During my trip to Los Angeles for the World Premiere of Oz the Great and Powerful, I got to spend a whole day with 24 other awesome bloggers at Disney Animation Studios for a Wreck-It Ralph Press Day! It was so much fun.We have seen the movie twice and can’t wait to own it on DVD (by the way, it comes out March 5th).
Seriously, the Disney Animation Building was so amazing! There was so much to see on the inside – it was fabulous! Inside was a magical Wreck-It Ralph fun filled day for us. This post focuses on learning about how the film was actually created. The Animation Building needs a post all to itself. <– that’s a link so be sure to check it out.
When we arrived, we were split up into two groups. My group’s day began with learning all about Disney’s Digital Copy feature from Anthony Mutalipassi and Nicole Elmes. It’s great to know that Disney is really looking out for us parents when it comes to the digital copy. I love that I can have the DVD for our viewing pleasure; however, I can stream it to our iPads, phones and laptops. Plus, more than one device can be watching it at the same time. This is definitely going to save some arguments in many households.
It was fun hearing about how the Wreck-It Ralph story came about from Raymond Persi. The story took about a year to write. It’s amazing to see how much the story changed from when it was originally finished as a rough draft to when it was completely finished. They basically have meetings where all the studio staff will sit down and watch the movie storyboards. There is sound. In the beginning, it’s usually whoever is around unless they are certain on who will be playing the role and they can get them in the studio.
After the studio watched the film, they tell it like it is. They voice what works and what doesn’t work. The story then gets changed and they do this meeting all over again. Wreck-It Ralph had seven of these meetings (called animatic screenings) before the movie was perfected. We were able to see some of the deleted scenes and they were so cute! They will be available on the Blu-Ray/DVD Combo Pack March 5th.
We then headed over to learn about Visual Development and how they came up with the characters. We had the pleasure of speaking with Mike Gabriel and Bill Schwab. They told us so many great stories on how they came up with Ralph’s character. I had always imagined when a movie script was written, they just know what the character looks like. That is not the case at all. They threw around a lot of ideas on how Ralph would look. They didn’t know if they wanted him to be a type of animal or a human. They didn’t know what kind of clothes they wanted him to wear. At one point, Ralph looks more boyish than like a man. It all comes together slowly as the story progresses and various people give their input.
We then moved on to the Wreck-It Ralph "Rigging" fun. What is rigging you ask? Rigging is basically the movements of the characters. It amazes me on how much work goes into making an animated film. These type of things I had never even considered. It was all very fascinating.
We all sat at a desk with two computer monitors. This was a hands on experience and we were instructed by John Kahwaty. We only used one. I was very excited because they had Wacom Digital Tablets. This is something that we have at home; however, ours is much smaller. My hubby would LOVE one this big. Well, maybe. I’m not sure what he would do with it.
They use software called Maya. This is a 3D animated software that you can use for animation, modeling, simulation and much more. I think it would be a pretty cool software to know how to use. There are various green points that you can click on and have the character move in different ways. Basically, the character becomes putty and you can do anything you want with it – even things the human body could never do. Above you will see that I stretched Ralph out a little bit. For a minute there, I thought I broke him. Below, you will see a video that I took of Ralph doing some sort of dance. Yes, that is me moving him!
We then were able to play around with the contraptions on the Motion Capture Stage with Evan Goldberg and his team. I have already told you about that in my previous post so I’ll move on. We visited Amy Smeed in her super cool animation office. This is all top secret stuff in here so we were unable to take photos. It was so cool to hear her talk about how the characters really come to life.
The animators have a home office which makes it easier for them to really focus on the characters. Amy records her self acting out the character’s lines. She plays them back to see her expressions and body movement. Then she incorporates that into the scene. She showed us some clips of her acting out a scene. I distinctively remember the line, "Look, you want that medal, right? And I want to race. So, here’s what I’m thinking… You help me get a new kart–a REAL kart–and I’ll win the race and get you back your medal." It was fun seeing how Vanellope’s facial expressions reflected so much of Amy.
Remember to pick up your copy of WRECK-IT RALPH on Blu-ray/Combo pack March 5th, 2013! Follow Wreck-It Ralph on Facebook and Twitter to stay up on all the latest news and promotions. You can also visit the official Wreck-It Ralph website to learn more about the movie and have some fun!
Even though Disney provided me with an all expense paid trip, all thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own. This is an absolutely adorable movie and I can’t wait to watch it over and over.