Disney’s rival DreamWorks seems to be taking a swipe at The Little Mermaid with Ruby Gillman. The upcoming animated movie features a very Ariel-like mermaid as the primary villain, seemingly reversing the roles of Ariel and Ursula.
Given that Dreamworks has famously dunked on Disney before in the Shrek series, it was probably no coincidence. The timing is curious as well, with the live-action Disney remake of The Little Mermaid being embroiled in controversy over casting and the creepy, uncanny valley versions of Sebastian, Flounder and Scuttle.
Here’s the official write-up for Ruby Gillman: Teenage Kraken…
This summer, DreamWorks Animation dives into the turbulent waters of high school with a hilarious, heartfelt action comedy about a shy teenager who discovers that she’s part of a legendary royal lineage of mythical sea krakens and that her destiny, in the depths of the oceans, is bigger than she ever dreamed.
Sweet, awkward 16-year-old Ruby Gillman (Lana Condor, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before franchise) is desperate to fit in at Oceanside High, but she mostly just feels invisible.
She’s math-tutoring her skater-boy crush (Jaboukie Young-White, Ralph Breaks the Internet), who only seems to admire her for her fractals, and she’s prevented from hanging out with the cool kids at the beach because her over-protective supermom (Oscar® nominee Toni Collette, Knives Out), has forbade Ruby from ever getting in the water.
But when she breaks her mom’s #1 rule, Ruby will discover that she is a direct descendant of the warrior Kraken queens and is destined to inherit the throne from her commanding grandmother (Academy Award® winner Jane Fonda), the Warrior Queen of the Seven Seas.
The Kraken are sworn to protect the oceans of the world against the vain, power-hungry mermaids who have been battling with the Kraken for eons. There’s one major, and immediate, problem with that: The school’s beautiful, popular new girl, Chelsea (Emmy winner Annie Murphy, Schitt’s Creek) just happens to be a mermaid. Ruby will ultimately need to embrace who she is and go big to protect those she loves most.
Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken stars an extraordinary cast that includes Emmy winner Colman Domingo (Fear the Walking Dead) as Ruby’s supportive dad, Emmy nominee Sam Richardson (Veep) as Ruby’s enthusiastic uncle and Blue Chapman (Council of Dads) as Ruby’s cool little brother.
Directed by Academy Award® nominated filmmaker Kirk DeMicco (Vivo, The Croods) and produced by Kelly Cooney Cilella (Trolls World Tour, Trolls), with Faryn Pearl (The Croods: A New Age, Trolls World Tour) serving as co-director, the film features a comedic powerhouse supporting cast, including Emmy nominee Will Forte (The Last Man on Earth), Emmy nominee Nicole Byer (Nailed It!), YouTube Diamond creator Liza Koshy (Liza on Demand), Ramona Young (Never Have I Ever), Eduardo Franco (Stranger Things) and Echo Kellum (Arrow).
Ruby Gillman: Teenage Kraken opens in theaters this summer.
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