Walt Disney Animation Studios and Marvel Comics brought Big Hero 6, the upcoming CG-animated film based on the Marvel superhero team of the same name, to New York Comic Con yesterday. According to the filmmakers behind the movie, it combines the best of Disney and Marvel — and indeed, Big Hero 6 is the first Disney movie based on a Marvel series since the House of Mouse acquired Marvel Entertainment in 2009.
Big Hero 6 is directed by Don Hall and Chris Williams, who both worked on Frozen. Hall said during the panel that he grew up loving both Disney animation and Marvel Comics, so this film is a dream project for him. The movie brings together Disney and Marvel, and according to Hall, the concept of the story was a “high-tech mashup” of Eastern and Western culture. In fact, Big Hero 6 takes place in a fictional metropolis called San Fransokyo — a portmanteau of San Francisco and Tokyo — and this comes through in its combination of massive, busy, Shibuya-esque intersections and the steep hills of the Bay Area.
The film centers on a teenage genius named Hiro Hamada (Ryan Potter), who puts his brilliant mind to the task of building complex robots — and pitting them against other battle bots in underground fights. His older brother, Tadashi (Daniel Henney), is a robotics whiz in his own right. Tadashi decides to take on the role of Hiro’s mentor, and encourages him to apply to college. There, Tadashi introduces Hiro to his team of fellow scientists, as well as the inflatable robot he’s created, Baymax (Scott Adsit).
Tadashi designed Baymax to help humans with healthcare; it’s a very caring robot, and it wants to keep Hiro safe. And Adsit, who appeared on the panel, brings a wonderful humanity to the character. Asked about his experience at NYCC by host Chris Hardwick, Adsit said he felt tremendously lucky to be on the panel, since he’s the kind of person who loves attending the show but never has the “stamina” to wait in line for hours in order to get into a panel in the main theater. Adsit was joined by three other voice actors from Big Hero 6: T.J. Miller, Genesis Rodriguez and Jamie Chung, all of whom play members of Tadashi’s team.