You’ve probably heard of Blue Sky Studios, the computer animation company that gave us the Ice Age movies, Robots (that movie with Robin Williams), Horton Hears a Who, Rio and Epic.
Well, the Connecticut-based studio has a new project coming out in late 2015, and it’s about a group of characters you’re probably more than familiar with. A Peanuts movie is coming, and it doesn’t look like anything most of us have ever seen.
Here is the first trailer for Peanuts:
Peanuts as an overall franchise has always meant a lot to me, personally. The cartoon, comic strips and movies were a big part of my upbringing, mostly due to their raw emotional pull that I could never overlook. Most animated offerings like to pull punches with introspective kids like me, but Peanuts never really tried to do that.
It was just real. Well, as real as fictional cartoons go.
So the idea of a new Peanuts movie coming out and being computer animated rightfully set off a lot of alarms for me and many of you, as well. I’m all for re-introducing classics to new audiences, but aren’t some properties just sacred?
Of course, I’ve come around since the movie was first announced, and it has a lot to do with this trailer. What I see is a blend of the old and new: hand-drawn animation combined with a CGI flare, making the style something truly unique.
We’ve talked before about this new kind of hybrid animation style that even Pixar has been working on, but Peanuts may be one of the first major productions to actually show it off. Who would have thought that our first chance to evaluate hybrid animation would be an adaptation? (Not me).
At this point, there is reason for both concern and optimism when it comes to this new Peanuts film, though it is almost two years away. All we can take certainty in for now is that Blue Sky is promising to honor the memory of these beloved characters without distorting what made them great. That means avoiding a faux-modernization of the subject material—think Smurfs—or anything else ridiculous like making Snoopy talk.
We’ll just have to wait and see if they can live up to that promise come November, 2015.
Thanks for Reading! You can subscribe to this blog by email via the prompt on the sidebar. Otherwise, be sure to stay connected with me on Twitter (@JonNegroni). I’ll follow you back if you say something witty and awesome.