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D23, Disney’s official fan club and Disney Infinity hosted an early screening of Maleficent on Wednesday, May 28th in San Francisco at the AMC Metreon along with a sneak peek at the upcoming Disney Infinity 2.0 and some of its new characters. I’m not a gamer. I have a Nintendo Wii on which I play the oh-so-complex games like Super Mario Bros., Walk It Out and NASCAR. But as Disney Infinity Executive producer John Vignocchi showcased the upcoming Disney Infinity 2.0. offerings I found myself thinking that looks fun.

Merida and Maleficent (Jolie style) are coming to Disney Infinity 2.0 A video featuring their game play will be posted by Disney Infinity on Friday.
Merida and Maleficent (Jolie style) are coming to Disney Infinity 2.0 A video featuring their game play will be posted by Disney Infinity on Friday.

While the gameplay seems fun, users really rave about the toybox element that lets you create your own adventures. Since I’m not interested in extremely long term investments of time to create new fun especially since I’ll be playing alongside my five year old son who I know will be excited to build and break, build and break I didn’t purchase the game when it hit shelves. The new feature highlighted in 2.0 that provides largely already designed template we can edit, “builders” that can autonomously generate worlds whether assigned structures or decor, etc. I also learned more about the fun of exploring adventures created by others. In fact Disney Infinity offers a weekly web series ( http://youtu.be/Ha-kdUc6iJM ) sharing the fun and even present specific themed challenges for users to show off their talents and unique vision. I’ll be a regular viewer now.

Individually numbered and signed by the artist. Amazing gift from Disney Infinity and D23.
Individually numbered and signed by the artist. Amazing gift from Disney Infinity and D23.

And then it was time for Maleficent. The theater darkened at the film began. Sadly the audio malfunctioned initially. We were treated to amazing vistas but only the film’s score was heard, none of the main dialogue. They stopped the film and tried to fix the sound. It took a few tries but they corrected the problem and we were finally shown the feature. The world Director Robert Stromberg creates is visually stunning. I especially enjoyed the way select iconic moments from the classic animated feature were brought to life and the acknowledgement in the film’s credits to the vision of legendary Disney animator Marc Davis who created Maleficent for the classic animated feature. I’m sure it will lead to spirited debate among fans of the classic film as always happens when a story is retold. Hopefully it will also spark renewed interest in the artistic masterpiece that inspired it and the inspired artists who made it.