How Video Games Will Continue To Play A Vital Role In Wreck-It Ralph 2

Shank Gal Gadot driving in slaughter race Ralph Breaks the Internet

In case it wasn't obvious from the title, Ralph Breaks The Internet is a sequel that will break away from the setting of its predecessor. While Wreck-It Ralph was entirely embedded within the world of arcade games, the upcoming follow-up will take heroes Ralph and Vanellope into the World Wide Web and websites like eBay and OhMyDisney. If you're concerned that the movie is leaving its roots behind, however, you shouldn't sweat it, as co-director Rich Moore is still promising a key part for video games to play, starting with Game Central Station:

Well, it definitely colors their 'small town.' We will see a lot of those characters that we met in the first one as citizens of their little town that they live in. That's the place that Ralph loves. So it's definitely an aspect of it.

Back in early August I joined a group of reporters on a trip to Walt Disney Animation Studios in Burbank, California for a behind-the-scenes look at Ralph Breaks The Internet, and throughout the day learned all about the world-building behind the upcoming sequel. After multiple presentations, however, I noticed that one aspect of the film not really being discussed was the video game element -- so I brought the subject up later in the day when I had the opportunity to sit down with directors Rich Moore and Phil Johnston and producer Clark Spencer.

Considering the amount of incredible world building featured in Wreck-It Ralph, it would have been crazy for the new movie to totally move past it -- and the good news is that it isn't. Litwak's Arcade is where the story begins, reuniting us with not only Ralph (John C. Reilly) and Vanellope (Sarah Silverman) but the various residents of their games, Fix-It Felix and Sugar Rush.

Of course, the leads ultimately wind up going from Game Central Station to the internet, but it should be noted that the gaming side of things doesn't stop there. In case you didn't know, online games are a pretty big thing, and Phil Johnston confirmed that the characters will be involved with it after being transported through the router -- though he couldn't say too much about the subject at the time. Said the filmmaker,

There is this whole huge plot of online gaming that we didn't talk about today that we will talk about soon - but that's a massive part of this story, is online gaming.

Since August we have heard about a couple of developments with Ralph Breaks The Internet, with one of the most significant being the introduction of the driving game Slaughter Race and its lead character, Shank (voiced by Gal Gadot). It's a very different environment for Vanellope von Schweetz, who is primarily used to driving cars through gumdrop mountains and over chocolate lakes, but the footage that we've seen from the film so far suggests that she will have no problem adjusting to the new, tougher atmosphere.

Going back to the metaphor that he introduced earlier, Rich Moore put it simply:

It's kind of gaming in their little town, and then gaming in the big city.

You can take a gander at the world of Slaughter Race in the most recent trailer for Ralph Breaks The Internet -- though be warned in advance that it looks like the game is going to be at the center of a serious and sad conflict between Ralph and Vanellope, threatening their relationship with real possibilities for the young driver's future:

If you're like us and super excited for Ralph Breaks The Internet, the best possible news we can offer at this point is that the movie is almost here. Disney will be releasing the animated sequel in theaters on November 21st -- and be sure to be on the lookout between now and then for more about the film here on CinemaBlend, as we'll have more interviews coming with the stars and filmmakers.

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

Eric Eisenberg is the Assistant Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. After graduating Boston University and earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism, he took a part-time job as a staff writer for CinemaBlend, and after six months was offered the opportunity to move to Los Angeles and take on a newly created West Coast Editor position. Over a decade later, he's continuing to advance his interests and expertise. In addition to conducting filmmaker interviews and contributing to the news and feature content of the site, Eric also oversees the Movie Reviews section, writes the the weekend box office report (published Sundays), and is the site's resident Stephen King expert. He has two King-related columns.