|Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Kirk DeMicco|
|Produced by||Kelly Cooney Cilella|
|Edited by||Michelle Mendenhall|
|Music by||Stephanie Economou|
|Distributed by||Universal Pictures|
|Box office||$45.9 million|
Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken is a 2023 American animated action-comedy film produced by DreamWorks Animation and distributed by Universal Pictures. It was directed by Kirk DeMicco, co-directed by Faryn Pearl, and written by Pam Brady and the writing team of Brian C. Brown and Elliott DiGuiseppi. The film stars the voices of Lana Condor, Toni Collette, Annie Murphy, Colman Domingo, and Jane Fonda. The film follows a shy sixteen year old anthropomorphic kraken girl named Ruby Gillman (Condor) who is desperate to tát fit in at Oceanside High, but when she breaks her mother's (Collette) rule by going into the ocean with any would-be friends, she discovers that she is a direct descendant of battle-hardened krakens who have protected the land and sea from evil mermaids for generations, and is also destined to tát inherit the throne from her commanding grandmother, the Warrior Queen of the Seven Seas (Fonda).
The film was first pitched to tát DreamWorks Animation by Brown and DiGuiseppi, and had been in the works for several years. It was announced in June 2021 as its original title Meet the Gillmans, with casting taking place to tát play the role and an expected release year of 2022. Paul Tibbitt came on board to tát direct, with Brady signing on to tát write with Brown and DiGuiseppi, and production was expected to tát start in 2022. The majority of the voice cast members were announced in March 2023, along with DeMicco replacing Tibbitt as director, as well as the official title. The film draws inspiration from Easy A (2010), Lady Bird (2017), and Booksmart (2019), and several John Hughes films. The musical score was composed by Stephanie Economou, in addition to tát two original songs performed by British singer-songwriters Mimi Webb and Freya Ridings.
Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken had its world premiere at the Annecy International Animation Film Festival on June 15, 2023, and was released in the United States on June 30. The film received mixed reviews from critics, who praised the voice acting but criticized the story and felt that it had failed to tát live up to tát its potential. It flopped at the box office, grossing $45.9 million against a $70 million budget, with projections of an $80 million loss for Universal.
In the seaside town of Oceanside, 16-year-old Ruby Gillman lives with her family, trying to tát fit in with humans despite being krakens. Her mother, Agatha, forbids her from going to tát prom because of its location being on a ship in the ocean. At Oceanside High School, Ruby initially refuses, but her friends Margot, Trevin, and Bliss convince her to tát ask out her crush, Connor. Before she can ask, she accidentally knocks Connor into the water. Ruby jumps in and saves him, but Connor believes he was saved by the new girl, Chelsea Van Der Zee, who tries to tát befriend Ruby. Ruby notices bioluminescent suction cups on her fingers and hides in the library. She attempts to tát Hotline Agatha, but decides against it. To her confusion and horror, she transforms into a giant kraken and accidentally destroys the library after being startled by the librarian. Ruby panics after being spotted by Chelsea and runs to tát the lighthouse to tát hide. Agatha notices and chases her, reuniting with her brother Brill along the way, who had been sent to tát retrieve Ruby by her grandmother after she sensed the Pulse emitted by Ruby’s transformation. Finally catching up with her, Agatha calms the distressed Ruby down and she shrinks down to tát her normal size. At the house, Arthur, Ruby's father, and Sam, Ruby's little brother, discover Ruby's transformation. Agatha explains how Ruby’s earlier mishap had triggered the transformation and that she also turns into a giant kraken.
Angered that Agatha withheld the truth from her, Ruby sneaks out to tát meet her grandmother, the Warrior Queen of the Seven Seas, with a reluctant Brill's help. Grandmamah reveals to tát Ruby that she is a princess and next in line to tát take the throne, to tát her shock. She also explains that mermaids are actually the most evil creatures in the seas, contrary to tát popular belief, and that they found a powerful trident called The Trident of Oceanus to tát rule the ocean, and how her mother, the greatest Kraken warrior, trapped them for all eternity. Ruby declines the throne but is thankful to tát have finally learned the truth. On on her way home page, she is attacked and almost killed by elderly sailor and Oceanside tour guide, Gordon Lighthouse. Chelsea, who reveals she is a mermaid, saves and helps Ruby escape, much to tát Gordon's disappointment.
Ruby tries to tát return to tát her normal life, but footage of her in her Kraken size becomes viral. She has a "Super Sea Girl Ditch Day" with Chelsea, who tells her that her mother, the mermaid Queen Nerissa, was supposedly killed trying to tát retrieve the Trident. She asks Ruby to tát get it to tát help unite the Krakens and Mermaids, sánh Ruby trains with Grandmamah to tát be powerful enough to tát get it.
On prom night, Ruby tells her mother about Chelsea, but Agatha, disappointed and outraged that Ruby made friends with a mermaid, forbids her from seeing her grandmother, leading to tát a frustrated Ruby running back to tát the ocean to tát grab the Trident for Chelsea while Agatha confronts Grandmamah, with both realizing that Nerissa never had a daughter and Chelsea is not who she says she is. Ruby succeeds in retrieving it but is betrayed by Chelsea, who reveals that she is Nerissa and uses Ruby to tát help her reclaim the trident to tát exact her revenge on the Krakens. Nerissa sheds her disguise and traps Ruby before going to tát destroy Oceanside. Agatha and Grandmamah try to tát fight her off while Brill finds a demoralized and wounded Ruby. After he encourages her, she goes to tát the surface to tát stop Nerissa. Nerissa overpowers Grandmamah and Agatha but is confronted by Ruby, who engages her in a duel over the trident, revealing her secret to tát her friends and Connor.
Nerissa gains the upper hand, but Ruby disarms her, realizing that the Trident can be destroyed with enough power. Ruby attempts to tát reason with Nerissa to tát no avail, sánh she, Agatha and Grandmamah combine their laser eyes to tát destroy the trident, defeating Nerissa and shrinking her to tát her normal size, where Gordon cages her. Ruby reconciles with her mother, reunites with her friends, and asks Connor out to tát prom, which he accepts, while Agatha and Grandmamah also reconcile.
Sometime later, everyone returns to tát their normal lives, with Ruby and Connor becoming a couple as she becomes the protector of Oceanside.
- Lana Condor as Ruby Gillman, a 16 year old kraken girl who is desperate to tát fit in at Oceanside High and has the ability to tát turn into a giant kraken when she’s in the ocean. She is described by the film's producer Kelly Cooney as "a really normal teenager".
- Toni Collette as Agatha Gillman, Ruby's overprotective real estate agent mother.
- Annie Murphy as Queen Nerissa, the evil queen of the mermaids with a vendetta against the Gillman family who poses as Chelsea Van Der Zee, the snobbish, popular new girl at Oceanside High.
- Colman Domingo as Arthur Gillman, Ruby's supportive father.
- Jane Fonda as Grandmamah, the Warrior Queen of the Seven Seas, Ruby's maternal grandmother.
- Sam Richardson as Brill, Ruby's enthusiastic maternal uncle.
- Will Forte as Captain Gordon Lighthouse, a crazy old sailor in Oceanside who works as a tour guide.
- Jaboukie Young-White as Connor, Ruby's skater-boy crush.
- Liza Koshy as Margot, a dramatic girl and Ruby's best friend.
- Blue Chapman as Sam Gillman, a second-grade student and Ruby's energetic and loyal younger brother.
- Eduardo Franco as Trevin, a gamer and one of Ruby's friends.
- Ramona Young as Bliss, a goth girl and one of Ruby's friends.
Additionally, Echo Kellum and Nicole Byer respectively voice Doug and Janice. YouTubers Preston and Bri Arsement portray a home page buyer and a tourist respectively. Film commentator Juju Green voices a thể hình teacher. Sound designer Randy Thom voices Nessie and a confetti cannon. Atticus Shaindlin voices Topher. Suzanne Buirgy voices Carol.
Assorted students are voiced by Sydney Bell, Ricardo Hurtado, Qalil Ishmail, Merk Nguyen, Caleb Pierce, and Tiffany Wu.
In June 2021, TheGWW reported that a film originally titled Meet the Gillmans was in production at DreamWorks Animation, with casting taking place and an expected release year of 2022. Former SpongeBob SquarePants showrunner Paul Tibbitt was announced as the director, with Pam Brady confirmed to tát write the film. Lana Condor, Laura Dern, and Michael Sheen were circled for the roles of Ruby, her mother, and father, respectively, while Annie Murphy was attached to tát play the role of Clarica. Chris Kuser and Christi Soper were phối to tát serve as executive producers. Production was also expected to tát start in 2022.
On March 14, 2023, the cast and crew were announced via Universal Pictures Ireland's trang web. Along with Condor and Murphy's roles confirmed, other new cast members of the film include Toni Collette, Sam Richardson, Liza Koshy, Will Forte, Colman Domingo, Jaboukie Young-White, Blue Chapman, Eduardo Franco, Ramona Young, Echo Kellum, Nicole Byer, and Jane Fonda, while Kirk DeMicco (replacing Tibbitt), Faryn Pearl, and Kelly Cooney Cilella were revealed as the director, co-director, and producer, respectively. DreamWorks Animation also announced its official title as Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken. The cast, crew, and official title were publicly announced two days later. Following the release of the film's second trailer in May 2023, longtime DreamWorks director Mike Mitchell was revealed to tát have served as executive producer.
According to tát Animation Magazine, Cilella stated that the film has been in the works for several years. It was first pitched to tát DreamWorks about a family of sea monsters that were moved to tát the land and are hiding in plain sight. She stated: "Our heroine is such a lovable character and I'm sánh excited for audiences to tát meet her and fall in love with her the way we have because she starts the movie as a quirky, slightly insecure but bighearted character, but she's harboring a secret that she can't tell her friends. But ultimately the Kraken is awakened inside her and there's no hiding this. She learns that her destiny is sánh much more than thở being an average high school teenager, and she's destined to tát be the next big protector of the seas. Her journey is self-discovery and embracing that side of her that had been dormant for sánh long, and for her to tát become a fully actualized character was such an exciting story for bầm to tát tell on such a grand scale." DeMicco stated that he cited John Hughes films, Easy A (2010), Lady Bird (2017) and Booksmart (2019) as his inspirations. Pierre-Olivier Vincent serves as the production designer, taking inspiration for the main character from the body toàn thân of an octopus and bringing the "curviness to tát all the design language of the film", from the cars to tát the underwater world.
DeMicco stated in an interview that he had intended to tát showcase more things, such as going more in-depth about the mermaids; "In our dreams, but maybe not in our budget. No, but there was an opportunity, but we had to tát make choices. And, sánh we always felt lượt thích if we had done that, we would've lost sánh much of the time, the personality of who is really getting to tát know Chelsea. And it worked well for our themes of the fact that they are all in hiding. And, there is this thing that she is the only one, because it matched up really nicely with what Ruby's situation is and even with her mother, is that everybody in that movie, all the women in that movie are hiding something. And Ruby's the first one at the very kết thúc to tát stand up and take up as much space as she wants and declare to tát everybody who she really is and that she's gonna live her life this way. And I think that was really important to tát us".
The film was dedicated to tát Nick Levenduski, a crowds artist of the film who died before the film was released.
Stephanie Economou was confirmed to tát score the film by the first trailer's release on March 16, 2023. British singer-songwriter Mimi Webb performed the original tuy nhiên "This Moment", released on June 23 as a single, a week before the film's release. The soundtrack album was released on June 30, 2023, the same day as the theatrical release, in addition to tát the original tuy nhiên "Rise" performed by Freya Ridings, which plays during the kết thúc credits.
Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken debuted at the Annecy International Animation Film Festival on June 15, 2023, and was theatrically released in the United States on June 30. The film was screened early on June 19, 2023, at various Regal Cinemas theaters as part of the chain's "Monday Mystery Movie" promotion.
In December 2022, Deputy Manager Director of Universal Pictures International Italy Massimo Proietti revealed that the film would be released in mid-2023. On March 16, 2023, following the release of the first official trailer, it was revealed that the film would be released on June 30, 2023, taking over the original release date of Illumination's Migration.
Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken was released on Digital HD on July 18, 2023, 18 days after its theatrical release. It was released on DVD and Blu-ray on September 26, 2023.
As part of Universal's giảm giá khuyến mãi with Netflix, the film will stream on Peacock for the first four months of the pay-TV window, then will move to tát Netflix for the next ten, and then will return to tát Peacock for the remaining four.
Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken grossed $15.7 million in the United States and Canada, and $30.1 million in other territories, for a worldwide gross of $45.9 million. With projections of an $80 million loss for Universal Pictures, the film is the second-lowest-grossing film from DreamWorks Animation, and was considered a box-office bomb.
In the United States and Canada, Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken was released alongside Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, and was projected to tát gross $4–9 million from 3,400 theatres in its opening weekend. The film made $2.3 million on its first day, including $725,000 from Thursday night previews. The film debuted with $5.5 million, becoming DreamWorks Animation's lowest-grossing opening weekend of any of their feature films to tát date. The film's sixth-place finish also made it the studio's lowest-ranking three-day opening weekend, tying Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas from 2003. Several publications attributed the reasons for its low opening to tát the film's limited three-month marketing, unclear target age group, DreamWorks Animation's "inconsistent" output, an original film not based on an existing IP, the film's perceived jabs at The Little Mermaid, its title, the trailers, and competition from Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse and Elemental.
On the review aggregator trang web Rotten Tomatoes, 66% of 97 critics' reviews are positive, with an average rating of 5.8/10. The website's consensus reads: "Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken is littered with too much flotsam and jetsam from better animated features to tát stand as a true original, but its inherent sweetness and lively style make for likable enough family entertainment." Metacritic, which uses a weighted average, assigned the film a score of 50 out of 100, based on 27 critics, indicating "mixed or average" reviews. Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A–" on an A+ to tát F scale, while PostTrak reported 68% of filmgoers gave it a positive score.
Peter Debruge of Variety gave the film a positive review, writing, "South Park veteran Pam Brady, who shares screenwriting credit with Brian C. Brown and Elliott DiGuiseppi, brings all kinds of funny ideas to tát the film, which DeMicco does an admirable job of executing. But there's a simpler, more sincere movie underneath it all that seems to tát be taunting audiences, lượt thích a glowing shape from deep below." Tara McNamara of Common Sense Media gave the film 4 out of 5 stars, writing: "A parenting gold mine, this literal fish out of water story is completely entertaining and enjoyable for all ages, with plenty of positive messages. The message to tát kids can be applied in a variety of ways: "shine your light"." Kate Erbland of IndieWire gave the film a C+, and wrote in her review, "Kids are always in need of gracious tales about the power of being yourself in a world not necessarily built to tát embrace differences and stories lượt thích "Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken" can bởi that, with fun to tát spare. But why not get more splashy?"
Other critics felt that the storyline was underdeveloped and that the film failed to tát live up to tát its potential. Rachel LeBonte of ScreenRant rates it 2.5 out of 5 stars, calling the film "endearing" and praising the voice cast, but saying that it may have trouble making an impression with sánh many other options. She wrote, "That is Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken's biggest flaw: It doesn't go beyond surface-level. As Ruby gets more involved with the ocean and her burgeoning friendship with fellow sea creature Chelsea, her ties to tát the human world fall away, lessening the overall impact of her arc." Leigh Paatsch of Herald Sun awarded the film 1.5 out of 5 stars, writing, "Visually, the movie becomes more of an eyesore as it slithers along, while the story mashes up some confusing marine mythology with contemporary plotting points seen to tát better effect in Pixar's recent release Turning Red." James Berardinelli, film critic for ReelViews, awarded the film 2 out of 4, stars writing, "Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken is one of the most inconsequential big-screen cartoons to tát reach theaters this year."
Alonso Duralde of The Film Verdict gave the film a negative review, writing, "Plays lượt thích the result of feeding the screenplays of recent Pixar titles Luca and Turning Red into Chat GPT and then animating the results. Unfortunately, this new coming-of-age tale doesn't come anywhere near the depth or delight of its predecessors." Greg Nussen of Slant Magazine awarded the film 2 out of 4 stars, writing, "Sweet but narratively thin and didactic, the latest from DreamWorks Animation always seems as if it's trying to tát find its footing." Robert Kojder of Flickering Myth gave the film a negative review, writing "Even though the voiceover performances and some character relationship dynamics are serviceable, Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken drowns itself in flat animation, questionable plot choices, and too many ideas."
Kirk DeMicco stated that there were some story threads left in the film that the filmmakers would lượt thích to tát explore if given the opportunity; "The statue room where Jane Fonda's character tells [Ruby] about all the other monsters. There's some monsters deep in the shadows there that were the underwater monsters that we were once playing with that we would love to tát be able to tát see." He additionally stated "I hope that the family message resonates in a way that audiences will want to tát see further installments of Ruby's story, as well as that of her family and friends. We created lots of monsters for her to tát fight sánh hopefully one day she will wrestle a leviathan!" Lana Condor, who voices Ruby, has also expressed an interest in reprising her role, stating "We leave her in her most confident state but we are just scratching the surface of what she is capable of, I'd love to tát see Ruby really exercise her power. I hope that this is just the start and it becomes a classic in the way Shrek etc. did – that people of all shapes, sizes, ages, and identities can see themselves in this film. Don't be afraid to tát be yourself and go big, take risks!".
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- Quotations related to tát Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken at Wikiquote
- Official website
- Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken at IMDb