Earlier today, Disney released the first teaser trailer for their next animated feature Zootopia. This film is Disney’s follow-up to the successful Big Hero 6, and as explained by the wonderful Jason Bateman (the voice of the fox Nick Wilde), Zootopia is a world where there never were humans, and the mammals all have human characteristics. They walk on two feet (especially funny for the giraffes), wear clothes, and take selfies. The animals still have their “natural” attributes as well, from night vision to sensitive hearing, and will likely take advantage of them for plot purposes, but we don’t know too much about that.
Unfortunately, we don’t get too much more than that from the teaser. We are also introduced to the bunny Judy Hops (Ginnifer Goodwin), Zootopia’s most talented detective who will be charged with hunting down Bateman’s Nick Wilde. There’s some playful interaction between them, and we can expect their relationship to be central to the story, as Nick is framed for some crime and Judy transitions from his pursuer to his partner when the two get caught up in a conspiracy. For now, though, we don’t see any images from the story, just this playful introduction. For a teaser trailer, this is just fine, and it definitely whets my appetite for something more substantial down the road.
We are in the midst of the second Disney Renaissance, as the animation studio has finally learned how to use computer animation to tell stories that are wonderful, yet distinct from Pixar. There isn’t much to go on for right now, as Zootopia has a March 2016 release date, but this teaser has certainly catapulted the next entry in the Disney canon into the realm of “highly anticipated.” I am looking forward to it, and hopefully after watching it below, you will too!