The short films Pixar produces to precede its theatrical features are among life's singular joys, and word of a new one is almost as exciting as this recent mega-announcement. The Pixar Blog tells us what to expect when we finally sit down to watch Wall-E this summer. Presto is a five-minute short about Alec, a magician's rabbit who becomes increasingly disgruntled as a hat trick involving him makes his master famous. When the magician goes out to dinner one night, he leaves Alec locked in a cage, gazing longingly at a carrot just out of reach. Doug Sweetland, an animator on most of Pixar's big productions, directs and does all the voices. Above is a somewhat low-res still from the film.
You can take a peek at most of the Pixar shorts here, and the full versions are available on iTunes for two bucks a pop. You can't really go wrong with any of them but the best, for my money, is For the Birds, which is so outrageously fantastic that I'm convinced it contains the meaning of life. (The fact that it is forever associated with Monsters, Inc., my favorite Pixar feature, doesn't hurt.)
Wall-E -- and Presto -- hit theaters on June 27th.