Within the last two years, we’ve had crowd pleasers such as ParaNorman, The Lorax, Rango, Megamind, Puss in Boots, and Kung Fu Panda 2. Now with Walt Disney Animation Studios’ Wreck-It Ralph on the horizon, it may be time for Pixar to start worrying. Just from looking at the new theatrical trailer, this arcade-jumping, adventure comedy looks to bring new life to animated features with fun personable characters and incredible, fast-paced visuals.
With lukewarm releases such as Brave and Cars 2, the beloved animation studio, Pixar, has not been keeping up to par after the Oscar winning Toy Story 3 released. DreamWorks Animation has been on a roll ever since Kung Fu Panda, and has been close to evenly matching Pixar who wasn’t even nominated for an Oscar last year – DWA received two nominations for PiB and KFP2.
When I first learned about Wreck-It Ralph, way back when, I sort of shrugged it off. Then I went to E3 2012. The teaser trailer debuted and I was in awe of its nostalgia factor, the beautiful imagery, and the engaging story. I had to see this film as soon as possible. This is like Toy Story for video game nerds. We see appearances by Zangief and M. Bison of Street Fighter, Bowser from Super Mario Bros., and Dr. Robotnik aka Eggman from Sonic the Hedgehog. Therereferences from many classic games such as Q-Bert and Pac-Man.
I like the plot, I think it’s an interesting take on how we perceive characters in the games we play. Yes, it’s practically the basic premise of Toy Story – what would happen if your such and such came to life – but beyond that, Wreck-It Ralph strays away from what Pixar has created. Read the official plot synopsis from Disney:
For decades, Ralph (voice of John C. Reilly) has been overshadowed by Fix-It Felix, Jr. (voice of Jack McBrayer), the good-guy star of their game who always gets to save the day. Tired of playing the role of a bad guy, Ralph takes matters into his own massive hands and sets off on a journey across the arcade through multiple generations of video games to prove he’s got what it takes to be a hero.
On his quest, Ralph meets tough-as-nails Sergeant Calhoun (voice of Jane Lynch) from the first-person action game Hero’s Duty, and feisty misfit Vanellope von Schweetz (voice of Sarah Silverman) from the candy-coated cart racing game, Sugar Rush, who may just be his first real friend. But everything changes when a deadly enemy is unleashed, threatening the entire arcade and Vanellope herself. Ralph finally gets his chance to save the day—but can he do it in time?
As you can see, the 52nd animated feature film from Walt Disney Animation Studios has a lot going for it. (Although I did not see Winnie the Pooh, I loved Tangled and had a tough time holding back emotions at the end of Bolt.) I’m excited that Wreck-It Ralph will venture into the vast genres video games behold. Wherein lies the many possibilities to create sequels if this film proves to be a success. (Click on the poster to enlarge.)
From a production standpoint, I’d like to know how much it cost to get the licensing and go ahead from all the major game studios like Capcom, Nintendo, Sega, and all the others involved with this film. I’m sure it wasn’t cheap. Either way, I’m anxious to see what other gaming references they have plugged in that we haven’t seen in the trailers thus far. I wonder if they’ll touch on the gaming industry as a whole with current generation consoles such as the PlayStation 3, Nintendo Wii, or Xbox 360? (Click on the thumbnails below to enlarge the screenshots from the trailer.)
Wreck-It Ralph releases into theaters on November 2, 2012; starring the voices of John C. Reilly, Jane Lynch, Sarah Silverman, and Jack McBrayer. The film also features voice talent from Alan Tudyk, Mindy Kaling, Adam Carolla, Horatio Sanz, and many more!