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Watch Trailer for Disney & Pixar's New Film 'Soul' featuring Jamie Foxx (VIDEO)

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© 2020 Disney/Pixar. All Rights Reserved.
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In Disney and Pixar’s “Soul,” Joe Gardner (voice of Jamie Foxx) is a middle-school band teacher whose true passion is playing jazz. ";s:3:

Available exclusively on Disney+ beginning Dec. 25, 2020, Disney and Pixar’s feature film “Soul” introduces Joe Gardner, a middle-school band teacher with a serious passion for jazz music. The story is particularly relatable to the artists behind it. For Jamie Foxx, who lends his voice to Joe, it begins with jazz. “Like Joe, I hear music in everything,” said Foxx. “When you’re a jazz artist, man, you talk a little different: ‘Hey, cat!’  I got a chance to go to a few jazz fests and meet Herbie Hancock, Chick Correa—hang out with those guys. They have a way of talking, a way of dressing—everything funnels toward their music, toward the jazz.” 

But director Pete Docter, who shares Foxx’s love of music, conceived of the character before jazz entered the picture. “I’ve been so lucky to work with some incredible people and make movies that have been seen around the world,” he said. “But I realized that as wonderful as these projects are, there’s more to living than a singular passion—as expressive and fulfilling as that may be. Sometimes the small insignificant things are what it’s really about. This film is about broadening the idea of a singular focus to thinking more widely about what life has to offer and what we have to offer life.”

Likewise, co-director Kemp Powers, who initially joined the project as a writer, didn’t have to look far to find inspiration for Joe Gardner. "We’ve been working on ‘Soul’ for years, but the film feels timelier now than we ever could have imagined back when we began,” said Powers. “In a year where everything we know has been turned upside down, we’ve all been forced to find new meaning both in the relationships we have and the small moments that truly make life worth living."

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Credit © 2020 Disney/Pixar. All Rights Reserved.
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© 2020 Disney/Pixar. All Rights Reserved.
ALL THAT JAZZ – In Pixar Animation Studios’ upcoming feature film “Soul,” Joe Gardner is a middle-school band teacher whose life hasn’t quite gone the way he expected. His true passion is playing jazz, and he’s good. But when he finds himself in another realm helping someone else find their passion, he discovers what it truly means to have soul. Jamie Foxx lends his voice to Joe.

In the film, Joe is on the brink of getting his big break playing for a jazz quartet. But he finds himself on an unexpected detour from the streets of New York City to The Great Before, tasked with helping new soul 22, voiced by Tina Fey, find her spark to earn her way to Earth. “He’s sure if he can share his life story with her—his passion for jazz—she’ll be inspired and they’ll both get to go to Earth,” said producer Dana Murray. “They do make it back to Earth, but that’s really the beginning of their adventure. It’s a funny and touching story of friendship and self-discovery, and we can’t wait to show it to the world.”

Five-time BAFTA winner Graham Norton (“The Graham Norton Show”) revealed last weekend that he lends his voice to spiritual sign twirler Moonwind. The voice cast also includes Rachel House (“Hunt for the Wilderpeople,” “Thor: Ragnaraok”) as the count-obsessed Terry, and Alice Braga (“Elysium”), Richard Ayoade (“The Mandalorian”), Wes Studi (“Woke,” “The Last of the Mohicans”), Fortune Feimster (“Bless the Harts”) and Zenobia Shroff (“The Affair”) as the voices of the Counselors. Comedian Donnell Rawlings voices Joe’s barber Dez, and June Squibb (“Nebraska”) provides the voice of Gerel. They join Foxx, Fey, Phylicia Rashad, Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, Angela Bassett and Daveed Diggs. 

Rated PG, “Soul” features jazz compositions & arrangements by globally renowned musician and GRAMMY® nominee Jon Batiste, and an original score by Oscar®-winners Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross (“The Social Network”). 

Ray Cornelius is one of Atlanta’s newest entertainment writers and media personalities. His arts and entertainment website, www.raycornelius.com spotlights the latest in “positive” African-American celebrity news and was established in 2012. Since that time Cornelius has covered a myriad of red carpet premieres, award shows and Atlanta-based films including Tyler Perry’s Temptation, The BronzeLens Film Festival, The Trumpet Awards, and The Steve Harvey’s Neighborhood Awards just to name a few. He has also interviewed a who’s who list of today’s top singers, actors and reality stars. With nearly 20 years of media experience, Cornelius has also worked as an associate producer for the Emmy-winning public affairs program, ATL Insider and with such award shows as The Soul Train Awards, The Trumpet Awards and BET Hip-Hop Awards.