Though I have been back home in Texas for a week now, it seems just like yesterday that I was walking the halls in a new-to-me Disney building, one that hosted us for an advance screening and exclusive interviews regarding “Big Hero 6 The Series”! Yes, our friends are back!
Disclaimer: Disney*Pixar invited me to California on an all-expenses paid trip, in exchange for my coverage of events, which included an exclusive interview for “Big Hero 6 The Series”.
This wasn’t the first time I’d visited Disney for Big Hero 6. In fact, just 3 years ago I visited the Animation building to meet with directors Don Hall and Chris Williams and Producer Roy Conli, to talk about what would become Walt Disney Animation Studio’s 54th feature film, “Big Hero 6”. You’ll want to check that out –> Original Big Hero 6 Movie Interviews!
I was excited that our favorite animated superheroes are back, and I imagine your kids are too!
Big Hero 6 The Series and Big Hero 6: Baymax Returns
Launching Monday Nov 20th
Mark your calendar. “Big Hero 6 The Series” Launches With Primetime TV Movie ‘Baymax Returns,’ Monday, November 20, Simultaneously on Disney XD and Disney Channel.
It was just a few years ago when we fell in love with the Academy Award-winning movie, Big Hero 6. Yes, Academy Award-wining movie. It won an Oscar, and I remember watching that moment. When you have interviewed people who are nominated, it makes the award shows that much more interesting. I was so proud of them and all the hard work…it had paid off.
Well I am happy to announce that not only is there a brand new TV-movie, “Big Hero 6: Baymax Returns”, but there is a brand new series coming to Disney XD!
About “Big Hero 6: Baymax Returns” – The Movie
The one-hour TV movie “Baymax Returns” premieres on Monday November 20 at 8:00p.m. on Disney XD and Disney Channel.
Set in the fictional city of San Fransokyo, 14-year-old tech genius Hiro begins school as the new prodigy at San Fransokyo Institute of Technology and sets off to rebuild Baymax. However, his overconfidence and penchant for taking shortcuts leads him and the newly minted Big Hero 6 team – Wasabi, Honey Lemon, Go Go and Fred – into trouble.
The movie kicks officially kicks off the series and picks up immediately following the events of the feature film and continues the adventures and friendship of 14-year-old tech genius Hiro and his compassionate, cutting-edge robot Baymax. Along with their friends Wasabi, Honey Lemon, Go Go and Fred, they form the legendary superhero team Big Hero 6 and embark on high-tech adventures as they protect their city from an array of scientifically enhanced villains.
We had the opportunity to sit in the screening room and watch the one-hour movie and I will tell you it did not disappoint. It’s an emotional time for Hiro, having just lost his brother, and Disney definitely didn’t avoid the emotion of it all. But as with real life, life goes on, and so must Hiro. Thus “Big Hero 6 The Series” is perfect to kickoff the next phase of his life.
ABOUT “Big Hero 6 The Series”
We sat down after the screening with Executive Producers Mark McCorkle, Bob Schooley & Nick Filippi, along with the voice of HIRO himself, actor Ryan Potter. What a thrill that was and here some fun facts we learned about “Big Hero 6 The Series”
6 Things to Know about “Big Hero 6 The Series”
Stan Lee is Returning
Yes, they were excited to tell us that Stan Lee is back in the series.
You might recall in the original movie, Stan Lee made an appearance as Fred’s dad in expected Marvel after credits scene.
Mark McCorkle explained, “The back story is that he was a superhero in the past and he gets to be the voice of wisdom from Fred, and then in a particular episode for Hiro. And it’s just great to work with Stan Lee like that. Intimidating, but an honor.”
The Animation is Different Than in the Original Movie
The original movie was filmed using computer generated 3D animation. You’ll immediately notice that the animation in the television movie and series has a totally different feel to it.
It’s traditional hand-drawn animation.
Nick Filippi explained, “We chose to go with hand-drawn animation partially because we wanted to create a new world and look for the show. We wanted everybody to immediately recognize these characters, to embrace these characters that they fell in love with in the movie, but we wanted to have a fresh start on the show, so we choose hand-drawn animation similar to what Disney was doing in the 60’s.”
He continued, We were referencing 101 Dalmatians. We wanted something that had a graphic feel that the animators could really latch on to, but also the warmth of the hand-drawn pencil line.”
To use computer generated 3D animation for television would have been difficult. They couldn’t have competed with what the original feature had done. Filippi added, “Between our show, Tangled and DuckTales, I think there’s three very good vital contemporary examples of how smart 2D art direction can make something a unique piece of entertainment onto itself.”
It’s different, but I agree so beautiful.
THIS Foreshadows Every Plot in the First Season
Bob Schooley told us how the background is actually like another character in the series. In the background is where you will want to look as there’s little foreshadowing practically to every plot in the first season.
He said, “There’s little nods to characters you’re gonna meet.” So pay attention!
Being Smart is Cool – This is Intentional
Most of us parents love the fact that this group of kids, they are smart and love science.
Mark McCorkle mentioned, “As soon as Bob and I first saw the movie on our way out, Bob turned to me and goes, it’s so refreshing to see science being positive, or being portrayed in a positive way that’s not dystopian future or whatever, because when we grew up, science was, let’s get an astronaut to the moon, like it was about solving problems. It was about the future and reaching and striving and I feel like we kind of lost that a little bit. So for us, it’s nice that you have this group of kids that are all smart and being smart is cool.”
Ryan Potter chimed in, commenting,” That’s one thing that’s never changed and I don’t think ever will change. At the heart of the story, it’s just a bunch of smart kids and every problem that they encounter, they tend to solve it with their wits.”
And then the banter went back and forth between everyone being interviewed. Bob Schooley said, “Other than Fred. Fred’s power is his imagination.”. Still others remarked how Fred lights stuff on fire. The laughs ensued.
Unexpected Characters Abound
Villains will be very different. Some will be scary, while others are more silly.
In fact, Katy Mixon from “American Housewife” plays one half of a mother-daughter 80s themed dance crime team. Oh my goodness, I cannot wait to see this.
Mark McCorkle spoke about a specific episode with Hiro. He noted Ryan Potter did an excellent job in this episode, “where he suddenly looks around and goes boy, I gave everybody else a superpower, but I don’t have one. And he gives himself one and that’s the one where Stan Lee kind of gives him advice and he learns his superpower is his brain. Being smart is his superpower.”
From the movie screening, I will say that my new favorite character is Professor Granville, played by the talented Jenifer Lewis from “Blackish”. She’s one tough cookie and I can’t wait to see all the fun they have with her!
Advice from Ryan Potter, voice of Hiro
There are many actors (adults and kids) out there dreaming of making it big in Hollywood. Ryan Potter had some advice for them.
Potter said, “The industry is tough. You have to build a really strong team, and not strong in the sense of big and powerful, but close and personal. I’ve been with my publicist Dani for close to seven years now, and my voiceover agent, Melissa, I’ve been with for I think five now.”
He continued, “I try not to have any my agents or managers change at all. It’s always a bummer if somebody has to leave for personal reasons, and that’s happened in the past, and that was heartbreaking. It’s like losing a family member, ’cause these are the people that you kind of ride this wave with, and it’s not always an easy time. Most of the time, it’s not easy. So having a really strong team of people who you consider family is really important because at the end of the day these are the people you’re gonna end up working with for the next 10, 15, 20 years, if not more.”
Great advice from someone who is living the dream!
Let’s take a look first at a clip from the one-hour movie…
And now the series…
Meeting with the executive producers and Ryan Potter was incredible.
‘Big Hero 6 The Series’ Launches With Primetime TV Movie ‘Baymax Returns,’ Monday, November 20, Simultaneously on Disney XD and Disney Channel.
Want to get the kids extra excited for the movie and series? Check out my Big Hero 6 Lunch – Baymax Sandwich Tutorial!
More from this Disney/Pixar/ABC Press Trip (more coming daily):
Pixar Coco Movie Review – No Spoilers, but parents questions answered!
Hollywood Coco Premiere – My red carpet experience!
Interview – Kevin Probably Saves the World – Politics, Religion, and Jason Ritter!
Interview – Designated Survivor – Italia Ricci and more!