There won’t be a brand-new Pixar movie opening in theaters this year, but there will be a sequel to How to Train Your Dragon arriving in the months ahead. The DreamWorks 3D animated feature was directed by Dean DeBlois and Chris Sanders, who also previously collaborated on Disney’s 2D ‘toon Lilo & Stitch. Sanders has since launched yet another (critically and financially) successful animated franchise with The Croods, while DeBlois worked alone at the helm on How to Train Your Dragon 2.
A third trailer for the How to Train Your Dragon sequel is slated to drop tomorrow, but in the meantime DreamWorks has proffered an Instagram teaser to tide everyone over (see below). The clip is from a scene that features series’ protagonist Hiccup (once again voiced by Jay Baruchel) – now older, more confident, and still missing any hint of a Viking accent – alongside Valka (Cate Blanchett), a mysterious woman who bonds with Hicucp through their shared deeper appreciation and understanding of dragon behavior. (Okay, “mysterious” is a stretch, since the second trailer already gave way one of her big secrets.)
DeBlois’ How to Train Your Dragon sequel ought to be an improvement in terms of the quality of animation over its predecessor (a perk from hitting theaters four years later); the 3D flying sequences, primarily, those with Hiccup and his dragon companion Toothless, ought to be just as well-crafted as before, in this second installment. In addition, the narrative looks to be more complex this time around, as the conflict will arise not from the regular dragons having to serve Red Death (a.k.a. that giant dragon from the first movie), but from a more complicated threat – one that puts the fragile peace between the humans and dragon-kind in danger.
We ought to get more information on that storyline through the upcoming trailer. Until then, here’s a brand-new poster (via CS), featuring Gobber the Blacksmith (Craig Ferguson) – the seasoned warrior who, in the first movie, taught young Vikings how to fight Dragons – along with his own scale-covered, fire-breathing “pet,” Grump:
The How to Train Your Dragon 2 voice cast includes America Ferrera (End of Watch), Gerard Butler (Olympus Has Fallen), Kristen Wiig (Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues), Jonah Hill (22 Jump Street), Christopher Mintz-Plasse (Kick-Ass 2), Kit Harington (Game of Thrones), and Djimon Hounsou (Guardians of the Galaxy).
How to Train Your Dragon 2 opens in U.S. theaters on June 13th, 2014.