Tag Archives Pixar

Emma Berman Shines Bright in Disney and Pixar’s Luca

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There are a few achievements in an actor’s career that provide that “I’ve made it” feeling. Landing your first leading role, walking on a red carpet, winning an award are all obvious markers of this. However, one of the most underrated achievements is being able to lend your voice to  a character in a Disney and Pixar film. This is an accomplishment that 12-year-old actress Emma Berman can cross off of her bucket list. Emma stars as Giulia in Disney and Pixar’s latest feature film Luca, out now on Disney+

Luca, has been making a splash since its release on June 18th. Set in a beautiful seaside town on the Italian Riviera, Luca is a quintessential coming-of-age story about a teenage sea monster boy, Luca, voiced by Jacob Tremblay, who finds a friend in a fellow teenage sea monster named Alberto, voiced by Jack Dylan Grazer. Alberto introduces Luca to the world of possibilities that is living on land. The two, joined by Emma Berman’s character Giulia, enjoy a summer of gelato, scooter rides, and ultimate adventure. 

 

 

While Luca marks the first Disney and Pixar film for Emma Berman, the actress is no stranger to voice acting. Since the age of 8, Emma has been voicing toys for the educational toy company LeapFrog. In addition to voice acting, she has appeared on stage in the Bay Area in productions of “Once” and “Gypsy” as well as in “A Christmas Carol” at the American Conservatory Theater. As a young performer who is dedicated to her craft, Emma’s future is bright and limitless. We were lucky enough to catch up with her to talk about Luca and much more! 

Cliché: What made you want to become an actor? 

Emma Berman: When I was 8 years old, I asked my mom to enroll me in a 2-week theater camp with the Bay Area Children’s Theater that was staging a production of Annie. I remember there were lots of little girls just like me there and we all wanted to get the part of Annie. It was very exciting to try out and even more thrilling when I got the part. It was the most incredible experience to perform in front of the audience. I got the theater bug and just wanted to keep doing theater from then on. 

You’ve lent your voice to so many different projects. What are some secrets you can share about what it takes to be a great voice actor? 

Emma Berman: I don’t know if I can really speak to what makes a “great” voice actor. I don’t think of myself as one, or maybe not yet, because there is so much more that I have to learn. But one thing that I really try to focus on with all of my auditions is making sure that I have really clear diction and that I have some specific emotions behind the lines. I always make multiple takes and listen back to see which one I like best. I try to make it funny by finding the beats and playing around with the speed of how I deliver the lines. Adding physicality when I say the lines helps me and I do it standing up.  For my very first voiceover project for LeapFrog, I had no training or coaching at all. I just read the script and my mom recorded it on her cellphone. For the last few years, I have been taking classes in performing arts, voiceover, and acting. I think the combination of this training definitely helped to shape me into a more versatile voice actor.  I love learning and discovering all the amazing things we can do with our voices.  

Cliché: Tell us about your new Disney and Pixar film, Luca.

Emma Berman: I am so excited for everyone to see this film! It is not like anything you have seen before. Luca is about the kind of friendships that change us, make us curious, and help us overcome our fears and conquer our dreams! It’s a story about the unforgettable summer adventures of three underdogs, Luca, Alberto, and Giulia, set on the Italian Riviera in the post-war era (the 50s and 60s time).  This film encourages kids who might not be very popular or think they don’t belong to accept themselves and all the aspects that make them who they are.  Luca is a very inspiring story, and the main three characters are very unique and empowering. I think the coolest thing we learn from this film is that we should open our minds and hearts and be accepting of others. We can then make new friendships that change our lives in the most unpredictable ways. 

Cliché: How do you relate to your character, Giulia?

Emma Berman: Giulia is about my age, 12 years old. She is a bit awkward and goofy, and she really wants to make new friends. She has a great deal of determination, but everyone thinks she is this weird kid who doesn’t belong. That’s how she and Luca connect, they both feel like outsiders. For Giulia, winning is important because that is her chance to prove herself. She really wants to be accepted and be looked at by everyone as the winner. I would say that I am similar to Giulia because she is super outgoing, she loves to make new friends and she has a hunger for adventure. I think I am also kind of goofy and determined and we both follow our dreams. Oh!! And we both have a cat! 

Emma Berman

Cliché: The story takes place on the beautiful Italian Riviera and your character Giulia is Italian. How did you prepare to voice a character with an Italian accent? 

Emma Berman: For the accent, I worked with the dialect coach Bettina Devin.  She is a lot of fun to work with! She is really funny and an incredibly talented actress and coach.  I also speak Russian at home which I think helps me pick up the accents in general. I also got the Babbel app on my phone to practice Italian words and was listening to Italian songs in the car. Before the recording sessions, my mom would take me out to get Italian food at the Trattoria da Vittorio, our local neighborhood restaurant in San Francisco and I would practice ordering in Italian. There are a lot of Italian food references in Luca and it was really fun and inspiring for me to discover so many pasta dishes and delicious flavors of gelato! 

Cliché: How does it feel to be in a film alongside other great actors like Jacob Tremblay, Maya Rudolph, and Jack Dylan Grazer?

Emma Berman: It totally feels like a dream. I feel immensely lucky and honored to have given my voice to Giulia. I have always been a Pixar fan and these are the movies I grew up watching. Not in a million years would I have ever imagined that one day I would hear my own voice coming out of a Pixar character or see my name next to all the incredibly talented actors.  It is really mind-blowing. I still can’t believe it!

Cliché: What’s your favorite Disney and Pixar film? 

Emma Berman: Ooooh this is the hardest question because I am a huge fan of all Pixar movies! Well, I guess I’ll have to go with Inside Out because it is set in my hometown San Francisco where I was born and raised so it is just a little more special for me for that reason. 

Cliché: What can we expect next from you? 

Emma Berman: I am currently recording at home for a fun new animated series project coming up soon and I can’t wait to share more when I can!

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Images Provided by Tenley Clark

Tim Allen on What to Expect From ‘Toy Story 4’: ‘It is so Emotional’

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Tim Allen, the memorable voice of Buzz Lightyear, opened up about a few things to expect from the upcoming installment. Although he remains mostly tight-lipped, he told The Talk this week that ‘Toy Story 4’ will have “an incredibly great story.” Co-host Sara Gilbert questioned the actor about the new film, to which Allen explained, “I gotta resist getting emotional…It is so emotional, it’s so funny, it’s so big, the idea they’ve come up with, I’m startled. I couldn’t even get through the last scene”. Of course, before revealing too much, Allen had to step back. “I just can’t do it. I can’t give any more away.” Although Allen didn’t give fans a lot to go off of, his personal investment in the Toy Story films does give us hope. A better installment than Toy Story 3? We will just have to see.

‘Toy Story 4’ and Returning Characters

Tim Allen spoke of some new character additions to the film. But that doesn’t mean we won’t see the return of original cast members. Tom Hanks (Woody), Joan Cusack (Jessie), Bonnie Hunt (Dolly) and Laurie Metcalf (Mrs. Davis) will all be returning in ‘Toy Story 4′. And if you’ve always been a fan of the Toy Story soundtracks, Randy Newman, who composed the music for the films, is also set to compose the soundtrack for the fourth movie. Toy Story was a huge hit in 1995, a remarkable success for both Disney and Pixar. To say the fans have some high expectations is putting it lightly. The release date is scheduled for June 2019, just in time for your summer blockbuster list.

Read the full article from People.com

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Tim Allen on What to Expect From ‘Toy Story 4’: ‘It is so Emotional’. Featured Photo Credit: Disney-Pixar.

Eight Movies to Buy Your Film Geek This Hanukkah

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Let’s get this out of the way now: I watch a lot of movies. I mean a lot. If I find myself with a spare two or three hours in the day, I’m most likely planted on my couch or in a dark theater somewhere lost in a different world. If you have someone in your life who is like me, you’re probably trying to wrack your brain to find films they haven’t seen yet (or should see again) this holiday season. So even though Netflix now owns our souls, here is a list of new (not to be streamed for years) releases to get the film geek in your life this Hanukkah.

He Named Me Malala – 12/15

This critically acclaimed documentary tells the story about noble peace prize winner Malala Yousafzai. Exceptionally moving, empowering, and jaw-droppingly shocking, this film opens your eyes to not only one person’s immense strength, but how much can change if we all work together. The most remarkable part of this film though is how human Malala is depicted. At just 17, she has stood up to an entire tyrannical regime, and yet, she still seems like your average teenager.

Mistress America – 12/1

This is a fun, witty, and thought-provoking indie is about two young woman who don’t know what they’re doing with their lives. Full of heart, passion, and exceptionally repeatable moments, this film encompasses all that we love about independent filmmaking. Not to mention a spectacular performance of comedic timing by Greta Gerwig, who happens to have co-written it. Plus, it’s got a great soundtrack.

Amy – 12/1

This eye opening documentary brings us into the world of the late Amy Winehouse and is arguably one of the most important movies I’ve seen this year. While the journey to A-list status is an incredible ride to be a part of, it’s also a shocking look into the life of an addict and the various types of enabling that went on in from various family members and friends. It’s almost frustrating to watch because there are so many times where you want to yell at the screen and say, “This is the moment! Help her!” but you already know the outcome. This is one of those films that stick with you long after the credits roll.

Trainwreck 11/10

The debut feature from America’s sweetheart Amy Schumer is finally ours for the owning. While one would expect this film to be chock-full of the clever and raunchy comedy that we’ve come to expect from Schumer (which it is), it’s also built on heart and emotion that transforms it from just another rom-com into something special.

Inside Out 11/3

Yes, it’s a “technically” a children’s movie, but when does Pixar actually make movies for children? With the help of their all-star cast, this film tackles mental health and feelings in a way that is so beautiful and innocent, you can’t help but cry your way through it – in a good way.

Before We Go 11/3

Think Before Sunrise meets The Wedding Date and you’ll sort of get an idea of what this little indie staring Chris Evans and Alice Eve is about. Romantic and provocative in the best kind of way, this dialogue-driven film is show on steady-cams to give it that less composed shot-style that makes it feel like more like a documentary than a narrative.

Maze Runner: Scorch Trials – 12/15

If you love other dystopian thrillers like the Divergent series or The Hunger Games, you’ll love this one.  This is the  second installment to the epic Maze Runner series and it is just as exciting as the first. Obviously, if you haven’t seen the first yet, check that out before you pick up this one – or, if you’re smart about it, have a mini marathon of the two!

Paper Towns 10/20

This is a fun coming of age story with a killer soundtrack. It is the latest conversion of a book-to-movie from author John Green (of The Fault In Our Stars). Yes, it’s got the classic teen angst and drama that we all secretly love, but it’s also an interesting twist on the “pixie dream girl” arc that leaves you with questions about perception. Who doesn’t love a good extensional crisis?

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Featured photograph courtesy of Fox Searchlight Pictures

The Magic of Pixar

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pixar-logo

The magic of Pixar is that it never gets old.

 Sure, there might have been some questionable ideas like Cars 2, but all of Pixar’s films are commercially successful.

As a whole, the company holds a Rotten Tomatoes score of 89%.

 Since the company released Toy Story, its first feature film, in 1995, it has won 27 Academy Awards, seven Golden Globe Awards, eleven Grammy Awards and an assortment of other awards.

Pixar knows how to appeal to children, but they know what will make an adult enjoy the film. Re-watching all of my old favorites has given me a fresh appreciation for the comedy they incorporate in the films.

The company has also played with my emotions because I’ve grown with it. I was three when Toy Story came out, and I was in my senior year of high school when Andy went to college 2010. I was eight when Mike Wazowski, Sully and Boo became a part of my life, and I finished my sophomore year of college when Pixar traveled back in time to show Mike and Sully at Monster University.

Pixar gets me. They get everybody.

I only know three of the next seven Pixar films in production, but I guarantee I’ll see all of them, whether it’s because I want to or my future kids want to. But who am I kidding? It’s for us and always will be. That’s the magic of Pixar.

Feature and Post Image Courtesy of http://collider.com/pixar-sequels-every-other-year/