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September 25, 2007

Enchanted's Health-Conscious Promotional Campaign

Toon Tuesday: Will "Enchanted" 's health-conscious promotional campaign ultimately result in robust box office receipts for this new Walt Disney Pictures release? (jimhillmedia.com)

Jim Hill wonders: Can a feel-good movie actually be used to encourage healthier eating habits? For that seems to be a key component of the marketing plan that Disney has cooked up for its big Holiday 2007 release...

You want proof that this is a very different Walt Disney Company now that Bob Iger is in charge? Then take a look at the cross promotional campaign that Mickey's marketing staff has put together for the studio's big Holiday 2007 release, "Enchanted."

Gone are the days when the Mouse would use McDonald's Happy Meals to help get the word out about its newest animated feature. Starting the middle of next month, Walt Disney Pictures will be teaming with Nutrisodas®, a carbonated nutrient-enchanced beverage, to help raise awareness of this Kevin Lima film. These drinks -- which feature natural fruit flavors as well as a meaningful level of vitamins & minerals -- contain absolutely no sugar or caffeine.

Not only that, but Mickey has also gotten in bed with The Little Gym folks. You know? That international chain that uses gymnastics to help kids develop motor skills? Now through October 19th, any child who signs up for fall classes will automatically receive two free passes to "Enchanted." Plus anyone who takes part in a free trial class will then be entered in The Little Gym Family Getaway Enchanted Sweepstakes. Which features a grand prize where a family of four will be flown out to Hollywood to attend the world premiere of this new Walt Disney Pictures release.

Why the sudden emphasis on health when it comes to promotion of the studio's motion pictures? According to company insiders, this new initiative can be traced directly back to Iger. As one Mouse House exec recently told me:

"You have to remember that Bob's got two young kids at home. Which is why he recognizes that something really has to be done about childhood obesity levels here in the U.S.

Think of this as a companion campaign for that no-smoking pledge that the studio made back in July. Iger thinks that it's really important that Disney sets an example here. That we show that it's possible for one of the major players in Hollywood to actually be proactive when it comes to matters that effect our kids' health."

And from what I hear, the Mouse really is serious about including a health-conscious message whenever it can as part of "Enchanted" 's promotion. Take -- for example -- the role that ABC's hit series "Dancing with the Stars" will play in the marketing of this new motion picture.

With the hope that this particular promotional effort will help kids associate the obvious health benefits of physical activity with this live action / animated romantic comedy, Mickey's marketing staff plans on turning this ABC show into a real showcase for "Enchanted." With commercials for this film being prominently featured during every episode that airs now through Fall Sweeps. Not to mention (as we get closer to "Enchanted" 's November 21st release date) guest appearances by that film's stars: Amy Adams, Patrick Dempsey, James Marsden and Susan Sarandon.

Mind you, the Mouse House recognizes that not every would-be "Enchanted" fan is a health enthusiast. Which is why they asked Disney Interactive Studios to cook up an "Enchanted" video game. And given that this Nintendo DS game hits store shelves on November 13th (i.e. eight days before "Enchanted" officially opens) ... Well, it's hoped that "Enchanted: The Video" game will help make couch potatoes aware that this high profile project will soon be " ... coming to a theater near you."

But -- beyond that -- Mickey is hoping that "Enchanted" will be the very first feel-good movie that actually encourages people to start adopting more health-concious habits.

So what do you folks think? Should the Walt Disney Company be commended for trying to associate "Enchanted" 's release with healthier food choices & physical activity? Or is this just an empty gesture by a well-meaning executive that will ultimately have little or no real impact on the movie-going public?

-Jim Hill, Jim Hill Media.com

Posted by dschnee at 10:45 PM

September 24, 2007

Enchanted Soundtrack

The soundtrack will be released on November 20, 2007.

I guess that Carrie Underwood will be singing "Ever After" from the movie? Found a few images on her website. This one must be a set piece for the music video, but what's up with the chubby guy? here and especially here, creepy.

I have yet to find the soundtrack online or for pre-sale... but stay tooned.

Posted by dschnee at 12:23 PM

September 21, 2007

Spiderwick Chronicles ILM & Tippett Studio Visit Preview

"We had a great chat with Mr. Tippett about creating some of the actual monsters used in The Spiderwick Chronicles. Mark Waters joined the talk and the two joked about Phil running around on set with the monsters in his hands yelling at the kids. After that, some of the other animators showed us what parts of the film they worked on."

Click below for the full article from -comingsoon.net

See Also: Spiderwick Screening! (I was there!)

There's a book that has magical qualities – and not all for the good. The Spiderwick Chronicles is a world created by Arthur Spiderwick. There's goblins, Hogsqueals, snakes, monsters, trolls, and much more. When the book falls into the wrong hands, all heck is about to break out.

Thanks to Nickelodeon Studios and Paramount Pictures, The Spiderwick Chronicles is coming to the big screen. It stars Freddie Highmore, Sarah Bolger, and Freddie Highmore – yes, Freddie plays twins Simon and Jared Grace, while Sarah plays sister Mallory; Mary-Louise Parker plays their mom and David Strathairn is Arthur Spiderwick. Lending his vocal talent to the project is Martin Short as the helpful Thimbletack and his alter ego, Bogart; also Seth Rogen voices the lovable Hogsqueal. And Nick Nolte plays three different roles of the same character (don't want to give too much away, so I'll leave it at that).

ComingSoon.net was invited to the one and only ILM/LucasFilm complex in San Francisco, as well as Tippett Studio to check out what they're working on for the upcoming children's flick.

Our first stop on the trip was to ILM in the Presidio, George Lucas' new home for his company. The complex is split into three different sections – ILM, LucasArts, and LucasFilm. Now, there are some people who would give their right arm to walk the halls and see items from Ghostbusters (Slimer!), "E.T.," the "Harry Potter" films – oh, and a little film series called "Star Wars" (you may have heard of that). We strolled by pictures, figurines, and many of the actual items used in the films designed by Lucas' team.

It was then time to see what's in store for The Spiderwick Chronicles. We met up with director Mark Waters (Freaky Friday, Mean Girls). He showed us a few clips from the film, mostly all complete with some of the amazing special effects created by Tippett Studio and ILM. One of the characters created by ILM was the Griffin, a half lion/half eagle; the animators explained how difficult it was to build that from scratch because of the intricacy of the feathers.

Tim Alexander and Tim Harrington of ILM gave us a history lesson of the 27 years of ILM that was so spectacular, I couldn't just write a one or two paragraph insert. A separate story on just ILM will be popping up in the very near future.

After Tim and Tim, we spoke to a couple more animators and then it was off to Tippett Studio. For those who don't know, Phil Tippett is the man behind the monsters in Starship Troopers, RoboCop, Dragonslayer, Howard the Duck, and he's one of the original visual effects artists who worked on "Star Wars."

We had a great chat with Mr. Tippett about creating some of the actual monsters used in The Spiderwick Chronicles. Mark Waters joined the talk and the two joked about Phil running around on set with the monsters in his hands yelling at the kids. After that, some of the other animators showed us what parts of the film they worked on.

For the film, ILM is designing the characters of Mulgarath, Thimbletack/Bogart, the Griffin, the Sprites (female flower creatures), and Stray Sod. And Tippett Studio is designing Hogsqueal, the Troll, Red Cap (voiced by Ron Perlman) and his army of goblins, plus the Bull Goblins.

All in all, a very fun adventure. Stay glued to ComingSoon.net for interviews with Mark Waters, Phil Tippett and the rest ofr the animating team behind The Spiderwick Chronicles, coming to theaters on February 15, 2008.

Posted by dschnee at 9:58 AM

September 18, 2007

Beyond the Spiderwick Chronicles

The Nixie's Song was released today! - The latest book in the world of Spiderwick...

The Spiderwick Chronicles leave the old-fashioned charm of New England far behind and head south for some fiendish faerie fun in the hot Florida sun. Eleven-year-old Nicholas Vargas only thinks his life has been turned upside down after his developer father remarries and moves his new wife and daughter into the soon-to-be completed Mangrove Hollow.
But an "expedition" to a nearby lake turns up a little nixie with a giant problem - the huge, lumbering, fire-breathing variety - and it's up to Nick; his stepsister, Laurie; and his big brother, Julian (plus a familiar face from the original Spiderwick Chronicles) to figure out the best way to stop a host of rampaging giants before all of Florida goes up in smoke.

Check out Tony DiTerlizzi sketching the Nixie below: (click here)

Posted by dschnee at 8:42 PM

September 17, 2007

Spiderwick Screening!

Last night the Tippett crew on Spiderwick was treated to an early screening of the movie! This was a congratulatory gift to us working so hard on the film, and it's pretty darn cool and rare for this to happen, it was a special treat. Thanks to Mark Waters and the Spiderwick Production! The films producer and director Mark Waters were there to introduce the film to us, and we got to watch it at ILM's digs in the Presidio at the Premier Theater, Letterman Digital Arts Center.

I wasn't really ready to see the film yet... but since I had never been into the Presidio, and never been or seen a film at the fancy Premier Theater (Where ILM holds dailies every Friday) I had to go!

I can't really say much about the movie until it's released, but I for one enjoyed it! Better than expected even! They showed it to a real test audience the night before and it scored very well, got a lot of laughs, especially after a few of our shots, which is always a great complement!

I've heard some say it's a cross between The Never Ending Story and Gremlins, so that's pretty sweet right there, that's all I'm gonna say.

Once again, The Spiderwick Chronicles will be released in February of 2008.

Posted by dschnee at 7:12 PM

Onto the next show... ?????

Today I have started work on the next project.?. and we have hit the ground running, lots to do in a short amount of time, but it's going to kick a whole lot of F'ing a$$, and were all excited about that.

Posted by dschnee at 1:18 AM

September 14, 2007

Is Disney's ENCHANTED enchanting?

"I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. I'm not going to go into detail... but I don't really need to. The film is typically Disney, but typically GOOD Disney. Say what you like, you have to admit that when Disney does something well, they do it REALLY well and this is no exception."


Ahoy, squirts! Quint here. Now, we've gotten some pretty leafy reviews for Disney films in the past and this one might be another one to add on to that pile, but it does jibe with what I've heard about ENCHANTED. The trailer is a little sweet, but it also looks really damn cheesy. However, I've heard from many insiders that the script is incredibly smart and funny and the film will be a big surprise. I hope so. I like the idea and it'd be good to see a good family film that works for more than just the 3 year olds again. Here's the review from an early screening. Keep in mind it is possible this is not the final version of the flick. Enjoy!

Hi Quint,

Saw your comment about Enchanted and though you might like to hear this:

I live in London; last week the Husbando and I went to see Bourne Ultimatum (good, but I still like Supremacy best), as we were staring at the refreshments board trying to figure out if we would need to re-mortgage the house for some popcorn, a man with a clipboard walked up and asked if we wanted to come to a free movie.

Free movie? we asked, suddenly very interested.

He explained that he worked for a research group doing a screening of a new Disney film to see how to market and edit it. He handed us a flyer and sure enough it was for 'Enchanted'. I'd seen the trailer for it before Harry Potter and dismissed it as something I wasn't going to see but see above re: free movie. It was then that Mr Clipboard mentioned who was in the film and I was actually interested.

So we called the magic number and got ourselves seats for the screening. I still figured that it would be one of those typical Disney films that you only really go to see because it is your 8 year old niece's birthday and she has cornered the market on Disney Princess merchandise.

I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. I'm not going to go into detail -but I don't really need to. The film is typically Disney - but typically GOOD Disney. Say what you like, you have to admit that when Disney does something well, they do it REALLY well and this is no exception.

Amy Adams is spot on as the animated princess turned real. I've loved her since Drop Dead Gorgeous and she is the primary reason I decided to see this. James Marsden (who I could only ever previously describe as 'wooden') proved that he is capable of turning out a really good comic performance as the charming Prince Edward. If I were his agent, I would seriously consider sending him out for more comic stuff in the future. Both of them manage to make their animated characters work, right down to their body language which carries over from the animated version into the real world and is the primary reason that the characters don't degenerate in parody. They move like animated people and it works. My one complaint about the film is that Susan Sarandon doesn't move like her animated counterpart and it makes her Queen Nerissa too camp.

The movie takes some standard fairy tale conventions (helpful talking animals, a supply of beautiful gowns for the peasant-turned-princess, etc) and turns them on their heads. The musical numbers are few but funny and the ending you expect, while still there, is satisfying when it comes.

The cut I saw was pretty long, and I'm sure that this will be trimmed for eventual release, but there isn't a lot there that NEEDS to come out, and I'd probably go see it again when it comes out, just to see what they do cut.

Husbando, who only agreed to go because it was free and I insisted, enjoyed it as well. Saying that while he wouldn't have gone without me, he would probably recommend it to other couples, ones with or without children, as a good night out.

All in all, I would say that if there is anything in the Disney animated back catalog that you enjoyed, almost regardless of how old you were when you saw it, Enchanted is worth seeing.

If you use this, call me Bug.

Posted by dschnee at 7:27 AM

September 13, 2007

Disney's Enchanted DS Trailer

~enjoy, because I'm willing to bet that I just wasted damn near 2 minutes of your life watching that fantastic game trailer!

Posted by dschnee at 11:06 AM

September 12, 2007

Final Week on the Wick

This week marks our final week of post production work on The Spiderwick Chronicles, the past few weeks have been a flurry of activity as everyone is scouring around to get all of our shots out the door.

Actually today is our last day, we delivered all of our shots on time this morning, it was a mad dash to get this one last shot out the door as a number of us teamed up and went on into the early hours this morning to take it across the finish line.

This was a fun show, I think we did some impressive creature, character, and animation work in this one, and look forward to it hitting theater's come February!

I'm completely excited for the next show I'm going onto. So what's next? You will most likely have to have an extended 'stay tooned' as I'm not at liberty to say... :(

Posted by dschnee at 9:23 PM

September 4, 2007

Disney's Enchanted International Movie Poster!

"Once Upon A Time and if Disney of Christmas became reality?"

(can anyone translate?)
Il Etait Une Fois: Once Upon A Time
Et si le Disney de noel devenait realite?: What if the (this) Disney movie
became reality?

Word on the street is the kids are saying 2 more International Posters are in the works... stay tooned.

Posted by dschnee at 7:21 AM