Big Hero 6 (film)
|Big Hero 6|
|Directed by||Don Hall
|Produced by||Roy Conli|
|Written by||Don Hall
|Based on||Big Hero 6 by
Steven T. Seagle
Damon Wayans, Jr.
T. J. Miller
|Music by||Henry Jackman|
|Distributed by||Walt Disney Studios
Big Hero 6 is an upcoming American 3D computer-animated superhero-comedy film produced by Walt Disney Animation Studios and inspired by the Marvel Comics superhero team of the same name. The film will be directed by Don Hall and Chris Williams, and will be the 54th animated feature in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series. Big Hero 6 will be the first Disney animated film to feature Marvel characters since The Walt Disney Company's acquisition of Marvel Entertainment in 2009. The film will be released on November 7, 2014 by Walt Disney Pictures.
Set in a fictional metropolis called San Fransokyo (a portmanteau of San Francisco and Tokyo), a young robotics prodigy named Hiro Hamada and his robot Baymax uncover a criminal plot and pull together a team of inexperienced crime-fighters, including Wasabi, Honey Lemon, GoGo Tomago, and Fred to solve the mystery surrounding the crime.
- Ryan Potter as Hiro Hamada, a 14-year-old robotics prodigy. Hiro's battle bots dominate the underground bot fights of San Fransokyo. His brother Tadashi redirects him, inspiring Hiro to gain admission to San Fransokyo's Institute of Technology. Speaking of the character, co-director Don Hall said "Hiro is transitioning from boy to man, it’s a tough time for a kid and some teenagers develop that inevitable snarkiness and jaded attitude. Luckily Ryan is a very likeable kid. So no matter what he did, he was able to take edge off the character in a way that made him authentic, but appealing."
- Scott Adsit as Baymax, an inflatable robot built by Tadashi to serve as a healthcare companion. Hall said "Baymax views the world from one perspective—he just wants to help people, he sees Hiro as his patient." Producer Roy Conli said "The fact that his character is a robot limits how you can emote, but Scott was hilarious. He took those boundaries and was able to shape the language in a way that makes you feel Baymax’s emotion and sense of humor. Scott was able to relay just how much Baymax cares."
- Jamie Chung as GoGo Tomago, a tough, athletic, non-talkative adrenaline junkie. Hall said "She’s definitely a woman of few words...We looked at bicycle messengers as inspiration for her character."
- Damon Wayans, Jr. as Wasabi, a smart, slightly neurotic, heavily built neat-freak. On the character, co-director Chris Williams said "He’s actually the most conservative, cautious—he [sic] the most normal among a group of brazen characters. So he really grounds the movie in the second act and becomes, in a way, the voice of the audience and points out that what they’re doing is crazy."
- Génesis Rodríguez as Honey Lemon, a quirky chemistry whiz. Williams said "She’s a glass-is-half-full kind of person. But she has this mad-scienctist quality with a twinkle in her eye—there’s more to Honey than it seems."
- T. J. Miller as Fred, a laid-back comic-book fan. Speaking of Miller, Williams said "He’s a real student of comedy. There are a lot of layers to his performance, so Fred ended up becoming a richer character than anyone expected."
- Maya Rudolph as Aunt Cass, Hiro and Tadashi's aunt and guardian, who owns a popular San Fransokyo bakery and coffee shop
- James Cromwell as Professor Robert Callaghan, the head of a robotics program at San Fransokyo Institute of Technology and Tadashi's professor and mentor
- Alan Tudyk as Alistair Krei, a pioneer entrepreneur and tech guru. Also one of the most distinguished alums of San Fransokyo Institute of Technology and owner of the biggest technology company in the world, Krei Tech.
- Daniel Henney as Tadashi Hamada, Hiro's older brother and Baymax's creator. On Hiro and Tadashi's relationship, Conli said "We really wanted them to be brothers first. Tadashi is a smart mentor. He very subtly introduces Hiro to his friends and what they do at San Fransokyo Tech. Once Hiro sees Wasabi, Honey, Go Go and even Fred in action, he realizes that there’s a much bigger world out there than [sic] really interests him."
After Disney's acquisition of Marvel Entertainment in 2009, CEO Bob Iger encouraged the company's divisions to explore Marvel's properties for adaptation concepts. By deliberately picking an obscure title, it would give them the freedom to come up with their own version. While co-directing Winnie the Pooh, director Don Hall was scrolling through a Marvel database when he stumbled upon Big Hero 6, a comic he had never heard of before. But he would pitch the concept to John Lasseter in 2011, as a possible production for Walt Disney Animation Studios, and it "struck a chord" with Lasseter, Hall and Chris Williams. In June 2012, Disney confirmed that Walt Disney Animation Studios was adapting Marvel Comics' series and that the film was commissioned into early stages of development. While both Sunfire and Silver Samurai were members of the team in the comic, they will not appear in the film due to 20th Century Fox holding the film rights to the characters as part of the X-Men franchise.
Big Hero 6 will be produced solely by Walt Disney Animation Studios, although several members of Marvel's creative team will be involved in the film's production including Joe Quesada, Marvel's chief creative officer. It was reported that Marvel initially wanted the movie to be aimed at an older audience, which Disney refused. Marvel then threatened to not publish the comics in which Disney replied it would see their own US comics, but they eventually came to an agreement. Conversely, Lasseter dismissed the idea of a rift between the two companies. Regarding the film's story, Quesada stated, "The relationship between Hiro and his robot has a very Disney flavor to it...but it’s combined with these Marvel heroic arcs." The production team decided early on not to connect the film to the Marvel Cinematic Universe and set it in a stand-alone universe instead.
In terms of the film's animation style and settings, the film will combine Eastern world culture (predominantly Japanese) with Western world culture. In May 2013, Disney released concept art and rendered footage of San Fransokyo from the film. On December 31, 2013, it was reported that Chris Williams had joined Hall as director, while Roy Conli had replaced Kristina Reed as producer.
In researching robotics, the film's team consulted with engineers at Carnegie Mellon University who were working in the new field of "soft robotics" using inflatable vinyl. Hall stated that the technology "will have potential probably in the medical industry in the future, making robots that are very pliable and gentle and not going to hurt people when they pick them up." In terms of Baymax's design, Hall mentioned that the look of the mechanical armor took some time "because of the sheer amount of robots out there and just trying to get something that felt like the personality of the character." Co-director Williams stated "A big part of the design challenge is when he puts on the armor you want to feel that he’s a very powerful intimidating presence...at the same time, design-wise he has to relate to the really adorable simple vinyl robot underneath."
San Fransokyo, the futuristic mashup of San Francisco and Tokyo was described by Hall as "an alternate version of San Francisco. Most of the technology is advanced, but much of it feels retro ... Where Hiro lives, it feels like the Haight. I love the Painted Ladies. We gave them a Japanese makeover; we put a cafe on the bottom of one. They live above a coffee shop." According to production designer Paul Felix "The topography is exaggerated because what we do is caricature, I think the hills are 11/2 times exaggerated. I don’t think you could really walk up them ... When you get to the downtown area, that’s when you get the most Tokyo-fied, that pure, layered, dense kind of feeling of the commercial district there. When you get out of there, it becomes more San Francisco with the Japanese aesthetic. ... (It’s a bit like) Blade Runner, but contained to a few square blocks. You see the skyscrapers contrasted with the hills."
A software program called Denizen was used to create hundreds of characters that populate the city, while a new rendering system called Hyperion offered new illumination possibilities, like light shining through a translucent object.
Big Hero 6 will premiere on October 23, 2014 as the opening film at the Tokyo International Film Festival. It will be theatrically released in the United States on November 7, 2014. Theatrically, the film will be accompanied by the Walt Disney Animation Studios short, Feast.
A video game based on the film will be released on October 28, 2014 for Nintendo 3DS and developed by GameMill Entertainment. Baymax and Hiro from the film will also be available in the Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes video game.
Vinyl toy company Funko released the first images of the Big Hero 6 toy figures via their Big Hero 6 Funko. POP Vinyl series collection featuring Hiro Hamada, Go Go Tomago, Wasabi No-Ginger, Honey Lemon, Fred and a 6-inch Baymax. Bandai will be producing a tie-in toy line for the film.
A Japanese manga adaptation of Big Hero 6 (which is titled Baymax (ベイマックス Beimakkusu?) in Japan), illustrated by Haruki Ueno, began serialization in Kodansha's Magazine Special from August 20, 2014. A prologue chapter was published in Weekly Shōnen Magazine on August 6, 2014. According to the film's official Japanese website, the manga will reveal plot details in Japan before anywhere else in the world, and it is the first time a Disney animated film has been adapted into a Japanese manga. The website also quoted the film's co-director Don Hall, to whom it referred as a manga fan, as saying that the film was Japanese-inspired. Yen Press will publish the series in English.
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- Official website
- Big Hero 6 at Walt Disney Animation Studios
- Big Hero 6 at the Internet Movie Database
- Big Hero 6 at Box Office Mojo