Bringing Disney magic to life: Animator Mark Henn
MANILA, Philippines – Loyal is probably one of the words to describe Disney animator Mark Henn. For 38 years, Henn has been working with Walt Disney Animation, bringing life to some of the most beloved characters on-screen.
Speaking to Filipino media on the sidelines of his trip to Manila for AsiaPop ComicCon, Henn talked about some of the milestones in his career, including his work in Ralph Breaks the Internet.
"I guess my first milestone was the first project I ever got to animate on was Mickey's Christmas Carol. So I started my animation career as a full pledged animator animating Mickey Mouse for Disney. How can you top that?
"And so milestones would be like Little Mermaid. It was certainly a milestone. It kind of ushered this new generation of musicals I guess that we've been doing. And it kind of hit its peak with the Lion King which was a pleasant surprise to all of us," he said.
Henn said another big moment was when they moved into the new animation studio in Florida with a group of new artists. It was there that Mulan would later be created.
"Seeing that group of artists who were for the most part were all brand new to animation. They were right out of art schools. It was really fun to see that group gel and to grown and where we get to do our first feature film Mulan, which was extra special because of that."
Back to Wreck It Ralph 2
Henn is one of the people behind Ralph Breaks the Internet, the sequel to Wreck It Ralph. This time, Ralph and his friend Vanellope travel to the world of the internet with some hilarious adventures (and misadventures) along the way. Vanellope even gets to meet some of our beloved princesses.
"We're working essentially with the same group of artists that brought us the first film. So that in essence makes it a true sequel," he said.
Henn said he had a good time revisiting the characters, introducing new ones, and diving into the world of the internet.
"Just going into the internet, what a vast world, that was exciting and also challenging because it is so big. We had to try to figure out what parts of the internet that we're actually going to have the time to get to see and participate."
"We create a film that is appealing to all ages. That was always Waltz's (Disney) philosophy — from the child, to the child in us who has grown up but still has that child in us. So we've always done and that's still our goal – to create films that appeal to the widest audience around," he said.
Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck It Ralph 2 opens in the Philippines on November 21. – Rappler.com