Based on the #1 New York Times bestseller, and USA Today’s top-selling book of 2017, by R.J. Palacio, writer-director Stephen Chbosky (Beauty and the Beast, The Perks of Being a Wallflower) brings to life the uplifting story of a boy who inspires and teaches others that true beauty is found within.

Wonder follows the inspiring story of the Pullman family, whose youngest child, Auggie, is a boy born with facial differences. When Auggie enters mainstream elementary school for the first time, his extraordinary journey unites his family, his school, and his community, and proves that you can’t blend in when you were born to stand out.

The Wonder home entertainment release includes all-new special features, including a never-before-seen 5-part documentary, multiple featurettes, a music video, and an audio commentary with Stephen Chbosky and R.J. Palacio.

4K UHD/BLU-RAY/DIGITAL SPECIAL FEATURES

· “Summer of Fun” 5-Part Documentary

o “A (com)Passion Project” Featurette

o “Family Matters” Featurette

o “A Technical Wonder” Featurette

o “A Note of Kindness” Featurette

o “We All Deserve a Standing Ovation at Least Once in Our Lives” Featurette

· “A Child’s Sense of Wonder” Featurette

· “What a Wonderful World” Featurette

· Audio Commentary with Stephen Chbosky and R.J. Palacio

· “Brand New Eyes” Music Video

· Wonder Soundtrack: Behind-the-Scenes Featurette

Lionsgate was gracious enough to provide us an advance copy to review the bonus features for you prior to the film release on February 13.

Summer of Fun Multi-Part Documentary
A (com)Passion Project

RJ Palacio talked about the inspiration for the book. Director Stephen Chbosky mentions how each character in the book was memorable on their own. The book is a call to kindness for everyone. Something essential to discuss so people treat people with kindness. This story is the lesson on how to look at someone’s heart rather than the package they come in. The crew and cast had a mission to protect the book and was faithfully adapted to the screen.

Families Matters

RJ Palacios feels that the cast selected to portray the family is a vivid personification of her characters. Jacob brought depth and childlike innocence to Auggie. Julia Roberts believed in the book coming to life and was committed to be part of the film throughout the three years it was in the works. Owen Wilson brings the comedic relief as Nate making sure hat the family isn’t always too serious and has some humor. Izabella does a fantastic job of portraying Via as a supportive sister who is sometimes pushed aside due to her brother’s needs.

A Technical Wonder

Having the book change points of view is a brilliant way of letting the readers hear how every character hears the same events. Let’s the reader see that everyone deserved sympathy, empathy and kindness. Viewers realize that each character has a part they identify with. The challenge was on how to depict Auggie and if it would be a child actor in makeup or mostly CGI. SFX make-up artist Arjen Tuiten was able to come up with a design that would be applied quickly that consisted of prostethics and a head piece.

A Note of Kindness

Director Stephen Chbosky asked the crew to send him music for the film to see what would fit the mood of scenes. The music of Marcelo Zorvos was continuously standing out because the themes were not just sad but also uplifting which is why he was selected for the film’s score.

We All Deserve a Standing Ovation At Keats Once In Out Lives

To RJ Palacio it was a surreal moment to see the final scene from the book brought to life. Director Stephen Chbosky arranged a special surprise for the author when filming this final scene.

A Child’s Sense of Wonder: Featurette

Stephen Chbosky discusses what it was like working with a cast mostly composed of kids. The mood on set was that of a summer camp with everyone getting along on and off screen. A lot of the child extras were relatives of the cast and crew.

What A Wonderfull World Featurette

The city the book takes place in, North River Heights, is based off of RJ Palacio’s neighborhood in Brooklyn. Filming in Vancouver made location scouting a bit of a challenge to create a New York vibe. The production designer explains that part of creating he set is defining the characters brought their environments. Everything placed on the walls told a story about that character’s past. Just like each character has their own voice this was helped by creating a unique world for them through the wardrobe and set.

Wonder – Soundtrack Behind the Scenes Featurette

A big part of creating the right mood for a film is the music selection and in this Featurette we get a peek at the making of the score. Composer Marcelo Zarcos compares it to creating a musical of the film because each scene is like a song and a story in and of itself.

The film’s commentary with Stephen Chbosky and RJ Palacio’s also gives some amazing insights on casting, scene shots and ideas included to bring the book to life.

Overall, the bonuses features for Wonder do a magnificent job of showing how such a well received work of children’s literature was adapted and giving us more than enough behind the scenes insight into the making of the movie. If you read and loved the book you will really love diving into these bonus features.

Diving Into the World of ‘Wonder’ - Bonus Features Review
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