‘Zooptopia’ Directors Talk Sequel Options as Film Passes $1 Billion

By June 6, 2016
zootopia 2 ideas

Over the weekend, Disney’s Zootopia became the second film of 2016 to gross more than $1 billion worldwide (the first was another Captain America: Civil War, also a Disney property). But even more impressive than Zootopia‘s colossal box office take is the fact that it has also become the second-biggest original film of all time, behind James Cameron’s Avatar.

Sure, there are plenty of films that have grossed more than Zootopia, but with the exception of Cameron’s tale about blue forest people, all of those other films were based on pre-existing properties – so they’re not considered “original.” And while these sales figures are only factoring in the actual revenue, even after adjusting for inflation Zootopia still remains in the Top 10.

With results like that, it’s no wonder that directors Byron Howard and Rich Moore have some ideas for a sequel, and during a recent chat with Entertainment Weekly they discussed a few things they’d like to explore in the further adventure of Nick Wilde and Judy Hopps. Says Howard:

“We cut a lot out during the making of the film. We introduced districts that we talked about that couldn’t fit in, other characters that we eliminated from the movie. There’s a vast potential for this world, so I’d love to see something more come from it… There’s a part in the film where the train goes by Sahara Square and Hopps looks up at this huge palm tree hotel, and that palm tree hotel, we really designed to the nines. We designed the lobby, the interior, and [Shakira’s character] Gazelle at one point had a suite at the top. It was this super luxury Dubai-esque place, which would be an awesome setting in the future… We liken it to going to New York City for the first time. You see the highlights on the first trip, but when you go back, you get to appreciate things you didn’t know before, almost like a local.”

While the settings and supporting characters were fabulous, the heart of Zootopia lies in the relationship between Nick and Judy – but just what is the nature of that relationship? It’s a question that Byron and Howard know they won’t be able to avoid in the sequel, with Moore conceding:

“We will have to take on [the question], what is Nick and Judy’s relationship like? And somebody’s going to be disappointed. It will either be romantic, or it will stay a friendship, and those who ship [them] are going to go crazy, and those who just want them to be friends will say, ‘Why did you make it a romance?’ So we need to gird ourselves for that.”

Zootopia 2 hasn’t been officially greenlit yet, but with the directors being so forthcoming about what they’d like to do in a follow-up film, an announcement will probably be coming down the pipeline before too much longer.

Brent Hankins

Brent Hankins

Contributing Writer at GeekNation
Brent Hankins is a member of the Phoenix Critics Circle and co-host of the Drinks and Discourse podcast. He's also the proud owner of an Italian Greyhound named Sullivan. He's adorable (the dog, not the author).