Big Hero 6 is a 2014 American 3D computer-animated superhero-comedy film produced by Walt Disney Animation Studios and inspired by the Marvel Comics superhero team of the same name. The film will be directed by Don Hall and Chris Williams, and will be the 54th animated feature in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series. Big Hero 6 will be the first Disney animated film to feature Marvel characters since The Walt Disney Company's acquisition of Marvel Entertainment in 2009. The film was released on November 7, 2014 by Walt Disney Pictures.
The film is set in a fictional futuristic hybrid metropolis called San Fransokyo (a portmanteau of San Francisco and Tokyo). Hiro Hamada is a young, genius robotics expert who spends his time participating in back alley robot fights. His older brother, Tadashi, worried that Hiro is wasting his potential, takes Hiro to the robotics lab at his university. There, Hiro meets Tadashi's friends GoGo, Wasabi, Honey Lemon and Fred as well as Baymax, a personal healthcare robot Tadashi created. Hiro also meets Professor Robert Callaghan, the head of the robotics program. Amazed by the students' projects, Hiro decides to apply to the school. With help from Tadashi and his friends, Hiro designs his own robotics project in order to gain a personal invitation via an annual exhibition. His invention: microbots, a type of nanorobotics which he can control telepathically through a neural-cranial transmitter, impresses Callaghan, who offers Hiro an invitation to the school. His project also impresses, Alistair Krei, owner of the prestigious robotics company, Krei Tech. Krei offers to buy Hiro's microbots, but Hiro refuses. As they leave to celebrate Hiro's success, a fire suddenly breaks out in the exhibition. Tadashi rushes in to rescue Callaghan, but the building explodes and both are killed (off-screen). As a result of losing his brother, Hiro secludes himself from others.
One day, Hiro accidentally activates Baymax, who responded to Hiro's cry of pain. As Hiro attempts to deactivate Baymax, he discovers a single microbot left in his jacket. Hiro believes its movement is due to malfunction, but Baymax believes it is trying to go somewhere. Hiro inadvertently tells Baymax to find where the microbot wants to go, but realizes his mistake and chases after Baymax. Hiro manages to catch up to Baymax waiting outside the main entrance of an abandoned warehouse. There, they discover that someone has been mass producing Hiro's microbots before they are attacked by a masked man controlling the microbots telepathically. Realizing this man has stolen his project, Hiro decides to catch him and upgrades Baymax with battle armor. He also uploads various karate moves on another chip that he stores in Baymax, which allows Baymax to fight. Following their single microbot again, they find the masked man at the San Fransokyo Port but are surprised by Gogo, Wasabi, Honey and Fred. When the masked man attacks them, they flee in Wasabi's car and hide out in Fred's enormous family mansion. In the mansion, Hiro draws a logo that he caught a glimpse of on a piece of debris the masked man was collecting from under the sea: a bird in a circle. Unfortunately, the logo was a dead end. Luckily, Baymax had scanned the masked man, so Hiro decides to even better armor for Baymax so he can scan the entire city to find him. Hiro also provides his friends with supersuits based on their science projects.
When scanning the entire city, Baymax locates the masked man on a quarantined island off-shore from the city. There, the group discovers a former Krei Tech lab that was experimenting with teleportation technology. The test went awry when one of the portals became unstable and the woman who piloted the test pod is lost and presumed dead. The 6 friends suspect that Krei is the masked man due to the masked man being on Krei's island. When the masked man appears, they attempt to steal his mask, where they deduce the neural-cranial transmitter is located. Despite some difficulties, they succeed in unmasking him and he is revealed to be Professor Callaghan, who explains he survived by using Hiro's microbots. When Hiro realizes that Tadashi died for nothing, he orders Baymax to destroy Callaghan. Baymax argues, saying he is not programmed to hurt another human being. In a rage of blind fury, Hiro removes Baymax's healthcare chip, leaving Baymax with only the fighting chip. Gogo, Fred, Wasabi, and Honey try to stop Baymax while he attempts to kill Professor Callaghan. In the chaos, Callaghan manages to get his mask back and escapes in the process when Honey Lemon puts the healthcare chip back into Baymax. Angry at the four for preventing him from getting revenge, Hiro leaves with Baymax to find Callaghan and finish the job. However, Baymax's scanning ability was damaged so the two return to Hiro's garage where he fixes Baymax's scanning abilty and attempts to remove Baymax's healthcare chip once more, but breaks down when Baymax asks him if killing Callaghan will make him feel better. In order to make Hiro feel better, Baymax shows several playbacks of Tadashi trying to perfect Baymax's healthcare abilities. Hiro realizes that killing Callaghan isn't what Tadashi would want and he makes amends with his friends.
After examining more footage of the teleporter test, they discover that the test pilot was none other than Callaghan's daughter Abigail and realize that Callaghan is seeking revenge on Krei, whom he blames for her demise. The 6 heroes rush to find Krei, but find him already caught in the grasp of the microbots, forced by Callaghan to watch a repaired portal destroy everything Krei loves: his business. The portal uses an extremely powerful electromagnetic field to suck in Krei's building bit by bit. The heroes manage to neutralize the microbots and take the transmitter from Callaghan. However, after falling from the sky, the portal remains active and is becoming increasing unstable. As everyone starts to leave, Baymax detects signs of a female in hypersleep from within the portal. Realizing that it must be Abigail, they rush in to save her. However, on their way out, half of Baymax's armor and thrusters are damaged from a large chunk of Krei building debris, and Baymax realizes the only way to save Hiro and Abigail is to send them back by propelling the pod with his rocket fist. Hiro refuses to leave Baymax behind, but Baymax convinces him that it's the only option. Baymax asks Hiro if he's satisfied with his care, to which Hiro repeatedly says no until he finally gives in and says yes, which causes Baymax to deactivate. Hiro and Abigail safely make it back through the portal and Callaghan who finally sees the errors of his ways, apologizes to Hiro for the death of Tadashi and is arrested.
Later, as Hiro is about to leave his room, he discovers Baymax's health care chip (which contains his entire personality as well) is held in the rocket hand's grasp. Hiro successfully rebuilds Baymax, reactivates him with the healthcare chip and they happily reunite. The 6 friends then continue their exploits through the city, staying unknown, and helping those in need.
In a post-credit's scene Fred, back at his mansion, talks to a photo of his father, telling him he'd be proud of him being a hero. Fred accidentally opens a secret door and, upon entering, finds weapons, armor, and superhero gear. His father (voiced by Stan Lee) then arrives and talks about their underwear before stating they have a lot to talk about.
- Ryan Potter as Hiro Hamada
- Scott Adsit as Baymax
- Jamie Chung as Gogo Tomago
- Damon Wayans, Jr. as Wasabi No-Ginger
- Génesis Rodríguez as Honey Lemon
- T. J. Miller as Fredzilla
- Maya Rudolph as Aunt Cass
- James Cromwell as Professor Callaghan
- Alan Tudyk as Alistair Krei
- Daniel Henney as Tadashi Hamada
- Stan Lee as Fred's father, a secretly retired superhero.
After Disney's acquisition of Marvel Entertainment in 2009, CEO Bob Iger encouraged the company's divisions to explore Marvel's properties for adaptation concepts. While co-directing Winnie the Pooh, director Don Hall was scrolling through a database of Marvel characters when he stumbled upon Big Hero 6, a comic he had never heard of before. But he would pitch the concept to John Lasseter in 2011, as a possible production for Walt Disney Animation Studios, and it "struck a chord" with Lasseter, Hall and Chris Williams. In June 2012, Disney confirmed that Walt Disney Animation Studios was adapting Marvel Comics' series and that the film was commissioned into early stages of development. While both Sunfire and Silver Samurai were members of the team in the comic, they will not appear in the film due to 20th Century Fox holding the film rights to the characters as part of the X-Men franchise.
Big Hero 6 will be produced solely by Walt Disney Animation Studios, although several members of Marvel's creative team will be involved in the film's production including Joe Quesada, Marvel's chief creative officer. Regarding the film's story, Quesada stated, "The relationship between Hiro and his robot has a very Disney flavor to it...but it’s combined with these Marvel heroic arcs." The production team decided early on not to connect the film to the Marvel Cinematic Universe and set it in a stand-alone universe instead.
In terms of the film's animation style and settings, the film will combine Eastern world culture (predominantly Japanese) with Western world culture. In May 2013, Disney released concept art and rendered footage of San Fransokyo from the film. On December 31, 2013, it was reported that Chris Williams had joined Hall as director, while Roy Conli had replaced Kristina Reed as producer.
In researching robotics, the film's team consulted with engineers at Carnegie Mellon University who were working in the new field of "soft robotics" using inflatable vinyl. Hall stated that the technology "will have potential probably in the medical industry in the future, making robots that are very pliable and gentle and not going to hurt people when they pick them up." In terms of Baymax's design, Hall mentioned that the look of the mechanical armor took some time "because of the sheer amount of robots out there and just trying to get something that felt like the personality of the character." Co-director Williams stated "A big part of the design challenge is when he puts on the armor you want to feel that he’s a very powerful intimidating presence...at the same time, design-wise he has to relate to the really adorable simple vinyl robot underneath."
San Fransokyo, the futuristic mashup of San Fransisco and Tokyo was described by Hall as "an alternate version of San Francisco. Most of the technology is advanced, but much of it feels retro ... Where Hiro lives, it feels like the Haight. I love the Painted Ladies. We gave them a Japanese makeover; we put a cafe on the bottom of one. They live above a coffee shop." According to production designer Paul Felix "The topography is exaggerated because what we do is caricature, I think the hills are 11/2 times exaggerated. I don’t think you could really walk up them ... When you get to the downtown area, that’s when you get the most Tokyo-fied, that pure, layered, dense kind of feeling of the commercial district there. When you get out of there, it becomes more San Francisco with the Japanese aesthetic. ... (It’s a bit like) Blade Runner, but contained to a few square blocks. You see the skyscrapers contrasted with the hills."