Right now, it's good to be Mark Andrews. After Brenda Chapman parted ways with Pixar in the middle of production on Brave, the studio's 2012 release, Andrews stepped in to see the film through to completion; he was rewarded for his efforts this past February, pulling out a surprise victory at the Academy Awards for Best Animated Feature Film of the Year. While he duo shared the honor together, courtesy of a co-nomination, it's Andrews who's making the first post-Oscars move, announcing that he's begun work on his next picture.
Andrews, who appears to have developed an affinity for Scotland while directing Brave, recently traveled to Glasgow as part of a mentoring project for Scottish students. Edinburgh-based publication Scotsman caught up with him to chat about his family ties to the Highlands, as well as the possibility of a Brave sequel.
Andrews made sure to offer no guarantees on the latter matter, but was willing to discuss his immediate future in brief. Here's the direct quote from Andrews himself:
I don’t know if there will be another one. We never make a film at Pixar to have a sequel.It is always nice when you do and we kind of have a philosophy that if we find the right story then we will. Surely the marketing and success of Brave says that you can have one and they will come. Make it and they will come. I am currently working on another film, which is original and is being written and directed by me, but that’s all I can say about that.
Watching Brave, it's tricky to pick out which elements belong to Andrews and which were introduced by Chapman herself. In an interview with Screen Rant last year, Andrews emphasized his intention to maintain Chapman's original vision, only claiming the addition of atmospheric details as his personal contributions. So by default, there's not much of a gauge by which to determine what a Mark Andrews film might look like, even taking his direction credit on Pixar short One Man Band into account; that he offers no info whatsoever on what his movie will be about makes that task even more of a challenge.
But that's not to say the news isn't interesting on its own merit. Brave, for its faults, is a perfectly worthy Pixar film (have a look at our review), and if Andrews has found inspiration in its setting, it seems feasible we could see him return to Scotland with his solo directorial debut (though that's only speculation, given that he's keeping mum on details).
Will that path eventually take him back to the world of Merida, Queen Elinor, King Fergus, and bear transmogrification? Pixar has been ramping up its sequelizations recently - look ahead to June and the imminent release of Monsters University - and that, coupled with Brave's reasonable commercial success, could mean a second installment in the not-too-distant future. But this is, again, all theoretical. (After all, they do have their slate hammered down leading into 2014.)
How does the idea of Andrews striking out on his own sound to you, Screen Ranters?