Welcome to Bolt Source, where everything is B-Awsome!
Bolt is a canine actor who portrays a super dog for a TV show, however he believes that everything that's happening, along with his powers, is real.
The episodes usually ended with Penny being saved by Bolt, but it was discovered that people weren't "happy with happy", so the studio went for a cliffhanger approach in the next episode, which involved having Penny being kidnapped by the Green-eyed man. Bolt, believing that Penny was actually kidnapped, escapes from his trailer when the hatch on the roof was opened by a couple of feline actors.
While running around the studio searching for Penny, he ends up being packed away in box that’s to be shipped to New York City. It’s there that he captures a stray cat, named Mittens, that he believes is working for the Green-eyed man. Mittens, who plays along with Bolt, shows him on a map where he can find Penny. However, instead of letting Mittens go as planned, he drags her, along with a hamspter hamed Rhino (who's a huge fan of Bolt) that they found along the way, across the country on a fun and emotional adventure.
The film was originally going to be called American Dog when Chris Sanders was writing the film, but he was later replaced with Chris Willams and Byron Howard. Before becoming the Bolt we know today, the original dog was named Henry, who found himself abandoned in a desert in Nevada. He comes across a one-eyed cat and a large radioactive rabbit who are both looking for a new home.
In 2006, Chris Sanders had a disagreement with John Lasseter, the chief creative officer at Disney animation, with making some changes to film. Lasseter was quoted saying "Chris Sanders is extremely talented, but he couldn't take it to the place it had to be".
After Sanders was removed from the project, the animation crew was told they only had 18 months to complete the animation process. On June 8th, 2007, Disney announced the the film would be ready for release on November 21st, 2008 in digital 3D.
The art style of the film was inspired by Edward Hopper, an American realist painter and Vilmos Zsigmond, a cinematographer. A new technology allowed the animation crew to render non-realistic rendering engine to give the film its unique look.
Bolt's character design is a mixture of different breeds, but designers started with the American White Shepherd. The lead character designer, Joe Moshier, said that the long ears of the American White Shepherd is a trait that he wanted to incorporate to add to Bolt's expressiveness.
Although only performing modestly at the box office, the film was widely acclaimed by critics and audiences alike who praised it for its solid animation, loveable characters, and a lot of wit and heart in its script. It was also honoured with five Annie nominations and an Academy Award nomination for Best Animated Feature.
Because of John Lasseter’s involvement, the success of Bolt proved to be a major turning point for Walt Disney Animation Studios after a long series of critical and commercial failures. The film helped the once-troubled studio get back onto its feet and brought them into a new era.
Following Bolt, Disney would release more highly acclaimed animated classics including The Princess and the Frog, Tangled, Winnie the Pooh, and Wreck-it-Ralph, before reaching their biggest peek with Frozen. The two directors of Bolt would later go on to direct Disney movies that would win the Oscar for Best Animated Feature, with Chris Williams’ Big Hero 6, and Byron Howard’s Zootopia.
As of today, Bolt has maintained a strong and dedicated fan base, and is now considered a cult classic amongst animation fans, and those who admire the fluffy white canine.
Country of origin: United States
Directors: Chris Williams, Byron Howard
Producer: Clark Spencer
Screenplay: Dan Fogelman, Chris Williams
Music: John Powell
Editor: Tim Mertens
Studio: Walt Disney Animation Studios
Distributor: Walt Disney Pictures
MPAA rating: PG (for some mild action and peril)
Running time: 96 minutes
Budget: $150 million
Box office: $310 million (worldwide)
John Travolta - Bolt
Miley Cyrus - Penny
Susie Essman - Mittens
Mark Walton - Rhino
Malcolm McDowell - Dr. Calico
James Lipton - The Director
Greg Germann - The agent
Diedrich Bader - Veteran Cat
J.P Manoux - Tom
Dan Fogelam - Billy
Kari Wahlgren - Mindy
Chole Grace Moretz - Young Penny
Randy Savage - Thug
Grey Griffen - Penny’s Mom
Sean Donnellan - Penny’s Dad
Kelly Hoover - Ester
Jeff Bennette - Lloyd
Daran Norris - Louie
John DiMaggio - Saul
North American theatrical release: November 21, 2008