Incredible behind-the-scenes pictures show how forthcoming Pixar blockbuster Brave made it to the big screen. These fun-filled snaps look like they're straight out of a tourist's holiday album. But they actually reveal how the team of top Tinseltown filmmakers lived, worked and breathed Scotland to bring the mythical Highland tale to life.
Brave is expected to become Scotland's biggest movie success — even bigger than Mel Gibson's Braveheart — when it takes the world by storm this summer.
Disney and tourism chiefs VisitScotland are planning a multi-million-pound marketing campaign for the film to take Scotland global.
Pixar — the animation giants behind Finding Nemo, Cars and The Incredibles — signed up a host of Scotland's biggest names, including Trainspotting star Kelly Macdonald, comic legend Billy Connolly and US chat show host Craig Ferguson.
It's due out in August but these amazing pictures show this big-screen adventure started a staggering SIX YEARS AGO.
Director Mark Andrews, with writer Brenda Chapman and cartoonist Steve Purcell, made a secret visit to Scotland for the first time. They enjoyed a two-week research trip here, visiting Pitlochry, the Trossachs, Skye, Harris and Lewis. One snap shows the trio lying down in the heather soaking up the atmosphere surrounded by some of our most stunning scenery.
Back at the Pixar hub in California, those on the Brave animation dream team had to attend weekly production meetings wearing KILTS and tartan so that they could stay in the creative mood. One of our images captures animators Travis Hathaway, Ken Kim, Daniel Campbell, Terry Song and Carlo Vogele wearing our national dress.
A Brave insider said: "The guys behind the film have gone to extraordinary lengths to make the project work.
"They just wanted to soak up the very essence of Scotland and make that transfer on screen and in the story.
"And they've shown that they don't take themselves too seriously.
"Seeing pictures of some of the world's top people in animation lying face up in the heather staring at the sky, captured that injection of famous Scottish humour.
"That's been vital for getting the right humour across on screen."
Writer Brenda came up with the idea for the 3D film, which also features Harry Potter star Robbie Coltrane, Grey's Anatomy hunk Kevin McKidd and Oscar-winner Emma Thompson.
She led the project until she was replaced by Andrews as director two years ago.
Brenda says she was inspired to write the screenplay by her 12-year-old daughter.
She said: "I wanted to do a story about a mother and a daughter and what that relationship is like, the struggle.
"Mainly it was inspired by my relationship with my daughter, who is 12. She is very strong-willed and very independent natured.
"We butt heads and we're both control freaks but the intensity of my love for her is constant."
It was also Brenda's decision to set the medieval tale in the Highlands.
Read and see much more at The Scottish Sun