Now… I do not pretend myself an expert in film making nor do I proclaim myself as one entitled to know all of the ins and outs of the Walt Disney Animation Studios. I will however, declare myself a true blue fan of their films and many of their affiliated works. As such, I can wholeheartedly say that I have never, not ever, been as brokenhearted as I am when the news came out that Disney’s next storybook fantasy film, Gigantic, has been shelved.
Despite what a LOT of news reporting websites and other media are reporting, that is NOT what Disney is doing. The direct quote is as follows:
“It’s impossible to know when we begin a project how the creative process will unfold, and sometimes, no matter how much we love an idea or how much heart goes into it, we find that it just isn’t working,” said Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios president Ed Catmull. “With Gigantic, we’ve come to that point, and although it’s a difficult decision, we are ending active development for now. We are focusing our energies on another project that has been in the works, which we’ll be sharing more about soon, now set for Thanksgiving 2020.”
As you can read by the bolded and underlined portion, they are cancelling active production not the film itself.
For those not in the know, Gigantic’s story is based on the classical tale of “Jack and the Beanstalk” with dashes of the novel Gulliver’s Travels thrown into the mix. Taking place in Spain during the Age of Exploration, young Jack would find to a land above the clouds and populated extraordinarily large humans, otherwise known as giants. In point of fact, Jack would end up finding and befriending a young giant girl named Inma who despite his many protests to the contrary treats Jack more like a toy than a person.
Now, to be fair to Disney, this has not been the first film to be shelved and likely not the last either. However, of the two other films currently sharing in Gigantic’s hiatus, only one of them has plausible reason as to why it’s likely not going to be made. A film by name of Newt which… is basically the film Rio but with lizards instead of birds. Given that Disney already experienced a rather poorly timed release with an affiliated film, The Wild, to Dreamwork’s Madagascar, I can see why this film has been shelved.
The other film, The King of Elves, has thus far no official reasoning beyond story conception, which I can understand given that it is based on a short story and one that is not as globally recognized as others.
Yet the point still stands that for all that we got a basic plot and even snippets of concept art for these two films, we received that and far more for Gigantic. Aside from the aforementioned art and story concept, it had its own little exhibit at the D23 Expo of 2016, which is essentially Disney’s equivalent to Comic-Con, where aside from the art and story there was also a demo of a song sung by Inma relaying her feelings towards Jack. A song done by the same geniuses behind the earworm that is “Let It Go” from Frozen.
In point of fact, a lot of top guys and girls from previous Disney films were/are involved in Gigantic. I won’t name any names because, as of now, the work that they have done may not still apply to the final product but I will state that the creative minds behind Tangled, Frozen, and Inside Out along with the short Get a Horse! And the upcoming Captain Marvel film! That’s a LOT of top applicators to simply put this film on the shelf.
I guess, the overall point that I’m trying to make here is that while it’s perfectly understandable that Disney wants to focus on other, more pertinent projects that have a higher chance of success than others. I mean, c’mon, like they wouldn’t make a Frozen 2 given the sheer hype of “Let It Go” alone never mind the question on everyone’s minds… What that question is I’ll leave up to you but I digress!
Sigh… to whatever folks at Disney that may have stumbled upon this, my most humble of blogs, while Gigantic may be put on hold for now, please do not let it become lost amidst a net of cobwebs and sea of dust. Please do not forget that sometimes, you just have to take the risk and jump in. Whether you land on your feet or end up stumbling, it doesn’t matter! You guys are freaking Disney! Name me an animated film that “didn’t do well” in the box office and I’ll pull up a whole list of people that are part of its cult following!
Finally, and surprisingly, there is a petition to still keep the film’s production going, or at the least, make sure it’s not forgotten at the following link: https://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/978/239/480/