‘The Grinch’: First Trailer Reveals Benedict Cumberbatch as the Lovable Grump

     March 8, 2018


Illumination Entertainment has released the first The Grinch trailer. For those who have never read or seen the Christmas classic, the story follows The Grinch (Benedict Cumberbatch), who plans to steal Christmas, but eventually experiences heart-enlargement when he sees the citizens of Who-ville being so good to each other.

This Illumination film is co-directed by Yarrow Cheney (The Secret Life of Pets) and, curiously enough, Kevin Smith‘s longtime producing partner Scott Mosier. It’s an interesting pairing that could result in something genuinely new from the studio behind the Despicable Me franchise, but this trailer is mostly concerned with familiarity as it unsurprisingly opens with a nod to the Despicable Me series. The animation itself is very much in line with the art of Dr. Seuss, and indeed Illumination tackled a Seuss adaptation before with the dreadful The Lorax.

We don’t get to hear too much of Cumberbatch here, as this teaser is more focused on just showcasing the jerkiness of the titular character. But I can already tell Max is going to be the standout character from the film, and as long as he’s around doing adorable things that should keep a lot of folks happy. It’s been nearly 18 years since the live-action Jim Carrey adaptation of the story, so perhaps this’ll get a whole new generation of kids into this Seuss classic.

Check out the first The Grinch trailer below. The film opens November 9th.

Here’s the official synopsis for The Grinch:

For their eighth fully animated feature, Illumination and Universal Pictures present The Grinch, based on Dr. Seuss’ beloved holiday classic.  The Grinch tells the story of a cynical grump who goes on a mission to steal Christmas, only to have his heart changed by a young girl’s generous holiday spirit.  Funny, heartwarming and visually stunning, it’s a universal story about the spirit of Christmas and the indomitable power of optimism.


Academy Award® nominee Benedict Cumberbatch lends his voice to the infamous Grinch, who lives a solitary life inside a cave on Mt. Crumpet with only his loyal dog, Max, for company.  With a cave rigged with inventions and contraptions for his day-to-day needs, the Grinch only sees his neighbors in Who-ville when he runs out of food.


Each year at Christmas they disrupt his tranquil solitude with their increasingly bigger, brighter and louder celebrations.  When the Whos declare they are going to make Christmas three times bigger this year, the Grinch realizes there is only one way for him to gain some peace and quiet: he must steal Christmas.  To do so, he decides he will pose as Santa Claus on Christmas Eve, even going so far as to trap a lackadaisical misfit reindeer to pull his sleigh.


Meanwhile, down in Who-ville, Cindy-Lou Who—a young girl overflowing with holiday cheer—plots with her gang of friends to trap Santa Claus as he makes his Christmas Eve rounds so that she can thank him for help for her overworked single mother.  As Christmas approaches, however, her good-natured scheme threatens to collide with the Grinch’s more nefarious one.  Will Cindy-Lou achieve her goal of finally meeting Santa Claus?  Will the Grinch succeed in silencing the Whos’ holiday cheer once and for all?


Find out, Christmas season 2018.

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