Pixar is Reportedly Working on Their First Ever Musical
When Pixar was a new and unknown company, it broke from the Disney mold by making feature length animated movies that specifically weren’t musicals. Nowadays, their template has become the norm. Every animation studio is trying to make emotionally satisfying stories filled with compelling characters (with mixed success, of course). Well, leave it to Pixar to sail against the winds they created. According to the latest rumors, Pixar is working on its first musical.
This rumor hit the internet from musical legend Randy Newman, of all people (via Filmdivider), but it makes sense in a weird sort of way. After all, Newman wrote the scores for and contributed songs to all three Toy Story movies, Monsters Inc., and Cars, winning two Academy Awards in the process. If anyone has an inkling of what is going on at the company musically, it may be him.
However, the news comes as part of an offhand comment in the middle of a larger statement. While speaking about Toy Story 3’s Lee Unkrich, he was blunt about his combative relationship with the director, saying that he probably won’t work with him again ... even on that new musical he”s currently making:
I’m not so sure I don’t have a reputation for being a little trouble. Lee Unkrich isn’t going to use me, I don’t think.
And not only that, Lee Unkrich had Toy Story 3 temped with my music and it was limiting to me. It was fine, the movie did great and everything and maybe I’m wrong and if I look back on it I won’t know the difference, but it didn’t fit hand in glove the way I would have tried to do. And he fell in love with the temp, very much so.
Now he’s not going to use me to work with him again. He’s doing a musical now.
A musical, eh? Last time we checked, Unkrich was working on another Pixar film, an untitled project centered around Día de los Muertos (not to be confused with The Book of Life). Here’s how that was described when it was announced a few years ago:
From director Lee Unkrich and producer Darla K. Anderson, the filmmaking team behind the Academy Award-winning Toy Story 3, comes a wholly original Pixar Animation Studios film that delves into the vibrant holiday of Día de los Muertos.
So, if everything lines up, that means that this untitled film is Pixar’s first musical. It makes sense! After all, this is a film about a holiday from a culture known for its vibrant and lively music. Then again, how do we know that Newman actually knows anything about this project? For all we know, it will be a Toy Story situation, where the film features original songs but isn’t actually a musical.
But with the success of Frozen certainly on every animated studio’s mind (and “Let It Go” surely stuck in their head), the prospect of an animated musical certainly sounds far more enticing than it did a decade ago.