Luca Animation Supervisor Compares The Disney+ Release’s Charm To Pixar’s WALL-E

WALL-E and Luca Pixar movies
(Image credit: (Pixar))

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As this year’s summer season kicks off, there's a lot of big movies to be excited about, including Disney+’s big streaming release Luca. The Pixar film will infuse many of elements about the animation studio that fans love, along with venturing out with a new vision we’ve yet to see from the company – such as taking inspiration from Studio Ghibli’s animation style for the visual narrative. And as the upcoming movie’s visual supervisor told us, it may take you back to the warm feeling of WALL-E.

When speaking to Luca’s animation supervisor Mike Venturini, the filmmaker teased the fresh visual styles the movie inspired through first-time director Enrico Casarosa, such as taking a more artistic approach to its setting rather than mirroring reality and physics of Pixar's 3-D animation that we’ve seen in movies such as Finding Dory and Cars. But as Venturini told CinemaBlend storywise, Luca also reminds him of WALL-E. Here’s why:

We see this world through innocent kids, Luca being very innocent because he hasn’t seen the world, he sees things for the first time. And then you have Alberto, who thinks he’s seen the world, but he’s all talk. So there’s moments in there that are very innocent and there’s a ton of charm that comes from that. And Enrico told us this story that one time, he went back to this playground from his childhood, and his memories as a child was this giant playground with this giant jungle gym and these huge slides and when he went and saw it, it was tiny. In our kid minds, everything feels huge. So, he wanted the film to be huge – from the kids perspective.

Luca is a personal story to director Enrico Casarosa, who grew up in the Italian Riviera before directing the Disney film about a young sea monster exploring the surface world. As Mike Venturini told us, narratively Luca reminds him of the 2008 film WALL-E because both movies come from a place of innocence and curiosity. Of course, we fell in love with the little robot’s lonely life on Earth, where he collected items from the planet’s past as humanity moved to the stars following some kind of apocalypse.

After a few years of Pixar sequels, it’s exciting to see Pixar take on more personal and original concepts following the success of Soul at the end of 2020. Luca will focus on Jacob Tremblay’s Luca and his friend Alberto, played by Jack Dylan Grazer. During their latest trip to the surface, they befriend a human and may make some enemies along the way. Check out the Luca trailer below:

Along with being a fun sea monster tale, it will also serve as a love letter to Italy and visual spectacle. Some have likened its setting to 2017’s Best Picture nominee Call Me By Your Name, though Enrico Casarova has responded that Luca will not be a romance. Luca is coming exclusively to Disney+ on June 18. You can sign up for the service using this link. In the meantime, check out what else is new to Disney+ this month, including Cruella.

Sarah El-Mahmoud
Staff Writer

Sarah El-Mahmoud has been with CinemaBlend since 2018 after graduating from Cal State Fullerton with a degree in Journalism. In college, she was the Managing Editor of the award-winning college paper, The Daily Titan, where she specialized in writing/editing long-form features, profiles and arts & entertainment coverage, including her first run-in with movie reporting, with a phone interview with Guillermo del Toro for Best Picture winner, The Shape of Water. Now she's into covering YA television and movies, and plenty of horror. Word webslinger. All her writing should be read in Sarah Connor’s Terminator 2 voice over.