There’s a new Disney movie coming to town later this month and we are looking forward to checking out Moana. We are always intrigued by different cultures and the stories they share and Disney is now presenting a version of the legend of Maui. My husband and I have been to Maui in Hawaii and we heard all sorts of legends about him told while we were there.
Three thousand years ago, the greatest sailors in the world voyaged across the vast Pacific, discovering the many islands of Oceania. But then, for a millennium, their voyages stopped – and no one knows why. From Walt Disney Animation Studios comes “Moana,” a sweeping, CG-animated feature film about an adventurous teenager who sails out on a daring mission to save her people. During her journey, Moana (voice of Auli‘i Cravalho) meets the once-mighty demigod Maui (voice of Dwayne Johnson), who guides her in her quest to become a master wayfinder. Together, they sail across the open ocean on an action-packed voyage, encountering enormous monsters and impossible odds, and along the way, Moana fulfills the ancient quest of her ancestors and discovers the one thing she’s always sought: her own identity. Directed by the renowned filmmaking team of Ron Clements and John Musker (“The Little Mermaid,” “Aladdin,” “The Princess & the Frog”) and produced by Osnat Shurer (“Lifted,” “One Man Band”), “Moana” sails into theatres on Nov. 23, 2016.
Disney has done an incredible job with the artwork for this film. Going above and beyond what was needed, even calling in models with hair similar to the main character Moana so that the artists could see how hair behaved when wet so they could depict it accordingly in the artwork. They also made sure to reference with a group they call the Oceanic Story Trust, which is a group of advisors Disney assembled from their time in the Pacific Islands. This trust collaborated with Disney’s team on Moana. Examples of this would be that the characters in the film all wear outfits made out of materials that would have been available during the time period of the film. Also, originally Maui was going to be bald but the OCT advised the filmmakers that Maui was usually depicted as having a full head of hair. Thus his signature hairstyle in the artwork for the Moana.
One thing we love about Disney is that they always sneak subtle nods to other films into the movies. One you will find in Moana, is that Maui has a “Mini Maui” tattoo that acts as his conscience, making sure he does the right thing. Sound like another movie and character you know of? This is a nod to Pinocchio and Jiminy Cricket.
We will be attending the screening in the Vancouver area in a few shorts weeks and cannot wait to see just what Moana is all about. We also have a chance for one reader to win a family four-pack of tickets to attend the screening of the movie that is happening on Monday, November 21st at SilverCity Riverport. The show starts at 7pm. If you are in the Greater Vancouver area and are interested in attending the screening be sure to enter below.