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Friday, August 07, 2015

Ronnie del Carmen and Pete Docter Invade Manila for INSIDE OUT


Inside Out, Disney-Pixar's latest movie, arrives in Philippine theaters August 19, and what better way to celebrate its release than with a visit from the two people who helped bring it to life!

Ronnie del Carmen and Inside Out director Pete Docter are in Manila right now to promote Disney-Pixar's latest animated film, and we're fortunate enough to have been given exclusive access to their press conference! This is the first time Pixar ever flew someone over to Manila to promote their film, so this is an amazing opportunity to know more about Inside Out straight from the source.


Pete and Ronnie were all smiles as they climbed up the stage, even dancing an adorable little jig for everyone in attendance. "We've been here 12 hours and we've already eaten 3 times," Pete quipped before taking his seat. Looks like Ronnie's been giving Pete a crash course in Filipino dining habits!

Ronnie del Carmen is a veritable rock star in his own country, as he's one of the most prominent Filipinos working in Hollywood right now, having worked on some of Pixar's most memorable hits like Up, WALL-E, Finding Nemo, and now Inside Out. A graduate of the University of Santo Tomas majoring in Advertising (like me!), Ronnie's hard work enabled him to be pulled into Pixar and eventually leading him to where he is today, back in Manila sitting in front of a media/press crowd promoting the film he co-directed with Pete Docter.


"[Pixar is] a collaborative place," Pete tells us in between regaling the crowd of the process that goes into making a movie like Inside Out. "There's a team of 270 amazingly talented artists who worked on this film, and every one of them contributed in some way."

Unsurprisingly, some of these 270 were fellow Filipinos, Ronnie revealed. "We called ourselves Pixnoys (Pixar-Pinoys). And all we do is eat."

Kidding, of course. Ronnie always looks like he's having the time of his life.

Having migrated to the US in 1989, Ronnie calls it "quite a journey" from simply watching movies in Greenbelt, wishing he could be a part of making movies, to eventually working at Pixar. "I'm not just coming home, there's a movie I helped make that 's opening here [in the Philippines] and it's kind of a surreal experience."

"It's a dream come true," Ronnie says with a smile.


At a current global box office take of $630 million (with more territories still waiting for the premiere), Inside Out is a smash hit for Pixar, who seem to have a knack for bringing engaging and funny stories to life.

One surprising tidbit about Inside Out was that it was supposed to feature depression as 'a malevolent force taking over', but decided against it, as it didn't further the message they were trying to convey. "The thing about depression is that it's the absence of emotion," Ronnie says. "It's not about being political. It takes it out of the hands of the protagonist. It would not be worth watching this movie about emotions and you're ineffective."


A movie about emotions have never been done before, and it took Pete and Ronnie's team 5 years of exhaustive research into psychology and story meetings-cum-therapy sessions to clarify how they're going to go about making people care about personifications of emotions.

"The research kind of fell our way and we were like, 'Yes! We can tell the story' because the hard thing to do is to make a movie wherein you care about what your characters are going through." Pete explained. "No one's ever seen an emotion before, nobody knows what they do, yet they're these characters in a little girl's head, and we're supposed to care about what they want. That is monumental."

The last question is the most decisive one: will we ever see the Pixar films, a collection of movies that's been analyzed by fans to hell and back as happening in a single universe, cross over with each other?

"This will be a controversial answer," Pete said with a rueful smile before answering in the quite definitive "No."

Ow. Sorry about that, Pixar shared-universe fans.


And just like that, the presscon was over. Pete and Ronnie stayed to do a photo op holding plush toys of Inside Out's characters, their babies, and you can see in their faces the relief of finally releasing to the world their labor of love. And with a near perfect score from critics and fans alike, it's evident the world absolutely loves them too.

Inside Out opens across the Philippines on August 19, 2015.

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