Pixar Announces 'Luca', a Coming-of-Age Adventure Set in the Italian Riviera

Even though Pixar Animation is still sitting on the release of their next film Soul, the animation studio has already announced their next project, and it will arrive next summer.

Pixar’s Luca is a coming-of-age story said to follow as young boy as he and a new friend experience an unforgettable summer filled with gelato, pasta and endless scooter rides. This sounds like Pixar’s version of Call Me By Your Name, though probably with a lot less peach eroticism.

Luca was announced today in an official press release from Pixar Animation Studios. The movie will be directed by Oscar nominee Enrico Casarosa, who was at the helm of the short La Luna, and produced by Andrea Warren (Lava, Cars 3). As has become customary with new Pixar movies, our first glimpse comes from a piece of concept art, and this peek at the movie is a stunning one. Here you go:

These two kids look like they’re having a blast, but all the fun they’re having is about to be upended. This young boy’s new friend is keeping a secret: he’s actually a sea monster from another world that lies just below the nearby water.

If that sounds like the plot of a horror movie, that’s because it basically is already. It’s a 2014 movie called Spring, and though it doesn’t follow two kids dealing with this monstrous secret, it follows a newfound Before Sunrise-style romance between a man and a woman, where the woman is an ancient creature that needs to feed on humans. It also takes place in Italy. But surely Pixar’s movie will be much different since it (presumably) won’t have a woman eating people.

Here’s what director Enrico Casarosa had to say about the new project:

“This is a deeply personal story for me, not only because it’s set on the Italian Riviera where I grew up, but because at the core of this film is a celebration of friendship. Childhood friendships often set the course of who we want to become and it is those bonds that are at the heart of our story in ‘Luca.’ So in addition to the beauty and charm of the Italian seaside, our film will feature an unforgettable summer adventure that will fundamentally change Luca.”

Pixar’s animation has been off the charts beautiful, having a stylized realism to it that looks stunning on the big screen. Taking a beautiful location like the Italian Riviera and bringing it to life in animation will undoubtedly yield gorgeous results. We just hope movie theaters are still around (and open) next summer to see we can see it the way it was intended.

Pixar’s Luca is slated to arrive on June 18, 2021.

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