It’s krakens vs. mermaids in DreamWorks’ latest action-adventure and coming-of-age animated film “Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken” starring a stellar voice cast that includes Lana Condor, known for “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before” franchise, in the titular character, along with Oscar® nominee Toni Collette (as Ruby’s mom), Academy Award® winner Jane Fonda (as Ruby’s grandmother) and Emmy winner Annie Murphy as Chelsea. The movie also stars an extraordinary supporting 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 ( “The Croods”), “Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken” is a sweet, awkward 16-year-old who 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 from 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 and 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 queen and is destined to inherit the throne from her commanding grandmother, the Warrior Queen of the Seven Seas.
The krakens 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 just happens to be a mermaid. Ruby will ultimately need to embrace who she is and go big to protect those she loves most.
“As a filmmaker, I’ve always been interested in subverting expectations in my storytelling,” DeMicco says. “When it came to Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken, one of the things that excited me most was the opportunity to do just that with the mythology of the krakens and mermaids. Traditionally, the kraken has been portrayed as a monstrous creature, something to be feared and avoided at all costs. But in this film, we wanted to explore the idea of krakens as powerful and benevolent protectors of the sea. Similarly, we wanted to take the traditional image of mermaids and turn it on its head, creating a more complex and nuanced mythology that challenged audience expectations.”
The result is a visually stunning, emotionally resonant—and very funny—aquatic coming-of-age tale about a girl searching for a sense of belonging in the world and learning more than she could have ever imagined. “DreamWorks Animation has a long, comic tradition of subverting the hero’s journey, whether it’s an ogre who saves a princess, a panda that becomes a warrior, or a progressive Viking teen and his injured dragon who change the course of their community,” says DreamWorks Animation President Margie Cohn. “Ruby Gillman represents a new chapter to that tradition: a teen girl with unexpected and extraordinary powers.”
A DreamWorks film and Universal Pictures presentation, “Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken” swims in Philippine cinemas on June 28.