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Zombies Normal to Norman

23 Nov, 2012 By: Sean Viele


The film’s two directors hope ‘ParaNorman’ will have a long life


The 3D stop-motion comedy-thriller ParaNorman is set for release on DVD and Blu-ray Nov. 27 and the film’s directors are thinking long term.

“Forget about the opening weekend box office; that’s not why we’re making [the film],” said Chris Butler, one of the two directors and the sole writer of the film. “We’re making it so 20 years down the line, another kid, another generation will see it on TV… and it will spark something in them.”

“I think the ambition for anyone who works in animation is to create something that is going to last generations,” Butler added.

The film has already had some success at the box office, grossing more than $55.6 million domestically and nearly $100 million worldwide since its Aug. 17 theatrical release.

With its Nov. 27 release on high-definition Blu-ray Disc, co-director Sam Fell, said their creation now can be viewed in a controlled environment, exactly as it was meant to be.

“We’ve graded it for Blu-ray, and you’ll see it exactly as it was intended every time,” Fell said.

Before ParaNorman became a motion picture, it was simply an idea in Butler’s head. The original seed of the idea was to create a stop-motion zombie movie for kids, which Butler said he thought up “many, many years ago.”

“It’s partly because as a kid I loved horror movies. I loved watching movies that I shouldn’t have been watching,” he said.

As time progressed it became a “love letter” to other films that shaped him as he grew up, such as Ghostbusters, The Goonies and E.T. — The Extra-Terrestrial. 

“I wanted to use all these wonderful conventions, these kind of horror motifs and the monster movie conventions to actually tell a story that was very real about what it’s like to be a kid who doesn’t fit in,” Butler said. “Over the years it just grew and grew and grew.”
     
The growth of the story didn’t stop there. ParaNorman has since blossomed into a hit film that can be enjoyed by children and adults alike. Fell and Butler said they worked hard to make the film appeal to audiences of all ages.

“It’s not just a babysitter to sit your kids in front of,” Fell said. “Grown-ups are going to love it, too.”

Universal Studios Home Entertainment presents ParaNorman on DVD ($29.98), Blu-ray combo pack ($34.98) and 3D Blu-ray combo pack ($49.98). The 3D Blu-ray combo pack and Blu-ray combo pack include a Blu-ray, DVD, digital copy of the film and UltraViolet access.

Bonus features include commentary from Fell and Butler, a behind-the-scenes look into the creation of the film and seven short featurettes.

As a first-time screenwriter, Butler is excited that his story of a young boy, Norman Babcock, with the gift of seeing and speaking to the dead can be passed on for generations to enjoy. 

“I do think there’s a timeless quality to it; I think [ParaNorman] will have a long shelf life,” Butler said. 
 


About the Author: Sean Viele


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