Side By Side: Looking at the Trailer For “Pinocchio” on Disney+ Against The Original Animated Classic

Disney+ Day is coming up on September 8th, and with it we are set to see the debut of many new series and films, including the new adaptation of Pinocchio from acclaimed director Robert Zemeckis. Personally, I’m very excited for the new film considering I’m a huge fan of the original, arguably the most beautiful film Walt Disney Productions has ever done. Recently, a trailer was released and you can see how much influence the original Walt Disney Studios animated film had on the project. Check out the trailer below!

Academy Award winner Robert Zemeckis directs this live action and CGI retelling of the beloved tale of a wooden puppet who embarks on a thrilling adventure to become a real boy. Tom Hanks stars as Geppetto, the woodcarver who builds and treats Pinocchio (Benjamin Evan Ainsworth) as if he were his real son. Let’s take a look at the trailer, and compare it side by side with some shots from the trailer against the original 1940 classic animated film.

Immediately, we see Jiminy (voiced in this version by Joseph Gordon-Levitt) outside Geppetto’s workshop and home on approach. In the original film, we are treated to more of a POV shot as the iconic cricket bounces along looking for warmth in the evening.

While the screengrab from the new film seems to take place when Geppetto is wondering where Pinocchio is at such a late hour, we are also treated to the visual feast of handmade cuckoo clocks and gizmos that adorn the walls of his home and workshop, which somehow immediately makes me want to ride Pinocchio’s Daring Journey at Disneyland Park.

Time for a cuteness overload. Figaro, one of the most popular Disney Felines, takes plenty of design cues from the animated counterpart.

Early in the film, before the visit from the Blue Fairy, Geppetto dances around with his newly finished marionette, much to Figaro’s chagrin.

Of course, when the Blue Fairy does arrive, her presence awakens Jiminy who is resting peacefully nearby.

Of course, it’s the Blue Fairy (Cynthia Erivo) who brings Pinocchio to life as a trial run before turning him into a real boy if he proves himself brave, truthful, and unselfish.

Gepetto, dancing around with his new puppet-come-to-life. Why was the cat more bothered before? There’s a living puppet now!

Of course, the film will bring us to some familiar settings, including Pleasure Island. The animated version had giant doors and not quite as spectacular a marquee, but the amusement park and clown idea sure made it into the new film.

Other characters Pinocchio encounters in the animated film appear in the new adaptation as well. Here we see Honest John (voice of Keegan-Michael Key) taking a stroll just as the group did in the original, though we don’t know for sure but can assume “Hi-Diddle-Dee-Dee” will be sung around this time.

Monstro the whale also seems to retain the grand scale he had in the original film.

Iconic moments from the animated classic seem to make an appearance as well, and the likeness is a little on the nose if you ask me.

Fun fact about animation, the more characters you put into a shot, the more difficult and expensive it can be. Here against the live action shot we see Pinocchio going to school with a bunch of villagers that animators in 1940 probably would have liked to included, and the new adaptation finally did.

As Pinocchio gets ready his excitement almost does a shot for shot version of his animated counterpart dancing and rotating all his parts before jubilantly saying that he’s ready for school. It was so accurate to the original, it’s what made me examine the rest of the trailer so closely and bring you what you’re reading now.

Though Tom Hanks’ Geppetto seems to be a bit heavy and sentimental in this moment, it sure does mimic Geppetto giving Pinocchio an apple for school quite well.

Pinocchio’s performance as part of Stromboli’s show also comes in pretty similar to the animated counterpart, though this too seems more fleshed and possibly more significant than in the original animated classic.

Pinocchio’s dance alongside other marionettes also looks quite similar to the original, but I also grabbed this moment for the easter egg hiding in the puppet theater backdrop – That’s Sleeping Beauty Castle back there. Do you think the puppets know that just behind those castle gates is a ride based on the very story they are telling? No? Yeah, I think I just really want to go on that ride again now.

And finally I have to point out a blink and you’ll miss it moment in the trailer, and oddly something that made me want to watch this film even more. One of the most terrifying scenes in the Disney animated pantheon is when boys transform into…donkeys… in the original, and though the trailer doesn’t outright mention that plot point, that silhouette and the fear on Pinocchio’s face (mirroring that of viewers who catch it) know what lies ahead. And I know what Director Robert Zemeckis is capable of:

So I’m both terrified and terribly excited for Pinocchio to debut on September 8th, 2022 on Disney+.

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