Zootopia is a modern, civilized world that’s entirely animal. It’s a city like no other, comprised of habitat neighborhoods that are a melting pot where animals from every environment live together and where, no matter what you are, from the biggest elephant to the smallest shrew, you can be anything. But, when optimistic Officer Judy Hopps (voiced by Ginnifer Goodwin) arrives, she discovers that being the first bunny on a police force of big, tough animals isn’t so easy. She’s determined to prove herself and crack a case, but she’ll have to partner with a fast-talking, scam-artist fox, named Nick Wilde (voiced by Jason Bateman), to do so.
In October, Collider (along with various other entertainment outlets) was invited to check out some scenes from the March 4th release and attend a handful of presentations at the Disney Animation Tujunga campus, where we learned about character creation, the blending of animal and human behavior, production design and the extensive research they did to bring it all to life. Throughout the day, it became quite clear that there is attention paid to every single detail, no matter how small, the environments in the film are beautiful to look at, and that the humor and heart that audiences have come to expect from Disney Animation features will be present.
Here are 20 things we learned about Zootopia, from the early press day for the film:
It’s the studio’s goal, each and every day, to make contemporary and ground-breaking films that inspire and tell great stories. Through the story trust, which is a mix of directors, writers and story artists, they challenge each other to push their films to a new level of excellence. They strive to tell timeless stories that appeal to audiences, they want the movies to be entertaining for all ages, the films must contain a combination of great humor and deep emotion, and the films must represent the style of Walt Disney because his name is on them.
- When they started thinking about the story they wanted to tell next, they kept coming back to wanting to tell a story of animated animals in a city called Zootopia. Once they decided what the film would be, the filmmakers spent 18 months just studying animals. They started at Animal Kingdom at Walt Disney World and Wild Animal Park in San Diego, and then they went to Kenya for two weeks to study animals in the wild, in order to capture what makes them so amazing in the natural world.