Three of the creative talents behind Disney's Atlantis: The Lost Empire recently visited Denver to share a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the $100 million film. A rapid-fire adventure yarn that took nearly five years to complete, the film is about to take on a crowded summertime playing field that includes competition from Steven Spielberg (A.I.), Tim Burton (Planet of the Apes), and the big-screen adventures of Shrek and Lara Croft.
The Disney trio, Don Hahn (producer of such hits as Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, and Who Framed Roger Rabbit), Kirk Wise (director of Beauty and the Beast and The Hunchback of Notre Dame), and John Pomeroy (supervising animator, whose efforts can be seen in The Rescuers, An American Tale, and Pocahontas) are the laid-back, clean-cut, family-oriented types you would expect to find at Disney. They're aware of the Disney legacy and the place many of those classic films hold in almost everybody's childhood and they take the craft seriously; even though Atlantis is an animated film, they still refer to concepts such as "emotional thumbprint" and "vocal signature."
If they were suffering from any sort of pre-release stress, their genial manner and enthusiasm for their creation were more than enough to cover it up.
• Originally published at MovieHabit.com.