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The Playlist

From Worst To Best: Ranking The Pixar Movies

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • June 19, 2013 2:50 PM
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  • 63 Comments
Pixar Feature
This weekend Pixar's latest digital marvel, "Monsters University," roars into theaters (you can read our review here). Few studios can claim the kind of quality that Pixar often does – for a while there it was the most critically and commercially adored studio in the history of cinema (though they are not without their faults). And for good reason. It seemed like year after year they would commit a new classic, an endlessly re-watchable delight full of characters that will be beloved by children the world over for decades to come. In fact, the amount of excellence made ranking the films a blurry and burdensome proposition. But in hindsight (and after a couple of shoddy 3D conversions), it becomes clearer which movies are truly more special than others. This is what we've attempted to do, with our worst-to-best Pixar retrospective.

First Image Debuts From 'Toy Story of Terror' Halloween Special; Brenda Chapman Weighs In On 'Brave' Princess Controversy

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • May 15, 2013 9:45 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Anyone who thought that Disney/Pixar's "Toy Story" franchise would really be kaput following "Toy Story 3" (a movie that practically crow-barred tears out of even the most hardened misanthrope) were, of course, out of their collective minds. Since the third film was released, we've had three dazzling theatrical short films ("Hawaiian Vacation," "Small Fry," and "Partysaurus Rex") and idle chatter of a fourth film, while the characters still live on in the ever-evolving Toy Story Midway Mania attraction at both the Disney California Adventure and Disney's Hollywood Studios parks on either coast. And come Halloween, we'll get something even more special – a 22-minute TV special called "Toy Story of Terror," the first image of which debuted today. Also, former Pixar director Brenda Chapman weighs in on the controversy surrounding her "Brave" character Merida becoming an official Disney Princess.

Oscars: The Snubs & The Surprises Of The 85th Academy Awards

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • February 25, 2013 11:50 AM
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  • 11 Comments
The 2013 Oscar season finally came to an end with the 85th Academy Awards. The major prizes of the night went to "Argo," which, as expected, won Best Picture, Ang Lee took Best Director, while Christoph Waltz, Anne Hathaway, Daniel Day-Lewis and Jennifer Lawrence won the acting prizes.

'Argo' & 'Silver Linings Playbook' Take Top Editing Prizes At ACE Eddie Awards

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • February 17, 2013 9:20 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Seven days left until the Oscars, and the final precursor awards roll out this weekend. Tonight sees the WGA Awards, and last night was the ACE Eddie Awards, run by the organization for film editors, and rewarding the best editing in cinema in 2012.

Grammys: 'The Muppets,' 'The Artist,' 'The Dark Knight Rises,' 'Dragon Tattoo' & More Nominated For Soundtrack & Score

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • December 6, 2012 11:53 AM
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  • 0 Comments
We haven't paid attention to the Grammys in years, mostly because it's irrelevant, these days we're barely familiar with half the nominees, and the show is usually pure tedium. (Don't even get us started on that Beach Boys tribute thing last year.) But for movie buffs looking to maintain their awards season high, yesterday's announcement of Grammy nominees did bring with it some films that are looking to collect gold from their pals in the music biz.

'Brave,' 'Rise Of The Guardians,' 'Wreck-It Ralph' Lead Annie Awards Nominations

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • December 4, 2012 2:16 PM
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  • 0 Comments
While not as hotly contested as many of the major awards this holiday season, the International Animation Film Society announced the nominees for its 40th Annual Annie Awards yesterday, and offer, at the very least, a peak at what the Best Animated Feature Oscar race will look like in the next couple of months. Pixar's Scottish fairy tale "Brave," Disney's retro video game adventure "Wreck-It Ralph" and DreamWorks Animation's mythological team-up film "Rise of the Guardians" led the nominations with ten nominations a piece.

Director Brenda Chapman Says Disney Animation Hired Her Because She Was A Woman

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • October 20, 2012 1:28 PM
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  • 7 Comments
Animation fans were shocked when, a year-and-a-half before the film’s release, animation giant Pixar fired Brenda Chapman, an animation vet and the studio’s first female director (she was also the only female member of the studio’s vaunted Brain Trust creative committee), from her deeply personal first project, “Brave.” While Pixar maintained that she was still on staff, the writing was on the wall, and earlier this year it was announced she had decamped for an unspecified role at LucasFilm Animation. As one animation vet told me yesterday, “Pixar definitely has a glass ceiling.” A recent blog post by Chapman, who has become more outspoken about how she was treated on the film, claims that the only reason she was hired at Disney Animation, back during the studio’s upswing, was because she was a woman.

Summer 2012 Wrap-Up: Which Actors, Directors & Studios Came Out On Top?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • August 22, 2012 1:00 PM
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  • 8 Comments
With "The Bourne Legacy" and "The Expendables 2" landing over the last couple of weekends, we're pretty much at the tail end of the tentpole-laden summer movie season. The rest of the month finds classic late-August programmers like "Premium Rush," "The Apparition" and "The Possession" hitting theaters before attention will be turned to the fall festival season with Venice, Telluride, TIFF, and NYFF all on the way.

Director Brenda Chapman Says Being Removed From 'Brave' Was "Devastating"

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • August 16, 2012 11:17 AM
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  • 7 Comments
The story of Disney/Pixar's "Brave" is a complicated one, fraught with battle-hardened debates and hurt feelings, and we're just talking about what happened behind the scenes of the Scottish-set fairy tale. Originally conceived as the first feature from a female filmmaker at the notoriously male-oriented studio, it was to be written and directed by Brenda Chapman, an animation vet who shepherded the second Disney Renaissance and directed "Prince of Egypt" at DreamWorks. However, eighteen months before the movie was set to premiere, she was removed from the project and, in subsequent months, the studio. (She recently got a job on a typically secretive project at LucasFilm.) Chapman hasn't said one word about her experience on "Brave." Until now.

Weekend Box Office: 'The Dark Knight Rises' Bound For Largest 2D Opening In Box Office History In Wake Of Tragedy

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • July 22, 2012 3:22 PM
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  • 21 Comments
When discussing the box office, we try to emphasize weekly that there are always more significant issues than the amount of money a movie makes. Usually, that issue is the quality of the films themselves. This weekend, it's the horrifying loss of life in the wake of the Aurora, Colorado shooting tragedy. We at The Playlist hope and pray for those directly affected by the tragedy, hoping that our readers are on the same page in regarding what we're about to discuss as simple numbers, no more.

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