Entertainment

Toy Story turns love story as Disney unveils new movies

ANAHEIM: Disney and its subsidiary Pixar on Friday announced a slew of new animated movies coming down the pipe, including a love story in the “Toy Story” series and a modern take on Jack and the Beanstalk. 

John Lasseter, the chief creative officer of Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios, introduced clips from several of the new films at Disney’s D23 Expo in California, in front of an audience of nearly 8,000 people.

The new Jack and the Beanstalk film, “Gigantic,” is set for release in 2018 and will feature music from songwriters Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez, who penned the hit “Let it Go” from the movie “Frozen.”

“We’re taking parts of the story we all remember and adding twists and turns, emotion and humor,” director Nathan Greno said.

The film follows the adventures of Jack and Inma, a 60-foot-tall, 11-year-old girl.

Lasseter also announced “Coco,” inspired by Mexico’s Day of the Dead. He said the story follows Miguel, a fearless 12-year-old boy.

The fourth film in the “Toy Story” series this time will focus on a love story between the characters Woody and Bo Peep.

“It’s the 20th anniversary of the original ‘Toy Story,'” Lasseter said. “I’m sorry to make you feel old.”

Disney delighted fans at the convention center with clips from the new film “Zootopia,” which comes out in February and features the singer Shakira voicing one of the film’s characters, a gazelle pop star.

Shakira made the announcement in a taped message.

Dwayne Johnson, the actor and former wrestler also known as The Rock, will voice mighty demi-god Maui in Disney’s “Moana,” which tells the story of a young Polynesian princess who embarks on a daring journey to prove to the world that she is a great explorer.

Along the way, she befriends Maui, a half-man, half-god played by Johnson. The film is set for release in November 2016.

The audience seemed to approve of a clip played on Friday, which showed a baby Moana playing in the crystal waters of her island.

“I’m half Samoan, half black, so to tell a story inspired by the South Pacific is a great honor,” said Johnson, whose mother comes from the Samoan Islands.

The audience at the D23 Expo, which runs through Sunday, also caught an early glimpse of Pixar’s “The Good Dinosaur,” which follows Arlo, an Apatosaurus, and Spot, his unlikely human friend.

Disney also unveiled “Riley’s First Date?” — a short film about the first date of the star of this year’s critically acclaimed “Inside Out.”

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