What happens when fire and water mix? In Elemental City, it sparks an unlikely connection between two of its residents – Wade and Ember.
The elements Fire, Water, Earth, and Air come to life in Pixar’s animated feature ‘Elemental,’ following the journey of Ember as she works towards her goal of taking over her parents’ convenience store – Fireplace. Due to her fiery personality, Ember has a hard time controlling her outburst when it comes to interacting with the customers, further delaying her desire to take over the family store.
In the midst of Ember’s predicament, she meets Wade in the most unexpected way, which results in the store being on the verge of shutting down. As Ember and Wade work to get the store up to code, they discover something even more alarming that could cause devastating destruction to parts of Elemental City.
The story of Ember and Wade gives us all the warm and fuzzy feeling of a romantic comedy – the unexpected meeting, their clashing personalities (playing into how fire and water don’t mix), and how they have to put aside their differences to save their city.
The official synopsis for ‘Elemental’ is below:
“Disney and Pixar’s ‘Elemental’ is an all-new, original feature film set in Element City, where Fire-, Water-, Earth- and Air-residents live together. The story introduces Ember, a tough, quick-witted and fiery young woman, whose friendship with a fun, sappy, go-with-the-flow guy named Wade challenges her beliefs about the world they live in.”
‘Elemental’ first premiered at the 76th Canne Film Festival as the closing film. It held its world premiere on June 10, 2023 at the Tribeca Festival. Prior to the festivals, the first twenty minutes of the film was screened in 3D at the 2023 CinemaCon and was positively received by critics.
The animation style for ‘Elemental’ was quite a challenge for director Peter Sohn’s team. To bring Ember and Wade to life, it required about 10,000 controls, whereas the average Pixar character has about 4,000. The animators needed additional controls in order for the characters to act like elements, which also included layers of effect on top. For example, Ember couldn’t have shadows because she is a Fire elemental. With Wade, having too little light meant you couldn’t see him.
Who Is The Voice Cast Of ‘Elemental’?
Elemental features the voice talents of:
‘Elemental’ is directed by Peter Sohn (‘The Good Dinosaur’)
Inspired By Peter Sohn’s Personal Story
The story of Ember and her family is inspired by Sohn’s own experience. He is a son of Korean immigrants, and his parents opened a bodega-style store in the Brox, much like Ember’s family in the film. There are also beats that will resonate with the immigrant experience – Bernie and Cinder changing their names because their birth names proved to be too hard for an Elemental City immigration officer to pronounce.
The film touches on the pressure of being a child of an immigrant as well – Ember’s dad, Bernie, recounts how disappointed and disapproving his own father was when he chose to leave his hometown. When Bernie bowed to his father as a final farewell, his father did not bow in return. Bernie carried that burden of his father’s disapproval for the rest of his life and vowed not to do the same to his daughter.
Where Can I Watch Pixar’s ‘Elemental’?
The Pixar animated feature opened in theaters domestically on June 16, 2023, and is available in various formats, such as Dolby Cinema, IMAX, Real 3D, and 4DX. ‘Elemental’ is still playing in theaters, so be sure to check your local listings and Moviefone below for showtimes in your area. ‘Elemental’ has a total runtime of 1 hour and 42 minutes.
Watch the official trailers for ‘Elemental’ below:
Can’t make it out to the theater? Don’t worry; the Pixar animated feature will surely make its way to Disney+. Additionally, Disney has announced the film will become available on digital on August 15, 2023. ‘Elemental’ will be available to purchase on platforms such as Prime Video, Apple TV, Vudu, and more. The physical release will be on September 26, 2023.