Netflix’s Trollhunters promises limitless imagination from Guillermo del Toro
James R | On 17, Dec 2016
‘Twas the day after Christmas and all through the house, no child was complaining, not even a spouse. The gifts were unwrapped and toys played with care, while parents revelled in the peace and quiet in the air. That’s the kind of seasonal holiday Netflix is promising parents with the release of its new animated series, Trollhunters.
“We program our shows around people’s lives – not advertising schedules,” says Andy Yeatman, Director of Kids Content for Netflix. “We know our members are hungry for new content in the slow post-holiday weeks of late December and early January, which is when our viewership peaks. So, we teamed with DreamWorks Animation Television and acclaimed filmmaker Guillermo del Toro to launch 26 episodes – the most we’ve delivered of any original series at once – to give families a new story to enjoy together.”
The show premieres on Friday 23rd December, with a whopping 13 hours of adventure, following an ordinary teenager who finds himself chosen to save both the world of humans and trolls, as the two collide.
“This is a magical show and it has light and joy,” is how Kelsey Grammer (voicing one of the trolls) puts it. And, after a nightmarish 2016, a bit of magic, light and joy are just what the family doctor ordered. Netflix teases 24 acts of bravery, 15 jokes adults will love that kids won’t catch, 14 creatures kids will describe later in painstaking detail, 44 “insane” action scenes and 20 gross-out moments kids will love, but the main draw for some parents will be del Toro’s limitless imagination – which, as a new featurette reveals, is what attracted a lot of the cast to the project. As The Walking Dead’s Stephen Yeun concludes, “it looks awesome”.
Here’s the new video:
Netflix unveils trailer for Guillermo Del Toro’s Trollhunters
9th October 2016
Netflix is always announcing new original kids series, as the VOD service races against its rivals to dominate the family streaming market. One announcement stood out last year, though: a DreamWorks Animation series called Trollhunter. Unlike the usual DreamWorks spin-offs from feature-film franchises, this is an original show, about two friends who make a startling discovery beneath their town. The discovery? You guessed it: trolls.
Now, we’ve got our first look at the show in action – and it’s brimming with humour and imagination, as we witness Jim stumble across a mysterious amulet and turn into that tried-and-tested protagonist fantasy tales love: the normal human who becomes a hero to end the battle between the good trolls and the bad trolls.
The show boasts Kelsey Grammar and Ron Perlman in its voice cast, the former playing a troll who helps Jim and the latter a sinister troll who targets him. The ensemble is led by the late Anton Yelchin, who tragically passed away earlier this year.
The series will premiere on 23rd December.
Kelsey Grammer and Ron Perlman to star in Guillermo del Toro’s Trollhunters
16th June 2016
Kelsey Grammer and Ron Perlman will star in Guillermo del Toro’s Trollhunters. The animated series, produced by DreamWorks Animation for Netflix, was first announced last year as part of a new deal between the two giants. The series promises to “unleash a new, fantastical world wrapped around two best friends who make a startling discovery beneath their hometown”.
Now, we’re finally hearing further details about the show straight from the horse’s mouth. The Pan’s Labyrinth director announced the casting at France’s Annecy Festival, where he delivered a masterclass on his career yesterday. Including a sizzle-reel of footage from the show, he spoke about the programme and his work to date.
Anton Yelchin will voice Jim, our hero, who discovers a mysterious amulet in his suburb of Arcadia, which soon leads to the uncovering of a hidden battle between good trolls and bad trolls. Grammer will voice a troll who helps Jim, while Perlman will voice Bular, “a sinister troll who targets Jim and his friends for battle”.
“Saving the world after gym class” is how del Toro said he pitched the show to DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg, who was a surprise guest at the festival.
Katzenberg added that the Mexican durectir has brought a certain darkness to DreamWorks Animation over the years, reports THR, commenting that he “increased the murder rate by 100 per cent”, and suggested the killing off of key characters.
Trollhunters will premiere on Netflix in December 2016, making it the perfect billing for the streaming service’s Christmas family offering.
Photo: DreamWorks Animation / Annecy Festival