Today, The Hollywood Reporter has revealed the first look at Winnie the Pooh in Rhys Frake-Waterfield's Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey 2, a sequel to this year's surprising (and surprisingly successful!) Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey. That's Pooh there, up at the top of this page, glowering at you and, quite frankly, looking a helluva lot better than he did the last time we saw him.
Turns out, that's all thanks to Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey 2's expanded budget, which is considerably higher than the amount of money spent bringing the first Blood and Honey to the screen. How much higher? An estimated 10 times the $20-30,000 Jagged Edge Productions spent on the first one.
"(Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey 2) is better than number one in every single aspect. Because we’ve gone into this knowing on what platform scale it’s going, whereas in the first one, we didn’t really have much of an idea. We obviously didn’t expect it to go to the masses it did. This time we’ve gone into it knowing that will happen, so a lot more time can be dedicated towards it. I’ve not really worked on anything else this year. And that’s why all areas are now a massive jump up compared to the first."
That definitely includes Pooh's fresh new look. Frake-Waterfield goes on to add:
"Before we had a mask bought online, some cleaning gloves from the shop downstairs and a red lumberjack shirt from Amazon. The whole monster was about £630 ($770). But this time we have people doing the prosthetics — it’s a company that has worked on Harry Potter’s Voldemort and Star Wars. And they’ve been in charge of the redesigns of the creature. And that’s why Pooh looks a bit more scary. There’s an extra level of detail there."
Frake-Waterfield estimates that Pooh's new design cost the production somewhere in the neighborhood of $20,000, which means they've spent around as much bringing the new Pooh to life that they did making the entirety of Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey. Oh, bother, indeed!
Head on over to The Hollywood Reporter to read the rest of their interview with Frake-Waterfield and producer Scott Jeffrey, and do stay tuned for more on Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey 2 as we draw ever closer to its proposed February 14th (Valentine's Day, naturally) release date.