There's still nearly two years until Dreamworks' How to Train Your Dragon 3 hits theaters, but that doesn't mean that the cast and crew aren't well into production. Animated films are notoriously long productions, after all, especially when the animation is high-detail CG like we see in the How to Train Your Dragon series.
That said, the workflow of doing a movie like How to Train Your Dragon 3 is a bit different than some would expect... at least for the actors who bring the characters to life with their voice performances. Series star Jay Baruchel recently commented on the progress of the film, and his thoughts on how it will stack up to the other entries in the franchise once it's finally released.
Speaking on the JoBlo Movie Show podcast, Baruchel discussed the work that he's done on How to Train Your Dragon 3 so far. He described the sporadic nature of working on the film (which has already seen a few delays), and how odd it feels when a project with that spaced out of a production schedule makes an impact on fans. As he described it:
I've already done a number of recording sessions for that one. Once every 2-4 months I will work for 2 hours and then that happens over the course of 3 years and then before I know it I'm at Cannes with a movie that people are like, 'You don't understand! This movie is the most important thing in the world to me!' I felt like I fell ass-backwards into STAR WARS! It's really cool. We're well on the way to doing it. They take a lot of time to make so I don't know when it's coming, exactly.
He also revealed that he wasn't allowed to talk about the story at all, and wasn't even willing to reveal how old Hiccup would be in the new film. He did mention that he felt that How to Train Your Dragon 3 had the "strongest" story of all three movies, however:
I'm not allowed to say anything. This is what I'll say, and for whatever it's worth I do swear that this is not just promo nonsense. It's by far, the strongest of the stories (of the 3). It's the movie that the series requires and deserves and it's the rightful third chapter or third act, I should say. I don't think anybody will be disappointed.
It's interesting to note that Baruchel corrects himself to say "third act", suggesting that the story will tie in closely with the larger overall arc of the first two films. It may also indicate that How to Train Your Dragon 3 is still intended to close out that narrative arc, as was suggested a few years ago before the film was pushed back to 2019.
Of course, it will likely be another year or more before we find out too much more about the film. With two years to go, there's still time for significant changes to be made to the voice acting and even portions of the plot. With any luck, though, in 2019 we'll all agree with Baruchel about the strength of the third film and how it's just what the series needed.
How to Train Your Dragon 3 is currently slated for release on March 1, 2019.