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Comic-Con 2014: The 7 Best Moments From ‘The Boxtrolls’ Panel

Laika/Focus Features

The Boxtrolls’ – which hit Hall H on Saturday at San Diego Comic-Con — is the third feature film from Laika, the stop motion animation studio that brought the world ‘Coraline’ and the wonderful ‘ParaNorman.’ Honestly, I cannot get enough of these movies, and Laika is quietly becoming the most unique animation studio working today. (Pixar’s last three films have been ‘Monsters University,’ ‘Brave,’ and ‘Cars 2,’ which is not exactly that studio’s best work. And, yes, I realize ‘Brave’ won an Oscar, but that was a travesty.) ‘The Boxtrolls’ centers on a large group of eponymous trolls who raise a human child who must eventually reacclimate to a world where no one else wears boxes. (Sounds hard.) Anyway, here are our seven favorite moments from ‘The Boxtrolls’ Comic-Con panel.

1. The Boxtrolls are trolls that wear a box as their clothes. I realize this makes a lot of sense, but, there you go.

2. ‘The Boxtrolls’ has been in production for 10 years. This is a good reason why not many animation studios specialize in stop motion animation, which even producer and panelist Travis Knight admitted just shouldn’t be done because of how tedious the production process is. Knight said that by the time filming actually starts, they only produce about a minute of footage a week.

3. All of the sets that took so long to build are eventually destroyed. Which sounds awful, but it’s part of the filming process. To achieve the close-ups on certain characters, the set has to be “shaved away,” so the animators can reach the model.

4. Sir Ben Kingsley wants to keep a model version of his character, Archibald Snatcher, just so it can greet guests as they arrive at his front door.

5. Elle Fanning wants to keep the cheese?

6. Tracy Morgan — who got a big ovation from the crowd even though he wasn’t in attendance and is still recovering from an auto accident — told producers he had been studying English accents for his character, yet when he did the character, it still just sounded like Tracy Morgan.

7. There will be no farts. When an audience member asked Travis Knight if every action by the character was written in the script and used “Sir Ben Kingsley farts” as an example, Knight responded, “No farts. This ain’t Dreamworks.”

Mike Ryan has written for The Huffington Post, Wired, Vanity Fair and GQ. He is the senior editor of ScreenCrush. You can contact him directly on Twitter.

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