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Discover How Pixar Creates Exclusive Magic In “Onward”

Based on his own family story, director Dan Scanlon released a great movie called “Onward”. The film follows two brothers who go through many interesting challenges to find out if there’s still a little magic left in the world. Having lost their father at a young age, the two teenagers always want to see their late father again and believe that magic is the key to realizing their wish. With the set in everyday life in a fantasy suburb with magical creatures living in harmony, the film opens up to viewers a magical world full of color and joy. In particular, this magical movie has introduced us to spells and magic things that are both familiar and strange.

So have you ever wondered how the “Onward” filmmakers created the exclusive magic of the film? Let’s explore the process of forming ideas to implementing them in the movie.

#1 Idea formation

Source: Disney

The beliefs of magic are based on previous films, books that we are all familiar with, or tales that have been passed down from generation to generation, according to story artist Louise Smythe. They did, however, want to create their own form of magic. And they did it because we see the magic is both strange and familiar in this movie.

#2 A set of rules

Source: Disney

Of course, they also have certain rules. First, Smythe said, “Every spell requires heart’s fire”. Put in the story content, belief is the key to launching the spell. Second, it is a “magic decree,” which is “a mental and emotional exercise,” she explained. In this movie, the emotional, verbal, material, and movement components are used to perform spells. Third, add some auxiliary elements to increase attractiveness. Early in the movie, Ian and Barley use a phoenix gem for very advanced-level spells.

#3 Interesting name of spells

Source: Disney

The task of naming the spell is equally crucial. Short names for spells are required; you can guess what it is merely by hearing it; it does not seem stupid or young. As a result, Smythe established a “spell squad,” which was successful after much work.

#4 Understanding the power of spells to arrange screens

Source: Disney

To gain a feel of the role of magic in the movie, the effects team graded the spells on a scale of one to ten. “we came up with this ‘magic theory’ packet where we would track the spell, the success rate of the spell and how much screen space it occupies,” Serritella further explained.

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