While Pixar took a year off after the delay of their latest movie, they are still set for two features and two new shorts for 2015 and have offered the first glimpse of one of the shorts.
On Thursday, Yahoo released video of the first clip from Lava last week, a short that will play before next summer's Inside Out. The clip features a volcano singing Israel Kamakawiwo'ole's version of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow."
Lava director James Ford Murphay talked about work on Lava and what inspired him to make a short about a singing volcano.
"We struggled with it a lot," Murphy said. "But I feel like, once we were able to embrace the limitations of it, it unlocked all sorts of possibilities. I love that about animation: You can really make a mountain come alive. You can't do that in another medium."
Murphy added that some inspiration came from Chuck Jones' Feed the Kitty cartoon. "That cartoon has so much heart and so much of the humor comes from genuine emotion," he said. "That was a major inspiration for us."
With The Good Dinosaur delayed until late 2015 and Inside Out coming from Up director Pete Doctor in June 2015, it should be a big return for the animation juggernaut with Lava looking like a return to form from the company that made as memorable shorts as they did with features.
As for the song choice, Murphy said it was also something that drove the film. "I thought that if I could marry the rich imagery and with the power and emotion of music, then I could really make something cool," he said.
Inside Out and Lava open in theaters in June 2015.