Legend of the Guardians

Another live action filmmaker tries his hand at directing an animated film. Zack Snyder (Watchmen, 300) brings Kathryn Lasky’s Guardians of Ga’hoole novels to the screen this fall when Warner Bros. releases Legend of the Guardians on September 24th. Animal Logic (Happy Feet) in Australia produced the animation. Here’s the trailer:

(Thanks, Iain Robbins)


  • stumpyuncle

    I have never met an owl who could carry a feature-length film.

  • Spencer Brandt

    I didn’t like the way the penguins looked in Happy Feet, but I must say there is some really beautiful looking stuff in this trailer. The story also looks somewhat interesting. The characters are also big improvement from HP, so I’m keeping my eye on this one.

  • http://www.enigmation.de slowtiger

    Give me a reason why I should watch this. If I want owls, I go to the zoo. If I want another “hero inside” story, I … Wait. No, I don’t want any more of that, no matter how realistic the rendering is. I’m not interested in this story, and putting the dialogue into beaks doesn’t change that.

  • Bob

    Another animated movie for the hipsters.

  • http://mymedicatedlife.blogspot.com/ Bitter Animator

    If there isn’t a sequence in the movie showing in detail how an owl makes a helmet then I’m not interested.

  • mark

    well its looks pretty decent, lets hope they did have done justice to the book!

    showtiger, hmm guess what if that studio had offered you a job in the production of this film, i am sure you have grabbed it and would have been proud to be a part of this feature!

  • Gobo

    I think Animal Logic is going to make a name for themselves in working well with live-action directors to make quality animated features, if the trailer’s any indication. Looks great to me.

    Slowtiger: “If I want owls, I go to the zoo.”

    So I’m guessing you’ve never bothered watching a Disney feature with animals. 101 Dalmations? I can see dogs on the street. Dumbo? I can see elephants in the zoo. Toy Story? I can see toys at Target. Gimme a break

  • http://evananthony.com BaconIsGood4you

    Phenomenal rendering and lighting but bleh, how terribly kitschy.

  • http://jessicaplummer.blogspot.com Jessica Plummer

    throw in an epic battle of unicorns and narwhals and i just might be sold…

  • http://pouchjunior.blogspot.com/ pouch

    AHAH it ‘s uber shity. superb!

  • http://www.animehell.org tohoscope

    “In a world…where owls wear hats…”

  • http://www.massjordan.com benben

    http://www.massjordan.com friendship tips, this online store are selling wholesale shoes.Now all products are 38% Discount and all free shipping.

  • http://www.animationinsider.net/ Aaron H. Bynum

    Animation looks great; but Owls? I can’t say I’ve ever heard of “Guardians of Ga’hoole” — of which, I know I’m constantly pronouncing incorrectly in my head — but if the animators can find some functional way of making a feature length film about Owls remotely interesting, go for it.

  • http://sacks10.blogspot.com/ SACKS10

    I totally agree with Slowtiger. I’m hungry for something different. Enough with the realistic talking animal movies. My kids and I are truly tired of it.

  • henrik

    looks nice!

  • http://fishsaquarium.blogspot.com antonin

    Please just stop with slow mo Zack…

  • tedzey71

    Are people seriously going to argue about Owl’s wearing helmets on A CARTOON BLOG?! ALRIGHT, TWO CAN PLAY THIS GAME!

    1) Sponges don’t wear square pants
    2) Toys can’t come to life
    3) Wolves don’t go to bars to watch stripteases
    4) Ducks can’t have their bills blown off backwards
    and the one we’ve all been waiting for…
    5) Mice don’t wear red shorts!

    There you have it folks! BTW i though the animation in this trailer was fantastic. Seeing Snyder translated into animation’s funny, cause he’s still doing the whole slow-motion action.

    Like the guys at spill say, “300 was a 20 minute film… until they SLOOOOWWWWEEEEDDD IIIIITTTTTT DOOOOOOOOOWWWWWWNNNNN!”

  • Steve Gattuso

    Looks like a hoot.

  • diego

    Snyder is one of the few directors who knows how to handle CGI in a good way, the other one is David Fincher.

    And also, you almost could say that “300″ and “Watchmen” were animated films.

  • http://beesbuzz.biz/ fluffy

    Those owls seem kind of creepy. I mean owls already look pretty creepy, but then they had to go and humanize the features JUST ENOUGH to make them just… ugh.

    Also, forget the helmets, real owls can’t move their eyes.

  • Dan

    Zack has yet to make a movie I could watch begining to end, there’s always something that happens around the five minute mark that ends it for me. With this trailer that moment happened around the five second mark.

  • http://thatlukeperson.blogspot.co.uk Luke

    That was just a series of shots of owls flying, a general feeling of ‘epicness’ and the word ‘guardians’ said repeatedly in a dramatic manner.

    This might actually be an hour and a half of owls flying to places with nice lighting.

  • toddes

    My daughters saw the trailer this morning and it sent them bounding across the house in joy. They love the series and are thrilled about the movie. For all the naysayers, it’s for children, for pre-teens. Judge it on its intended audience not on your expectations.

    It’s amazing how often we read on this site that not all animation is intended for children and then when a movie that obviously is intended for children is discussed we expect it to please the palette and tastes of the mature viewers as well.

  • Scarabim

    Beautiful, yet…blah.

    And I agree: Owls?

    There’s a book series out there about foxes who have tales about legendary warriors and who go on quests, there’s a similar one involving cats, and there’s one about elephants. Wow. Who knew the denizens of the animal kingdom were so into their own fuzzy versions of Dungeons and Dragons? (Visions of geeky bunnies rolling dice and arguing about charisma points).

    I blame Watership Down…

  • Mark

    Watchman movie is one of the worst BAD movies I’ve ever seen. Not as fun as Battleship Earth, but just as bad.

    Just replicating “reality” isn’t animation to me. There’s little sense of caricature. Looks like a film little girls who like unicorns might like, though.

  • cm

    I rolled my eyes at the part where the owl rolls her eyes since they can’t really do that.

    It wouldnt look so wrong if the owls didn’t look like REAL OWLS

  • Isaac

    Very nice animation. Shame that they had to use that story and those characters. It’s Twilight, without the romance.

  • http://www.cementimental.com Tim Drage

    Vic: “Hey, do ya wanna come to a party?”
    Bob: “How many owls are comin’ Vic?”
    Vic: “Two owls!”
    Bob: “Yeah, count me in!”

  • tom Stazer

    Dear God, the pain. I have to go wash my eyes.

  • Mr. Crankypants

    Yippee. Can’t wait for “Bone”.

  • squirrel

    Are you sure you’re not confusing it with the BONE movie?

  • rodguen

    My son is a fan of the books series.
    This adaptation looks gorgious and owls are
    even more appealing than penguins in my book.

    The constant bashing for anything non-Pixar here
    will have to stop sometime, hopefully

    r.

  • Bill Turner

    Very pretty while they’re flying, but the talking looked just like Happy Feet. For me, that’s not a good thing. Hopefully kids will like it.

    Steve Gattuso wins for best comment.

  • Michael G.

    I agree cm, Why do we see the same facial expressions from Aladdin to the aliens from District 9? They need to give the animators an old tool, a mirror.

  • http://torontoanimation.blogspot.com TempleDog

    “In a world…where owls wear hats…”

    THANK YOU!! I’m not going nuts here. In the midst of the rockin’ soundtrack (no, seriously, like that track) and the nicely executed CGI, my mind kept hooking on the flying elephant in the room…how the hell does a handless cadre of characters make elvish helmets for their lil’ beaky heads?

    I call it the ‘Cars’ quotient. Is there an inherent aspect of the movie’s ‘universe’ that is bloody distracting, even if it’s trivial? Like who built all the cars if there’s no people in ‘Cars’? And don’t give me that ‘it’s fantasy’ crap, not rationalizing this shit in the script is just flippin’ sloppy.

    Also, the British accent thing again. If they finally get around to producing Kazu’s ‘Amulet’ books in feature form, they’re better damn well not be a Stewey soundalike in the lot…it’s a cliche so damn worn, it’s tranparent.

    Whew! O.k., I’m done…man, cathartic. Oh, and cool trailer.

  • JMatte

    I have to agree with rodguen on all his points.
    It looks like a beautiful adaptation of the books, owls have more appeal than penguins in my taste too.
    (agree also with the stop of non-Pixar movie bashing).

    The animation looks great. It is very hard to make a good animation of an animal in flight, and they seemed to have done it very very well.
    Technically, looks superb.
    As for the story, I have learned to never ever judge a movie by a trailer, so I think instead I’ll try and read the books and see what they have done with the adaptation.

  • Angry Anim

    Looks like the animation and lighting are really well done.

  • The Zoo

    Good lord, people! What’s with the hate?

  • http://www.bishopanimation.com FloydBishop

    “The constant bashing for anything non-Pixar here
    will have to stop sometime, hopefully”

    That’s not likely here. Cars II being heralded as genius, original film making is much more likely.

  • ben c

    “Please just stop with slow mo Zack…”

    what are you talking about, its his only trick! without it he’d have nothing :P

  • ben c

    “It’s amazing how often we read on this site that not all animation is intended for children and then when a movie that obviously is intended for children is discussed we expect it to please the palette and tastes of the mature viewers as well.”

    when I read the name ‘Zack Snyder’ I usually don’t associate it with ‘children’ but I still see what you mean.

  • someguy

    I’d rather see the movie about armor smithing Owls… them with their tiny hammers and small scale furnaces. make it live action. so cute LOL.

    Secret formula to success: cute animals + Lord of the Rings = profit.

    Another one of those future “oh my god I can’t believed I loved this as a kid” properties.

  • Ben K.

    It was impossible to watch this trailer and not think “ORLY?”

  • http://www.copernicus.ca Murray Bain

    another Zack Snyder film brought to you by the plug ins “shine” and “time remapper”

    I think the uncanny valley applies to animals as well, if they’re going to talk, they should have an element of exaggeration to their design. especially birds, who have very cold lizard like eyes.
    for example: just look at Glen Keane’s treatment of the giant condor in rescuers down under vs. the Buddy Hackett albatross, if you design the bird real, then it should act like a real bird.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tHxKnJTeTUw
    or happy feet vs. surf’s up:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MAIpBSKJWXM
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d1RH866AvJQ

    but then again, maybe today’s kids who didn’t grow-up watching cartoons, prefer the taxidermy look. Plus, if it was a cartoon bird, the helmet thing might be a bit more forgivable.

  • http://gagaman.blogspot.com Gagaman

    Looks a lot better than Happy Feet, these guys have improved a great deal it seems, some really nice visuals in there and it doesn’t come across as a bit creepy like their prior film did. I just wish that song would stop getting used for every TV/movie trailer of something ‘epic’ over and over again.

  • http://www.animationapocalypse.blogspot.com Baron Lego

    I hope that the movie goes into detail as to where the owls get their helmets from and that it eventually turns out to be the handiwork of monkeys. That would be awesome.

  • optimist

    ” when a movie that obviously is intended for children is discussed we expect it to please the palette and tastes of the mature viewers as well.”

    Yes, absolutely I expect it to. Why not?

    Just my opinion but unless it’s a specific “learning” project meant for teaching shapes and colors to pre-or barely verbal kids, any film made “for children” should be enjoyable for adults also. Or perhaps I really mean that a family film (made by adults, after all) should be able to appeal to everyone, and that making a film for “pre-teens” shouldn’t mean that it lacks depth of feeling, intelligence or somehow has a lesser bar to jump.

  • http://mymedicatedlife.blogspot.com/ Bitter Animator

    Did I miss it or is Zack Snyder’s name nowhere in that trailer?

  • http://nocturnusstudios.blogspot.com Nick

    Funny how in the watchmen previews he puts his name all over that cluster-F*** but you don’t see his name anywhere on this preview. They do however mention Happy Feet. I think this says everything about his approach to this film.

    Because as we all know it’s just a kids movie. No need to try to make it good.

  • TheGunheart

    Generally speaking, it’s the STUDIO that puts the director’s name on the movie. I would assume that since it’s a kids movie, they don’t want to scare the audience away by telling them upfront that it’s by the guy who directed 300 and Watchmen.

    But yeah, I have to agree about the owl helmet thing. I mean, for the guy saying that sponges don’t wear pants, the problem is that Spongebob is supposed to be funny. Here, it’s like seeing clothes in Bambi or The Lion King. These are supposed to be relatively realistic animals, so the sight of them wearing intricate forged helmets jars a bit.

    On the other hand, it doesn’t seem like we see these guardians outside of stories told by the characters, so it might be that there aren’t any helmet-wearing owls in the main story.

  • Erin

    I wouldn’t have expected this to be made before Warriors or Redwall. And it looks 50 times more epic than the books too.

  • http://www.enigmation.de slowtiger

    I should have written “realistically rendered owls” to make my point clearer. This trailer spells wrongness on so many levels for me. If these owls are real: how do they get their helmets? (thx, bitteranimator) Any fiction must stay consistent within its self-invented world. If these owls are completely fantasy: why do they have to look and move realistic? This is more like puppetry than animation.

    Of course a lot of work and money went into this, and the technical side looks quite good. But this doesn’t help the story: I’m still not interested in another hero yarn, I’ve had enough of that. (I haven’t watched Cars as well as Happy Feet for the same reason: no interest in the subject.)

  • Andrea

    Ah, Zack Snyder directed it. No wonder the preview gave me a 300 vibe.

  • VGREER

    Wow, some incredible looking shots but I’m too old and jaded to watch an ‘Epic Owl Adventure’ I know my 12 year old self would have been all over this.

  • Gobo

    Ah, I see, slowtiger — you’re bashing films you HAVEN’T EVEN SEEN. Classy! Just stop now.

    To those who’re randomly posting “looks like shit!” and “eye rape!” among other mature evaluations… why’s it look bad to you? Seriously, is it the animation quality? Or did you just turn it off when you saw owls and decide to troll on Cartoon Brew for kicks?

  • Mike Johnson

    At the 1:23 point, did anyone else think “I love to sing-a, about the moon-a and the June-a and the spring-a?”

    Now I can’t get that Owl Jolson song outta my head…

  • http://www.elliotelliotelliot.com Elliot Cowan

    Are you people crazy?
    This looks terrific!!!!

  • Sara H.

    For a few seconds I thought this HAD to be a joke. This looks allll kinds of awful. Why would they ever make a silly animated movie about epic owls that wear epic helmets, and make the owls look almost photo-realistic!? It’s like they looked through books about owls to make their models instead of hiring a character designer! Owls are soo cool and could have been designed in so many amazing ways, and this is what they give us.

    Can you imagine if they had made ‘Secret of NIMH’ with the most photo realistic mice and rats that could be managed? Uhgg, I shutter to think how terrible that film would be.
    This trailer actually disgusted me more than the chipmunk sequel.. I didn’t think that was possible.

  • Toby Prince

    I think technically the trailer looks great. I have read the books and had heard that the style was going to be more realistic towards the way 300 looks.
    I dont understand all this talk about where would owls get helmets from, Its ANIMATION! Its also all explained in the story.

    Although the music for this trailer kills it for me, certainly could of done something better then this?
    Apart from that im really looking forward to this movie and hope its a hit.

    Also TempleDog – where exactly are these British accents in the trailer?

  • Gobo

    “Why would they ever make a silly animated movie about epic owls that wear epic helmets…”

    Look, I haven’t even read the books here, and I paid enough attention to the trailer to know that the owls in helmets were part of a story that a dad was telling his kids — y’know, legends. I also paid enough attention to see that it’s based on a bestselling series of kids’ books. The owl models look terrific — appealing, attractive characters that smartly don’t stray too far from realistic owls. Geez, people.

  • Sara H.

    @Gobo

    There reason mickey mouse doesn’t looks strange wearing red shorts is because they anthropomorphized him enough that it looks believable. If mickey looked almost exactly like a real mouse wore those dumb pants it would look TERRIBLE. That is exactly what happened here, there are shots of these owls that looks like live action footage at some points, to start putting human clothes on them is a horrible design decision.

  • http://www.Heibies.deviantart.com Phil

    This really doesn’t look that bad.
    I won’t be seeing it, because the style is not within my own preference. But I’m sure the fans of the book will be happy though.

    And it looks much better than Happy Feet, I can say that.

  • Scarabim

    **I hope that the movie goes into detail as to where the owls get their helmets from and that it eventually turns out to be the handiwork of monkeys.**

    Especially flying monkeys!

  • http://zavorio Z

    Its a medical fact now, birds are taking over http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jrmt-EMqzgo

  • http://powpowcomics.com Brooks Michael Williams

    Yikes. Really insulting on every level… I can’t get past how goofy the premise is yet that neediness in it for the viewer to take it very seriously. Happy Feet at least had some rhyme or reason to it.

  • Mr. Crankypants

    Suggested tag lines:
    “You’ll Owl With Laughter”
    “Owl Be Back”
    “Owl Together Now”
    “America’s Got Talon”
    “Hoot First, Ask Questions Later”

  • Simon

    I’m delighted to see Australian accents in the film. Unlike Happy Feet they haven’t filled it with American “names”.

  • Victor

    I like PBS’s Nature series better, at least those animals don’t talk. In some strange way the owls look very similar to the penguins of happy feet. Weird but i think it has something to do with the eyes.

  • Gobo

    @Sara H (and others), it’s clear your opinion is that the characters in this movie are horribly ugly and hurt to look at, yes. That’s your opinion, and I disagree completely.

    @Brooks (and others), I really have no problem with the whole ‘owls in helmets’ thing. In the trailer, the owls wearing helmets are imaginary legendary owls that other owls are telling stories about… ie, perhaps they saw humans in helmets and are using that in their legends. That’s the vibe I got. In any case, it’s got a huge built-in audience, since it’s based on bestselling kids’ books.

  • ninjacat

    Everyone who’s put this movie down, it’s not even released yet. How about you all get a life and first of all; see the movie, read the books, and think through a kid’s eyes. I read these books in grade 4-7 and they were the best thing ever to me. They were my favourite books for years and I was eager for each new release.

    The movie looks pretty good, I hope it’s accurate…
    Just remember, it’s a kid’s movie. It doesn’t have to be perfect.

  • http://nocturnusstudios.blogspot.com Nick

    Can people who are not animators, animation students, or people who understand animation not post things here.

    I’m talking to you ninjacat, gobo and tedzey71.

    “Just remember, it’s a kid’s movie. It doesn’t have to be perfect.”

    That’s just the stupid half-ass thinking that’s screwing up our industry. Children deserve quality films just as much as adults. And also to tell us to get a life is like telling a computer engineer to stop talking about computers. If you don’t know anything about animation STOP POSTING! It’s tiring to have to fill you people in.

  • Kaitlin

    I got that the owls in helmets were part of the dad’s story-so it didn’t matter how they got them or what purpose they serve. We put cool stuff in stories to make it cooler – like mermaids, sentient robots, and world peace. You know – fantasy.

  • cute furry flightless bird

    AL seriously need to hire proper concept and design guys for their next movie whatever it may be… this “realistic cute animals running all over the screen to rip off 5yr old kids” nonsense has to stop one day! dancing penguins it was.. now anime eyed cutesy owls.. what next? furry ducklings with puffy butts?? @#$%@#! totally horrendous design choices from what’s seen in that trailer, but kudos to the animators and lighters though.. the animation here seems light years ahead of happy feet. and the general look and feel of the whole thing seems pretty solid. but still my mind just can’t wrap around realistic animal mouths/beaks/snouts spouting english language out… STOP LETTING THE EXECS MAKE DESIGN CHOICES AL! grow some balls for crying out loud!

  • JP

    wow it’s disturbing to see so much hatred. I hope none of you are actually working in this industry because no one who is would be stupid enough to put down other peoples (and studios) work like that. If you are the industry or are hoping to be, you should watch what you say, when you’re desperate for a job people tend to have good memories for morons.

    If it’s not a movie you’d watch that’s fair enough, but you have no right to put down other peoples hard work because of that. (Sara H?)

  • Gobo

    Nick, it might surprise you to know how much I know about animation. Asking me not to post here because you don’t agree with your opinion is insulting. Are you just trying to troll here, pissing people off for fun? I’ll post here all I like — and again, you’d be surprised at what I know about animation. Thanks for your opinion!

  • http://nocturnusstudios.blogspot.com Nick

    @Gobo

    Insulting? How about the way you insult people for making a decision about whether they will or will not see a movie. It’s not your “opinion” that annoys me but your general lack of understanding about the medium that causes you to form “opinions” that are not valid. Also Gobo if anyone is trolling it’s you. This is the first time I’ve seen you on this blog I’ve been here for about two years now. If you’re not going to intelligently join the debate than LEAVE!

  • http://www.cementimental.com Tim Drage

    THE OWLS ARE NOT WHAT THEY SEEM

  • http://www.enigmation.de slowtiger

    Since when is “not wanting to see that movie” “bashing” it? A studio bringing out a movie makes an offer. We, as the audience, may accept it or not. I have every right to not be interested in a certain theme, story, design, or whatever is part of a movie. And I don’t need to watch a movie first to decide I’m not interested in it – there’s enough trailers, reviews, and general information available.

    And if I’d be only interested in praise of a certain movie, I’d linger around on fan pages.

  • Gobo

    Nick, your posts are becoming unacceptable as you’re personally attacking me. I’ve been on this blog longer than you have, actually, and again, you have zero idea how much I know about animation or about my involvement with the industry, do you? You don’t know about the animation I’ve personally directed, nor about the work I’ve done. So please, stop assuming that I have a “lack of understanding”, and for godsakes, stop telling me to leave this website. Unacceptable. I’m entitled to my opinion, just as you are, and my opinion (which is that the character designs on this movie look pretty damn good) are quite valid.

    And no, I haven’t insulted anyone. Nobody. I question when people say things like “this movie is shit” without actually watching it, because I think that’s foolish. End of discussion.

  • Nick

    So you’re telling me that you’ve never seen a preview and thought, “I don’t think I’ll see that movie.” If that’s true you must be broke if you like every movie that’s come out. Having discernment is not foolish NOT having discernment is. And I know you haven’t worked in the industry because if you had you wouldn’t think hyper realistic owls are good design because if anything it’s ANTI-DESIGN. And if you think you haven’t insulted anyone maybe you should read slowtiger’s post. She was clearly speaking to YOU!!! I’m not the only that’s getting annoyed with you.

    If you were a REAL professional you’d know that good design is not relative to the viewer’s choice. There are clear objective principles that create GOOD design. A knowledge of draftsmanship and anatomy is one aspect but it is not the only aspect. That is why the “designs” in this movie are not good. There is NO DESIGN. It’s a movie with just life drawings.

  • http://www.enigmation.de slowtiger

    Nick: thx for the compliments, but last time I checked I was still male … *snicker*

  • http://nocturnusstudios.blogspot.com Nick

    my bad

  • Sylvain

    It seems like another one of those shamanism-based animated film. After Ferngully, Pocahontas, Brother Bear, Avatar, is this book sufficiently different to warrant yet another one ? I do like the animation in the trailer so I’ll probably see it anyway.

    My god, you guys are really hating each other over a film opinion. I thought I was rude but I now feel like a zen master compared to some posters here…

  • http://www.kellytoon.com Kelly Toon

    This comment will probably never be read at this point, but god help me, I hope they don’t do like they did in Happy Feet and fool everyone into thinking they will see a movie about happy, charming birds, and then smack you with a “humanz r evil” oil-spill-from-hell scenario to scare the piss out of all the little kids! How nasty and underhanded is that, I ask you?

  • http://www.spiteyourface.com Tony Mines

    “You’ll Believe an Owl Can Fly!”

    Rachel: Do you like our owl?
    Deckard: It’s… Australian?
    Rachel: Of course.

  • Sean

    for people involved in the entertainment industry – and animation at that – which relies so heavily on fantasy, many of you seem completely incapable of the first key factor to appreciate our art forms:

    SUSPENSION OF DISBELIEF!!

    If you spend your time looking for the improbable or the impractical, then you should be involved in legal affairs and leave the world of FUN and ANIMATION to those of use who can still use our imagination.

  • Sylvain

    Kelly,
    There is nothing about oil-spills in happy feet, so I guess you haven’t seen the film.

    Happy Feet is not about humans-are-evil but in fact the opposite, the main character disproves the concept of good and evil, because he tries to understand and communicate with humans. He prevailed because he refused to believe the spiritual dogma crap fed by either their political leader, or the preacher.

    ALL the kids around me, both related and unrelated to my own DNA, absolutely loved this film, no one was scared. However I do remember one adult american from Kentucky who let her political bias in the way of understanding the film. She was very pissed.

    This Guardian film will be the complete anti-thesis of Happy Feet. I’m sure you’ll love it.

  • george

    I want to know why and how Animal Logic ends up with these realistic ‘character designs’ 2 films in a row. Happy Feet at least to my understanding is George Miller’s IP but how about this owl movie? Did the character designs come with Zack Snyder or is Animal Logic creditable for these ‘real animal look’?? I had a very hard time differentiating one penguin from another in Happy Feet and it seems it’s going to happen again with owls.

  • Animal can’t talk

    Suspension of disbelief just doesn’t come to the audience naturally buddy. It takes a lot of planning to make sure things sync up well in the alternate universe you create on the screen and only then for the duration of the movie will their brains be fooled into accepting what you present to their eyes. At the end of the day every movie tells a human story and unless it’s a silent movie you’re going to have animals speaking human language. So if you don’t humanise these characters’ faces to some degree and choose to present them au natural then a little thing called logic springs up in the viewers minds… ANIMALS DON”t TALK!
    And it usually prevent the viewers from being totally invested into the story that you’re trying to tell.

  • HH

    I started laughing when it was shown in the theates. I can’t put the song “Kings and Queens” and owls together. It’s also hard to take it seriously on owls in a great battle even though it was based on a fantasy novel.

  • Ethan

    I have friends and colleagues who worked their ass off on this film, so I am definitely seeing it. But I have no illusions, I expect the script to be… not very good…

  • Gobo

    Nick said: “So you’re telling me that you’ve never seen a preview and thought, “I don’t think I’ll see that movie.”

    That’s not what I said, Nick. If you don’t want to see a movie, fine, nobody’s forcing you to. But posting actual criticism of movies you haven’t seen — as some folks here are doing, and slowtiger was doing — is simply ignorance. Try watching them. Otherwise, you have no basis to criticize, only glimpses from a trailer, which can be very misleading.

    “If you were a REAL professional you’d know that good design is not relative to the viewer’s choice”

    I disagree, actually. I think that different films can gear their design to appeal to different age groups and audiences, depending on what’s needed. To me, the designs on this film nicely straddle the line between realistic and stylized, which is becoming Animal Logic’s hallmark; if you saw Happy Feet, you’ll remember that some of the penguins were hyper-realistic while others were very stylized indeed, and I expect the same from this flick.

    Nick, feel free to disagree — people have different tastes, and I’m NOT saying you’re wrong for disliking the way this film looks. But you telling me to stop posting on this website is immature. That’s not the way adults debate.

  • http://www.sexymecha.com Hal

    Zack Snyder’s a director who’s flirted with greatness for me, and I’m loving live action directors bringing their aesthetics to animation (along with Wes Anderson and of course George Miller). Rarely can animators’ unique visual style remain intact in features, but these live action directors are able to bring something new to the table more often than the major studios’ animation departments thanks to BEING A “NAME.” I’m also loving that all three of these directors have a darker streak that comes through as well. Snyder’s been a bit of a let down since DAWN OF THE DEAD, 300 and especially WATCHMEN were burdened by adhering to preexisting visual styles, but I think Children’s Lit is the level of narrative he can work with and elevate with his style. I’m really excited the voice casting is for GOOD voices, not celebs – can I get a WOOT WOOT for Hugo Weaving and Sam Neill?

  • http://tillmyhands.blogspot.com Adam VM

    Barn owls. I won’t be seeing this! Those suckers give me nightmares.

    There’s some beautiful animation in there, but I had my fill of photo-realistic animals with happy feet. Add all the SLLLOOOO MMMOOOO and the inevitable 3d, and… yeah.

    Since people insist on casting Hugo Weaving, hopefully this film lets him act in a way that has some personality. He’s been portraying Agent Elrond for way too long now, now, I’m sure he’s tired of it.

  • http://alvazar.ru/ Alvazar

    Wow, so coll! The spirit grasps in some moments :)
    I will precisely look this animated cartoon at a cinema in 3D!!!

  • kitoridragoness

    okay so if you haven’t read the series and you are talking crap about the storyline and you haven even seen movies that are like this or have this kind of vibe, i don’t see the point in commenting crap okay! it may be overly “realistic” or “old” but if you really knew what the story was about, you probably wouldn’t be saying “I have a problem with owls with helmet’s!” or “the realistic stuff in this movie is all too much to go along with the fantasy of it” because you would know that the author of the books would probably want what is shown here okay? now quit talking if you dont even know what this movie is about.