Ever since it debuted with Coraline back in 2009, LAIKA Studios has blown critics and fans away with its rare blend of stop-motion animation prowess, and unique storytelling angles. So it's no surprise that the studio's latest film is aiming to be another crowd pleaser of the highest form, as LAIKA has announced Missing Link as its fifth motion picture, to be released next spring. And it already sounds like a fantastic journey lies ahead for the fans, as Hugh Jackman and Zoe Saldana are two of the film's leads, setting off on the quest to find exactly what the title suggests -- the missing link between humanity and its primal ancestors.
Announced as seeking foreign distributors at the Cannes Film Festival, Missing Link sees Jackman playing the role of Sir Lionel Frost, an investigator of mythological creatures and such that wants to make a name for himself. Sure enough, with the help of Saldana's fellow adventurer Adelina Fortnight, he hopes to find Shangri-La, the mythical utopia that may help them find the answers they seek. And it's all because of a new friend that Sir Frost has made: Mr. Link, voiced by Zach Galifanakis, and member of the species that bridges the human race to the apes they came from. Though the impressive cast doesn't end there, as Emma Thompson, Stephen Fry, and Timothy Olyphant are all on board, as well, with the film written and directed by ParaNorman's Chris Butler. Travis Knight and Arianne Sutner, from Kubo and the Two Strings, are also set to produce. Domestically, LAIKA's new studio partner, Annapurna Pictures will be handing the releasing duties.
Hearing about this new production from the imagination of the studio that also brought us The Boxtrolls is quite exciting, as LAIKA has had a fantastic track record critically thus far. (Maybe not so much with box office wins.) Luckily, celebs seem to be fans of the brand, and the pedigree of a LAIKA film is something that manages to attract some slightly bigger names than your average animated project. Of course, the potential movie sounds a lot different from most other things you'd see on the market, and yet right at home with the folks tasked with bringing this movie to life.
A larger than life adventure, with a new and unique creature that requires protecting, is something that makes Missing Link sound very much up the alley of The Boxtrolls, mixed in with some Coraline-esque travel to other worlds. Though we have to admit, the thought of Hugh Jackman and Zoe Saldana bantering back and forth, with Zack Galafanakis adding some quips of his own between the two, sounds like something that should have happened already. It seems to be too good of an adventure / comedy hybrid to pass up, which makes the fact that LAIKA's Missing Link is not too far off from hitting silver screens all over all the better to know.
Missing Link doesn't have an official release date, but is looking to be released in spring 2019. If you're looking for more excitement and adventure in your cinematic life within the near future, you can check out our 2018 release schedule to see what's on the horizon.