* Pixar has announced that its summer 2015 release will be “Inside Out,” which takes place inside the mind of an 11 year old girl. Her emotions will be the characters: Anger (Lewis Black), Sadness (Phyllis Smith), Joy (Amy Poehler), Fear (Bill Hader), and Disgust (Mindy Kaling). It sounds a lot like the old Cranium Command attraction at Epcot, which I remember fondly. With Pete Docter of “Up” as director and a terrific cast, this sounds like it could be one of Pixar’s best.
Variety reports that Docter made an hour-long presentation about the film, explaining that he was inspired by watching his daughter grow up but relied on the latest research about brain development in creating the storyline.
“It’s based on a strong emotional experience I had watching my daughter grow up,” says the “Up” director, who noticed that when his daughter Elie turned 12, much of her childhood joy disappeared, and she became more moody and withdrawn. “There is something that is lost when you grow up” — and the film became a way to explore that change on an emotional level.
The film centers on a young girl named Riley Anderson, “one of those kids who seems like she was born happy,” Docter says. “In truth, Riley is not our main character; she is our setting.” To demonstrate what he meant, Docter screened the first five minutes of the movie, a good segment of which was still in a pencil-drawn storyboard state. (The finished film will open June 19, 2015.) Sure enough, “Inside Out” takes place in Riley’s subconscious, where a crew of anthropomorphized emotions manage how the girl feels at any given moment from a control panel that looks something like the flight deck of the Starship Enterprise.
* According to the New York Times, Kristin Wiig and her “Bridesmaids” co-screenwriter Annie Mumolo are working on a new project. This time, Wiig will direct as well. TriStar Productions says that the film is about “best friends who find themselves in over their heads and out of their depths, which were, perhaps, not too deep to begin with.”
* And an old friend is coming back, via Netflix, which has announced that Ms. Frizzle and the Magic School Bus will be back with new adventures for a new generation!
And more: “9 to 5” co-stars Jane Fonda and Lili Tomlin are reuniting in a series for Netflix. Can we hope that Dolly Parton shows up to guest star?