While in LA last month we got to do some very interesting things. One of my favorites was learning about the animation process that Disney studios goes through to take a movie from storyboard to the big screen. Our first stop was to learn about this process. We enjoyed this day so much. So why not learn what we learned from them!
1. The animators go into a conference room and discuss the way they think the movie should go. Then they disperse to their desks and draw up some ideas. They then come back together and throw a lot of ideas away and start over! lol They basically have drawn 4-5 movies before the final movie is finished.
2. When coming up with the way animals/figures/beasts move they actually had an animator with a degree in biology. He actually helped them understand the way the muscles moved, bones, tail, etc when the animal was doing certain things. So it was so helpful that Ryan Green had that degree and could tell them “no, if he had a tail it would be used in this way or that way.”
3. They headed to the zoo to see how the NeverBeast would walk. They spent hours studying the animals that they thought would move like him.
4. They studied their dogs and pets to see how animals act when excited, wanted to eat, wanted to play. Made notes about them and applied that to the Neverbeast as well.
5. There was only one Neverbeast ever made but they did make subtle changes along the way. So he’s essentially stayed the same.
6. 40 animators worked on the film and a team of 10 worked on just Gruff the Neverbeast.
7. They looked at gymnasts for the fairies and pole vaulters and long jumpers for the Scout Fairies.
8. Start to finish the film took 3 and 1/2 years. Wow most movies don’t take that long to make! That’s impressive.
9. They record the voices first. The voice actors have free range to act as they see fit. They come back in as the story changes and flows. So what they recorded may change as the story changes.
10. The animators sometimes use their own voices and act out the scenes so they can see how it plays out. So Fawn’s scene might be acted out by Mike.
11. They say to stay away from fur in animation because it’s hard to do. But that kind of shapes our story and is what makes it great. Yeah it was hard to do but it was worth it!
This was the fabulous group of bloggers I was with as we were about to watch Tinkerbell and the Legend of the Neverbeast. It was fabulous! Check out my review of Tinkerbell and the Legend of the Neverbeast before you go!
Thank you to Mike and Ryan for sharing their knowledge about their process with us. They were so forthcoming and detailed in their telling us how the animation process works. It was so cool to see the film from story boarding to the big screen.
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Get It On Blu-ray and Disney HD everywhere today March 3!!
Check out us learning about the animation process below.