John Lasseter, Chief Creative Office of Disney Animation and Pixar Studios, took the stage on Friday to announce the next slate of Disney Pixar films at Disney’s Fan expo. D23 Expo has seemingly become the venue that Disney uses to announce and show off new, never before seen clips of upcoming films.

For Pixar, a new slate of movies are headed to theaters. Some will feature familiar faces, others are brand new stories that look to become household names. Pixar Studios plans to release The Good Dinosaur, Riley’s First Date?, Finding Dory, Coco and Toy Story 4.

The Good Dinosaur

The Good Dinosaur was originally due out much earlier, however with director changes, story changes (entirely rewritten) the movie is now looking for a November 25, 2015 release. While in most cases, film delays mean horrific results, I think audience members at this year’s Animation panel were left with high expectations.

Director Peter Sohn, whom is probably most famous for his close resemblance to another Pixar character, Russell from the film UP explained to those in attendance at D23 Expo why he became a film maker. Pointing out especially poignant moments and memories of films. He set out with that goal in mind when making The Good Dinosaur. This movie is a heartfelt story about a boy and his dog, except in this case, the boy is the dinosaur and the dog is a boy.

There’s a particularly emotional scene that was shown to the audience at the expo in which the main character, Arlo, and Spot (his boy) share their story about their families. SPOILER ALERT: It’s a Disney film, so someone’s parent has to die. There was not a dry eye across the sea of people. The film is absolutely stunning in respect to the visual and technical qualities. Probably the most beautiful Pixar film yet, and that is saying a lot.

The movie progresses and we see Arlo look at the world not in fear but a place of wonder. I’m a huge dinosaur fan, but this movie is much more than dinosaurs, it just tells a great story well, add to it the stunning technical and visual features we’ve known to appreciate from Pixar. This movie is complete an well worth the delay.

The Good Dinosaur will be in theaters November 25, 2015 (Thanksgiving) it is directed by Peter Sohn (Ratatouille, The Incredibles, Finding Nemo, Partly Cloudy).

Riley’s First Date? (Inside Out short)

This new short will be available with the Inside Out release this Fall. As you can guess by the title, Riley’s First Date?, what the premise of the film will be. This idea came about as the creators of Inside Out were discussing their children, especially when it came to daughters. It became a impromtu support group for raising girls. To which one member said “just wait until she brings home a boyfriend for the first time?” To which Director Josh Cooley’s mind melted, as one would expect, and of course the idea was put into a creative project.

Riley’s First Date? Will be available as a bonus feature in the digital and Blu-ray releases of Inside Out which will be available digitally Oct. 13 and on Blu-ray Nov. 3, 2015.

Riley’s First Date? Is Directed Josh Cooley, along with “Inside Out” filmmakers Pete Docter (“Up,” “Monsters, Inc.”) and Jonas Rivera (“Up”).

Finding Dory

Ellen DeGeneres returns to her role as Dory in this Finding Nemo sequel. The premise of this film is, What happened to Dory before she met Nemo and Marlin? Why can’t she remember? Where is her family?

I’m sure you can imagine the jokes and story line that go along with a fish that has a short term memory issue. The scenes shown from Finding Dory were hilarious and looks to be a real fun time.

In addition to returning star Ellen DeGeneres, Albert Brooks brings back his voice talents for Marlin. Diane Keaton, Eugene Levy, Ed O’Neil, Ty Burrell, Katilin Olson all add their voices to the film. Finding Dory is directed by Andrew Stanton and is slated for a June 17, 2016 theatrical release.


Not much was mentioned about this film during Disney’s D23 Expo. While this movie has already been announced it is still a ways away from release. We know that Coco is a film that takes a look at Dia de los muertos or Day of the dead. The audience was given a look at a test diorama of the film, but not much else was shown or discussed. Though from the tests, it looks to be a colorful, beautifully crafted film.

Toy Story 4

Toy Story 4 brings back John Lasseter to the director’s chair in which the Toy Story franchise storyline tackles a new genre. Love. This time Woody’s adventures shift to a love story involving Bo Peep. Many of the original Pixar and Toy Story creative team will rejoin this project and will include Rashida Jones and Will McCormack who will be screenwriters for the new Toy Story installment. I don’t know if Toy Story 4 will top Toy Story 3, that was kind of a perfect ending for the trilogy. But then again as John Lasseter said he didn’t realize each of the Toy Story movies filled a specific genre until they were released, Toy Story 3 was really a part of growing up and moving on. I suppose a natural evolution of emotions is falling in love.

Of course Randy Newman is back to compose Toy Story’s soundtrack, his piano playing and voice are synonymous with the franchise.

Toy Story 4 will be slated for release June 16, 2017.