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The LEGO Movie is a 2014 American-Australian-Danish 3D computer-animated action adventure comedy film directed and written by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, from a story by Dan and Kevin Hageman, as well as Lord and Miller, and produced by Dan Lin and Roy Lee. Based on the Lego line of construction toys, the film stars the voices of Chris Pratt, Will Ferrell, Elizabeth Banks, Will Arnett, Nick Offerman, Alison Brie, Charlie Day, Liam Neeson, and Morgan Freeman. It was the first film produced by Warner Animation Group in eleven years since Looney Tunes: Back in Action, which was released in 2003, and is an international co-production of the United States, Australia, and Denmark. The film tells the story of an ordinary Lego minifigure as he ends up becoming involved in a resistance against a tyrannical businessman who plans to glue everything in the Lego worlds.
The film was released theatrically on February 7, 2014, through Warner Bros. Pictures and Village Roadshow Pictures to near-unanimous acclaim; critics praised its visual style, humor, voice cast, and heartwarming message. It earned more than $257 million in the U.S. and Canada and $210 million in other territories, for a worldwide total of over $469 million. The film won the BAFTA Award for Best Animated Film, the Critics' Choice Movie Award for Best Animated Feature, and the Saturn Award for Best Animated Film. It was also nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Animated Feature Film. The film also received an Academy Award nomination for Best Original Song for "Everything Is Awesome".
The film quickly expanded into a franchise which ties to the Lego brand, with two spin-off films, The Lego Batman Movie, and The Lego Ninjago Movie, to be released in 2017, a sequel scheduled for release on February 8, 2019, as well as a third spin-off, The Billion Brick Race.
The film is dedicated in memory of Kathleen Fleming, the former director of entertainment development of the Lego company, who died in an unidentified accident while vacationing in Cancun, Mexico, in April 2013.
In a world made of Lego bricks and populated by anthropomorphic minifigures, the evil Lord Business breaks into the resting place of a superweapon called the "Kragle". The wizard Vitruvius attempts to stop him but is blinded by Business's robots; he prophesies that a person called "the Special" will find the Piece of Resistance, a brick capable of stopping the Kragle. However, Lord Business merely scoffs at the idea of being stopped.
8½ years later, construction worker Emmet Brickowski finds a woman named Wyldstyle searching for something at his construction site after hours. When he investigates, Emmet falls into a hole and finds the Piece of Resistance. Compelled to touch it, Emmet experiences vivid visions and passes out. He awakens in the custody of Bad Cop, Lord Business's lieutenant, and with the Piece of Resistance attached to his back. Wyldstyle rescues Emmet, believing him to be the Special, and takes him to meet Vitruvius in the Old West.
Emmet learns that she and the wizard are "Master Builders" — people capable of building anything from their imagination without needing building instructions—who oppose Business. Wyldstyle explains Business wants to use the Kragle, a partially weathered tube of Krazy Glue, to freeze the world into perfection; the mingling of the Lego worlds confused him, driving Business insane. Though disappointed to find Emmet is not a Master Builder, Wyldstyle and Vitruvius are convinced of his potential when he recalls visions of a seemingly human deity referred to as "the Man Upstairs".
Emmet, Wyldstyle, and Vitruvius evade Bad Cop's forces with the aid of Batman, Wyldstyle's boyfriend. They go to the hidden "Cloud Cuckoo Land," where they attend a council of Master Builders, who are unimpressed with Emmet and refuse to fight Business. Bad Cop's forces attack, placing a tracking device on Emmet and capturing everyone except Emmet, Vitruvius, Wyldstyle, Batman, Benny (a Spaceman Lego Minifigure), and Princess Unikitty of the now-destroyed Cloud Cuckoo Land. Escaping, they are picked up by the makeshift pirate Metal Beard. Emmet devises a team plan to infiltrate the office and disarm the Kragle, but the group is captured and imprisoned in the Think Tank, where all the captured Master Builders are forced to make instructions. Trying to retaliate, Vitruvius is decapitated by Lord Business, who sets a self-destruct protocol and leaves everyone to die, including Bad Cop. As he dies, Vitruvius reveals he made up the prophecy and that it was never true. He soon reappears as a ghost to Emmet and tells him that his belief makes him the Special. Strapped to the self-destruct's battery, Emmet sacrifices himself to save his friends by jumping into a pit and severing the connection, shutting the computer down. Inspired by Emmet's sacrifice, Wyldstyle rallies the Lego people across the universe to use whatever creativity they have to build machines and weapons to fight against Lord Business's forces.
Emmet finds himself in the human world as a Lego Minifigure, unable to move. The story's events are being played out by a little boy named Finn on his father's expansive Lego set in their basement. His father—"the Man Upstairs"—comes home from work and chastises his son for ruining the set by creating variations of different playsets and proceeds to permanently rebuild and glue his perceived perfect creations together. Realizing the danger his friends are in, Emmet wills himself to move and gains Finn's attention. Finn returns Emmet and the Piece of Resistance to the set, where Emmet now possesses the powers of a Master Builder and confronts Business.
Meanwhile, Finn's father looks at his son's creations and realizes that Finn had based the villainous Business on him and his perfectionism. Through a speech Emmet gives Business, Finn tells his father that he is special and has the power to change everything. Finn reconciles with his father, which plays out as Business having a change of heart, capping the Kragle, and ungluing his victims with mineral spirits. Emmet is hailed as a hero. With Batman's blessing, Emmet begins a relationship with Wyldstyle.
As a result of Finn's father allowing Finn's younger sister to join them in playing with his Lego sets, aliens from the planet Duplo beam down and announce their plans to kill them all.
Chris Pratt as Emmet Brickowski, an everyman, construction worker from Bricksburg. He is mistaken for the Special and is trained to be a Master Builder.
Will Ferrell as Lord Business, an evil businessman and tyrant of Bricksburg and the Lego Universe who is the company president of the Octan Corporation under the name President Business.
Ferrell also plays "The Man Upstairs", a Lego collector and Finn's father in the live-action part of the film.
Elizabeth Banks as Wyldstyle / Lucy, a "tough as nails" and tech-savvy fighter who is one of the Master Builders, Batman's girlfriend.
Will Arnett as Batman / Bruce Wayne, a DC Comics superhero who is a Master Builder and Wyldstyle's boyfriend.
Nick Offerman as Metal Beard, a giant makeshift pirate and Master Builder seeking revenge on Lord Business for taking his body parts following an earlier encounter, compelling him to build his current body from scratch.
Alison Brie as Princess Unikitty, a unicorn-horned kitten and Master Builder that lives in Cloud Cuckoo Land, Middle Zealand.
Charlie Day as Benny, a "1980-something space guy" who is one of the Master Builders and is obsessed with building spaceships.
Liam Neeson as Bad Cop / Good Cop, a police officer with a two-sided head and a split personality who serves Lord Business as a member of the Super Secret Police. The character's name and personality are both based on the good cop/bad cop interrogation method which is briefly shown in the film.
Neeson also voices Pa Cop, Bad Cop/Good Cop's father.
Morgan Freeman as Vitruvius, a old wizard who is one of the Master Builders and was blinded by Lord Business in an earlier encounter.
Channing Tatum as Superman, a DC Comics superhero who is one of the Master Builders.
Jonah Hill as Green Lantern, a DC Comics superhero who is one of the Master Builders. He frequently attempts to ingratiate himself with Superman, much to Superman's displeasure.
Cobie Smulders as Wonder Woman, a DC Comics superhero who is one of the Master Builders.
Jadon Sand as Finn, an eight-and-a-half-year-old boy who is the son of "The Man Upstairs" in the live-action part of the film.
In addition, Anthony Daniels and Billy Dee Williams reprise their Star Wars roles as C-3PO and Lando Calrissian respectively, with Keith Ferguson voicing Han Solo (whom he previously voiced in Robot Chicken and Mad). Shaquille O'Neal voices a Lego version of himself who is a Master Builder alongside two generic members of the 2002 NBA All-Stars.
Will Forte, Dave Franco, Jake Johnson, Keegan-Michael Key, Chris McKay, and Jorma Taccone provide voice cameos in the film.
Co-director Christopher Miller cameos as a TV presenter in the studio that films the Where Are My Pants? TV series.
The plans to develop the movie were revealed in August2009. In June2010 it was reported that Phil Lord and Chris Miller were going to write and direct the movie. In November 11, 2011 it was revealed that the release of the film will be in 2014 and it would be developed by the Australian company Animal Logic.
In March 2012, Phil Lord and Chris Miller stated a possible working title could be "LEGO: The Piece of Resistance" and that story development, character design, and casting would begin shortly. "In the 3 to 4 months, hopefully," Phil Lord stated.
In a press release before the San Diego International Comic-Con 2013, LEGO revealed there would be 17 new sets released in 2014 based on The LEGO Movie, based on several themes from Space to Wild West. This press release also states there will be a line of Collectible Minifigures based on the movie's characters.
The movie consists largely of 3D it was made to look like it's stopmotion, though parts of it may be stopmotion. A short portion is also live-action, with actual human actors instead of minifigures. The end credits are completely stopmotion made with real bricks.
During production, the animators did alternative takes in both 2.35:1 widescreen, and 1.33:1 Academy format, on the assumption that not all theaters booking the film would rush to equip themselves with expensive wide screens and stereophonic sound-playback equipment. When the Academy format version was used in theaters, it was matted to 1.85:1, as the directors intended for the Academy Ratio version. For the Amazon Prime version with bonus features after the film, a matted 16:9 (1.78:1) transfer (the ratio is close to 1.85:1, the theatrical ratio of the flat version) from the 1.33:1-framed flat negative was played.
For a limited time in 2013, 5002891 The LEGO Movie Mini Poster Sticker was included with 10232 Palace Cinema. It is based on the real movie poster and can be used to replace the other movie posters that show what's playing in the cinema.
A sign in the movie reads "Heartlake City" and "Paradisa."
During Wyldstyle's flashback involving the Master Builders, the map that is shown in Lord Business' boarding room lists various locations including Bricksburg, The Old West, Middle Zealand, Cape Space, Pirate's Cove, Viking's Landing, Pharaoh's Quest, Dino Island, Atlantis, Vladek's Realm, TECHNIC Mecha Mine, the Forest of Obsolete Products, and Octan HQ.
Unlike most LEGO movies/shows such as Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu, Legends of Chima: The Animated Series, and The Yoda Chronicles, everything in the movie is made to look like something real. This is true for nearly everything in the entire film, including buildings, landscapes, clouds, smoke, lasers, water, and explosions. The few things that aren't brick-built are "relics" from our world, including a BAND-AID, a staple remover, a battery, an apple core, a computer disc, a calculator, a Titleist golf ball, a Gummy Bear, nail polish remover, a laser pointer (referred as "the Pointed Laser" in the video game), a q-tip, and a tube of Krazy Glue (AKA the Kragle), the lid to the Krazy Glue (the Piece of Resistance), and Vitruvius' staff (a partially-eaten lollipop), among others. Many of these are housed in Lord Business' Relic Room.
The movie was released until April in certain countries.
The Toa Mata/Toa Nuva from BIONICLE briefly appear in the film when Wyldstyle is talking to Emmet about the prophecy. So do Fabuland, 9448 Samurai Mech from Ninjago, 41039 Sunshine Ranch from Friends, 8158 Speed Racer & Snake Oiler from Speed Racer, along with a few other themes.
Some stopmotion videos created by fans on ReBrick were featured in the movie.
For some far-off camera shots, miniature versions of the models are used, such as when MetalBeard escapes Cloud Cuckoo Land, or when the Millennium Falcon gets eaten by a space slug.
The medieval world, Middle Zealand, is a reference to Tolkien's Middle Earth in The Lord of The Rings and The Hobbit. Peter Jackson's adaption of Middle Earth uses New Zealand to shoot, hence the name.
Some, but not all, official LEGO products and webpages spell the title "The LEGO MOVIE", with "movie" in all capital letters.
The DVD/Blu-Ray release date of The LEGO Movie is June 17, 2014.
A small tune is reused throughout the film's soundtrack: Everything is Awesome (fast and upbeat), Emmet's Morning (techno), Saloons and Wagons (dramatic), Wyldstyle Leads (upbeat and epic), and We Did It! (a glorious upbeat tone) and also multiple other pieces of the soundtrack.
Emmet and Wyldstyle made cameo appearances in the Simpsons episode "Brick Like Me".
When the knights are putting pieces together in Middle Zealand, pay close attention to the background and you will see a dragon attaching two Skeletrons to the feet of a Horse.
Over 30 new pieces were designed for this film. Wyldstyle and Lord Business use the most new pieces, with both of them tied with four (Wyldstyle's hair, hood/hair combination, pulled-down hood, and hat hair combination and Lord Business' hair, helmet, cape, and neck decoration).
As Emmet, Batman, Wyldstyle, and Vitruvius drive up the rainbow to Cloud Cuckoo Land, two knights are jousting in the background. They both charge towards each other and the knight on the right is impaled by the lance and his helmet flies off on his lance which is sticking out of the ground after he dropped it. He then drops off of the lance.
This movie incorporates certain elements that are usually not allowed in LEGO products, which are: death (Vitruvius dies), torture (a real-life LEGO image is shown when Vitruvius is describing Middle Zealand shows a person on a torture table surrounded by knights holding torture weapons, Lord Business also mentions torturing Master Builders too), and violence (in the same image shown when Vitruvius is describing Middle Zealand, heads are shown in a box), alcohol (Wyldstyle and Emmet walk into a saloon where various people are holding bottles that probably contain alcohol like normal western saloons) and others. This is probably intended as a tongue-in-cheek joke.
When Unikitty enrages and attacks the Micro Manangers, the first one she attacks she swallows whole. A gulping sound can also be heard when she eats it.
In the background while Wyldstyle is talking to Vitruvius while he is playing the piano, Emmet can be seen picking up a bottle and taking a sip from it. He then makes a disgusted face, implying that it was some type of alcoholic beverage.
Unikitty has over 30 different brick-built combinations so she could be posed in different ways, such as her "rage" form, sitting, pouncing, jumping, etc.
When Bad Cop uses the turret in a truck to take down the glider Emmet, Wyldstyle, and Vitruvius are riding, a Horse can be seen driving the truck.
As Emmet, Wyldstyle, and Vitruvius are escaping the Robo SWAT on the rooftops, a Robo SWAT can be seen riding a Cow. Vitruvius knocks the rider off the Cow and it proceeds to chase Emmet around the top of a building. Emmet jumps off as the Cow lunges towards him and accidentally kicks it in the face and it falls off the rooftop.
When The Orb of Titleist rolls towards the Yeti, Vampire, Johnny Thunder, and the Island Warrior, the Yeti creates a mound of ice to block it, but it is smashed by the weight of the "Orb". At the same time, Johnny Thunder is also holding a whip as he runs from it, possibly to create a subtle reference to Indiana Jones' iconic boulder chase scene.
A rack with torture weapons in the Melting Room has an axe, a chicken leg, a comb, a feather, and a bone on it. All of the items are colored pearl gray.
Batman, as Bruce Wayne, can be seen during the beginning of the film. As Emmet is driving his car, Bruce Wayne can be seen walking on the sidewalk to the audience's left.
According to the DVD Commentary, Unikitty was going to become Batman or Metalbeard's love interest.
As the LEGO citizens are celebrating their victory against the Super Secret Police in the final scene, at the right hand corner of the screen, Good Cop, Frank the Foreman, a Cowboy, and the Tribal Chief can be seen dancing together. That is a reference to the 1970's group The Village People.
The LEGO Movie is Warner Bros.' most successful animated film to date.
It set a box office record for being the movie being in the top spot for the most weekends.
Unusually, Vitruvius dies from having his head cut off by a penny, but Metalbeard manages to survive and escape Octan Tower with only HIS head, causing a plot hole. This could be because Metalbeard escaped a few of his organs as well and thus barely survived, whereas Vitruvius was fully decapitated.
When Emmet mentions that Lord Business will take over the world in two days; which lined up with Taco Tuesday, this means that the plot starts on Sunday. (Not counting 8 1/2 years ago when Vitruvius is guarding the Kragle.)
Up until MetalBeard rescues the crew at the ocean, it isn't actually specified how big MetalBeard's ship actually is due to the miniature model used in the far-out shot, when MetalBeard explains his "tale of woe" and when he leaves Cloud Cuckoo Land, the bottom portion isn't shown.
An early script had many of the character's names different, R2-D2 and ndiana Jones being main characters, Emmet still living with his elderly mother, who turns out to be "the most powerful woman in the universe", had Bad Cop actually swear instead of saying "darn", Larry the Barista having a larger role, and Benny having a co-pilot that's an inanimate mop called Moppy.
The word "LEGO" is never spoken in the movie.
Ironically, it is mentioned numerously in the videogame.
When in the Octan tower, Wyldstyle goes off and tells them to wait for her signal. When she gives it, it's the "Super Secret" signal from Team America: World Police.