If it isn’t broken, make a sequel!

I’m starting to think the claim that filesharing is damaging the movie business is true.  Disney’s production choices have been more and more conservative over the past decade, and it might possibly be my fault for DL’ing Seasons 1-3 of Chip n Dale’s Rescue Rangers.

But I have no regrets.

As a consequence of customers’ reluctance to spend money on anything except family favorites, D&Co. is relying on established franchises for their upcoming films.  Just in 2014, Maleficent retells Sleeping Beauty, Alexander has a Horrible Day, and Planes fly some more.   Big Hero 6 and Muppets sap pre-existing fandoms, and popular Hollywood actors try to sing as they go Into the Woods.  2015 and 2016 will be full of thrills and surprises as Kenneth Branagh plays the title character in Cinderella, audiences have to go Find Dory, and Star Wars and Pirates renew their race to see who can amass the most *quels (although neither has a chance of beating James Bond.)  Also there’s two more movies about dinosaurs and animals in clothing.  Possibly together, since noone knows exactly what either is about.

Moviegoers looking for something original will have to wait for Inside Out.

This is good news for parents who are tired of buying new merchandise every six months, and it keeps getting better.  At the shareholders meeting yesterday, CEO Bob Iger announced that Incredibles and Cars will also be getting new sequels.  There are no dates for these yet, but we might be looking at Summer and Christmas ’17.   Helen tried to stay retired, but…

Leave the saving of the world to the men?  I don't think so.

When Mr. I and his family came out ten years ago, Pixar was a hip place brimming with creativity and adventure.  Animated movies with talking toys or vehicles instead of princesses!  Located underwater or on a space ship!  Main characters who are middle-aged insurance agents or elderly grumps or robots who only say one word the entire film (and it’s still one of the most romantic characters of all time.)

So, I don’t think it’s wrong to say that rebooting Pixar classics is a betrayal of that energy that John Lasseter brought back to animated films.  It would make Walt sad to know that exciting and worthy stories are being passed over just to keep shareholders happy; safe was never his favorite word.

Fans will be especially pained to realize that Incredibles 2 and Cars 3 will probably include Violet and Mater dating. Not each other, but it’s still not something we want to see. As Edna Mode says:

Edna Mode: I never look back, darling.  It distracts from the now.

She also said “My God, you’ve gotten fat,” but we’re not making a picture for that.

On the other hand, Edna might decide to design new suits, and that would be fabulous, darling, just fabulous!

In case you’re keeping count, this brings the Cars spin-off movies up to five now, plus TV series Mater’s Tall Tales.  Captain Jack and R2 better watch out!

Owen Wilson and Lightning McQueen

Modesty is not his best virtue. His, either.

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