The first season of Dug Days is set to premiere on Disney+ on September 1, 2021, and all five episodes had us smiling, laughing, and (to put it plainly) feeling happy — we bet you’ll love each episode as well.
Recently, we spoke with some of the creative minds behind the project — Bob Peterson (Writer/Director/Dug’s Vocal Actor) and Kim Collins (Producer) — and they shared many fantastic insights about our favorite characters from Up.
When does this new storyline take place? Bob noted that it takes place right after Up wrapped and he pitched the series to show the normal aspects of a dog’s life. Kim noted that in addition to being about funny canine traits, it’s also a story about how Dug and Carl care for each other.
How Carl and Dug take care of each other is where the heart of the story comes in — Carl’s endless patience with Dug (after the adventures they had in Up) led Carl to loosen up in general. To show Carl’s updated spry nature, the Pixar team updated his character rig. Carl stands up a little more straight, he no longer wears his sport coat and he’s even rolled up his sleeves to demonstrate the more relaxed side of himself.
Carl also has a fun new woodworking hobby and has made (among multiple projects) the most adorable whirligig of Kevin (with her babies) which sits atop his roof.
Of course, Carl wasn’t the only one who got an upgrade. Dug’s character rig was also updated and he looks absolutely fantastic. His golden color seems to glow endlessly with his updated fur and his movements are so dog-like, sometimes it’s hard not to imagine that he’s not real.
The animators (and frankly the whole team) did a wonderful job bringing these characters to life. Carl and Dug’s new house is so warm and inviting. The lighting in the backyard makes you wish it was your own. And, don’t even get us started about how great the wildlife which fills the backyard is — this leads to…squirrel…many…squirrel….adventures for Dug.
Each episode is approximately 6-8 minutes long and is packed with jokes which feel like classic Disney cartoons (think about the hilarious Pluto, Chip, and Dale classics).
Be sure to catch the official Dug Days trailer premiering on Pixar’s YouTube page at Noon ET on August 26, 2021 (embedded below).
Bob noted that it took him a week or two to get back into the swing of things with voicing Dug since he was a little rusty. Ed Asner’s return as Carl is flawless and he doesn’t sound any different than he did in 2009. All of Ed’s dialogue was recorded fresh for this project.
Russell also makes an appearance in an episode, but of course, the original vocal actor, Jordan Nagai, is much older now. So, the editing team went through Up‘s original and unused dialogue and found lines to include “new-old” dialogue.
- Squirrel! — Dug comes face to face with his sworn enemy.
- Puppies — Dug learns that puppies are cute, but also a lot of work!
- Flowers — Dug finds out he doesn’t love fireworks as much as Carl does.
- Smell — Dug smells something he has never smelled before.
- Science — Russell helps Dug find a new way to communicate with his “neighbors.”
Bob and Kim were also kind enough to share some of the great Easter Eggs you’ll find scattered throughout the show.
- The design of Carl and Dug’s new house was modeled after Bob’s Grandmother’s real home. Their street address is 333, which is also the same number as his Grandma’s house. (As a side note, Carl and Ellie’s address was 18 in Up, which is the same as Bob’s other Grandparents’ home — how cool is that?!)
- You know the frog that doubles as an alarm clock when Carl wakes up in South America? The frog design shows up as a bookend in Dug Days on one of Carl’s shelves.
- The Ferris wheel from Toy Story 4 appears beyond Carl’s house — this was a nod to Kim’s previous project she was working on before starting on Dug Days.
- There is a film camera on Carl’s shelf which has the name Nielsen on it. This is a nod to one of the Executive Producers on the project, Mark Nielsen.
- There is a baseball hat shown which has the initials JR stitched on it to represent Jonas Rivera (the original Producer of Up) who is an avid baseball fan.
- Finally, resident sweet-tooth and Chief Creative Officer Pete Docter received a nod with a box of treats on Carl’s kitchen table emblazoned with the brand name “Pete’s Macarons.”
Let us know how excited you are for Dug Days by leaving a comment below or chatting with other fans about the story and upcoming products in the Pixar Post Forum thread all about Dug Days.
Be sure to watch all five episodes of Dug Days on Disney+, premiering on September 1, 2021.