A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Kids will see a team of diverse filmmakers within the workplace and may consider the various career or job opportunities throughout the movie industry.
Believe in yourself. Persevere to pursue a craft. Experience different lives through the lens of diverse storytelling. Challenge levels of diversity in underrepresented areas in society. Importance of a work-life balance.
Positive Role Models
Positive role models include directors, producers, and artists who work hard and follow their dreams.
Docu is about BIPOC aspiring directors Aphton Corbin and Louis Gonzales, who are selected to pursue their dream of becoming directors at Pixar Animation Studios. Lots of diversity represented in the documentary. Loving depiction of a quadriplegic dog who wears a hoodie in Nona. LGBTQ+ characters embrace each other in the film Out.
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Violence & Scariness
References include gang activity, jail sentencing, graffiti on property produced with spray paint, getting up on a bus and jumping out of the window, a character in the Oscar-winning animated short film Bao eats a baby, a grandmother character and granddaughter playact wrestling, and archival footage of wrestlers engaged in a match inside a ring.
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"Damn," "stupid," and "jerk," and comments such as "yeah, but you're really pretty for a Black girl," "snitches get stitches,” and "pissed off."
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Products & Purchases
Tumblr, McDonald's, images from Pixar Animation Studios films, scenes from various Pixar films.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Images include illustrations of a dance club that features a bar, a menu of drinks available to customers, and characters holding cocktails.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that A Spark Short is a documentary about BIPOC aspiring directors Aphton Corbin and Louis Gonzales, who are selected to pursue their dream of becoming directors at Pixar Animation Studios. Through the company's SparkShorts program, the filmmakers share their lens of diverse storytelling. Images include a scene of cannibalism from the Oscar-winning animated short film Bao, footage of wrestlers engaged in a match inside a ring, and illustrations of a dance club with characters holding cocktails. References include gang activity, jail, and getting on a bus and jumping out of the window. Language includes "damn," "stupid," and "jerk." Positive messages include belief in yourself, perseverance in pursuit of a craft, and the importance of a work-life balance, as well as positive images of diversity, equity, and inclusion. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
This career-inspiring documentary offers sound vocational advice for opportunities to make movies. "We started the SparkShorts program because we didn't know what kind of talents we were skipping over by not giving people a chance to tell their story," notes A Spark Story's Pete Docter, Pixar Chief Creative Officer and director of the Oscar-winning animated film Soul.
Pixar BIPOC story artists Aphton Corbin (Soul) and Louis Gonzales (The Incredibles) take part in the program with the chance to become directors. "Growing up, I always loved animation and cartoons, especially Disney cartoons," says Aphton, who enrolled in a high school animation class. "Seeing drawing come to life grabbed me." For Louis, "stories honor life. They honor people. When I tell stories, I'm honoring my family and friends. That's something that I love." The priceless portraits of passion shared by the gifted filmmakers in A Spark Story make this film a valuable viewing session for kids and parents alike.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.