Director Gore Verbinski talks about his first animated film, RANGO

Before the release of the two-minute trailer for Rango, director Gore Verbinski invited some members of the press to the screening room of his Blink Wink Productions, showed them footage, and answered questions about his first-ever animated film. Rango stars Johnny Depp as a stranded chameleon, and Isla Fisher, Abigail Breslin, Bill Nighy, Alfred Molina, Ned Beatty and Harry Dean Stanton as denizens of a town called Dirt in the Mojave desert. “It’s a quest. It’s an identity quest for Rango,” Verbinski told the press. The movie also has many elements of a classic Western. “It really started with this concept of first just creating this Western genre based on creatures of the desert and then from there I sat down with four of my favorite illustrators and said ‘Let’s conjure. Let’s go. But that’s the only rule.’ Snakes, tortoises, lizards, everything. Out of that we started to build iconography and first is just simple silhouettes of shapes. At the same time we’re working on the screenplay with John Logan and both things influenced each other.”

“We’re just trying to do something different,” Verbinski told “I feel like that there are a lot of animated films that have a certain aesthetic and we’re trying to stay at arm’s length from that. Besides the Western genre, there’s a spirituality to the desert that we wanted to bring to the film, not unlike [Hayao] Miyazaki or some of the surrealists. There’s something else going on. You’ll feel it in the movie. Nature has a kind of energy and that is definitely present.”

The Zone thanks Emma for sharing articles from USA Today and, and Theresa for a report from You can read much more about Rango on the Zone’s News & Views forum.

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