'Moana' screening plus Q&A with a Disney animation supervisor | Department of Media Arts
October 21, 2016

'Moana' screening plus Q&A with a Disney animation supervisor

Malcon Pierce.Join us in the Department of Media Arts for a free screening of the new Disney animated film Moana and stay for questions and answers with animation supervisor Malcon Pierce on Wednesday, Oct. 6, 2016, in RTFP 184 (the Radio, TV, Film & Performing Arts Building is at 1179 Union Circle).

The doors open at 5:30 p.m. with the screening starting at 6:00 p.m. The film follows young Moana using her navagational skills to set sail for a fabled island while being joined by her hero, legendary demigod, Maui. Moana will be in theaters on Nov. 23, 2016.

As an animation supervisor, Pierce oversaw bringing the title character Moana to life. Beginning in preproduction, he worked with the character team to translate Moana's design from drawings into a CG character that could be animated. He was responsible for ensuring Moana always feels like one character even though more than 90 artists are behind the actual animation.

Disney's 'Moana' opens in theaters on Nov. 23."Moana has such a charm to her character that allows for such a wide range of acting," Pierce said. "She's passionate, but sometimes that gets her into trouble. She's confident, but also vulnerable. She's strong, but can be goofy. I love how much depth and variety this character has. I think because of this, more people will be able to connect with her."

Pierce studied media arts and animation at the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale. He went on to work as an animator with Blue Sky Studios before joining Walt Disney Animation Studios as an animator on Tangled (2010). He went on to work on Wreck-It Ralph (2012) as an animator, then on the Oscar®-winning feature Frozen (2013) as a supervising animator. He also worked as an animator on Oscar® winner Big Hero 6 (2014).

Disney characterizes Moana as a sweeping, CG-animated feature film about an adventurous teenager who is inspired to leave the safety and security of her island on a daring journey to save her people. Inexplicably drawn to the ocean, Moana (voice of Auliʻi Cravalho) convinces the mighty demigod Maui (voice of Dwayne Johnson) to join her mission, and he reluctantly helps her become a wayfinder like her ancestors who sailed before her. Together, they voyage across the open ocean on an action-packed adventure, encountering enormous monsters and impossible odds, and along the way, Moana fulfills her quest and discovers the one thing she's always sought: her own identity. Directed by the renowned filmmaking team of Ron Clements and John Musker (The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, The Princess and the Frog); produced by Osnat Shurer (Lifted, One Man Band); and featuring music by Lin-Manuel Miranda, Mark Mancina, and Opetaia Foa'i.

'Moana' on Facebook.