Why is Pixar’s 24th film titled ‘Luca’ & New Images and Artwork From the Film (Il Venerdi Magazine)

View concept art and a new character from Pixar’s Luca in the March issue of Il Venerdì.

In the February 19 issue of Il Venerdì di Repubblica magazine, Enrico Casarosa, the director of Pixar’s 24th feature, Luca, shares details about the film as well as his Italian roots which inspired the story.

First, let’s talk about the image on the cover of the magazine — we get another look at Alberto (the name of Enrico’s real childhood friend), Luca (the main character), and another new character who we haven’t seen before. Additional details on the trio will hopefully be coming in the upcoming trailer — Enrico mentioned it should drop in February.

Luca Watermelon Concept Art
Concept Artwork via Il Venerdi Twitter

So, why is the film titled, Luca? Enrico notes in the article (translated with Google Translate) —

“When you’re looking for a title for a film, the search can take months. This is a deeply personal story, inspired by my experience, with my childhood best friend, Alberto, but I certainly couldn’t put my name in the title. ‘Luca,’ yes, I’ve always liked it. It’s simple. It is pronounced well in America too, there are many Luke’s here too and many are not Italians.”

Enrico Casarosa

Enrico was born in Genoa, Italy, and spent his summers on the seaside coasts of Deiva Marina before he moved to New York when he was 20 to pursue his dreams of art and animation. This film looks back at the nostalgia of those summer friendships, but, with a twist.

Alberto and Luca are sea monsters and the article notes that Luca arrives in the Italian Rivera from his underwater world. It sounds like the transformation of Luca from a sea monster to a human may mirror a bit of Enrico’s transformation from a shy child as he explored the world with Alberto.

Pixar Luca character concept artwork

Enrico notes — “Nostalgia for childhood is a large part of the film, nostalgia for those friendships in which you discover yourself different and that take you where you do not expect. I was a shy child, with a family that was on me. Alberto had more freedom than me and a less present family. He seemed to be able to do what he wanted. So he got me out of the box I lived in.

He taught me to fish. One day he bought a python and took it to school. He made me grow up in a different way. In Liguria [capital of Genoa] there is little sand and a lot of rock. There is a scene in which from a peak you push yourself into the water — take off your sneakers and jump off. It’s the perfect metaphor for these encounters that make you grow, change you and carry you inside when you say goodbye. “

Pixar Luca Cover March 2021 Il Venerdì di Repubblica

Check out the full article in the March issue of Il Venerdì di Repubblica and read more about Enrico’s past while growing up, his journey to an artistic career, and Pixar’s research trips to Italy to explore the impact of tourism with the film’s release. 

Finally, be sure to read more from the article and chat about your thoughts with other Pixar fans in the Pixar Post Forum thread about Luca.

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