The Tatra isn’t the character, I just liked him.

You may recall that I confronted the brains behind Pixar’s Cars franchise about the difficult conceptual issues inherent in the Cars universe. That was a partial success. Now, I’d like to show you a conversation I had with the people behind the visual look of Cars 3. It’s a bit more fun, and a bit less disturbing.

I talked with three of Pixar’s talented artists, Jude Brownbill (Directing Animator), Jay Shuster (Production Designer), and the wonderfully-named Michael Comet (Characters Supervisor). Together, they’re responsible for the way the Cars universe looks, and they decide all of the visual rules that govern that universe.

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I’ve accepted that Pixar will never accept my fervent belief that car eyes are headlights; I’ve made my peace with that, and accept they have their reasons. The therapy helps, as do the pills.

Even so, I still challenged them to try to Cars-thropomorphize a car with a very prominent natural face, and they gave it a very good go. We also discussed the nature of trunks in the Cars universe (can they open?) and whether a car’s body panels can ever be used as a mouth.

The biggest treat was that Jay was willing to do the Cars-treatment on a car that has yet to actually be in any of the movies, and it was great seeing a talented artist quickly sketch out a new, never-before-seen character right there on the whiteboard.

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We didn’t give it a name, yet, though, so feel free to come up with one and a backstory in the comments.