Aaron Widmar
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[VIDEO] New ‘Cars 3’ Movie Teaser Promises Dark Twist to Atone for ‘Cars 2’

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Disney Pixar Cars 3 2017 teaser trailer movie image animated lightning mcqueen crash

Lightning McQueen is in danger
Photo: Walt Disney/Pixar Studios

Remember when John Lasseter said that “At Pixar, we do sequels only when we come up with a great idea, and we always strive to be different than the original”? And now, nearly every Pixar film being released this decade has been and will be a sequel–Finding Dory, The Incredibles II, Toy Story 4, and even Cars 3.

Despite my love of automobiles and animation, I’m not a fan of the Cars franchise. The onslaught of puns, predictable scenes, and weak characters are too much for me. When it was announced, I exasperatedly wondered who asked for another Cars sequel.

But, if I’m honest, I’m actually intrigued by the first teaser trailer for Cars 3 that was released this morning–and here’s why.

Check Out the Grim, Edgy Cars 3 Trailer

Because of its dependence on franchising and established characters, a lot of people–myself included–have accused Pixar of being afraid to take chances and produce anything original in recent years. I mean, why would you if you can churn out a by-the-numbers sequel andĀ have audiences and critics at your feet?

But even die-hard Disney/Pixar fans have to admit that Cars 2 was a mess, childishly pandering and unengaging. Cars didn’t need that sequel and it didn’t benefit from it in the public’s eye. It was, arguably, the first “stumble” in the studio’s run.

Disney Pixar Cars 3 2017 teaser trailer movie image animated race

It actually looks like a legitimate race this time
Photo: Walt Disney/Pixar Studios

Based on the new teaser released this morning, Cars 3 seems to be intent on making up for the disappointment that was Cars 2 by taking the franchise somewhere new and challenging. Why else would it promise the audience, in bold lettering across the screen, “From this moment, everything will change”?

The visual style here is no longer a bright, glossy cartoon–it’s dark, rough, realistic, and highly detailed. For most of the trailer, it actually looks like footage from a real race–or at least high-quality video game footage from a Forza title. And very obviously suggests that something disastrous happens to Lightning McQueen.

Heck, you might as well call this film, Cars 3: Into Darkness.

Hopefully Cars 3 , being released in summer 2017, will finally reach older viewers who grew up watching CarsĀ and are now old enough to want something more substantial.