This past March, something really extraordinary happened to me as I movie fan and entertainment journalist. I got the incredible opportunity to visit Pixar in Emeryville, California for the first time! I was invited to do interviews with the director, producers, well with everybody was involved in the fantastic animation Cars 3. Going deep in this experience that last one and half days, what stood out to me was how much inspiration you feel, how much appreciation you started to have just to be surrounded by all the artistic creativity people and the office environment. I was able to “taste”’ every aspect and details of the creation of an animation: storyboard, research, music, colors, formats, characters, types of cars…. It was endless and a unique experience! Aside from watch around 45 minutes of Cars 3 footage, I had the opportunity to watch the new short called Lou.
Disney-Pixar’s Cars 3 that hits theaters on June 16 and this time around Lighting McQueen, voiced once by Owen Wilson, was pushed out of racing by a young car called Jackson Storm, voiced by Armie Hammer. To get back into the track, Lighting McQueen will use some help of trainer Cruz Ramirez, voiced by Cristela Alonzo.
After screening the animation, we had a reception and we had a chance to chat a little with first time director Brian Fee. Here is the quick chat:
What can we expect from Cars 3?
Brian Fee – The tone is going to be more like Cars. That’s one of the things we wanted to do with that trailer. Not only is the tone going to go back to Cars and back to McQueen’s story, but we’re taking his character to a place where he has to decide who he wants to be, and he might not be able to be the person that he was.
This is your first time directing, right? How was the experience?
Brian – I came to Pixar as a story assistant, and I hadn’t ever drawn a storyboard before. I drew some storyboard like drawings, just to get the job as the assistant, and I asked my story supervisor, “How do I stick around here?” His advice was, “Just make yourself indispensable,” which was the best advice anyone has ever told me. How I interpreted that was just to do the best job I could, with whatever I was working on.
Did you go nervous or panic?
Brian – Yes! It was a combination of things. I worked on all of the other movies, so these characters are like family to me, and I felt the need and desire to protect them and to tell their story. I was very excited about that. I knew it was a great honor. What John was entrusting me to do was a huge opportunity and a huge honor. I was excited and terrified, at the same time, because I’ve never directed anything before. That’s really hard! I had to learn as I did it, but I was able to.