From Screen to Scream – Pixar Reps to Speak at SATE’13 on Film and Theme Park Symbiosis

Posted by Rachel S on Tuesday, August 20th, 2013

SATE'13 Conference

If you haven’t already made arrangements to make it to TEA’s annual SATE design conference, know that 2013 is not to be missed. SATE’13 – to be held in picturesque and  uber-cool Savannah GA – will feature a peek inside the minds that translate Pixar animation into theme park attractions. This year’s SATE theme “What’s Next” is embodied in the work of Pixar’s Liz Gazzano and Roger Gould who will share the podium in Savannah as featured speakers.

Pixar's Liz Gazzano

Announcing Gazzano and Gould’s appearance at SATE’13, TEA president Christine Kerr of BaAM Productions lauded their work saying, “When a great story becomes both a great film and great theme park attraction, it touches all the SATE buttons: Storytelling, Architecture, Technology, Experience.” The duo will share details on how Pixar works closely with Walt Disney Imagineering to take their highly successful animated films and translate them from screen to screams in the form of exciting theme park rides and attractions.

Pixar's Roger Gould recently interviewed Gazzano and Gould and revealed how from the beginning, with Pixar’s first film “Toy Story”, Imagineers latched onto the idea of taking the beloved characters and making them part of the theme park experience. It wasn’t long before Buzz, Woody and their endearing playroom pals were on parade at Disney MGM Studios captivating the crowds.

Toy Story Parade at Disney MGM

So what will Gazzano and Gould be revealing at SATE’13? In line with the event theme “What’s Next” they will speak to what’s on the horizon for creative collaboration between Pixar and its theme park brethren for tying screen success to theme park experiences that will deepen fan appreciation of the animated works.

Liz Gazzano is Pixar Animation’s Executive Producer of Theme Parks and Roger Gould serves as Creative Director of Theme Parks. How many film studios employ a team specifically to extend their films to theme park rides and attractions? It seems like other film to ride translations are licensing driven after the fact rather than created in a collaborative fashion from the ground up.

Cars Land at Disney Adventureland

Gould told Entertainment Designer that Disney’s Animal Kingdom show “It’s Tough to Be a Bug” was created at the same time as Pixar created the film it was based on. This is ground-breaking and reflective of the new paradigm in entertainment engineering that Pixar has typified since its launch. Most recently, the power pair completed the “Cars Land” attraction at Disney’s California Adventure.

To be front and center when Gazzano and Gould wow the crowd with “What’s Next” at Pixar, make plans to join TEA at SATE’13 hosted at SCAD – Savannah College of Art & Design – on October 3rd and 4th. Conference tickets are still available – click here to register.

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