MOTW: Five Fast, Fun Facts about "The Incredibles"

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A family of undercover superheroes, while trying to live the quiet suburban life, are forced into action to save the world.
Photo Credit: Buena Vista Pictures
June 17th, 2013

MOTW: Five Fast, Fun Facts about "The Incredibles"

When "The Incredibles" was released in 2004, it instantly earned critical acclaim and performed well at the box office. The number of firsts this film managed to achieve from conception to release serves to further underscore its surprising success. This computer-animated film was originally developed as an extension of the popular comic books dating back to the 1960s. Fans of both the original comic series and the film may be surprised to discover some of the fun facts relating to the movie.

"The Incredibles" was only the sixth film to come from Pixar Animation Studios. When it grossed approximately $631 million, it further solidified the studio's position as a major player. The concept of the film was first pitched by Brad Bird. Although Bird was no stranger to the industry, his first feature film, "The Iron Giant", had not met with success at the box office. Still, Pixar seemed willing to take a chance with Bird, and he became the first outside director brought in by the studio.

Bird not only directed "The Incredibles" but also wrote the script for the film. After Pixar agreed to do the project, Bird was given the task of selecting his own team to bring the film to life. He ultimately brought along a core team that he had previously worked with during production of "The Iron Giant." Most of that team had only worked on 2-D projects and was faced with the need to transition over to 3-D.

When "The Incredibles" finally was released at the box office, it marked a number of other firsts for Pixar, including being the longest-running film released by the studio. The film has a total running time of one hour and fifty-five minutes. In addition, this was the first film released by Pixar to focus almost entirely on human characters. This was also the first movie from Pixar to have a PG rating; the second was "Up." In addition, "The Incredibles" was the first Pixar film to have separate full-screen and widescreen home releases. Only the widescreen version is still available for purchase. This was also the last film from Pixar released on VHS.

Fans of the film who pay close attention may notice that the film contains a number of interesting cameos. Interestingly, "The Incredibles" is actually one of the first major films released by Pixar that does not feature an appearance by the "Toy Story" Pizza Planet truck. Even so, the delivery truck was included in the game based on the film. Other references to "Toy Story" appear in the film as well. For instance, fans may notice that a restaurant in the film is named Andy's. This is a direct reference to the character of Andy in "Toy Story." Another restaurant in the film is named Luxo Deli, which refers to "Luxo, Jr.," the first short film Pixar produced. Audiences can also see another reference to a Pixar film in the scene in which Bob has doodled a picture of Wall-E while he is listening to a message from Mirage. At the beginning of the film, the license plate of the police car is KR 54. This is a reference to the TV show "Car 54, Where Are You?"

When writing the script for "The Incredibles," Bird included a number of fun inside jokes. For instance, the scene in which Frozone, who is voiced by Samuel L. Jackson, has a gun pointed at him by a cop and wants a drink of water is startlingly similar to a scene featuring Jackson in "Die Hard with a Vengeance." In that film, Jackson's character finds himself in a similar situation, except that he is standing on a subway platform and needs to answer a pay phone. A similar situation can be found in a scene featuring Bob Parr, who is voiced by Craig T. Nelson. When Parr breaks a car door, audiences can hear him muttering the phrase, "Oh, geez." This part of the scene actually was written into the film after Nelson was selected to voice the character of Parr. Nelson's character frequently used this as a catchphrase on the show "Coach."

"The Incredibles" achieved a number of firsts for Pixar, and the success of this film remains undeniable. It went on to win Academy Awards for Best Animated Feature and Best Sound Editing.