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We Talk To Cars On The Road Directors On The Show’s The Shining & Mad Max References

Cars On The Road is an upcoming spinoff series set in Disney Pixar’s Cars franchise, which starts streaming on Disney+ Hotstar on 8 September 2022.

The series follows Lightning McQueen and his best friend Mater on a cross-country road trip across the United States as they journey eastward to attend a wedding for Mater’s sister. The episodes will depict the characters in various scenarios, for example, them being chased by dinosaur-like cars. It will be set in new locations with a multitude of new characters, including their new friend Ivy, a monster truck who travels with them, as well as feature returns of the already established characters from the franchise.

Owen Wilson and Larry The Cable Guy reprise their roles as Lightning McQueen and Mater, respectively. The executive producer is Pete Docter while Steve Purcell is the writer.

Courtesy of Disney+ Hotstar, we were given the opportunity to interview Steve Purcell (Director of Episodes 1, 2, and 8) & Brian Fee (Director, of Episodes 3, 4, and 7). This interview has been edited for clarity. Stay tuned for the review of the series.

Every episode I’ve seen has a specific theme or gimmick. One episode even had The Shining references while another referenced Mad Max. Was this part of making the series appeal to adults as well/and not just kids?

Steve Purcell: Hopefully, that’s what it will do. We really kind of create these shows for ourselves. So, we’re kind of the audience and we’re trying to create stories that we think are funny or entertaining and sometimes references to things that we’ve loved in the past come out of that exploration. So yeah, we’d love for adults to enjoy the show as much as kids do.

How and why did you first come up with the idea of Lightning and Mater going on a road trip?

Brian Fee: What was it? Was it a year and a half ago?

Steve Purcell: Yeah, it was at least a year and a half ago.

Brian Fee: We went through some various different ideas. We knew we had the opportunity to do something on Disney+ and the winning idea, the one that made us laugh, was when Steve came up with the idea that they would be on a road trip that would allow for every episode to be wildly different.

What were your main inspirations while making the series?

Steve Purcell: When I was a kid, I went on a road trip across the United States and that stuck with me so there’s a lot of wonderful memories of travelling on the road and all the different stops along the way and each one kind of being a different adventure. You know, every day being a kind of different flavour or sensibility so we tried to do something like that with our characters. It’s fun to take Lightning McQueen and Mater and put them in a lot of different situations and see how they react to them.

What was the most challenging parts of making this series?

Brian Fee: I think one of the most challenging parts would probably be how fast we had to make it. You know, this was much much faster than how we’d usually work at Pixar. Also, what’s exciting about it is that as soon as we came up with an idea and as soon as we brought it to a place that was making us laugh, we’re off to the races and we were sending it down the line and having people actually making it. Very, very quick for our typical schedule.

Was there you wanted to do but couldn’t for whatever reason?

Steve Purcell: No, I think we get to do some version of everything we were reaching for, some of the episodes were very challenging. We had the musical episode that had a lot of challenges too, we had the road rumblers episode that had a lot of lighting changes and dust and effects and things like that. I think we were lucky enough to do everything we wanted to do with the series and we hope the audience shares our excitement for.

What was like having Owen Wilson and Larry The Cable Guy returning to reprise their roles?

Brian Fee: It’s like hanging out with old friends and family again. I mean, they’ve been part of the series since the beginning and it was also really incredible to get their input. Owen’s a writer and Larry The Cable Guy’s a comedian so they’re gonna bring those perspectives to their roles. We enjoyed making sure the lines that we thought we wanted but also giving them opportunities to riff and play and give us some stuff back that wasn’t necessarily written.

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  1. Cars On The Road Has Unexpected Adult References & Is Fun For Everyone

    September 7, 2022 at 8:00 pm

    […] but each episode is hilarious. I was genuinely surprised by how much I enjoyed Cars On The Road. In my interview with the Cars On The Road directors, they mentioned that they made the series with adults in mind as well, including stories that would […]

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