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 Post subject: Togo
PostPosted: Mon Feb 19, 2018 6:12 pm 
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Disney's reportedly moving forward with the production of Togo (formerly Togo and Seppala), set to be directed by Ericson Core. The film is expected to be released on Disney's streaming service in fall 2019.

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Disney is developing a live-action movie about two of the key figures in the 1925 Nome Serum Run — sled dog Togo and sled driver Leonhard Seppala. The studio has hired Tom Flynn to write the script. Nome became famous in 1925 as the destination of the serum run, also known as the Great Race of Mercy, in which dog sleds played a major role in transporting diphtheria serum through harsh conditions over nearly 700 miles to save the city from an epidemic.

Gunnar Kaasen and his lead sled dog Balto became known for running the final leg of the serum run while Seppala and his 12-year-old lead dog Togo ran the penultimate and longest leg in temperatures that were 30 degrees below zero in gale force winds. The story will focus on the unlikely friendship between man and dog. Togo was an unruly and undersized puppy but showed great leadership qualities and became the lead dog at age 5. He passed away in 1929.

The project has not been set up with a producer. Jessica Virtue and Louie Provost are overseeing the project for the studio.
Source: http://variety.com/2015/film/news/disne ... 201629052/

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Just a little over two years ago it was reported that Disney was in development on a live-action movie about two of the key figures in the 1925 Nome Serum Run — sled dog Togo and sled driver Leonhard Seppala, titled Togo. Since then news on the project has been quiet, until now.

We have learned that the film will begin production on September 24th. Filming will take place in place in Alberta, Canada and is expected to wrap sometime in early March.

In the 1925 Nome Serum Run, dog sleds transported diphtheria serum over nearly 700 miles to save the city from an epidemic, and this film focuses on two key figures, sled dog Togo and driver Leonhard Seppala. Togo was born sickly and small, and required special care from Seppala’s wife. He only grew to around 48 lbs. as an adult, which is considered too small to make a lead dog. But Togo proved himself with his spirit and tenacity by jumping through a kennel window and running miles back to Seppala after he tried to give him away. During Seppala’s runs, Togo would follow the teams and lead them off the trail in charges against reindeer; Seppala had no choice but to put him in a harness to keep the other dog’s on task, and to his surprise, Togo calmed down immediately and shared the lead position by the end of his first run. Most people close to the story consider Balto the backup dog, as Togo led Seppala’s sled through the most dangerous territory of the run. In fact, Seppala was angry that Hollywood wanted to do a film that about Balto and the run without any mention of Togo. Now, there’s an opportunity to set the story straight, and give Togo the scratch-behind-the-ear he deserves.

Togo will be directed by Ericson Core, who directed Disney’s Invincible in 2006, from a script by Tom Flynn (Gifted). Doug Jones is on board as a producer. The film is expected to be ready to debut for Disney’s streaming service in Fall 2019.
Source: https://dsnynewscast.com/2018/07/produc ... film-togo/

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 Post subject: Re: Togo
PostPosted: Fri Jul 13, 2018 3:43 am 
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Willem Dafoe to Star in Disney Adventure Movie 'Togo' (Exclusive)
https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/ ... go-1126749

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 Post subject: Re: Togo
PostPosted: Fri Jul 13, 2018 8:24 am 
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Sotiris, what I don't understand with many of these upcoming live-action Disney movies that are now being rerouted to the streaming service is that they were never intended as "made-for-TV" films with TV-style budgets and production values. Am I right in assuming that Disney will still be producing these as if they were headed for theatrical exhibition with no skimping on production design and/or special effects?

If so, then I suppose what bothers me is that if these movies happen to be good, or really good - they will forever go down in the movie-making records as TV productions, which is moniker I wouldn't be very happy to be associated with if I were to work on these films. There are good TV movies, and then there are the bad, horrible, sloppy excuses-for-filmmaking TV movies. I am far more familiar with the latter group of TV productions than the former, and surely I'm not alone. :|

In any case, having your movie slated for a streaming service instead of the cinema sounds like a downgrade in my book.


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 Post subject: Re: Togo
PostPosted: Fri Jul 13, 2018 8:49 am 
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Jules wrote:
Am I right in assuming that Disney will still be producing these as if they were headed for theatrical exhibition with no skimping on production design and/or special effects?

That's my understanding. A movie like Togo was never going to have an exorbitant production budget anyway regardless of its mode of distribution. It would have been in line with Disney's other low-tier, non-blockbuster, theatrical fare with a budget between $10-30 million.

And while admittedly it is a "downgrade" (theatrical movies get more exposure, awards, and prestige), the quality of the movie itself is what's really important and the fact it will reach a broad audience. If it weren't for the VOD and SVOD market who knows if these type of movies would even get made, let alone receive a mainstream release. I'm convinced that if it weren't for Disney's upcoming OTT service, more than half of the movies destined to debut there would have been cancelled.

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 Post subject: Re: Togo
PostPosted: Fri Jul 13, 2018 9:19 am 
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Sotiris wrote:
I'm convinced that if it weren't for Disney's upcoming OTT service, more than half of the movies destined to debut there would have been cancelled.


That's downright scary! Do you mean in the USA the market for smaller-budget, increasingly intimate and modest films screened in cinemas is disappearing? :shock: I was aware that some movies were going straight to VOD lately but as I don't live there I wasn't sure to which extent it was happening.


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 Post subject: Re: Togo
PostPosted: Fri Jul 13, 2018 1:15 pm 
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Jules wrote:
Do you mean in the USA the market for smaller-budget, increasingly intimate and modest films screened in cinemas is disappearing?

Yeah, it's being going on for a while. It's getting increasingly difficult for an indie movie to get a theatrical release and when that happens it's a very limited one. They have to heavily rely on word-of-mouth and buzz and awards from the festival circuit to even get that. It's especially hard if no celebrities or star directors are attached. That's the case for arthouse films; when it comes to the brand of non-blockbuster, family films Disney makes, the situation is a bit different.

The big studios are becoming less and less interested in financing and distributing smaller, modestly-budgeted films that aren't based on popular IP or designed to become franchises. Disney is especially guilty of that. I'm sure you've noticed that Disney has been releasing less and less non-blockbuster films in theaters over the years. With the direct-to-video market shrinking and physical media declining in sales, digital streaming and downloading has become the place where these kind of films can still exist. Disney's sudden need to fill its upcoming streaming service with new, exclusive content resulted in them greenlighting far more of these films for production than they usually do. Projects that were languishing for years in development were fast-tracked and options were enacted upon.

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