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The Good Dinosaur
Photo: PixarThe Good Dinosaur

The Good Dinosaur: interview with Jim Morris, President of Pixar Animation Studios

We chat with the President of Pixar Animation Studios about the feel-good movie 'The Good Dinosaur'

Written by
Benita Lee
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We’re in for a treat. For the first time ever, Pixar’s going for two this year (we’re still recovering from all the feels in Inside Out), and its second release transforms prehistoric creatures into all shapes cute and cuddly. We find out more from Jim Morris, the President of Pixar Animation Studios.

'Nature is the nemesis in a story that treads the line between beauty and danger'

After hitting numerous bumps on its six-year road to the big screen, The Good Dinosaur finally sees the light of day.

The original idea was beloved by many in Pixar, but Morris cited unresolvable story issues as the reason for the complete overhaul. So out went director Bob Peterson in 2013, and in came Peter Sohn, whom you may recognise as the voice of Ratatouille’s Emile and Monsters University’s Squishy, as well as the inspiration for Russell in Up.

Compared to other films, this focuses less on dialogue and more on visuals.

It’s inspired by Sohn’s own experience of going with his non-English-speaking mum to the movies, where the only stories he didn’t have to translate were animated ones.

So the filmmakers sought to create vast landscapes in a world that felt visceral and immersive. Nature is the nemesis, in a story that treads the line between beauty and danger. And trust us, the wilderness looks so spectacular here, even non-outdoor lovers will be itching to go camping.

It’s gonna be an emotional rollercoaster.

The epic journey follows Arlo, a young, timid Apatosaurus, and Spot, a cave boy with a keen sense of smell, in a role reversal of the boy-and-his-dog relationship. Both of them are alone in this world (not by choice), and neither can understand each other’s language or behaviour, so you can bet there’ll be plenty of comedic interaction followed by heart-wrenching moments. Not to forget the usual line-up of hilarious and eccentric sideline characters.

During our preview of several minutes-long snippets, we were already bawling our eyes out (discreetly) and chuckling in delight. That’s just the power of Pixar.

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