With a $39.1 million domestic opening, Pixar’s “Onward” was considered a box-office disappointment last weekend, at least by the animation label’s elevated standards. Disney usually puts out only one Pixar film a year, but that’s not the plan for 2020. “Soul” is slated to come out in June, and the studio just released the film’s first full trailer.
Judging by this promising clip, Pixar may be back on track. Jamie Foxx voices Joe Gardner, a New York City middle-school band teacher who’s about to get his big break as a jazz musician when he falls down a manhole. He lands in the Great Before, an ethereal world where new souls are assigned personality traits before heading to Earth. There, he meets the cynical 22 (Tina Fey), a soul who doesn’t believe life is worth living. As Joe tries to convince 22 otherwise, he realizes he may have a shot at returning to his old body.
Directed by Pete Docter, who’s been responsible for some of Pixar’s most emotionally mature films (like “Inside Out” and “Up”), “Soul” gives off an “It’s a Wonderful Life” vibe. The film features jazz tunes by Jon Batiste, the bandleader for “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” as well as an original score by Nine Inch Nails’ Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, who won an Oscar for “The Social Network.”
“Soul” is scheduled to hit U.S. theaters on June 19.