Following the news that Disney is planning additional sequels for its classic hits, a tweet from actor Tim Allen suggests he will return to the role of Buzz Lightyear for Toy Story 5 after handing off the Space Ranger duties to Chris Evans for the 2022 origin story spin-off Lightyear.
Allen, who has voiced Buzz in all the Toy Story movies since 1995, wrote in character “See ya soon Woody, you ar ea sad strange little man and you have my pity. And off we go to number 5! To infinity and beyond!”
See ya soon Woody, you are a sad strange little man and you have my pity. And off we go to a number 5! To infinity and beyond! pic.twitter.com/bwRzE487Vi
— Tim Allen (@ofctimallen) February 9, 2023
Speaking of the future of the Disney-Pixar toon business, returned CEO Bob Iger appeared this week on CNBC’s Squawk on the Street to assure fans and industry watchers that the Mouse House will remain a stalwart Toon Town landmark, saying: “Animation will continue to be an important business for us for a long time.”
In the video, Iger points out the success of Oscar winner Encanto and this year’s Oscar-nominated Turning Red, despite the complications of post-COVID theatrical releasing. This should be reassuring to Walt Disney Animation Studios and Pixar Animation Studios employees as the company continues to work towards its planned $5.5 billion in cost cutting measures, including content chops.
Finally, graphic novel fans were treated to a teaser trailer for the live-action (but quite fantastical) Disney+ Original series American Born Chinese. Based on the genre-hopping action-comedy created by Gene Luen-Yang, the Disney Branded Television / 20th Television production is led by exec producer/showrunner Kelvin Yu (Bob’s Burgers, Central Park).
American Born Chinese tells the story of Jin Wang, an average teenager juggling his high school social life with his home life. When he meets a new foreign student on the first day of the school year, even more worlds collide as Jin is unwittingly entangled in a battle of Chinese mythological gods.
The cast includes , including Golden Globe winners Michelle Yeoh and Ke Huy Quan (Everything Everywhere All at Once), Ben Wang, Yeo Yann Yann, Chin Han, Daniel Wu, former Taekwondo champion Jimmy Liu and Sydney Taylor. Guest starring as a mythical pantheon of characters are Ronny Chieng, Jimmy O. Yang, James Hong, Leonard We, Stephanie Hsu and Poppy Liu, as well as human characters played by Lisa Lu and Turning Red‘s Rosalie Chiang.
Registration is now open for Licensing Expo, the world’s largest annual event dedicated to licensing and brand extension, taking place June 13-15 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas, organized by Informa Markets’ Global Licensing Group and sponsored by Licensing International. Register at licensingexpo.com.
Major players in the toy industry and kids’ entertainment space have already committed to exhibiting at the 2023 Expo, including Dr. Seuss Enterprises, Funko, Hasbro, Jazwares, Mattel, Moonbug Entertainment, Peanuts Worldwide, The Pokémon Co. International, SEGA of America and Sesame Workshop.
“As we continue to see growth in imaginative collaborations and product ranges across the licensing and fashion spheres, this year’s event will be the place to discover the many ways in which fashion is driving licensing conversations and experiences,” says Anna Knight, Senior Vice President of the Global Licensing Group, organizers of Licensing Expo.
The Producers Guild of America announced nominees for The PGA Innovation Award, recognizing the production of a noteworthy, impactful new media program that significantly elevates the audience’s viewing experience. The recipient will be announced at the Nominee Celebration Event on the evening of February 23 in Los Angeles, and highlighted at the PGA Awards ceremony February 25 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
2023 PGA Innovation Award Nominees:
- Dance Monsters (Lime Pictures)
- Experience Yosemite (CityLights)
- Ghostbusters VR Academy (HOLOGATE)
- LeMusk – A Cinematic Sensory Experience (Intel Corporation)
- Lustration (New Canvas)
- On the Morning You Wake (To the End of the World) (ASTREA)
- OXYMORE by Jean-Michel Jarre (VRROOM)
- PerfectoVerse (Watch and Play)
- Stay Alive, My Son (UME Studios)
- Stranger Things Immersive Watch Party (Sawhorse Productions)
- Verizon Pepsi Halftime Ultra Pass (R/GA)
Ahead of the previously announced feature contenders panel, VIEW Conference weill present a free virtual discussion with directors behind this year’s Oscar nominees for best animated short: Sara Gunnarsdóttir, Charlie Mackesy, Amanda Forbis & Wendy Tilby, João Gonzalez and Lachlan Pendragon.
The panel will take place Tuesday, February 28 at 9 a.m. PST. Register for free at viewconference.it.
PBS KIDS is celebrating both a popular holiday and an important element of health care with fresh February content featuring kids’ animated favorite.
The new season of Pinkalicious & Peterrific kicks off today (February 10) during PBS KIDS Family Movie Night with the re-air of the hour-long Valentine’s Day special “Cupid Calls It Quits.” In the special, Pinkalicious and Peter befriend Cupid who overs them a trade: he’ll become a real kid for a day while Pinkalicious become cupid. But will Pinkalicious and Peter be able to spread love across Pinkville?
At the Dentist, featuring Daniel Tiger and Dr. Plat, prepares children for a positive experience when going to the dentist. Through relaxing, interactive gameplay with Daniel and Mr. Dino, kids will familiarize themselves with a dentist visit by experiencing the sights and sounds of various instruments and processes utilized by the dentist. Additionally, the game will encourage little ones to brush their teeth for two minutes, as recommended by the AAPD.