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Pixar Wants You to Brave the Elemental

What’s the new Pixar movie going to be, you ask? Well, it’s Elemental, my dear Watson. Pixar’s upcoming film, Elemental, just released its first trailer, introducing audiences to new characters, some new animation styles, and a whole new world. As Pixar described the film, “In a city where fire, water, land, and air residents live together, a fiery young woman and a go-with-the-flow guy are about to discover something elemental: How much they actually have in common.” The trailer elaborates on that, showing main characters Ember and Wade meeting, hanging out, and discussing their futures. It turns out that the plot of the film largely focuses on a tale classic to animation (see The Little Mermaid, Mulan, Turning Red) about a fiery daughter whose parents have an idea of who she is that isn’t so. Here, that fiery daughter learns to listen to her own heart by making friends with Wade and learning The Way of Water.

The film is based on director Peter Sohn’s experience growing up as the son of Korean immigrants in New York. “Growing up in New York, what it means to belong to a city or belong to a community was something that was interesting to navigate,” Sohn told Total Film. “And so sometimes where I didn’t feel like I belonged, the city reflected that; and then sometimes when I did, the city reflected that. So, it was starting off with fire, and what would make it the toughest for a fire character? A city that started with water infrastructure.” The instant Sharkboy and Lavagirl–esque connection that Wade and Ember share isn’t just your brain imprinting on these characters — “it’s a love story, the heart of it.”

Elemental doesn’t feature any major stars. Leah Lewis and Mamoudou Athie voice Ember and Wade, respectively. The film will debut in theaters on June 16, just in time for the heat of summer and the heat of Ember to align.

This post has been updated.

Pixar Wants You to Brave the Elemental