Walt Disney Studios previewed its upcoming animated offering Strange World at D23 Expo today.
The film includes characters voiced by Jake Gyllenhaal, Dennis Quaid, Jabouki Young-White and Lucy Liu, all of whom were on hand. It’s about a legendary family of explorers whose differences threaten to scuttle their latest crucial adventure. The film is directed by Don Hall and written by Raya and the Last Dragon’s Qui Nguyen.
Hall called the film a “story of family [and] the strong desire to leave them a better world.” The director described the driving inspiration behind the film as “our kids.”
Nguyen said the story involves a hidden world, unique creatures and “environments full if surprises and dangers.”
Strange World marks Gyllenhaal’s first time in Disney animated movie. He plays a character called Searcher.
“Being here is so cool and to share this trailer for the first time,” he said. “I’ve always wanted to be in a Disney animated movie so it’s kind of a dream come true.”
“I love being part of the Disney family. It really has been very, very good to me. I play Jaeger Clade. I’m Searcher’s father and it’s a really different kind of character for me. He’s got huge calves, for one thing. Jaeger’s a world famous explorer in his strange world, an adventurer. He’s stubborn but he’s a lot of fun – opinionated but, you know, take him as he is.”
Liu said she was “excited to play such an amazing character because Callisto is tough. She’s fearless. A leader.” She also calls the character “someone I would aspire to be” because she wants to protect others.
“I love the idea of looking out for other people,” she said.
Young-White, who plays Searcher’s son Ethan Clade, describes his character as “an incredible kid. Super excited for adventure like his grandfather, not like his dad. I feel a part of myself in him.”