After working at Disney for more than twenty-five years, Chris Williams left the iconic animation studio to strike out on his own. He met with several different studios, but set up shop at Netflix after being won over by their enthusiasm. “When I decided to leave, I went to find the land and met other studios,Williams said THR. “And I was impressed that they talked about their five-year plan or 10-year plan, the ‘why we believe we will succeed’ presentations. Netflix was different. Netflix said: ‘This is the crazy train. We don’t know where it goes. Do you want to come?’Williams’ first project was The sea animalwhich has gone on to become the most-watched animated film in Netflix history, and you know what that means… sequel, baby!
While speaking with THR, Chris Williams confirmed that he is currently developing a sequel The sea animal. The first film told the story of a monster hunter (Karl Urban) and a young orphan girl (Zaris-Angel Hator) who join his group of sea monster hunters on their quest for the elusive Red Bluster. “I never thought beyond the first movie,Williams said. “We didn’t plan a series. And it was for the good. I just wanted to make this a fun experience and not compromise (the movie) by trying to set something up in the future. A priority in the first was to make it feel plausible and truthful. And when I thought of the truth of where The sea animal ended, it seems that everything is neatly wrapped up. You have father and daughter sitting on the dock, the world has changed and given up on monster hunting, and isn’t that great? But the more I thought about the truth of it, the more I realized that the story wasn’t really over.Williams continued:
And first of all, I thought of this brand new family of Jacob and Masie that has been thrown together. Suddenly, Jacob is a parent, a parent of a particularly willing child, right? And then when you see them on the dock, you know that’s not what parenting looks like. It’s far messier, far more complicated and at times more trying than that. So the idea of the challenges of this new family became interesting to me. And I also wondered if every single hunter in the world would just give up their source of income and identity, and I thought there’s a lot more story here.
As for whether Red could return, Chris Williams would only say, “Maybe?” In addition to The sea animal sequel, Williams is also working on an original fantasy story. “Tonally it would be in between Lord of the Rings and Princess Bride,Williams explained. “It’s like Game of Thrones and Lord of the Rings where you have a story leading up to the point where the story begins and it’s a huge world with multiple events that take place outside of the story being told. But at the same time, I want to have fun with some of those conventions Princess Bride did. It’s not parody, and it’s not making fun of it, but it has a perspective that’s light and refreshing.” He is developing both projects at the same time, but has not decided which he will tackle first. You can check out a review of The Sea Beast from our own Steve Seigh right here.