Early Look: Wreck-It Ralph - Mania.com

Early Look: Wreck-It Ralph

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Early Look: Wreck-It Ralph

Disney gives the press a look at their upcoming feature.

By Rob Vaux     August 03, 2012
Source: Mania.com

 The Disney Studios opened their doors to the press this past Tuesday for an early look at their upcoming animated feature Wreck-It Ralph. The tour included a look at some completed scenes, storyboards and interviews with the filmmakers about the upcoming project.

“Video-game movies, by and large, have struggled to succeed,” said Supervising Animator Zach Parrish. “We’re not making a video-game movie. We’re making a movie set in a video-game world.”

The titular character has spent thirty years as the villain in an 80s-era arcade game. Tired of his lot in an 8-pixel life, he sets out across the other games in the arcade – each containing its own universe and rules – to find his destiny.  Director Rich Moore nurtured the idea while working for many years on The Simpsons and Futurama. “I’ve always loved video games and I wondered what would happen if one of those old pixelated characters got tired of doing the same thing over and over again."

"Having a cast of such comic talents was a dream," he added, referring to a group that includes Sarah Silverman, Jane Lynch and John C. Reilly in the lead. "We actually brought them all in together to record, rather than one by one which you usually do in this sort of shoot. It gave them a chance to improv and take the material in some unexpected directions."

It took a great deal of visual development to reach that stage as well. Disney unveiled a series of images detailing the evolution of both Ralph and Vanellope. The former appeared as a troll and a white ape before finally becoming a Lil Abner-esque hillbilly, while the latter felt much more urchin-like as she evolved into her final, more polished image.

The various video game worlds received similar attention. In addition to Ralph’s boxy home world (based on the limited imagery of gaming’s early days) the games included Sugar Rush (a Candyland-type world patterned loosely after Mario Cart) and Hero's Duty (a hardcore fps resembling Halo and its ilk). Each game demanded its own distinct visual look and a stable of art department developers to make happen.

“It’s like making three movies instead of one," Parrish said. "And it's even more than that because while you can't have any overlap, you still need figures like Ralph to work visually in all of them. It was an enormous undertaking."

As indicated in the previews, the film also includes cameos from real-life video game characters, including M. Bison from Street Fighter and the Pac-Man gang. Securing the rights was "remarkably easy," according to Parrish. "Once the companies saw what we were doing, they were onboard all the way. Most of them had notes about how to present their characters, which actually helped us do what we wanted to do. Those characters had to feel real and right, or else the whole thing wouldn't work."

The inclusion of so many gaming figures also helped blur the line between fiction and reality: the crew filled the screen with dozens of original "video game" characters created specifically for the movie. As Moore explains, "The idea behind those figures is that they don't come from any real video game, but that they tickle just enough memory cells so that you think they might. We want the audience to look at them and say, 'I *think* I played that game once,' even though they haven't. I think we had about two real-game characters for every ten onscreen. If it works the way we want it to, it will all look seamless and audiences will embrace Ralph's world completely."

Wreck-It Ralph opens November 2 in theaters across the country.


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HudsonTaco 8/3/2012 6:08:36 AM

I obviously haven't been paying attention to this, it looks awesome. 

RobertTrate 8/3/2012 6:42:58 AM

 What I saw and heard about the film at Comic Con makes it the surprise of the fall. It has the potential to be incredible. 

karas1 8/3/2012 7:33:02 AM

My gaming group did an RPG with this theme.  We were all video game characters going on adventures in different video game worlds.  That was like 15 years ago.  LOL

But it makes me interested to see it.  I'd love to see what the peoploe at Disney could do with our idea.

redhairs99 8/3/2012 7:57:23 AM

 I never even heard of this before the trailer was posted a week or 2 ago, but now I'm really looking forward to it.

Looks like fun and they seemed to have gotten a number for "actual" video game characters to make the experience more "real" (if that's possible for a video game movie).

Roqueja 8/3/2012 8:57:23 AM

My kids are looking forward to this in the theatre, and I'm looking forward to taking them.  I was actually talking this one up in a sports bar last night with some friends.  Looks like loads of fun.

lusiphur 8/3/2012 11:43:53 AM

 Saw the trailer ahead of Spider-man and it peaked my interest then.  Looking forward to early November now.


shac2846 8/3/2012 3:43:13 PM

 Really looking forward to this. You guys should do more articles like this Rob.

Wyldstaar 8/3/2012 7:22:32 PM

Of the dozens of video game based movies over the past twenty years, this looks to be the first one that's actually going to be quality entertainment.

DarthoftheDead 8/6/2012 9:10:59 AM

 This looks AWESOME!!!!

Love these types of Movies....kinda like Toy Story, but with video game characters instead, lol!!

MrEt 8/10/2012 8:27:07 AM

I keep hoping that Space Ace and Dirk the daring make an apperance.



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