After Disney Animation began their steamroll of a CGI-fueled comeback with 2010’s Tangled, the studio has churned out box office and critical hits Wreck-It Ralph, Big Hero 6 and Frozen, the latter two winning Best Animated Feature Oscars.
The Mouse House will hope to continue their impressive streak of animated gems with next March’s Zootopia. The new comedy from Wreck-It Ralph‘s Rich Moore and Tangled‘s Byron Howard will zero in on a new universe – one where animals go about life as people do, just in more animal-friendly confines.
A new still from the film introduces us to the film’s two leads – Nick Wilde the fox (voiced by Jason Bateman) and Judy Hopps the rabbit (Ginnifer Goodwin). Nick is a con artist, and Judy a brand-new officer of the law. The film follows the duo as they are forced to join together to help solve a big case Judy is working on.
Bateman described his Nick to USA Today as “a crafty, sarcastic schemer,” but Moore says Bateman equipped Nick with “a funny yet heartfelt side.” So, it sounds like Nick has a little more under his tricky exterior. As for the small-town Judy, Goodwin describes her as “a little Pollyanna mixed with Furiosa.” Yes, Furiosa, as in the heroine from Mad Max: Fury Road. According to Moore, Goodwin gives the role a “very centered sweetness, tremendous heart and a great sense of humor.”
The photo above already teases the fun dynamic between the two characters, and some of the film’s previously-released Moana – a safe bet for their awards horse in 2016 – set for release that November. It looks like Zootopia will be the more-playful option to Moana‘s more-traditional setup, but even a video game-driven movie like Ralph had a hefty amount of heart to it. Zootopia will hopefully follow suit. It’s the emotional core that has made these post-Tangled Disney movies so special.