How to Train Your Dragon (film)
How to Train Your Dragon is a 2010 American 3D computer-animated action-fantasy film produced by DreamWorks Animation and distributed by Paramount Pictures.1 Loosely based on the British book series of the same name by Cressida Cowell, the film was directed by Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois, the duo who directed Disney's Lilo & Stitch. It stars the voices of Jay Baruchel, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson, America Ferrera, Jonah Hill, T.J. Miller, Kristen Wiig, and Christopher Mintz-Plasse.
|How to Train Your Dragon|
Theatrical release poster
|Produced by||Bonnie Arnold|
|Based on||How to Train Your Dragon
by Cressida Cowell
|Music by||John Powell|
|Distributed by||Paramount Pictures1|
|Box office||$495.8 million|
The story takes place in a mythical Viking world where a young Viking teenager named Hiccup aspires to follow his tribe's tradition of becoming a dragon slayer. After finally capturing his first dragon, and with his chance at last of gaining the tribe's acceptance, he finds that he no longer wants to kill the dragon and instead befriends it.
The film was released March 26, 2010, and was a critical and commercial success, earning acclaim from film critics and audiences and earning nearly $500 million worldwide. It was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature and Best Original Score at the 83rd Academy Awards, but lost to Toy Story 3 and The Social Network, respectively. The movie also won ten Annie Awards, including Best Animated Feature.
A sequel, How to Train Your Dragon 2, was released on June 13, 2014, with DeBlois writing and directing by himself. Much like its predecessor, the sequel was also universally acclaimed and became a box office success. A second sequel, How to Train Your Dragon 3 is to be released on March 1, 2019. The film's success has also inspired other merchandise, including a video game and a television series.
The Isle of Berk is a remote Viking village, from which dragons periodically steal livestock. Hiccup, the awkward fifteen-year-old son of the village chieftain, Stoick the Vast, is too small to fight the dragons and instead fashions mechanical devices under his apprenticeship with Gobber the blacksmith, though his inventions often backfire. During one attack, Hiccup believes he has shot down a Night Fury, an extremely rare and dangerous dragon. Hiccup later finds it in the forest trapped in his bolas, but finds that he cannot bring himself to kill the dragon and instead sets it free.
Stoick assembles a fleet to find the dragons' nest, leaving Hiccup in a dragon-fighting class taught by Gobber. Hiccup returns to the forest to find the Night Fury still there, and realizes it is unable to fly properly because of its crippled caudal fin. Hiccup gradually tames the dragon and gives it the name "Toothless", for its retractable teeth. Hiccup makes a harness and prosthetic fin that allows him to guide the dragon in free flight. By studying Toothless's behavior, Hiccup becomes proficient in subduing the captive dragons during training. Stoick's fleet arrives home unsuccessful, but he is cheered by Hiccup's unexpected success.
Astrid, a tough Viking girl on whom Hiccup has a crush, discovers Hiccup is training Toothless, but Hiccup takes her for a ride to demonstrate his relationship with the dragon before she can tell the village. Toothless unexpectedly takes the pair to the dragons' nest where they discover a gargantuan dragon named the Red Death,2 which eats the smaller dragons unless they bring it stolen livestock.
Back at the village, Hiccup subdues a captive dragon in his final training test in front of his father instead of killing it, but Stoick inadvertently angers the dragon into attacking. Toothless attempts to protect Hiccup in the ensuing panic but is instead captured by the Vikings. Hiccup accidentally reveals to Stoick that Toothless is capable of locating the dragons' nest. Stoick disowns his son and sets off for the nest with Toothless chained to the lead ship as a guide.
The Vikings expel most of the dragons but are overwhelmed by the Red Death until Hiccup, Astrid and their fellow pupils fly in riding the training dragons from the academy and provide cover fire. Hiccup almost drowns trying to break Toothless free from a sinking ship but Stoick saves them both and then reconciles with his son. Toothless and Hiccup destroy the Red Death but Hiccup is injured in the fight. Hiccup regains consciousness on Berk where his lower left leg has been replaced by a prosthesis, and the Vikings and the dragons now live in harmony.
- Jay Baruchel as Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III
- Gerard Butler as Stoick the Vast, the chieftain of the Viking tribe and Hiccup's father.
- Craig Ferguson as Gobber the Belch, blacksmith, Stoick's close friend and training master of the young warriors.
- America Ferrera as Astrid Hofferson, Hiccup's fellow student.
- Christopher Mintz-Plasse as Fishlegs Ingerman: an enthusiastic youth, knowledgeable in dragon lore narrated role-playing game terms.
- Jonah Hill as Snotlout Jorgenson, one of Hiccup's dragon-training classmates. Snotlout is brash, overconfident, and fairly unintelligent, but reliable.
- T. J. Miller and Kristen Wiig as Tuffnut and Ruffnut Thorston, a pair of quarrelsome twins.
- David Tennant as Spitelout, Snotlout's father.
The book series by Cressida Cowell began coming to attention to the executives at DreamWorks Animation in 2004. Coming off her success in Over the Hedge, producer Bonnie Arnold shortly became interested in the newly acquired property. She kept focusing on the project as time went on, and when DreamWorks Animation co-president of production Bill Damaschke asked her what she wanted to work on next, she chose “How to Train Your Dragon”.
In initial development, the plot followed the original novel closely, but about halfway through production Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois, the writer-directors of Disney's Lilo & Stitch, took over as co-directors and it was altered. The original plot was described as, "heavily loyal to the book", but was regarded as being too "sweet" and "whimsical" as well as geared towards a too-young demographic, according to Baruchel. In the novel, Hiccup's dragon, Toothless, is a Common or Garden Dragon, a small breed. In the film, Toothless is a Night Fury, the rarest of all dragons, and is large enough to serve as a flying mount for both Hiccup and Astrid. The filmmakers hired cinematographer Roger Deakins (known for frequently collaborating with the Coen brothers) as a visual consultant to help them with lighting and overall look of the film and to "add a live-action feel". Extensive research was done to depict both flight, as the directors knew they would be the biggest draw of the film's 3D effects, and fire, given animation could break away from the limitations seen in live-action films, where propane flames are usual due to being easier to extinguish. The dragons' design made sure to create animals that were comical and also innovative compared to other dragon fiction. Toothless in particular tried to combine various dragon traits in a black panther-inspired design, that also had large ears and eyes to convey emotion better.
The directors made sure to cash in the improvisation abilities of the secondary cast—Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Jonah Hill, Kristen Wiig and T.J Miller—by frequently bringing them together in the recording sessions.
John Powell returned to DreamWorks Animation to score How to Train Your Dragon, making it his sixth collaboration with the studio, following his previous score for Kung Fu Panda (which he scored with Hans Zimmer). Powell composed an orchestral score, combining bombastic brass with loud percussion and soothing strings, while also using exotic, Scottish and Irish tones with instruments like the penny whistle and bagpipes. Additionally, Icelandic singer Jónsi wrote and performed the song "Sticks & Stones" for the film. The score was released by Varèse Sarabande on March 23, 2010.
Overall, the score was well received by film score critics. Powell earned his first Academy Award nomination for his work on the film, ultimately losing to Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross for their score for The Social Network.
How to Train Your Dragon had its United States premiere on March 21, 2010, at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Universal City, California. It was theatrically released on March 26, 2010, in the United States. The film was digitally re-mastered into IMAX 3D, and released to 186 North American IMAX theatres, and approximately 80 IMAX theatres outside North America.
Competition for 3D screensEdit
A month before the release, DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg protested Warner Bros.' decision to convert Clash of the Titans from 2D to 3D, then to release it one week after How to Train Your Dragon. Entertainment reporter Kim Masters described the 3D release schedule around March 2010 as a "traffic jam", and speculated that the lack of 3D screen availability could hurt Katzenberg's prospects despite his support of the 3D format.
In March 2010, theater industry executives accused Paramount of using high-pressure tactics to coerce theaters to screen How to Train Your Dragon rather than the competing 3D releases, Clash of the Titans and Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland. As theater multiplexes often had just one 3D screen, theaters were unable to accommodate more than one 3D presentation at a time.
How to Train Your Dragon topped the North American box office with $43.7 million in its first weekend of release. The film grossed $217,581,231 in the United States and Canada and $277,297,528 in foreign countries with a worldwide total of $494,878,759. How to Train Your Dragon is DreamWorks Animation's highest-grossing film in the American and Canadian box office other than the Shrek films. It is the fifth-highest-grossing animated film of 2010 with $494.8 million, behind Toy Story 3 with $1,063.2 million, Shrek Forever After with $752.6 million, Tangled with $576.6 million, and Despicable Me with $543.1 million and the 10th-highest-grossing movie of 2010. As of 2018, the How to Train Your Dragon series has grossed over $1 billion worldwide.
How To Train Your Dragon received critical acclaim upon its release. Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reports that 98% of critics gave the film a positive review, based on 200 reviews from professional critics, with an overall rating average of 7.9 out of 10. The site's general consensus is that, "Boasting dazzling animation, a script with surprising dramatic depth, and thrilling 3-D sequences, How to Train Your Dragon soars." By "Tomatometer" score, the film is DreamWorks Animation's highest-rated film. On Metacritic, which assigns a weighted mean rating out of 0–100 reviews from film critics, the film has a rating score of 74 based on 33 reviews, indicating 'Generally favorable reviews.' CinemaScore polls conducted during the opening weekend revealed the average grade cinemagoers gave How to Train Your Dragon was A on an A+ to F scale.
Roger Ebert of The Chicago Sun-Times gave it 3 stars out of 4, stating that: "It devotes a great deal of time to aerial battles between tamed dragons and evil ones, and not much to character or story development. But it's bright, good-looking, and has high energy". Claudia Puig of USA Today gave it 3.5 out of 4 stars, saying, "It's a thrilling action-adventure saga with exhilarating 3-D animation, a clever comedy with witty dialogue, a coming-of-age tale with surprising depth and a sweetly poignant tale of friendship between man and animal." Rolling Stone film critic Peter Travers praised the film, giving it three out of four stars and in his print review wrote, "[The film] works enough miracles of 3-D animation to charm your socks off." Roger Moore of The Orlando Sentinel, who gave the film 2½ stars out of 4, wrote a mixed review describing the film as a "more coming-of-age dramedy or 'everything about your world view is wrong' message movie than it is a comedy, and that seems like a waste of a funny book, some very funny actors and some darned witty animation." Kyle Smith of the New York Post gave the film 2/4 stars labeling the film as, "Avatar for simpletons. But that title is already taken, by Avatar". Contrarily, Brett Michel of The Boston Phoenix stated that the film was better than Avatar. A. O. Scott of At The Movies felt the characters and the story were not strong points, but loved the cinematography and said, "that swooping and soaring, they are worth the price of a ticket, so go see it." Village Voice film critic Ella Taylor gave a more negative review of the film, describing it as an "adequate but unremarkable animated tale". Film critic James Berardinelli of ReelViews praised the film and its story, giving it 3.5 out of 4 stars he wrote, "Technically proficient and featuring a witty, intelligent, surprisingly insightful script, How to Train Your Dragon comes close to the level of Pixar's recent output while easily exceeding the juvenilia DreamWorks has released in the last nine years." Entertainment Weekly film critic Owen Gleiberman praised the film giving it an A- and wrote, "How to Train Your Dragon rouses you in conventional ways, but it's also the rare animated film that uses 3-D for its breathtaking spatial and emotional possibilities." ViewLondon's Mathew Turner gave the film 4/5 stars, calling it, "beautifully animated and superbly written", and praised the voice cast, humor, and action. Matt Risley of Variety gave the film a perfect score of 5/5 stars, hailing it as, "undoubtedly Dreamworks' best film yet, and quite probably the best dragon movie ever made".
How to Train Your Dragon was released on single-disc DVD, two-disc double DVD pack and Blu-ray/DVD combo pack in Canada and the United States on Friday, October 15, 2010. Among the features available in the two-disc DVD edition is an original sequel short film, Legend of the Boneknapper Dragon. As of July 18, 2012, units sold for the DVD stand at more than 6.5 million copies and has grossed $121,663,692.
Samsung signed a deal with DreamWorks to gain exclusive distribution rights to a Blu-ray 3D version of the film. The exclusive agreement ended on September 11, 2011, when How to Train Your Dragon - 3D was released in a two-disc Blu-ray combo pack.
A sequel, How to Train Your Dragon 2, was confirmed on April 27, 2010. The film was directed and written by Dean DeBlois, the co-director of the first film. Bonnie Arnold, the producer of the first film, also returned. The film was released on June 13, 2014 by 20th Century Fox, to critical acclaim. The entire original voice cast—Baruchel, Butler, Ferguson, Ferrera, Hill, Mintz-Plasse, Miller,and Wiig—returned for the sequel with the addition of Cate Blanchett, Djimon Hounsou, and Kit Harington.
A third film, How to Train Your Dragon 3, is in development. The film will also be directed and written by DeBlois, produced by Bonnie Arnold, and exec-produced by Chris Sanders, with all the main cast set to return. Cate Blanchett and Djimon Hounsou will also reprise their roles as Valka and Drago respectively from the second film. It is scheduled to be released on March 1, 2019 by Universal Pictures.
A television series based on the film premiered on Cartoon Network in Autumn 2012. Jay Baruchel, America Ferrera, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, and T. J. Miller reprise their roles as Hiccup, Astrid, Fishlegs, and Tuffnut. The series follows Hiccup and his friends as they learn more about dragons, discover new ones, teach others to feel comfortable around them, adapt traditions within the village to fit their new friends and battle against enemies as they explore new worlds. Hiccup has been made head of Berk Dragon Academy.
An action adventure video game released by Activision, called How to Train Your Dragon, was released for the Wii, Xbox 360, PS3 and Nintendo DS gaming consoles. It is loosely based on the film and was released on March 23, 2010.
How To Train Your Dragon Arena Spectacular is an arena show adaptation of the first film featuring 24 animatronic dragons, acrobats and projections. It premiered on March 2, 2012, in Melbourne, Australia.
- "How to Train Your Dragon (2010)". Box Office Mojo. IMDb. Retrieved December 18, 2010.
- "Viking-Sized Cast", How to Train Your Dragon Blu-ray
- "Gerard Butler Interview, Movies Online". Archived from the original on July 22, 2009.
- "Nadder, Zippleback and Gronckle Lessons From 'How to Train Your Dragon'". Lineboil. February 17, 2010. Archived from the original on February 23, 2010. Retrieved February 17, 2010.
- "David Tennant News Updates: How To Train Your Dragon". Retrieved November 21, 2010.
- Nasson, Tim (March 18, 2010). "How To Train Your Dragon — BEHIND THE SCENES". Wild About Movies. Archived from the original on November 5, 2011. Retrieved May 15, 2012.
- First look: DreamWorks' 3-D 'How to Train Your Dragon'. USA Today. April 11, 2009. Retrieved November 21, 2010.
- "The Technical Artistry of 'Dragon'", How to Train Your Dragon Blu-ray
- Murray, Rebecca (March 21, 2010). "'How to Train Your Dragon' Exclusive Premiere Photos". About.com. Retrieved August 19, 2014.
- IMAX Corporation (March 24, 2010). "DreamWorks Animation's How to Train Your Dragon Flies Into IMAX(R) Theatres on March 26, 2010" (Press release). GlobeNewswire. Retrieved August 19, 2014.
- Verrier, Richard; Claudia Eller (February 10, 2010). "Katzenberg angry over Warner's 'Clash of the Titans' 3-D release". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved April 1, 2010.
- Kim Masters; Renee Montagne (March 21, 2010). "Coming To A Screen Near You: A 3-D Clash". Morning Edition. NPR. Retrieved April 1, 2010.
- Richard Verrier; Ben Fritz (March 21, 2010). "'How to Train Your Dragon,' 'Clash of the Titans' clash for 3-D screens". The Washington Post. Retrieved April 1, 2010.
- Gray, Brandon (March 28, 2010). "Weekend Report: 'Dragon' Takes Flight, 'Hot Tub' Gets Soaked". Box Office Mojo. IMDb. Retrieved March 28, 2010.
- "DreamWorks Animation". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved July 13, 2012.
- Hamann, John (April 18, 2010). "Dragons Roast Fake Hero Wannabes". Box Office Prophets. Retrieved April 27, 2010.
- "Box Office Mojo > Search". www.boxofficemojo.com. Retrieved 2018-02-15.
- "How to Train Your Dragon Movie Reviews, Pictures". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
- "How to Train Your Dragon Reviews, Ratings, Credits". Metacritic. CNET Networks, Inc. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
- Rosen, Christopher (March 28, 2010). "Box Office Breakdown: Dragon Slays All Comers". Daily Transom. The New York Observer. Archived from the original on March 31, 2010. Retrieved March 28, 2010.
- Roger Ebert (March 24, 2010). "How to Train Your Dragon :: rogerebert.com :: Reviews". Chicago Suntimes. Retrieved March 26, 2010.
- Puig, Claudia (March 26, 2010). "'Dragon': How to do smart dialogue, 3-D visuals the right way". USA Today. Retrieved March 26, 2010.
- Travers, Peter (March 18, 2010). "How to Train Your Dragon: Review". Rolling Stone. Retrieved June 28, 2011.
- Moore, Roger (March 24, 2010). "Movie Review: How to Train Your Dragon". The Orlando Sentinel. Archived from the original on August 5, 2010. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
- Smith, Kyle (March 26, 2010). "'How to Train Your Dragon' breathes little fire". New York Post. NYP Holdings, Inc. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
- Scott, A. O. "How to Train Your Dragon film review". AtTheMoviesTV.com. Archived from the original on November 18, 2008. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
- Taylor, Ella (March 24, 2010). "How to Train Your Dragon, an Adequate but Unremarkable Animated Tale". Village Voice. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
- Berardinelli, James (March 26, 2010). "'How to Train Your Dragon' review". ReelViews.net. Retrieved March 28, 2010.
- Gleiberman, Owen (March 24, 2010). "'How to Train Your Dragon' (2010)". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
- "83rd Academy Award Nominations". Variety. January 25, 2011. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- "2010 EDA Awards Nominees". Alliance of Women Film Journalists. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- "38th Annial Annie Nominations". Annie Awards. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- Finke, Nikki (February 5, 2011). "38th Annual Annie Animation Awards: DWA's 'How To Train Your Dragon' Wins (After Disney Boycotts)". Deadline. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- "Bafta Film Awards 2011: Winners". BBC News. February 13, 2011. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- "The 'Social Network' Tops Chicago Film Critics Nominations". The Hollywood Reporter. December 17, 2010. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- Goldberg, Matt (December 13, 2010). "Critics Choice Awards Nominations Announced; BLACK SWAN Lands Record 12 Nominations". Collider. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- Pond, Steve (March 20, 2011). "Oprah Winfrey, Steven Colbert, 'How to Train Your Dragon' Win Genesis Awards". The Wrap. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- Finke, Nikki (December 14, 2010). "2011 Golden Globe Nominations Announced". Deadline. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- Giardina, Carolyn (February 20, 2011). "'Inception' Tops Sound Editors Golden Reel Awards". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 30, 2015.
- "IFMCA announces its 2010 nominees for scoring excellence". International Film Music Critics Association. February 11, 2011. Retrieved March 30, 2015.
- "IFMCA announces its 2010 Winners for scoring excellence". International Film Music Critics Association. February 24, 2011. Retrieved March 30, 2015.
- Bricker, Tierney (February 10, 2011). "Kids' Choice Awards 2011 Nominees: Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez lead". Zap2it. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- "2010 Awards (14th Annual)". Online Film Critics Society. Retrieved March 30, 2015.
- Day, Kevin (November 9, 2010). "'Alice in Wonderland', 'Twilight Saga' among People's Choice Awards Nominees". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 30, 2015.
- "2010 Satellite Awards". International Press Academy. Retrieved March 30, 2015.
- Bettinger, Brendan (February 23, 2011). "INCEPTION, LET ME IN, TRON, and THE WALKING DEAD Top the 2011 Saturn Award Nominations". Collider.com. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- Soll, Lindsay (June 14, 2010). "Teen Choice Awards 2010: First Round Of Nominees Announced". MTV. Archived from the original on June 6, 2012. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- Barnard, Linda (January 12, 2011). "Toronto critics name Incendies best Canadian movie". The Star. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- Vivarelli, Nick (September 12, 2010). "Venice Film Festival winners". Variety. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- Giardina, Carolyn (February 1, 2011). "'Inception' Tops Visual Effects Society Awards". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 29, 2015.
- Gordon, Tim (December 6, 2010). "The 2010 WAFCA Award Winners". The Washington, D.C. Area Film Critics Association. Retrieved March 30, 2015.
- "ASCAP Members & Affiliates Score 2010 World Soundtrack Award Nominations". The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. August 23, 2010. Retrieved March 30, 2015.
- "How to Train Your Dragon - DVD Sales". The Numbers. Retrieved July 18, 2012.
- "How to Train Your Dragon 2014 Blu-ray".
- Bond, Paul (April 27, 2010). "Train Your Dragon' sequel in the works". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved April 27, 2010.
- Giardina, Carolyn (February 7, 2011). "Details of 'How to Train Your Dragon' Sequel Revealed". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 8, 2011.
- "Upcoming Releases". DreamWorks Animation. Retrieved August 21, 2013.
- "DreamWorks Animation Announces Feature Film Release Slate Through 2014" (Press release). DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc. March 8, 2011. Archived from the original on August 20, 2011. Retrieved March 8, 2011.
- "More How to Train Your Dragon Sequel Details". ComingSoon.net. October 11, 2010. Retrieved October 11, 2010.
- "How to Train Your Dragon 3 Pushed Back to 2017". ComingSoon.net. Retrieved September 2, 2014.
- Chitwood, Adam (February 5, 2015). "Director Dean DeBlois Talks HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 3 at VES Awards". Collider. Retrieved February 5, 2015.
- Graser, Marc (January 22, 2015). "Jeffrey Katzenberg on DWA's Cutbacks: '3 Films a Year Was Too Ambitious'". Variety. Retrieved January 22, 2015.
- "Cartoon Network Celebrates 20th Anniversary with Ratings Growth and a New Generation of Content for a New Generation of Kids". Reuters. March 28, 2012. Retrieved April 22, 2012.
- "School of Dragons at San Diego Comic Con 2013!". School of Dragons blog. Archived from the original on December 27, 2014. Retrieved July 29, 2013.
- "School of Dragons producer interview". Berk's Grapevine. Retrieved July 29, 2013.
- "School of Dragons Mobile App". schoolofdragons.com. Retrieved July 29, 2013.
- Morgan, Clare (August 9, 2011). "Craft and heart breathe fiery life into dragons". Brisbane Times. Retrieved August 13, 2011.
- Chney, Alexandra (July 29, 2014). "DreamWorks Animation Q2 Earnings Fall Short of Estimates, SEC Investigation Revealed". Variety. Retrieved July 30, 2014.
- Miller-Zarneke, Tracey (2009). The Art of DreamWorks: How to Train Your Dragon (1st ed.). New York: Newmarket Press. ISBN 1557048630.
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: How to Train Your Dragon (film)|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to How to Train Your Dragon (film).|