How To Train Your Dragon is the story of Hiccup, the slightly hopeless son of a Viking chief, whose home island of Berk is constantly beset by dragons. But when Hiccup shoots down a dragon himself, he finds out that dragons aren’t the vicious creatures he first thought, and a charming friendship begins between him and the gorgeous dragon, Toothless. Released in 2010, it was DreamWorks’s most critically-acclaimed animation, nominated for Academy Awards, Golden Globes and BAFTAs.
The much-anticipated sequel hits cinemas on 4 July 2014 in the UK. Flicks And The City had a sneak preview of the film and a chat with director Dean DeBlois during which we found out some exciting things we can look forward to seeing in How To Train Your Dragon 2!
1. Music from John Powell and Sigur Rós frontman Jónsi Birgisson.
John Powell, the composer on the first film, is returning with his folksy blend of Icelandic-influenced sound – which viewers of the first film will remember managed to be cinematic, action-fuelled, melancholic, and upbeat by turns, capturing the spirit of the film perfectly. This time round he is working with the frontman of critically-acclaimed Icelandic band Sigur Rós, Jónsi Birgisson, to capture that truly authentic Icelandic sound and flavour.
2. All the former cast are returning!
The first film boasted a very high calibre of voice talent, from Gerard Butler, America Ferrera, Jay Baruchel playing the three main characters, alongside some comedy stalwarts such as Jonah Hill, Kristen Wiig, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Craig Ferguson and more. All of the original cast is returning to reprise their roles for the sequel, which is set five years after the first film.
3. Cate Blanchett and Kit Harington join the cast!
Oscar-winning actress Cate Blanchett and Game of Thrones’s Kit Harington are joining the cast as two entirely new characters. Blanchett plays Valka, an intriguing Viking woman with a mysterious past, and Harington is Eret, Son of Eret, who poses a new threat to Berk’s dragons. But the true threat comes in the form of Drago Bludvist, a vicious new character, voiced by Guardians of the Galaxy actor Djimon Hounsou.
4. It’s a trilogy!
Director Dean DeBlois confirms that How to Train Your Dragon was always pitched as the first part in a trilogy. With the second instalment soon to be released, that means that we can expect the third and final part some time in the next four years. DeBlois confirms that as they reach the end of production on part two, they are just beginning the very early script-work on part three!
5. It’s bigger, bolder, and more epic.
With a trilogy in mind, DeBlois confirms that a big influence in how they developed the story was George Lucas’s Empire Strikes Back. Sequels should take what was good about the first story, he says, and build on it, instead of repeating the same story or doing something pointless. And so How to Train Your Dragon 2 is full of rich characterisation, pacy plotting, stunning visuals that broaden the vista of the world, and plenty of new and exciting species of dragon to explore! Fans of How To Train Your Dragon are sure to be satisfied.
How to Train your Dragon 2 is released on 4 July 2014.