News has surfaced from none other than Pixar fan-favorite, Randy Newman, that Lee Unkrich's next feature film centered on the Mexican holiday Dia de los Muertos could possibly be a musical! If this were to be true, the untitled Dia de los Muertos film would be Pixar's first ever musical production, a sign of exciting new frontiers that the studio could be exploring. This news comes surprisingly from a radio interview that Newman was featured on about his unique relationship with Toy Story 3 director Lee Unkrich. More on the interview and what this means for Pixar's future all after the break!
"'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.'"
This unconfirmed news is very exciting! Why, might you ask? Well, Pixar has made a point in the past of not going the musical route. In fact, Toy Story was specifically constructed to not follow the typical "Disney" formula. At the time of Toy Story's conception, Disney Animation was producing one musical hit after another. Much of Toy Story's success came from it being entirely different from standard aimed fair- a buddy comedy like no other animated film (or film, for that matter) had ever been. So when the news hit that Pixar could possibly be exploring the idea of doing a musical, some would find this to be presumably out of the ordinary. But that is exactly it! If we have learned anything from the past 29 years of Pixar's existence, it's that audiences should expect the unexpected. Why? Because the creative heads at Pixar realize that it is impossible to duplicate success by simply replicating what has been done before. That is why with every film Pixar produces, the studio has explored something new- whether it is with new story, visual, audio, or graphic techniques. I say why not a musical! Pixar could completely transform the idea of what a standard musical could be and show us what we could never imagine. Although I hate using the phrase, our "post-Frozen" world has proven audiences are able to take all different types of entertainment. I say bring it on. And who better to prove us wrong? If anyone can, it's Pixar. Plus, the holiday of Dia de los Muertos lends itself to vibrant songs and dances! We'll just have to wait and see if any of this actually comes to fruition. But believe me when I say that I really hope it does come true!
"If you do what you love, you'll never work a day in your life."