Brooks, DeGeneres, and Stanton reunite for ‘Finding Nemo 2’

Mark Deming
Movie Talk

Almost ten years after “Finding Nemo” became one of Pixar’s biggest hits, details are starting to emerge about the along-awaited sequel to the animated comedy-adventure.

According to a report on Deadline, Albert Brooks has been confirmed to repeat his role as the voice of Marlin, the clownfish who was searching for his lost son in the original movie. Since “Finding Nemo” hit theaters in 2003, Brooks earned critical raves for his change-of-pace performance as cold-hearted gangster Bernie Rose in the thriller “Drive,” and published a best-selling novel, “Twenty Thirty: The Real Story Of What Happened To America.” Given the success of the original “Finding Nemo” and Brooks’ recent accomplishments, it has been suggested Brooks was holding out for a significantly larger salary to appear in the sequel, and apparently he got it. Also on deck for “Finding Nemo 2” will be Ellen DeGeneres, returning as the voice of memory-challenged Dory.

Far more surprising is the news that Andrew Stanton, who directed “Finding Nemo” in collaboration with Lee Unkrich, will be returning to direct the sequel. While “Finding Nemo” was a box-office smash, as was Stanton’s follow-up “WALL-E,” his live-action debut, “John Carter,”
was 2012’s most notorious box-office disappointment, reported to be largely responsible for an $84 million loss Walt Disney Pictures posted in May 2012. While one might have imagined Stanton would be persona non grata at Disney after that, the studio is presumably happy to have him back directing an animated film, where he’s a proven success.

No word has surfaced yet on what Marlin and Dory will be up to in “Finding Nemo 2,” but with the movie expected to arrive in theaters in 2016, Stanton and his team have plenty of time to come up with a good story.