'How to Train Your Dragon' Live-Action Movie Coming Soon

Universal Pictures has announced the production of a live-action How to Train Your Dragon movie, with Dean DeBlois, the writer, director, and producer of the original animated trilogy, returning, reported The Hollywood Reporter. The film will be adapted from the DreamWorks Animation trilogy made in the 2010s and released to great success. In 2010, the first film received Academy Award nominations for best animated film and best score. In addition to earning Oscar nominations, the second and third films were box office hits, grossing more than $1.6 billion. In addition to the movie franchise, DreamWorks Animation developed a TV series that aired on Cartoon Network, Netflix, and HuluHow to Train Your Dragon was based on the books by Cressida Cowell and depicted the friendship between Hiccup, an unheroic Viking boy, and Toothless, a dragon he rescues after it has been injured. In the movies, Hiccup and Toothless battled humanity's prejudices against dragons, parental loss, and falling in love for the first time. In addition, they consistently aged the protagonists proportionally to the story, creating an accurate "coming-of-age" tale.

DeBlois wrote and directed the first movie along with Chris Sanders and then directed the 2014 and 2019 films solo. Sanders later directed DreamWorks Animation's 2013 installment, The Croods. DeBlois will make his live-action debut with the feature. He will be assisted by veteran movie and theater producer Marc Platt, whose credits include Legally BlondeLa La Land, and Universal's upcoming Wicked adaptation. Finding a balance between making the dragons appealing and friendly, like some were in the original movie, as well as realistic, is one of the creative challenges facing filmmakers. 

In some ways, Universal is taking a significant risk. To a certain extent, the studio is following in the footsteps of Disney, which has long been making live-action remakes of its animated classics. Despite successfully generating $1 billion hits, such as Beauty and the Beast and Aladdin, this strategy has also led to less well-received films like Lady and the Tramp and Pinocchio. The latter can taint classics or characters, although that's difficult to measure. Universal may translate other DreamWorks Animation movies into live-action in the future, but this is the first time the same creator is overseeing the live-action remake as the animated original. The studio spent several months finding the proper budget before finally giving the project the go-ahead. Universal has dated the feature for a March 14th, 2025, release, and sources say the casting process has already begun.