By Zach Johnson
Disney and Pixar’s original feature film Luca is a fun and heartwarming story about two teenage sea monsters who share a life-changing summer on the Italian Riviera. Premiering June 18 on Disney+, the film follows new best friends Luca Paguro (voice of Jacob Tremblay) and Alberto Scorfano (voice of Jack Dylan Grazer) as they venture above the water’s surface and attempt to blend in with other humans in town. It’s exciting, but it’s also dangerous. Because whenever they get wet, they risk revealing their true identities!
Luca hails from Enrico Casarosa, who made his directorial debut with the short film La Luna, which earned an Academy Award® nomination after it screened theatrically with Brave in 2012. For Luca, Casarosa reverted to his roots. Born and raised in Genoa, Italy, he found early influences in Japanese animation—which, years later, inspired the look of Luca. And because Pixar so skillfully blends art and technology, Casarosa was able to bring his deeply personal story to life just as he’d always imagined. “I always felt there was a way to make something even more special by the meeting of the two things,” he says. “It’s more immersive… There’s something about the 3-D world that I find a little bit more transportive.”
The result is stunning, as the film’s visuals indeed transport the audience from the depths of uncharted waters to an idealized version of Italian Riviera, as seen in the concept art below. Luca and Alberto, meanwhile, are whimsical in both human and sea monster forms.
Before Luca debuts on June 18, take a deep dive into the film’s visual development: