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The Peanuts Movie

The Peanuts Movie
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Steve Martino
Produced by
  • Craig Schulz
  • Bryan Schulz
  • Cornelius Uliano
  • Paul Feig
  • Michael J. Travers[1]
Written by
  • Bryan Schulz
  • Craig Schulz
  • Cornelius Uliano
Based on Peanuts 
by Charles M. Schulz
Starring
Music by Christophe Beck
Cinematography Renato Falcão[2]
Edited by Randy Trager[1]
Production
companies
Distributed by 20th Century Fox
Release dates
  • November 1, 2015 (2015-11-01) (Premiere)
  • November 6, 2015 (2015-11-06) (United States)
Running time
93 minutes[3]
Country United States
Language English
Budget $100 million[4]

The Peanuts Movie, also known as Snoopy and Charlie Brown: The Peanuts Movie, is an upcoming American 3D computer-animated comedy film produced by Blue Sky Studios and distributed by 20th Century Fox based on Charles M. Schulz's comic strip Peanuts. The film is directed by Steve Martino and written by Craig Schulz, Bryan Schulz, and Cornelius Uliano, and features the voices of Noah Schnapp and Bill Melendez (via archival recordings). It is set to be the fifth full-length feature film to be based on the comic, and the first feature film based on the characters in 35 years. The film will commemorate the 65th anniversary of the comic strip and 50th anniversary of the TV special A Charlie Brown Christmas, and is scheduled to be released on November 6, 2015. The film sees Charlie Brown go on a life-changing quest.[5]

Contents

  • Premise 1
  • Cast and characters 2
  • Production 3
  • Music 4
  • Release 5
  • Reception 6
    • Critical response 6.1
  • Video game 7
  • References 8
  • External links 9

Premise

Snoopy goes up against his nemesis, the Red Baron, while Charlie Brown tries to win the affection of the Little Red-Haired Girl, who has just moved to the neighborhood.[6]

Cast and characters

Kristin Chenoweth voices Fifi, Snoopy's love interest. Chenoweth created "a series of conversational-like sounds" to create Fifi's language, using Melendez's Snoopy recordings as a guide, and making his sounds more feminine.[11] Trombone Shorty provides the "wah-wah" voices for Miss Othmar / Mrs. Little Red-Haired Girl, along with the other adult characters in the film.[12]Other characters expected to appear include Snoopy's brother Olaf,[9] and Frieda.[13]

Production

Director Steve Martino presented the film in the work-in-progess session at the 2015 Annecy International Animated Film Festival.[14]

In 2006, six years after the release of the last original Peanuts strip, as well as the death of creator Charles M. Schulz, his son Craig Schulz came up with an idea for a Peanuts film, which he showed to his screenwriter son Bryan Schulz. "I was happy to show my son," Craig said. "He showed me how to make it bigger—how to blow it up more—and he helped me put in structure."[2] When presenting their film to studios, Craig stipulated that the film remain under Schulz control, saying, "We need[ed] to have absolute quality control and keep it under Dad’s legacy... You can’t bring people in from the outside and expect them to understand Peanuts."[2] On October 9, 2012, it was announced that 20th Century Fox and Blue Sky Studios were developing a 3D computer-animated feature film based on the strip, with Steve Martino directing from the screenplay by Craig Schulz, Bryan Schulz, and Cornelius Uliano. Craig, Bryan, and Uliano are also producing.[15] Craig, claiming there is no one "more protective of the comic strip than myself," chose Martino as director because he showed faithfulness to classics in his adaptation of Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears a Who!.[2]

On the film's plot, Martino said: "Here's where I lean thematically. I want to go through this journey... Charlie Brown is that guy who, in the face of repeated failure, picks himself back up and tries again. That's no small task. I have kids who aspire to be something big and great... a star football player or on Broadway. I think what Charlie Brown is—what I hope to show in this film—is the everyday qualities of perseverance... to pick yourself back up with a positive attitude—that's every bit as heroic... as having a star on the Walk of Fame or being a star on Broadway. That's the [story's] core. This is a feature film story that has a strong dramatic drive, and takes its core ideas from the strip."[2] Martino and his animators spent over a year looking at Charles Schulz' original drawing style to help translate the "hand-drawn warmth... into the cool pixel-precision of CGI" without the fear of something getting lost in translation, such as "how the dot of an eye [conveyed] joy or sorrow so efficiently".[2] In addition to receiving the rights to use Bill Melendez's voice for Snoopy and Woodstock, Martino was also able to get the rights to archive music from previous Peanuts specials.[2] Classic locations are featured, such as Charlie Brown's skating pond, his house, "the wall" and Lucy's psychiatrist booth, each retaining their "eternal look of the strip."[16] Additionally, despite being outdated technology, rotary phones and typewriters are seen, as well as Lucy's psychiatrist booth still costing a nickel. Adult characters "wah-wah" voices are represented by a trombone with a plunger mute, as in previous Peanuts media,[6] courtesy of New Orleans jazz musician Trombone Shorty.[12] Because of the robust number of existing Peanuts characters, the film does not introduce any new characters.[9]

On January 8, 2013, Leigh Anne Brodsky became the managing director of Peanuts Worldwide and was set to control all the global deals for the film.[17] In April 2013, Fox announced that the film would be released in 3D.[18] In October 2013, it was announced that Paul Feig would also produce.[19] By April 2015, 75% of the animation was complete, with some footage scheduled to debut at CinemaCon in Las Vegas.[6]

Music

David Benoit, the jazz musician who is best known for his own rendition of Vince Guaraldi's "Linus and Lucy", contributed to the score done by Christophe Beck.[20]

In October 2014, it was revealed that Christophe Beck would score the film.[4] Beck stated, "With the Peanuts movies, I grew up on those specials from the '60s and '70s, that, of course, rerun to this day. I'm very fond of all that Vince Guaraldi music, so what we did was try to find spots in the film where we could sort of touch down and remind people who were watching the film that it's still a Peanuts movie, and there's still a place for that music in the film. There's a bunch of spots where we quote the Guaraldi music, or we actually re-record his pieces quite faithfully." He also added that the score would be more orchestral than Guaraldi's previous scores, which were mainly a small jazz combo.[21] Jazz pianist David Benoit contributed to Beck's score.[20]

On July 28, 2015, it was announced that pop artist Meghan Trainor was writing and performing a song for the film, entitled "Better When I'm Dancin'".[22] Epic Records released the soundtrack album on October 23, 2015.[23] The 20-track album features Trainor's "Better When I'm Dancin", Flo Rida's "That's What I Like" featuring Fitz, "Linus and Lucy", "Skating" and "Christmas Time Is Here" by Vince Guaraldi from the A Charlie Brown Christmas album, and 15 of Beck's original score for the film. An exclusive edition of the soundtrack released at Target features a second Trainor track, "Good to Be Alive".[24]

Release

The Peanuts Movie held its premiere in New York City on November 1, 2015,[25] and is scheduled to be released on November 6, 2015,[26] to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the comic strip and the 50th anniversary of the TV special A Charlie Brown Christmas. It was originally scheduled for release on November 25, 2015,[15] before being rescheduled to November 6, 2015 in November 2012.[26] The film will be released as Snoopy and Charlie Brown: The Peanuts Movie in the United Kingdom and Australia in late December 2015.[27][28]

Reception

Critical response

The review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reported a 67% approval rating with an average rating of 4/10 based on 6 reviews.[29] On Metacritic, the film has received a weighted average score of 70 out of 100 based on 4 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[30]

The Hollywood Reporter‍ '​s Michael Rechtshaffen found the film to be especially praiseworthy, feeling that Charles Schulz would have been proud of this film, though criticized the use of Trainor's song in an otherwise good use of Guaraldi's themes with Beck's score.[1] Peter Debrige of Variety gave similar sentiments, especially praising the animation of the film.[31] Alonso Duralde of TheWrap felt the film made a nice transition to 3D, saying, while the film might not reach "the melancholy of earlier films... it nonetheless respects the importance of failure and disappointment that Schulz always included in his storytelling." He did, however, feel that Peanuts purists would take issue with a few things in the film, such as seeing and hearing so much of the Little Red-Haired Girl, who was always off panel in the comic strips, and Peppermint Patty acknowledging that Snoopy is a dog and not just a kid with a big nose (even though, unbeknownst to him, Marcie told her that Snoopy was a beagle in the latter years of the strip).[32] Pete Hammond from Deadline.com admitted his trepidation about translating the characters from 2D to 3D, but enjoyed the film overall, only criticizing the amount of fantasy sequences involving Snoopy.[33]

Scott Mendelson from Forbes was more critical of the film, saying there was "nothing objectively wrong with The Peanuts Movie" but as he personally was not a fan of the Peanuts, that made him "anti-Charlie Brown", loathing each time he failed in the film.[34]

Video game

A video game based on the film, titled The Peanuts Movie: Snoopy's Grand Adventure, will be released on November 3, 2015 for Xbox 360, Nintendo 3DS, Wii U, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 and published by Activision.[35]

References

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  2. ^ a b c d e f g
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  4. ^ a b Events occur at 8:03 (budget), 9:00 (Beck).
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  6. ^ a b c
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m
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  9. ^ a b c
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  12. ^ a b
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  15. ^ a b
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  20. ^ a b
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  26. ^ a b
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External links


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