The 2013 D23 Expo has officially begun with a bang with an animation domination of the first morning. In front of thousands of fans in the D23 Arena, Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar Animation Studios, and Disneytoon Studios presented their latest lineup of upcoming feature films, led by the always entertaining John Lasseter.
Before the animation presentation began, Disney CEO Bob Iger took the stage to welcome everyone to the D23 Expo, noting every arm of the Disney company is in attendance, saying “That’s pretty cool.” A mention of Lucasfilm received the biggest applause. But fans shouldn’t expect any big “Star Wars” updates from this weekend. “We’re speechless,” said Iger. “In fact, we’re going to be somewhat speechless at this Expo.”
He emphasized that he’s been a lifelong Disney fan, amazed he is where is today. “I get to go to Disneyland whenever I want and I even get to go to the front of the line,” Iger joked. “This Expo is for you. It’s our way of saying thank you.”
Moving on to the topic at hand, Iger stated “Animation has always been and will always be the very heart of the Walt Disney Company,” ready to introduce the main event.
Highlights of the whole event are in the video below, followed by a complete recap of everything shown.
Video: Animation presentation highlights at the 2013 D23 Expo
John Lasseter excitedly took the stage, stating he’s proud to lead three animation studios. “The studio is its filmmakers,” he said, adding everyone animating for Disney is inspired by Walt Disney himself.
Lasseter built excitement with big promises “We have all sorts of D23 exclusives that you alone will see. […] We have installed seat belts in all the seats. I recommend you fasten them.”
First up on the celebrity roster, Saturday Night Live’s Bill Hader, voice of the slug in “Monsters University” – which Lasseter called the “superstar” character – joined in, stating it is “a giant, giant honor to be part of a Pixar movie.” He was followed by a first look at a hilarious new “Monsters University” short called “Party Central,” showed in its entirety. It features all the cast of the hit film in a frat party filled with door antics.
Lasseter then introduced “The Good Dinosaur” with a teaser set in space that proposes the question: “What if that asteroid missed Earth?” An asteroid flew past Earth as dinosaurs looked up from eating, watched it soar by, and went back to eating. The movie’s director and producer introduced the film’s characters as farmers, including Triceratops (the bulldozers), Stegasaurus (mow down acres of crops), Ankylosaurus (haulers), Apatosaurus (plowing), and Parasaurolophus (hard to pronounce).