and "Cinderella." But now, they have a trend of titling fairy tale movies differently, apparently to draw bigger crowds. I have no idea if that is working for them or not, but after "Tangled" and "Frozen," next is "Gigantic." While "Tangled" focused on Rapunzel and "Frozen" focused on interpretations of the Snow Queen fable, can you guess what "Gigantic" will be about? I liked "Tangled" and I liked "Frozen" up into the point Disney decided to oversell it, and I am hoping they are smarter with the craze "Gigantic" could potentially create. Disney does a very good job with its animated movies, and I don't want to not like something simply because it has become overused and annoying.

Star Wars
First of all, get a look at the old style poster for "Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens"
Love it!

Now let's talk a little about "Star Wars: Rogue One." And no, "Star Wars: Rogue One" is not the title for Episode VIII. In the upcoming future, we are going to be getting lots and lots of "Star Wars." Disney is planning to unleash independent movies in between each episode. This is becoming to be known as the "Star Wars Anthology" movies. These stories are set in the "Star Wars" universe, but the characters won't be interacting with the Skywalker family or any characters being introduced in the regular saga franchise. These anthology movies I am looking forward to the most. I love that we are going to be getting stories not pertaining to the Skywalkers, and Disney is giving themselves the opportunity to really expand their universe. "Rogue One" already has a great cast including Mads Mikkelsen, Felicity Jones, Alan Tudyk, Donnie Yen, Ben Mendelsohn and Forest Whitaker! Yeah, can't wait! Here is the first official image of "Star Wars: Rogue One!"
It was also announced that Colin Trevorrow, director of "Jurassic World" will direct Episode nine for Disney!

Pirates of the Caribbean
"Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales" will be the fifth installment in the series. While I agree that this is a money-making franchise, the quality of this franchise is beginning to fade for me. I loved the first movie, felt the two sequels were okay, but simply tried to do way too much at one time. Please, don't get me started on "On Stranger Tides" though, yeesh. This will hit theaters in July 2017.

Captain America: Civil War Footage Description!
Read and Enjoy! From Ain't It Cool News:

"The down to earth feel of Winter Soldier was evident from frame one. There's some kind of op Cap is on with Falcon and Black Widow. Falcon is on a rooftop in a fancy new duds (red and black outfit), Cap is peering out a window and Black Widow is in civilian clothes sitting at a table outside a cafe.
”Eyes on target, folks.” - Cap. They're looking at a particularly heavy vehicle in traffic. Falcon launches Red Wing, which is not a bird like in the comics but a winged drone that he can control. It flies under the car, gets readings and pings the guys inside. A battering ram is detected. Bad news all around.
The heroes converge on the car, disable it and Crossbones comes out with some goons. The first thing he does is throw some kind of sticky bomb on Cap's shield, forcing cap to throw it up and out of harm's way, so the rest of the fight is hand to hand. Falcon blocks bullets with his metal wings as he fights some guys, Widow does her running leap leg takedown things and Cap is focused on Crossbones, who is more than holding his own.
”This is for dropping a building on my face,” he growls as he punches Cap back into a brick wall. Crossbones raises a fist and a blade pops out. Cap blocks, knocks the gauntlet off of that hand and Crossbones answers with another blade on his left fist.
Cap pretty handily takes Crossbones out, helmet is knocked off and looks at Crossbones' disfigured face. The bad guy smiles. “You don't remember me, do you?” He mumbles something about “your pal, your buddy, your Bucky...” and we're quickly reintroduced to the Winter Soldier a few moments later. Before that we get a voice over and see official bureaucratic types (including a clean cut Martin Freeman) in government looking buildings. There's a voice over that was close to this:
”The world owes you an unpayable debt. While a great many people see you as a hero there are some who prefer the word vigilante. People are afraid.” I couldn't place the voice, but it might have been William Hurt.
Cap responds “This job... We try to save as many as we can. Sometimes that doesn't mean everybody.” That plays over some random destruction and post-battle imagery.
Then we find Bucky. His memory seems to have returned. “Do you know who I am?” - Cap “Your mom's name is Sarah and (with a smile) you used to wear newspapers in your shoes.”
That's when Stark is introduced.
”What would you call a group of enhanced individuals who inflict their will anywhere they choose?”
Cap: ”I know they're not perfect, but they're still the safest hands out there.”
Tony: “Sometimes I want to punch you in your perfect teeth. If we have no limitations, no boundaries, we're no better than the bad guys.”
The way the footage was cut that didn't come across so much as “I hate you and now we're going to fight,” but more an argument that goes from playful to deadly serious.
The footage did ramp up with the costumed heroes charging at other heroes. Looks like they're in an airport of some sort. I don't think we saw who was on the other side, but for sure Cap, Winter Soldier, Scarlett Witch and Hawkeye were on one side.
Hawkeye and Black Widow engage in a little fisticuffs. Hawkeye gets Black Widow on the ground. She says “We're still friends, right?” With a smile, Hawkeye responds: “Depends on how hard you hit me.” She smiles back and you get the feeling the fight is gonna continue.
There were some quick battle shots and a brief shot of Black Panther. His vibranium claws slide out of his finger tips and the crowd went bonkers.
They decided to end the footage on a comedic note. A van door is roughly slid open, revealing a sleeping Scott Lang. He wakes up and seems super happy to be there. He's starstruck by Cap. He shakes his hand and keeps shaking. And keeps shaking. And keeps shaking. “What an honor. I'm shaking your hand too long” (still doesn't stop shaking). Scarlet Witch is smiling behind him. He turns to her, while still shaking Cap's hand, “I know you, too. You're great.” Turns back to Cap. “Thinks for thanking of me...”
Sounds cornball, but it works. You know how likable Paul Rudd is and he oozes that all over this scene. Maybe I should have phrased that better..."

Jungle Book Poster
I can't wait to see what Jon Favreau does with his live action "Jungle Book" movie, due next year!

Overall, it sounds like it was a cool expo this year, for more on each of these stories, go here:

What do you all think of these developments?

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