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From the monsters in the closet to the rats in the kitchen, Pixar has helped modern movie audiences connect to and love the most unlikely of heroes. And while their latest addition to the Pixar family, the plucky princess Merida from the upcoming adventure Brave, readies her bow to shoot for box office gold, director Bob Peterson has began dropping details about the studio's 2014 release, The Good Dinosaur. And in the re-imagining Pixar vein, Peterson insists these dinosaurs will not be the cold-blooded movie monsters we remember from Jurassic Park.

24 Frames spoke with Peterson, who co-wrote/co-directed the Oscar-winning Up, and so discovered some curious elements of the project as well as some of his inspirations. It was memories of the dinosaur animatronics that fascinated him as a child visiting the World's Fair that sparked his concept for The Good Dinosaur, making him wonder what would happen if the mighty beasts had not gone extinct. Thus The Good Dinosaur will be set in an alternate reality where the asteroid never hit Earth, and so the dinosaurs never died off.

Immediately, the mind reels with what Pixar animators and storytellers can do with such a wondrous premise. But as Peterson, his co-director Peter Sohn--who helmed the charming short Partly Cloudy--and producer John Walker are in the midst of the story's development, they are all being tight-lipped on any plot specifics, refusing to even comment on what species of dinosaur may appear. However, they did share some of the allegorical conversations that are informing the film's development, exploring the idea of dinosaurs representing something resistant to change—for better and for worse. "The title is deceptively simple," Sohn said. "It has more meaning than it seems."

But Peterson insists the main focus is simpler: "It's time to do a movie where you get to know the dinosaur, what it's really like to be a dinosaur and to be with a dinosaur." While the trio also was unwilling to verify that people and dinos would be living amongst each other in the film, as some concept art has suggested (seen above), Peterson's comment seems a subtle confirmation. Instead, the filmmakers chose to focus on how they've been engaging in vigorous research, examining fossils and pouring over various museum and natural history exhibits, which is sure to give this dino tale that Pixar edge of incredible detail.

The Good Dinosaur will hit theaters May 30, 2014.