A Spark Story takes an intimate look at Pixar’s SparkShorts filmmaking process as two directors strive to get their uniquely personal SparkShorts visions on screen.
Directed by Jason Sterman and Leanne Dare of Supper Club (Chef’s Table), and produced by Sterman, Brian McGinn and David Gelb in collaboration with Pixar, A Spark Story launches on Disney+ on Sept. 24, 2021.
Says Sterman, “I think viewers will be most surprised by how much personal storytelling is involved in the Pixar filmmaking process. It takes so many people to bring one of these films to life, and you can feel the filmmakers’ personal touches in every aspect of the films.
Sterman added: “Hopefully ‘A Spark Story’ will give audiences a greater sense of the people and personalities who bring these types of films to life.”
A Spark Story introduces Aphton Corbin (director Twenty Something) and Louis Gonzales (director Nona) who navigate the emotional rollercoaster of stepping into a leadership role and inspiring their crews.
Giving audiences an exclusive and immersive look at the filmmakers and their films, the documentary explores the creative philosophy that makes Pixar unique.
“Like Louis and Aphton, this was our first time directing, so we could relate to a lot of the experiences they were going through,” says Dare.
She added: “We found ourselves in the same situations trying to find our story, figuring out how to lead our team and getting comfortable trusting our instincts—taking leaps of faith and knowing we’ll figure out how to land. This helped us connect to their stories and appreciate their unique approaches to storytelling.”
In Nona, a grandmother’s plan for a special day alone is upended by an unexpected visit from her granddaughter.
Twenty Something, meanwhile, is described as follows: “Adulting can be hard. Some days you’re nailing it, while other days, you’re just a stack of kids hiding in a trench coat hoping no one notices.
“Gia finds herself in this exact scenario the night of her 21st birthday.”