books to movies · nonfiction

The Art of Rise of the Guardians

The Art of Rise of the Guardians

by Ramin Zahed, foreword by Alec Baldwin, preface by William Joyce

pages : [hardcover] 158

summary :

In Rise of the Guardians, North, Bunny, Tooth, and Sandman recruit the mysterious Jack Frost to help them stop Pitch from putting an end to childhood belief and sending the world into eternal darkness. Based on the children’s book series by William Joyce, Rise of the Guardians is both an exciting adventure and a poignant exploration of the hopes and dreams of youth.

Rise of the Guardians is one of DreamWorks Animation’s most ambitious films to date. Its mythic premise allowed the artists at the studio to let their imaginations loose, producing a truly unique take on the imaginary figures of childhood, the worlds they inhabit, and the innocence and joy they represent.

With more than 400 pieces of meticulously reproduced art, including storyboards, character designs, visual development art, and effects concepts, The Art of Rise of the Guardians is an insider’s tour of DreamWorks Animation’s dynamic development process. Included is exclusive commentary from the director, producers, production designer, and crew that paints a fascinating picture of the way these filmmakers collaborated to create a stunning CG movie.

review :

Rise of the Guardians is one of my favorite animated movies of all time. For some odd reason it seems like every animated movie I fall in love with I never get to see in the theaters. There’s something amazing about seeing all of these animated characters up on the big screen, though on a smaller screen (and through the second or twelfth time viewing the movie) you get to appreciate all of the fine details that went into making that animation. I have such a high respect for animators. I would love to be able to do what these people can; I’ll settle for hoping to write the same magical storylines these writers come up with.

William Joyce wrote the original children’s series the film was based on and though the two mediums of book and film are completely different, I fell in love with both ideas and wish that more people could dive into Rise of the Guardians and see for themselves how lovely it is. I especially loved Joyce’s preface to this book of art, knowing that he had input in the movie and wanted it to be as great and wonderful as possible. They certainly succeeded.

The art contained in this book is just gorgeous. I could spend ages flipping through the pages just reading through the pictures. But whenever I stopped to read the text, the stories behind the visual developments of the characters were fascinating. It’s easy to see how a figure that seems so iconic to me now could have ended up completely different and I would have never known that there had been another concept up for grabs unless I peered through the pages of this book. I think it’s a great insight for any fan, let alone any art or film lover.

This book is a little more expensive than what I usually buy but I’m one hundred percent certain I made the right decision in purchasing this. The story of the movie is so heartfelt that people of any age can enjoy and cherish it. Seeing the love and hard work that went into the characters while the movie was being made makes me appreciate the outcome that much more. If you loved Rise of the Guardians or enjoy animated movies, pick up this book now! And if you haven’t seen the movie yet, well, what are you waiting for? It’s one that will stick with you forever.

5/5 stars

If you enjoyed this book, you might also love The Art of Tangled.

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