Director, Producer Talk Shrek

Shrek the Third director Chris Miller and producer Aron Warner tell us that one thing they wanted to do with the latest installment in the franchise is curb the number of pop-culture references, something that drew some criticism in the last film.

‘They’re easiest and I think we didn’t necessarily want to take the easy route,’ Warner remarks. ‘We just wanted to make a story that was more about these characters. When we made the first Shrek, it set a tone for a certain type of animated film and a lot of people took that tone and ran with it and did their own thing. I think at a certain point it just feels stale and it feels easy and we didn’t want to go that way.’

‘I think the ones that struck were the ones that probably should have,’ Miller adds. ‘We definitely never wanted to be self-conscious about a pop-culture reference. If it’s a moment in the story, then we’re open to it.’

CG technology has advanced quite a bit since the first Shrek debuted in 2001, and Miller and Warner say it has been a blessing. Warner notes, It would have been nice in the first one if the secondary characters looked as good as the primary characters but the great gift we have from the people at PDI is that we’re given any tool we want and need to tell the story. No one ever says no. They just say how? and how long do we have? I think the best technology we can have is freedom and that is what we get.’

‘In this film, the clothing is much more sophisticated than it was in the last two films and we’ve got layers of clothing moving on top of each other,’ says Miller. ‘There was much more freedom to do what we wanted with hair and skin textures, and the facial animation system is more sophisticated than it was. We’re getting these incredible actors and now we can actually do their voices even more justice.’

Asked about the status of the Puss In Boots feature film, Warner offers, ‘We’re definitely talking about it. It’s definitely being developed at this time but I don’t know where it is in the process. I’m not involved in it.’

Shrek the Third opens in theaters nationwide today. View clips, behind-the-scenes featurettes and other Shrek the Third video content now playing on AniMagTVat www.animationmagazine.net/tv/.