‘Inside Out 2’ Director Kelsey Mann Presents Unseen Footage


Pixar's 'Inside Out 2'.

Pixar’s ‘Inside Out 2’. © 2022 Disney/Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

The upcoming Pixar animated feature ‘Inside Out 2’ will be in theaters on June 14, 2023. Moviefone was invited to Pixar Animation Studio in Emeryville, California, along with a group of journalists to preview the first 30 minutes of the film and get a closer look at the inner workings of creating an animated feature film.

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Director Kelsey Mann Presents the First 30 Minutes of the Film

Kelsey Mann is photographed on September 25, 2013 at Pixar Animation Studios in Emeryville, Calif.

Kelsey Mann is photographed on September 25, 2013 at Pixar Animation Studios in Emeryville, Calif. Photo by Deborah Coleman / Pixar.

Moviefone had the pleasure of screening the first 30 minutes of ‘Inside Out 2’. Chief Creative Officer of Pixar, Pete Docter (who directed 2015’s ‘Inside Out’) kicked things off by talking about using big backdrops for past animation movies. Docter speaks about stories using large backdrops such as the ocean or space in films such as ‘Finding Nemo‘ and ‘Lightyear,’ but with ‘Inside Out,’ it explores the vast mind of a young girl.

‘Inside Out 2’ director Kelsey Mann and producer Mark Nielsen present the 30-minute footage. The director also clarified that some shots were not completely finished at the time of the presentation. Both Mann and Nielsen are now fathers of teenage girls and expressed that that made working on this film extra special and meaningful.

Mann says he could not stop thinking about the final line from Joy in the first film: “After all, Riley’s 12 now. What could happen?” as he began to work on this movie to explore Riley’s next chapter. ‘Inside Out 2’ will examine this stage of growing up – when a teenager’s self-consciousness and self-doubt are at the forefront of their emotions.

Pixar's 'Inside Out 2'.

Pixar’s ‘Inside Out 2’. © 2022 Disney/Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

While Mann did not work on ‘Inside Out,’ he did experience the film as an audience. Now, as director, he’s able to go into the sequel and explore the next chapter with new emotions: “I’d zeroed in on the idea of Anxiety being a major character,” said Mann. “It’s something that really starts to appear as we become teenagers – we can “It’s something that really starts to appear as we become teenagers—we can all relate. I remember doing a lot of research early on about what happens in our brains at this age that triggered this idea of a wrecking ball coming through Headquarters — a bunch of workers piling in and tearing everything down. It’s a renovation — that’s kind of what it feels like to be a teenager. It’s chaotic.”

Anxiety brings along fellow new emotions: the always-admiring Envy, the ever-mortified Embarrassment, and Ennui, who is in a constant state of boredom and disdain, opting to lay on a couch and stare at the phone rather than interact with the group.

What footage did we see from ‘Inside Out 2?

Pixar's 'Inside Out 2'.

Pixar’s ‘Inside Out 2’. © 2022 Disney/Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

The presentation kicks off with Riley’s hockey game, and inside Headquarters, the Emotions are gearing up for the big game. As Joy commands the console, she also doubles as a sports commentator as she gives the play-by-play. The other Emotions take turns at the console as the game continues – Anger when Riley needs to be more aggressive on the ice; Disgust when Riley accidentally puts someone else’s mouthguard in her mouth; Fear ensures Riley skates with caution; and Sadness when Riley gets a penalty. This is followed by a short exposition where Joy catches the audience up on what Riley’s been up to and gives a quick overview of the workings parts inside her mind, such as Personality Island, Friendship Island, and more.

The scene introduces something new called Riley’s Sense of Self. It blooms as Riley experiences various successes and failures — like scoring a goal or missing a pass from a teammate. The Emotions call this their masterpiece.

After the game, Riley and her two best friends are approached by a high school hockey coach to commend them on a well-played game and extend an invitation to hockey camp. This is where we’ll see Riley’s self-doubt come into play as she grows anxious and nervous about her performance at hockey camp. Joy has invented a “Riley Protection System” for moments like this — where she takes the “bad” emotions and launches them out of Headquarters and into the back of Riley’s mind.

Another new element introduced is the Belief Center, adorned with beautiful light threads made from Riley’s beliefs, which is where Joy stores the key memories.

Pixar's 'Inside Out 2'.

Pixar’s ‘Inside Out 2’. © 2022 Disney/Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

In the middle of the night, the console begins beeping. One by one, the Emotions awake to investigate the sound. A new button on the console is causing the beep – we come to find out this button is “Puberty.” Amidst the chaos of the demolition of Headquarters, the Emotion finds that the control console has become increasingly sensitive, causing Riley’s mood to surge from one spectrum to the other with even the slightest touch of a button. If things weren’t crazy enough, new Emotions, Anxiety, Envy, Ennui, and Embarrassment, arrive at this moment.

During the commotion, an Emotion we have yet to see makes a quick appearance, hinting at what’s to come for Riley in her adult life, but we won’t spoil that moment for you here. We also get a quick glimpse inside Riley’s mom’s mind as Riley experiences mood swings, “Welp, that’s a preview of the next 10 years.”

While talking to her best friends on their way to hockey camp, we get a better look at Riley’s self-consciousness taking over her mind. Disgust overanalyzes everything they say, including zooming in on her friends’ faces to study their expressions. It turns out that her friends would not be attending the same high school as Riley next year, causing a small rift in their friendship.

Pixar's 'Inside Out 2'.

Pixar’s ‘Inside Out 2’. © 2022 Disney/Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

Arriving at hockey camp, the girls are enamored by being around high school students. They meet Valentina “Val” Ortiz, the captain of the high school hockey team. With both old and new Emotions now sharing the console, Riley’s first meeting with Val quickly becomes awkward, from a very cheesy greeting with “shooting” hand gestures to nonchalant responses courtesy of Ennui.

Joy and Anxiety fight over Riley’s Sense of Self, as they do not see eye-to-eye on how to best handle social situations at hockey camp among high school-aged girls, as well as whether she should be hanging out with the hockey team or her best friends. Anxiety’s approach is to “plan for the future” which would mean Riley should hang out with her potential future teammates, whereas Joy chose to stay with what’s familiar – Riley’s friends.

With Joy and Anxiety unable to agree on the best way to help Riley, Anxiety ends up throwing the old Emotions inside a bottle and launching them out of Headquarters. Then, she announces her plan to build a brand new Riley. The new Emotions heads down to the Belief Center to begin the rebuild, and we see the straight, shining threads turn into sharp, jagged lines—similar to Anxiety’s hair.

The old Emotions find themselves inside a dark vault, where some of Riley’s oldest memories – and perhaps some secret – lie. This scene includes two new characters in a very different art style – a 2D animation-style character reminiscent of ‘Dora the Explorer’ and ‘Blue’s Clue’ and a 3D polygonal character whom the Emotions ask for help getting out of the vault and return to Headquarters.

What It Takes To Create ‘Inside Out 2’

Pixar's 'Inside Out 2' concept art.

Pixar’s ‘Inside Out 2’ concept art. © 2022 Disney/Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

Following the footage presentation, journalists were split into various groups and guided into the working offices of the Pixar campus for an in-depth look at what it takes to create the sequel.

First up was character development with Production Designer Jason Deamer and Character Art Director Keiko Murayama. They speak about the process of creating an Emotion by studying their Shape Language – like Anxiety who is more tightly wind-up and Joy who has more of a star-burst shape. Color and silhouette are looked at as well in character creation. One of the bigger challenges in creating the sequel is that it must look and feel like the first film, and it took around a year and a half to get it to look just right.

Next up is Story Pitch with Story Artist Becca McVeigh, who took us through the process of being assigned to a scene, animating it, and pitching it to the director. McVeigh live-pitched the scene called ‘The Alarm,’ where the Emotions are awoken by a strange beeping sound coming from the console. During the story pitch, artists will not only draw the sequence of the scene but also act out the dialogue and sound effects. After the pitch, director Kelsey Mann is there to give his notes, and they will run through the animated scene with McVeigh making changes right there on the spot – from adding more jokes or adjusting the dialogue of important moments to elevate the film further.

Becca McVeigh and John Hoffman during a story review, as seen on March 19, 2024 at Pixar Animation Studios in Emeryville, Calif.

(L to R) Becca McVeigh and John Hoffman during a story review, as seen on March 19, 2024 at Pixar Animation Studios in Emeryville, Calif. Photo by Deborah Coleman / Pixar.

Following the story pitch is the live edit session, where ‘Inside Out 2’ lead editor Maurissa Horwitz demonstrates how the editors piece together a scene, from layering various sound effects to make the scenes sound fuller to choosing the right music for scenes and picking the perfect dialogue performance.

Journalists also got a try at voicing a character in the movie in a mock voice recording session directed by a senior recording engineer.

The next stop was Virtual Camera Set Scout, where Adam Habib, Ryan Heuett, and Sunguk Chun gave an inside look at how being on a digital set in a Pixar film can parallel being on a physical set in a live-action film. The team used a tablet on a handheld rig, which functions just as a camera that allows the director and editors to move around anywhere on the set to find the right shot. This technology allows for over-the-shoulder shots, birds-eye view, and more. It can even give certain scenes a specific camera language. For example, Anxiety will be a more handheld-type, up-close shots and have less motion blur – with Heuett referencing the inspiration from ‘Uncut Gems’. In this session, journalists got to operate the handheld rig to virtually “walk” around the emotions’ Headquarter.

Kelsey Mann and Pete Docter talk before an Inside Out 2 animation review on February 8, 2024 at Pixar Animation Studios in Emeryville, Calif.

(L to R) Kelsey Mann and Pete Docter talk before an Inside Out 2 animation review on February 8, 2024 at Pixar Animation Studios in Emeryville, Calif. Photo by Deborah Coleman / Pixar.

The final stop is Animation Polish Review, where animators will go over a specific shot they’ve been working on, addressing the various notes and changes before receiving final notes or approvals. This process takes a close look at the detail elements such as fabric movement and wrinkle, ice particles on a hockey rink, and more.

Just like the Emotions and Mindworkers inside Riley’s mind, it takes a team and a lot of coordination to create an animated feature film.

‘Inside Out 2’ will arrive in theaters on June 14, 2024.

“Make room for new emotions.”

Not Yet RatedJun 14th, 2024

Showtimes & Tickets

Teenager Riley’s mind headquarters is undergoing a sudden demolition to make room for something entirely unexpected: new Emotions! Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear and… Read the Plot

What is the plot of ‘Inside Out 2?’

Following the 2015 movie, ‘Inside Out 2’ will return to the mind of Riley (Kensington Tallman) as she enters her teenage years. Joy (Amy Poehler), Sadness (Phyllis Smith), Anger (Lewis Black), Disgust (Liza Lapira), and Fear (Tony Hale) have their hands full as Riley experiences life-changing moments, along with Headquarters going under a sudden demolition to make room for something completely unexpected – brand new Emotions. Experience an emotional rollercoaster as the sequel introduces Anxiety (Maya Hawke), Embarrassment (Paul Walter Hauser), Envy (Ayo Edebiri), and Ennui (Adèle Exarchopoulos), who will share Headquarters with the original 5 Emotions.

Who is in the voice cast of ‘Inside Out 2?’

  • Amy Poehler as Joy
  • Phyllis Smith as Sadness
  • Lewis Black as Anger
  • Tony Hale as Fear
  • Liza Lapira  as Disgust
  • Maya Hawke as Anxiety
  • Ayo Edebiri as Envy
  • Adèle Exarchopoulos as Ennui
  • Paul Walter Hauser as Embarrassment
  • Kensington Tallman as Riley Andersen
Pixar's 'Inside Out 2'.

Pixar’s ‘Inside Out 2’. © 2022 Disney/Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

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