Disney, Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm presented their live- action film slates this morning at the D23 Expo 2017 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, Calif. Met with enthusiasm from the excited, fan-filled audience, the lively presentations revealed exclusive news and details about upcoming live-action films and showcased surprise live and video appearances from stars and filmmakers. Walt Disney Studios Chairman Alan Horn hosted the highly anticipated biennial event.
â€œAt The Walt Disney Studios, we could not do what we do without the support of the many Disney, Marvel, and Star Warsfans around the world,â€ said Alan Horn, Chairman, The Walt Disney Studios.Â â€œWe feel like our fans are a part of the family, and the D23 Expo is our chance to give a little something extra back to them.â€
After welcoming the crowd to D23 Expo 2017, Horn introduced Sean Bailey, President of Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture Production, to present overviews of the Disney live-action slate. Later Horn returned to the stage to introduce writer/director Rian Johnson for a look at Lucasfilmâ€™s upcoming film and ended by introducing Kevin Feige, President of Marvel Studios, for a rousing presentation to close the event.
A recap of the live-action presentation follows:
- Sean Bailey welcomed â€œA Wrinkle in Timeâ€ cast members Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, Mindy Kaling and Chris Pine along with newcomer Storm Reid and visionary director Ava DuVernay to the D23 stage, where they thrilled fans with a first look at the filmâ€™s teaser trailer and teaser poster. The film, which is an epic adventure based on Madeleine Lâ€™Engleâ€™s timeless classic, takes audiences across dimensions of time and space, examining the nature of darkness versus light and ultimately, the triumph of love.
Directed by Ava DuVernay from a screenplay by Jennifer Lee based upon the beloved novel by Madeleine Lâ€™Engle, â€œA Wrinkle in Timeâ€ is produced by Jim Whitaker and Catherine Hand with Doug Merrifield serving as executive producer. The film also stars: Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Michael PeÃ±a, Levi Miller, Deric McCabe, AndrÃ© Holland and Rowan Blanchard, with Zach Galifianakis.
Meg Murry (Storm Reid) is a typical middle school student struggling with issues of self-worth who is desperate to fit in. As the daughter of two world-renowned physicists, she is intelligent and uniquely gifted, as is Megâ€™s younger brother Charles Wallace (Deric McCabe), but she has yet to realize it for herself. Making matters even worse is the baffling disappearance of Mr. Murry (Chris Pine), which torments Meg and has left her mother (Gugu Mbatha-Raw) heartbroken. Charles Wallace introduces Meg and her fellow classmate Calvin (Levi Miller) to three celestial guidesâ€”Mrs. Which (Oprah Winfrey), Mrs. Whatsit (Reese Witherspoon) and Mrs. Who (Mindy Kaling)â€”who have journeyed to Earth to help search for their father, and together they set off on their formidable quest. Traveling via a wrinkling of time and space known as tessering, they are soon transported to worlds beyond their imagination where they must confront a powerful evil. To make it back home to Earth, Meg must look deep within herself and embrace her flaws to harness the strength necessary to defeat the darkness closing in on them. â€œA Wrinkle in Timeâ€ opens nationwide March 9, 2018.
- Sean Bailey shared with D23 Expo 2017 fans Disneyâ€™s all-new take on a classic story in â€œThe Nutcracker and the Four Realms.â€ Starring Keira Knightley as the Sugar Plum Fairy, newcomer Mackenzie Foy as Clara, Helen Mirren as Mother Ginger, Morgan Freeman as godfather Drosselmeyer, and featuring a special performance by Misty Copeland, the movie is inspired by E.T.A. Hoffmannâ€™s classic tale.
The film largely takes place in a strange and mysterious parallel worldâ€”home to Land of Snowflakes, Land of Flowers and Land of Sweets. But itâ€™s the ominous Fourth Realm where Clara must take on a tyrant called Mother Ginger as well as a gang of mice whoâ€™ve stolen a coveted key from Clara.
Said Bailey, â€œThe Mouse King is made up of thousands of miceâ€”a cutting-edge CG creation. But we wanted him to move in a way that would be wonderfully surprising and incredibly cool, so we called on Lil Buck to provide the style of dance that defines the character. He is so talented and the way he makes this character move is unbelievable.â€
Los Angeles-based dancer Lil Buck hit the stage at D23 Expo 2017 to demonstrate the kind of street dancingâ€”called jookinâ€”that informed the way his character moves in the film. The performance earned a standing ovation.
â€œThe Nutcracker and the Four Realmsâ€ is directed by Lasse HallstrÃ¶m and produced by Mark Gordon and Larry Franco.Â The film will open in U.S. theaters on Nov. 2, 2018.