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First Look: Pixar Releases Official Clip of ‘Elemental’

Ember and Wade in Elemental
Leah Lewis as Ember Lumen and Mamoudou Athie as Wade Ripple in 'Elemental'. Credit: Disney / Pixar

With the most complex animated character Pixar has ever created lighting up the screen for its brand-new film, will its other elements mix well with audiences?

Starring Leah Lewis as Ember Lumen and Mamoudou Athie as Wade Ripple, Pixar’s film Elemental personifies the elements as they converge in Element City for the first time. Fire, water, air, and land each have respective neighborhoods conducive to their existence. When Ember, the fiery and quick-witted protagonist, enters a bustling city with waterfall skyscrapers and giant pine-tree buildings, it’s only a matter of time before her fears about meshing with the environment ignite.

True to Pixar fashion, Elemental answers an existential question with imaginative animation and endearing characters. The director behind Pixar classics like The Incredibles and Finding Nemo, Peter Sohn, brings a story of belonging, self-discovery, and tolerance to life with a carefully-crafted set of intricate animations.

Ember and Wade Elemental

Credit: D23

Related: The First-Ever Original Pixar Series Is Coming to Disney+ in 2023

The depth of Elemental comes from director Peter Sohn’s personal experiences, and the monumental emotions portrayed by the characters capture his story as the son of immigrants living in New York City in the 1970s, shared by MovieWeb:

It has been the struggle of my life for sure understanding my place and what have I assimilated or my identity being a bifurcated identity. It’s always been there, I assume that it’ll be always a part of some amount of storytelling – having that kind of that diversity. Will it be a major thing? I don’t know. But it’s been a part of my life. And I love trying to reflect what the teams that we’ve worked with their lives and our lives into the work that we do.

Audiences Interact With ‘Elemental’

Pixar comprises pros at expanding a niche story (balancing crime fighting by day and housekeeping by night in The Incredibles) to resonate with a wider audience. The recipe Pixar has mastered takes a delicate balance, and audiences got to sample the elements starring in its new film at the Cannes Film Festival. Debuting as the grand finale at the Festival, the reviews from its first audience were like the elements: mixed.

While the response to the film’s visuals was positive overall, there was some discourse over the plot from reviewers like @LukeHearfield:

Peter Sohn’s #Elemental burns bright with Pixar’s reliable mix of vibrant animation and imagination. The story has been done before (think Zootopia but with Water & Fire) but there’s charming characters, creative set-pieces & Newman’s gorgeous score is spiritual #Cannes2023

Harsher responses came from The Hollywood Reporter, claiming the film felt like it was made by:

An algorithm putting together a perfect Pixar movie—entirely predictable

Although 21 days remain before Elemental debuts for a worldwide audience in theaters, @DisneyAPromos released the first official clip of the Pixar film:

It’s going to be up to Pixar fans to decide whether or not Disney’s newest film “Cannes” stand up to the other animated classics when it premieres. Starring Leah Lewis as Ember Lumen, Mamoudou Athie voicing Wade, Catherine O’Hara portraying Brooke Ripple, Joe Perna as Fern, Wendy Mclendon-Covey playing Gale, Sheila Vosough as Cinder, Matthew Yang King behind Alan Ripple, and Ronnie del Carmen voicing Bernie, Elemental hits theaters on June 16.

About Kaitlin Morelli

A Disney World Guest since before she could walk, Kaitlin is a Jersey girl and former Virginia Tech Hokie. When she's not listening to the 'Moana' soundtrack on repeat with her baby daughter, she's writing, singing, and strumming the ukulele. Kaitlin is passionate about finding the best Disney Park tips n' tricks and moments when pop culture and Disney collide. She's looking forward to eventually taking her first Disney trip with her favorite fan in the making: her daughter.

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