epic_teaser epic_teaser
CGIFeature Film

Blue Sky’s “Epic” Teaser

20th Century-Fox and Blue Sky have released a teaser trailer for their next film, Epic. Based on a William Joyce book… it’s looking pretty good:

  • I wanna see this film.

  • Tredlow

    Visually, it looks really good. The writing, though… I’m still skeptical. Also, they used “EPiC” the internet way. Man, I thought they were better than that. Let’s hope there’s more to the movie than just the visuals.

    • Mac

      I’m confident they mean Epic in the Bertolt Brecht sense. This movie will be episodic, it will be alienating and dispassionate, and carefully constructed. It will challenge our ideas of our relationships with and expectations of epic cartoon cinema.

      It reminds me of Battle for Terra.

      • Greg

        Greg from Blue Sky here. I’m glad you enjoyed our trailer, Mac. I think. Right? Anyway, we can only aspire to make a movie as wonderful as the one you made.

      • filipino pancake

        I love you, Greg.

      • Jenovasilver

        Greg, I want to see this movie, at first I was like ‘Epic’? Nah, then the teaser…oh god the teaser. Next summer? That’s far away, you need to sate me with more trailers.

    • Typewriter Ribbon

      The title isn’t shown as EPiC, it’s all lowercase, just ‘epic’.

  • Yo

    I wish Moonbot Studios had done it instead of Blue Sky

  • Epic teaser not epic enough.

    Plus, too many Ferngully & Spiderwick elements which make me question the originality of the story. I hope I’m proven wrong, though.

  • Past Blue Sky films have either ranged from average at best (Ice Age, Horton) to forgettably bland (Robots, Rio). I sure hope Epic breaks the trend.

  • James

    Hopefully this movie paves the way for more intriguing films projects such as “Comedy” or “Romance.”

    But, seriously that teaser hasn’t exactly got me sold on this movie, which doesn’t seem that original. It has potential to be good and the animation is pretty good. Hopefully they are able to make the fantasy world more intricate and immersive than what’s seen here.

    But I suppose teasers like this are only suppose to spark interest, and in that sense I’ll concede that it has…sort of gotten me a little interested.

  • Don Adams

    Awesome! Fern Gully in 3d.

    • Chris Sobieniak

      Hate to say I thought of that too (yet I never did see Fern Gully completely at all).

      • Probably Fox Animation’s best 2D animation aside from Anastasia. It’s definitely a must see!

      • siemasko

        If for no other reason, Ferngully must be seen for the unusual rap sequence done by Robin Williams character, a bat who escaped from an animal testing facility. Weird 90s animation at its best!

      • Nicole

        Sadly, this is true. How did a lab animal end up in a south american rain forest? Ask the year 1992.

  • eeteed

    does walt kelly get screen credit?

    when do we get to see their designs for peter wheat?

  • wever

    Because of the name change, the celebrity cast revealed in the press, the bland elements in the trailer that catch none of my interests, and the contrast of the serene music with the modern performances and “hip” lingo, I can tell I’m not going to like this movie.

    • Typewriter Ribbon

      Knowing a year in advance that you won’t like a movie you haven’t seen is fascinatingly prescient.

      • axolotl

        A lousy trailer can produce the illusion of prescience.

      • axolotl

        (Oh, heh, seriously, this looks like it has some cool stuff, I like people riding on hummingbirds. Smirky teenagers and comic-relief snails, not so much…)

      • wever

        A trailer doesn’t tell the full truth about a movie, sure. But it’s goal is to make you decide if you’ll see it or not. If a trailer has things that turn me off, and if there are enough of them, my decision is made.

  • tony

    I liked the intro of the teaser, until the song starts.
    Doesn’t the guy at 1:11 and 2:07 look a lot like Flynn Rider from Tangled?

    • Marie

      Agreed about the Flynn Rider thing. Why do so many leading male characters in animated films have that same long-haired, generic, hipster white guy design?

    • J

      I definitely thought it was Flynn. And my initial impression of the ornithologist at the beginning was that he was Linguini.

  • mindy

    I think this trailer is awesome! This movie looks more appealing than ANY animated movie that came out this year. The animation and rendering look breathtaking. Maybe Epic isn’t the best title, but it is obviously a marketing decision made by Fox’s team. The creative team on this movie however looks like they are really inspired, I’m excited to see it next summer!

  • The marketing of Epic makes it look like Fox wants to replicate the successful formula of Avatar. They may not get that, but I wouldn’t mind seeing more of this film.

  • Frisson all over my arms and then -BLAM!!!- goofy-ass talking snail.

  • The negativity of people never ceases to amaze me.

  • The trailer at least suggests by far the most interesting work from Blue Sky since their early days of the superbly wistful, melancholic Bunny.

    • wever

      For once, it looks like they’re making something that is NOT comedic or completely cartoony! I applaud that attempt!

      • tony

        Until a cartoony snail says: “seriously dude”.

      • wever

        Note I wrote “not COMPLETELY cartoony”.

  • SR

    I am on board! Can’t wait to see more!

  • Close

    Visually it looks great. I really wish a Hollywood animation studio would follow up on what Pixar hinted at doing in WALL-E & actually stick the landing. That is – make an animation film that is truly a silent film & never have a single line of dialogue. Tell a story with pure visuals only.
    Truthfully, I was on board with this trailer until Aziz Ansari spoke. I could almost hear a record skip to signify this won’t be what the trailer first sold it as.

    • In TOTAL agreement!

    • If we want an animated feature completely devoid of dialogue we all better start pooling our money — because Hollywood ain’t making it.

  • Sean P

    I think this would look better as a live action project. I can see some cool costuming and production design possibilities. This is looking too representational to me(design, acting, etc). Am I alone on this?

  • Larry

    I was cautiously optimistic until the dialog started. Then… ugh. There were only two lines, and both of them were stale retreads of very, very old gags: 1. A “pull out to reveal” joke with the punchline “Seriously, dude?” and 2. a person waking up saying “I had the weirdest dream about X” then looking up to see that it was real. Lazy and uninspired! Too bad, because the visuals and animation look really nice.

  • I also liked the part previous to the song more than the rest. However, it does look pretty good visually.

    Doesn’t surprise me that there are “jokes” in it and it’s not really a bad thing, it’s just that the trailers usually include them in the worst moment just to make you remember this is not “too serious”.

    Gags or serious I think it looks pretty much like a Disney-imitation from the 90s like Ferngully or Quest for Camelot and it’ll probably be about as good. It’s nice to see BlueSky trying a new thing and it’ll surely be better than Rio or Ice Age 25, but I’m not especially excited, it’s not like those movies were so great either. Actually, I’ve always liked Ferngully quite a bit, but the visual appeal of its 2d animation makes a lot of it. Here we have nice shots, backgrounds and camera work, but the characters are a little less appealing.

  • Maddie

    Shot direction lifted directly from Tarzan, story lifted from Fern Gully, character models lifted from my nightmares, this looks like a stinker. “The creative team on this movie however looks like they are really inspired” come on, I’m thinking half of you commenting worked on the film or are moms of people working on the film. This looks like it was released in 2004, we shouldn’t be rewarding this descent in animation quality.
    And Mac from Blue Sky, could you be any more childish? Won’t be seeing this or any other Blue Sky “movie” because people like you make them.

    • I_Like_Cartoons

      Enjoy animation much? I’ll ignore your implication that the only people who think this looks good are Blue Sky employees or relatives, and instead ask – can you elaborate on what animated “movies” in 2012 will make someone like you happy?

  • frozenfil

    the way the guy was sliding/surfing over the limbs looked very reminiscent of Tarzan to me.

  • Why do people think this looks “visually good”? Because it looks hyper-realistic? That’s all I can think when I watch this… it looks so “real”. Congratulations animation, you’ve managed to replicate the real world… now what?

    • Tak

      In an age when we seem to be throwing out the concept of Drawing animation all together what do you expect. We forget that “Ceci n’est pas une pipe!”. The style is then automatically pushed to match the aspects of the Rigged Puppet & the HighEnd 3D CGI sensibility (3D CGI TinTin & the like, while sustaining lots of Tech, VFX & Visual Detail jobs I guess) rather than focusing on any attempt of interpreting, retaining or realizing any sense of design that’s been developed as an illusive visual illusion of lines, marks & colours on a page. Not because we can’t, but simply because we aren’t starting from that premise of designing something from the ground up in the first place anymore. With the majority of feature CGI everything is based on visuals that are very tangible, rather than daring to be even somewhat based on something less tangible, like a drawn design illustration or doodle. We’ve been saying this stuff for who knows how long now, but at least folks like Tim Johnson, who actually have a somewhat influential platform, are saying it too.

      • Chris Sobieniak

        Ceci n’est pas une animé!

      • Tak

        HA! I laughed loudly at this quip, very astute Mr Sobieniak. Needless to say though, Tim Johnsons words do indeed represent a part of my mind set as an illustrator and simply something I’d like to express. But please understand that by expressing that notion, I am not automatically tearing down or opposed to everything that doesn’t somehow alight with it, merely trying to help generate some momentum to move the the giant bolder of The visuals of Feature CGI Animation just an inch to the left.

  • Blue Sky, you had me, You HAD ME…..until that slug started talking. Seriously, what a let down…thought we might be getting a different kind of American animated film. i cant judge it all just by this but from what I saw, i afraid of business as usual……..gosh, that was upsetting….

    • Exactly how I felt. I was so incredibly excited and on board for this until the jokes started. The beginning of the trailer, the mood of the music, I loved it all until the dialogue.

    • Jenovasilver

      I didn’t mind the talking slug, I wasn’t fond of the ‘Juno’ girl model tho, still…I’m willing to see this movie.

  • SKent.

    I dunno, looks more promising to me than most other upcoming animated features at the moment.

    I have a feeling it might just be a good trailer.

  • akira

    thank goodness they didn’t do a “nuts” joke when he slid down the branch to the acorn

  • chipper

    The fairies were cute, I just hope the woman isn’t a generic love interest with no personality of her own.


    Flynn Rider!!
    (in the world of Fern Gully)

  • Vik

    Characters in most modern animated films talk way too much and when they do, their dialogue is trite and uninspired. The two lines of dialogue in this simple trailer made me cringe. The character designs were a bit bland as well.

  • LazyBoy

    Looks very good. Let’s hope we won’t have a hip-hop jerk talking and showing-off during half of the movie this time.

  • Occams Breadknife

    Big Joyce fan, and the Leaf Men is one of my favorites of his. This looks to be an enjoyable film, but I can see the 3D shots already, and I am not much of a fan of 3D.

    I also don’t mind comedy, but when you have characters say things like “Seriously dude” it will date the film over time. It makes me worried that he marketing folks had a bit too much of a hand in it, and maybe Joyce not as much as I would have hoped. I’ll see it when it comes out, certainly, but I don’t expect “Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore”.

  • Alissa

    You had me Blue Sky, was already throwing my money at the screen…then that blasted snail talked. Now I’m paranoid and overly cautious about a movie I was getting excited about.

    Still probably gonna see this, just for the hummingbirds and fantasy elements.

  • ‘seriously dude’…. ahh fer fecks sake!!!! Who writes these lines? I have no doubt that writer’s hands are tied by nob head committees, focus group input and spineless unimaginative management. It’s a great shame that so many lines could span anything from Madagascar to Men in Black to Seth Rogan’s latest juggernaut of humour

    Looks great all in all. Personally I was hoping that they would push the whole in the direction of that great looking stylised slug/snail. Real looking birds, cartooned bird spotter man, semi real looking human type elve types and then really cartooned slug. Struck me as quite a mix there

    When all said and hyper criticised it looks like an enjoyable film to me

  • Greg

    We at Blue Sky work extremely hard and long hours to make the films we make. And while our movies may not be for everyone who reads this blog, we take great pride in our work and couldn’t be more proud of how Epic is turning out. And while I am certainly not here to shout down our critics, I want the readers of Cartoon Brew to know that the artists who make these films do read the comments and have opinions of our own. It takes years of difficult work and many hours away from friends and family to bring these films to life, but it takes mere seconds for naysayers to tear them down. Epic is awesome, and we are extremely proud of it.

    • Well said :)
      With how much work that goes into these films, it’s only respectful to fellow artists to take any first impressions from a trailer with a grain a salt and hold off judgement until we’ve seen it for ourselves.

      For the record, I actually think the movie looks really interesting from the trailer and I’m looking forward to it. If anything, I can say for certain from the trailer that it’s a beautiful looking film.

  • Jenovasilver

    Personally I liked what I saw, the mood of the movie switched when the characters started talking but I was still on board with the trailer overall, a trailers job is suppose to make me interested in seeing the film. It did that.

    Hell I remember not being remotely interested in Hotel Transylvania until the second trailer.

    Epic looked gorgeous and I nearly gasped when I saw the weed thing door opened up, that was really pretty.

    In short, this trailer wow’d me. So Bluesky, I’ll be waiting.

  • FigmentJedi

    Wish they had just kept Leaf Men as the title. I hate this trend of “one word vague descriptor” titles.

    • wever

      Trope! Trope, right here! Someone make it!

  • Sarah J

    Looks a lot cooler than I expected. Still think the title is stupid.

  • I liked it. If you can suspend disbelief enough for a hummingbird to carry a rider, then it can suspend enough for a talking slug! It does seem to be reaching for an Avatarish visual effect.

    Trailers are designed to pique interest – this one succeeded in that regard for me.

  • hitface

    How is this automatically a rip off of fern gully??
    Saying this is a rip off of fern gully just because it takes place in a magical world and a human is shrunk down to its size is like saying Avatar The Last Airbender is the exact same as Pokemon because it involves 2 boys and 1 girl adventuring to various towns to master something.
    Unless someone links me to a synopsis that says that this movie is about a magical rainforest in danger of getting developed and an idiot human ends up opening a tree that housed an ancient evil spirit made of polution and then ends up shrinking down and falling in love with one of the many fairies and helps save the day, this isnt a ferngully rip off.
    Its a pretty cool looking movie so far, though the talking did put me off as well. However, Trailers have been known to be shitty shit shit. I remember they made the cellphone scene in megamind into a FART JOKE. Obviously the people who make trailers try to go for gags, especially involving cartoons, rather than what could actually be the best part of the movie.

  • Ryo

    Learn from the past guys, this movie can turn out to be “epic” as the title is. Don’t you remember how crappy “Tangled”‘s trailer was and the movie turned out to be a classic disney fairy tale movie?