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Animated films have to really bomb hard not to get a sequel. So, it’s never a surprise when more than a couple of years go by and we hear about an animated property getting the sequel treatment. What is a surprise though, is when the makers of that sequel decide to use some of the biggest names in professional wrestling as the majority of their voice cast.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, a sequel to Surf’s Up, known as Surf’s Up 2: WaveMania, is in the works for Sony Pictures Animation. The catch, though, is that WWE Studios will be co-financing and helping to produce the movie. And, obviously, that explains the all-chair-throwing, all-fighting main cast. The new film will, again, focus on a young rockhopper penguin named Cody Maverick. He’ll convince a big wave crew, The Hang 5, to take an adventure with him to find the mysterious surfing paradise, The Trenches, which is said to have the biggest waves in the world. WWE stars John Cena, The Undertaker, Triple H, WWE Diva Paige and Mr. McMahon will voice The Hang 5.
The original Surf’s Up was a computer animated mockumentary that saw Cody leave his life in Shiverpool, Antarctica to travel to Pen Gu Island, the site of the Big Z memorial surfing contest that he’s entered. Cody soon falls in love, meets interesting characters and learns a lot about life in the process.
The 2007 film starred Shia LaBeouf, Jeff Bridges and Zooey Deschanel, and featured a host of actual professional surfers as minor characters. Surf’s Up got mostly positive reviews at the time, has a 78% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and grossed over $149 million worldwide. So, the only shock here is that it’s taken so long for Surf’s Up 2: WaveMania to get off the ground.
I suppose that that’s where WWE Studios comes in. It’s entirely possible that a condition of the partnership was having WWE stars provide voices for the film, and that’s a great bit of cross promotion if I’ve ever heard of one. Wrestling fans are a devoted, multi-generational bunch, and they’re the perfect audience for this type of movie. Throngs of wrestling fans will be incredibly likely to pack their kids up and get them into the theaters for this one, knowing that the entertainment will be completely family friendly.
WWE Studios has mostly specialized in making films that highlight their superstar wrestlers’ talents. Athletes like Steve Austin, Edge, Kane, Big Show, The Rock, John Cena and The Miz have been featured in their previous movies.
Since a large part of professional wrestling involves theatrics and acting talent anyway, this casting lineup sounds like it’ll work out well for Surf’s Up 2: WaveMania. What do you think? Have you enjoyed seeing pro wrestlers take on acting roles? Let us know in the comments.