Movies & TV / News

Soul Director Reveals What The Film’s Original Ending Was (SPOILERS)

January 2, 2021 | Posted by Joseph Lee
Pixar Soul - 1

Disney and Pixar released Soul to Disney+ on Christmas Day, and the film has received near-universal praise from critics. In an interview with ET Online, the filmmakers revealed what the original ending for the film was going to be before it was eventually changed to what’s in the finished product. Here are highlights:

Producer Dana Murray on how hard it was to come up with the right ending: “Very. We went back and forth on the ending up until the last screening. For a long time, Joe did go to The Great Beyond. There was a lot of debating back and forth, but I think the more we saw him live his life and just thinking about his mother, Libba, and all these different factors, it felt like the right ending, that he needed to be able to go enjoy his life in the way he wanted to, because he’d learned so much throughout the film.”

Co-director Kemp Powers on the original ending: “We have versions of the ending where Joe does not go back to his body, where he actually stays dead. We have versions of the ending where you see Joe on Earth a year later. Man, that ending sparked more debate than I think any other element of the film.”

Co-director Pete Docter on the ending in the original script: “That version he was, like, at peace and went in. But there was another version where he actually went to The Great Beyond, there was a scene there and then he returned. And we realized we were probably playing with fire, even though it was pretty esoteric. I don’t think it was too explicit in terms of, “This is what the afterlife looks like!” It was more abstract. But still, we decided, “Eh, probably dangerous.” And not ultimately right for the film, most importantly.”

Docter on if there were people pushing for the original ending: “Oh yeah, there were definitely camps. Because I think people felt like it’s cheating to let him go back. On the other hand, story-wise, you can’t teach this guy to enjoy life the right way and then rob him of that. So, it just didn’t seem like the right way to go. Although that was the original draft. At the time, I was thinking, “The most selfless act you could do is to pass on — I’ve had the chance. I’ve already enjoyed life. Now, you should have that chance, you, 22, who has not dared go down.” That seemed poetic and nice, but ultimately, in the movie, every scene was Joe going, “Wait a second, I didn’t live this the right way before.” So, it didn’t seem right then at the end to go, “All right, off you go!” [Laughs]”

article topics :

Soul, Joseph Lee