Ever since its acquisition, Marvel Studios has served its Disney corporate parents well, from Avengers Assemble and Iron Man 3 to Thor: The Dark World and Captain America: The Winter Soldier, with an additional slate of films that will fill out the rest of the decade and beyond. With the release of Big Hero 6, the question is whether or not they are going to be able to return the favour.
Inspired by the Marvel comic series of the same name, Big Hero 6 is the first property from the house that Stan Lee helped build to be produced in CG animation, and as such it seems to be in safe hands considering Disney’s track record in recent years, including Bolt, Wreck-It Ralph and Frozen.At the heart of the film is the relationship between Hiro and Baymax, the impression being that the former has the tragedy of losing his brother, but it would seem that by the end of the movie he will in essence have a surrogate brother in Baymax.
“Generally, that’s the arc of it,” agrees co-director Don Hall, “and thematically we’re dealing with loss in a very direct way as far as it’s not something that happened in the distant past or in flashback. It happens in real time in the movie, and you’re watching a character deal with the loss of his best friend and older brother, and the relationship that develops with the brother’s robot.”
Adds fellow director Chris Williams, “There’s a really powerful dynamic that was part of the original pitch that Donny did here, which is the idea of a boy who loses his brother, and without him he’s lost. He’s adrift. But then he discovers his older brother’s creation – this robot Baymax – and Baymax embodies so much of what was really good about his brother.
“Baymax is there to fill that void and become the surrogate older brother, and there’s a really nice idea in that the emotional climax of the movie comes when Hiro realises that his brother in a sense is not gone; that he can live on through Hiro and influence his choices. That’s something I think that’s a very true – but very powerful – idea, and that’s central to this movie, which is, on the surface, a very comedic, fun movie full of all sorts of superhero action. I think there’s a really special relationship and some pretty deep emotion.”
Big Hero 6 will be released in cinemas on 30 January 2015. Keep up with the latest genre news with the new issue of SciFiNow.