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Along with every Pixar film is the Pixar short, a delightful appetizer before the main course. For The Good Dinosaur, coming November 25, there will be Sanjay’s Super Team, from Pixar artist Sanjay Patel. The film combines the heroes of Patel’s favorite childhood cartoons and the gods of his parents’ religion.
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Sanjay’s Super Team is a Pixar short animated film directed by Sanjay Patel. It premiered on June 15, 2015 at the Annecy International Animated Film Festival in France, and is scheduled to be attached to the theatrical release of Pixar’s The Good Dinosaur on November 25, 2015.
The inspiration for the short film came from the Patel’s own childhood, growing up in San Bernardino in the 1980s, in a family of Indian immigrants. Like many American children, he played with Transformers, watched Looney Tunes cartoons and read Superman comics. On the other hand, he performed daily Hindu ritual of meditation and prayer with his father. He felt conflicted by his parents’ traditions, saying “Our worlds were diametrically apart. I just wanted my name to be Travis, not Sanjay.”
Growing up, he became more confident with his identity, although he still found it challenging to openly embrace his Indian background at work. As a child, he “felt deeply the absence of anyone who looked like him in films and television.” To “bring a young brown boy’s story to the pop culture zeitgeist,” Patel first pitched the short to the Pixar executives in the summer of 2012. Pixar’s chief creative officer, John Lasseter, was very welcoming to the idea “about celebrating the personal side of the story.”
The film’s setting was inspired by the Lido Motel, an old Route 66 motel which his parents bought and worked at when he was a child.