Nice texturing, but the animation is stiff. And you’re right about the eyes: the cat hardly blinks, which is what gives it the weird uncanny valley feel. Also, I’m getting a real "Luck, Inc." vibe off this. The cutesy "here we go again with a behind the scenes reveal of hitherto undisclosed human tropes" setup has me slightly less intrigued than I was back when we knew nothing about this!
I reckon Paramount knew what they were doing when they pulled out of the Skydance Animation business and let Apple pickup their deal for streaming: I doubt they thought they would have much, haha, luck at the box office with this one…
With Lasseter behind the scenes on this, I wouldn't be so fast to shelve it. There's only so much he could do with the animators he was dealt when he took over, who were not only not in the same building with him but were halfway across the world! (Though he did convince Skydance to buy that animation studio outright rather than just farm out work to them, giving him more control.) However, revamping a script would be a much easier prospect. He always used to say at Pixar that "story is king". And as this is the first film in his "comeback", I'm sure he wants it to be a good one. We could end up with a Hoodwinked situation here where the animation may not be great but the story is.
After Glen Keane's contribution to Netflix, I have natural trepidation that streaming will destroy ANY talented director who steps foot out of Actual Disney/Pixar, but also faith enough in Lasseter's natural Walt-like instincts for story to be curious.
We certainly get the Lasseter-era Pixar/WDFA-like teaser of the main characters on a bare set, just like the Toy Stories and Zootopia.
Even though...y'know...nobody's ever actually watched AppleTV since it started thinking it was a channel.
Well, lest we forget that Luck was in production before he was drafted in. I expect he made some changes, but a lot would have already been set.
You don't bring in multi-Academy Award winner John Lasseter to your brand new animation studio that hasn't released a single film yet and not expect him to not immediately make big changes. That's why you hired him!
If you are multi-Academy Award winner John Lasseter, you're not going to take over a brand new animation studio that hasn't released a single film yet and not start immediately putting your stamp on the output.
And it looks like a year after Lasseter took the helm of the studio, the original director and writer of Luck were replaced with people who had directly worked with Lasseter at Disney and Pixar in the past.
Honestly, it doesn’t look that great to me. Not trying to put down the artist’s’ efforts, but the designs are uninspired, the colors drab, and the story mostly resembles a re-packaged Monsters Inc. with some Toy Story for good measure.
(These are my honest opinions, and nothing to do with the tie to Lasetter or anything like that.).
You can’t just have your characters announce how they feel! That makes me feel angry!
Skydance was probably hoping that everything would've blown over by now as far as the JL controversy is concerned. But it hasn't. People are still upset about it, and for better or for worse, fairly or not, it's probably not going to go away anytime soon.
Skydance and Apple won't want this to be seen as "Lasseter's comeback"--if anything, they probably don't want people talking about him at all so as to avoid him being given a position of leadership at the studio more headlines which will just stir the pot up all over again. Even Brad Bird--probably the most widely respected animation director out there--was under fire when he took a job with Skydance for one of his passion projects.
I'm going to guess they'll test the waters with Luck before letting JL do any form of major meddling. They of course want for Luck to do well--but they don't want it to do well "because of" John Lasseter. And I highly doubt he's been given the freedom he had at Pixar or even Disney yet (probably much to his dismay). They don't want animators or directors telling stories about how he "hijacked" another project.
It may be, well, bad luck. Sorry. I told myself I wasn't going to do that!
"Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift--that is why it's called the present."
You don't bring in multi-inappropriate touching, "mistepping" John Lasseter to your brand new animation studio that hasn't released a single film yet and not expect him to not immediately make big changes.
I know he’s a hero, but please take that in the gentle ribbing way it was intended.
I'm not defending John Lasseter at all here! But I really don't understand what you guys think he was hired for if you don't believe he has any power?
Skydance Executive #1: "Hey, let's bring in that animation legend who nobody likes right now and has a terrible reputation!"
Skydance Executive #2: "Great idea! We can probably get him cheap. We'll have to deal with some backlash, but he could really help us get this animation studio we just created off the ground! Our first film has so many issues."
SE1: "What!? Are you crazy? We can't let him work on the film! What if he makes it better? People don't want to see him succeed right now."
SE2: "Huh? So you want to bring in someone Hollywood hates right now but who could really help us out... but not let him do much."
SE2: "So we're going to take a major hit in the press. Celebrities are going to quit our upcoming projects in protest over this guy. And our very first film will not be as good as it could have been."
SE2: "We don't get anything out of his name recognition. And we don't get to use his skills."
SE2: "So what do we get out of this hire then? "
SE1: "We can get him cheap! And maybe in a few years we'll let him dabble."
There's only one reason you hire a guy with Lasseter's bad reputation. And that's if you decide that your business interests override your moral interests, and you want to take advantage of his talents. Otherwise there is absolutely no reason to take the hit to your own reputation.
Lasseter won't be doing any press tours, and Skydance will barely mention him if at all. No one at the company will call this "Lasseter's comeback". But behind the curtains his hands will be all over everything they are doing.
While I'm often underwhelmed by Pixar's trailers, at least they look impressive. This looks pretty blah. As Vi said, the designs are absolutely uninspired, and there's nothing impressive about the animation or the designs. Yes, I'll be hoping for a Hoodwinked-type of surprise. We'll see. However, I already don't care for the premise. Like Storks, it'll be hard for me to buy into something that I just don't believe in. I was trained in the sciences, and the idea of "luck" has never appealed to me. Same for magic, which is maybe why I'm never too invested in the fantasy genre. I've always been a sci-fi guy.
And I have no doubt that Lasseter was brought in to sharpen up this production (and future ones, of course), but certainly his work won't be trumpeted.
His hands will be all over it. Funny! ......And maybe a little, "Oh, no he didn't!"