Just forget the words and sing along

Thursday, January 07, 2010

How to Train Your Dragon Trailer

I feel like I need to relentlessly mock the trailer for the latest DreamWorks animated epic, How to Train Your Dragon.

I wanted to mock this trailer mainly because of how it opens with the montage of clips from other DreamWorks films...it's like they're trying to establish this Disneyesque legacy for themselves. And I don't think they've established one yet in their 15 years of existence.

But I started reading up on How to Train Your Dragon, and suddenly, my eyebrows were raised in curiosity. It turns out the director is Chris Sanders.

Sanders cut his teeth at Disney back in the 1990s. He was one of the writers on Mulan. And then he got to write and direct Lilo and Stitch, which many consider to be the last good film in that period of animation now known as "the Disney renassance." A lot of people were stricken by Lilo and Stitch and how it was just so different from anything Disney had done...injecting new life into the Disney formulas.

Sanders' next project at Disney was Bolt, and then there was a management change. Remember, it was the whole Disney/Pixar merger, and John Lassetter, the head of Pixar, became the head of Disney Animation. Lassetter and Sanders butted heads over the creative direction of Bolt. Sanders eventually left Disney and soon found himself a job down the street at DreamWorks. It was the highest-profile...negative that came out of the Disney/Pixar merger. How to Train Your Dragon is Sanders' first DreamWorks project.

So I'm intrigued now. Part of the reason why I have a distaste for DreamWorks films is the fact that they nailed down a winning formula with their first film, Antz, and they've stuck to it ever since. Sanders was able to inject new life into the Disney formula with Lilo and Stitch...perhaps he can do the same with the DreamWorks formula and How to Train Your Dragon.

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