Interview with Brian Fee (Director) and Kevin Reher (Producer)

Disney sent me to Charlotte, NC on an all-expenses paid press trip for the in home release of Cars 3, in exchange for my coverage of the events, which included an exclusive interview with Brian Fee (Director) and Kevin Reher (Producer). All opinions are my own.
Cars 3 is on Digital HD as of October 24th and Blu-ray™ on November 7. We sat down with Brian Fee (Director) and Kevin Reher (Producer). Here’s some of what they had to share with us.

Catching up with Brian Fee and Kevin Reher from Cars 3

Photo by Becky Fixel

Brian:
We wanted everyone to feel like they can identify with Cruise. So whether it's through gender, whether it's through race... There's a million reasons why probably everybody in this room at some point in their life, if not all the time, feels a little bit of an outsider, you know. So I think it's, it's pretty universal.

Q: What tricks can you share with us in regards to actors and getting from them what you want us to see in the movie?

Kevin:
One of the things, about the side characters, especially, is when we cast. You don't have enough screen time to tell a back story, to flesh out a character. When Carrie Washington opens her mouth, you know, she's a smart statistician. You get it right away. Or Paul Duley, or, you know, even back in the day, George Carlin as Filmore. You get that he's a hippy mini-van, and you get what he is. You know? And so that's one of the things that we try to do in the casting part of it.
Brian:
I'll set the actor up as much as I can, or much as they'll tolerate. 'Cause I have a certain line read in my head, 'cause we've done this... We've done our own scratch recordings at work just to proof out the script and stuff. So I have my own, kinda [way] how I would do it. You know, but I'm not as good an actor as them. So I don't want how I would do it. I prefer a professional that's better than me to show me how it could be even better.  At first you want to set 'em up, and then just kinda let 'em do their thing, and see where it goes. And hopefully it goes somewhere better than what was in my head...

Photo by Becky Fixel

Q: When you first did Cars 1, did you imagine it would get here?

Kevin:
It would be easier if there was a master plan. Um, but on Cars 1, you know, we did all that research. I went on those trips on Route 66. And we listened to people's stories about the town...We went to these towns. I took all black and white pictures of these amazing towns that got bypassed [and] are just ghost towns.  So...that started it. And then Cars 2 was about racing, and Formula 1, and all the different kinds of racing. And then, you know, we just found ourselves going back to the sort of emotional time of Cars 1. 
Brian:
But we didn't expect back then that there would even be a Cars 3, let alone what it would be about.
Kevin:
Or a Cars Land. That is amazing, isn't it...This is actually one of the most popular attractions at Disneyland.

Photo by Becky Fixel

Q: Soundtrack and score add so much to every movie, and it's super important to the overall effects. How did the soundtrack come about for Cars 3?

Brian:  
Well, we knew we wanted Randy back. That was a no brainer. 
Kevin:
Randy does amazing small moments...But then he also respects not stepping on the humor, which is often very difficult for some of the composers, like...Don't kill the joke. Support your jokes...Support the humor. He's great at that.
Brian:
And then we knew we wanted some songs...we looked for the opportunities and who would be right to do it.
Kevin:
We work with Tom McDougal, who's the senior vice president, of all of Disney feature animated music. And so he had his own ideas of people that might be good like James Bay, and Dan Aurback.  And then I had said to him, you know, we do have a cast member who's a jazz singer... Leah Delaria. And so that's how she ended up on the soundtrack doing "Riding on the Freeway of Love."

Q: Are you happy with the product you came up with?

Brian:
Oh yes.
Kevin:
Yes. Very happy with it. Photo by Becky Fixel

About the Cars 3 At Home Release

“Cars 3” surged to the front of the pack opening weekend with audiences racing to see the legendary Lightning McQueen (voice of Owen Wilson) and spirited trainer Cruz Ramirez (voice of Cristela Alonzo) team up to beat the new generation of blazing-fast racers. Now, this summer’s high-octane hit cruises home—loaded with bonus features like the all new mini-movie starring the demolition derby legend Miss Fritter— Digitally in HD and 4K Ultra HD™ on Oct. 24, and on Blu-ray 4K Ultra HD™ and Blu-ray™ on Nov. 7. Race fans of all ages are invited to ride along with the “Cars 3” crew for hilarious and heartfelt extras, including an exclusive new mini-movie, “Miss Fritter’s Racing Skoool,” taught by the queen of the Crazy 8; a feature detailing how real-world race training influenced filmmakers; the journey taken by voice actor Cristela Alonzo and team while shaping tech-savvy trainer Cruz Ramirez; behind-the-scenes access to the story team who crafted Lightning McQueen’s third chapter; deleted scenes; and much more. “Cars 3” is Disney•Pixar’s first in-home title released in stunning 4K Ultra HD format, the next-generation viewing format with four times the resolution of HD and exceptional high dynamic range (HDR), resulting in brilliant highlights, vibrant colors and greater contrast on compatible displays than ever before. With 4K Ultra HD, viewers will feel like they’re at the center of the action—holding their breath during the dramatic crash that launches Lightning’s journey, feeling the pulse-pounding action at the Florida International Super Speedway, and getting down and dirty at the Crazy 8 demolition derby.

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