The Emperor’s New Groove celebrates its 15th anniversary and what better way to celebrate than a special screening at El Capitan Theatre.
Arriving at the theatre, I found a line of fans that reached half way down the block. Retrieving my tickets and entering the theatre we quickly found our seats – front and center. The event hosted by Ohmydisney included not just the film screening, but fun activities, like the opportunity to decorate our own ears with jewels, feathers and beads, and a trivia contest where members of the audience battled it out to see who knew the most about the film.
Watching The Emperor’s New Groove was a great trip down memory lane. Fifteen years ago, I sat with my 16 and 18 year old Disney son and daughter and laughed at the antics of Yzma, Kronk and Kuzco. Now sitting in the theatre with my 30 year old son and granddaughters, I was again reliving the magic of Disney movies.
Emperor Kuzco as you might remember is vain and selfish young man who wants to build a new palace on top of a hill, more precisely on location of Pacha’s family home. Pacha, a llama herder will have to move his family who has been in the home for generations. When Kuzco fires, Ymza his advisor, she puts a spell on him which turns Kuzco into a llama. Winding up in Pacha’s cart, Kuzco must try to convince everyone that he is the Emperor and not a real llama. Once convinced, Pacha and Kuzco set out to reverse the spell, but under the condition that if Pacha helps, Kuzco will not force Pacha and family out of their home.
One of my family’s favorite movies, we had the opportunity to not only enjoy the anniversary screening but also be part of the Q&A with the Executive Producer Don Hahn, writer Chris Williams, Head of Story, Steve Anderson, Producer Randy Fullmer, Director Mark Dindal and Screenwriter David Reynolds. The hysterical session had audience laughing out loud non stop. Among the film stories shared were facts that it was a 3 year process that was “not going anywhere” at the beginning. Originally titled Kingdom of the Sun, and a dark movie at the beginning, the film switched to a comedy after realizing the original concept was not working. After a few years, the script for Kingdom of the Sun was scratched and Emperor’s New Groove was born. Head of Story, Steve Anderson’s first impression was that the film”needed a lot of work.” Three years later, we had The Emperor’s New Groove. Realizing the movie was running out of time and money, they turned it into a cartoon. The film was made during the “Masterpieces” era of Disney Movies and known as “best Warner Brother’s Cartoon Disney ever made.” Casting for Kronk was instant after hearing the part where Kronk says “what do I do? I do 600 sit ups, 400 push ups” and at that moment Patrick Warburton was the obvious choice. One special moment shared by the group was the visit to Sting’s Malibu home, an amazing experience. As was the working with the talented, David Spade (Kuzco), Patrick Warburton (Kronk), John Goodman (Pacha), Eartha Kitt (Yzma) in the key roles. Hearing about the fun of filming The Emperor’s New Groove, was one of the highlights of the evening.
Check out some of the pictures from the original storyboard below and visit chipandco.com for all your Disney news, promos and updates.