Soul became Pixar’s first feature film to forgo theaters entirely and release on Disney+ December 25 last year, and now the short film 22 vs Earth has joined the contemplative film about the true purpose of life as a companion piece on the streaming service.
Director Kevin Nolting spoke about the film at a recent press event, revealing tidbits about how the creators decided to further explore the Tina Fey-voiced character of 22, a soul who, unlike all the other around her, refuses to complete her “Earth pass” and begin life.
Viewers of Soul know that 22 spends an extremely long time in the pre-existence (referred to in the franchise as the “Great Before”) and when asked how it was decided that the portion of her time there that 22 vs Earth would focus on, Notling said that the idea was to focus on “what made 22 who she is.”
“We wanted to tell something about her past, I mean, as we were making [Soul] obviously we were talking about what made 22 who she is and why all the other souls go to Earth and she doesn’t, so this was one idea of many that [showed] an aspect of that.”
22 vs Earth highlights 22’s loneliness as her friends in the Great Before all leave her for Earth. She sets out to change this by making new friends and ensuring they never find their “spark” to complete their Earth pass, but they end up finding them in many unexpected ways.
When asked if any there were any cuts or changes to the sparks featured in the short, Notling explained that the creative team “toned it down a bit” from their original plan.
“We sort of toned it down a bit at a certain point. I think, like, I think there were one or two others that we cut out very early in the script stage just for length, you know. But, for example, [for] the [soul] who says ‘I love driving!’ the original line was ‘I love stealing!’ and to me it’s sort of like, having a negative one was good because […] you have all different types of people in the world, but having them all negative sort of goes against the idea, so we decided to mix it up.”
22 VS EARTH OFFICIAL SYNOPSIS
Set before the events of Disney and Pixar’s “Soul,” 22 defies the rules of The Great Before and refuses to go to Earth,
enlisting a gang of five other new souls in her attempt at rebellion. However, as her cohorts’ activities lead to unexpected
results, 22’s subversive plot may actually lead to a surprising revelation about the meaning of life.
Soul and 22 vs Earth are available to stream on Disney+. What did you think of the two Pixar films? Let us know in the comment section below or over on our social media!