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Steven Universe: The Movie is a 2019 American animated musical television film based on the animated television series Steven Universe created by Rebecca Sugar. The film is directed, co-written, produced and executive produced by Sugar and fellow longtime crew members Kat Morris and Joe Johnston, and stars Zach Callison, Estelle, Michaela Dietz, Deedee Magno Hall, and Sarah Stiles, alongside an ensemble cast reprising their roles from the television series. Steven Universe: The Movie takes place two years after the events of the fifth-season finale "Change Your Mind", and follows the Crystal Gems as they attempt to save all organic life on Earth from a deranged Gem with a history with Steven's mother.

Steven Universe: The Movie
Steven, Garnet, Amethyst, and Pearl are on a cliff, while Spinel's silhouette is cast over them.
Official Poster
Based onSteven Universe
by Rebecca Sugar
Written by
  • Lamar Abrams
  • Miki Brewster
  • Amber Cragg
  • Hilary Florido
  • Joe Johnston
  • Amish Kumar
  • Jeff Liu
  • Katie Mitroff
  • Kat Morris
  • Chris Pianka
  • Maddie Queripel
  • Rebecca Sugar
  • Paul Villeco
Story by
  • Ben Levin
  • Hilary Florido
  • Ian Jones-Quartey
  • Jack Pendarvis
  • Joe Johnston
  • Kat Morris
  • Matt Burnett
  • Rebecca Sugar
Directed by
  • Rebecca Sugar
  • Kat Morris (co)
  • Joe Johnston (co)
Starring
Music by
Composer(s)
  • Alvi & Surasshu
  • Jeff Ball
  • Stemage
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
Production
Executive producer(s)
  • Rebecca Sugar
  • Kat Morris (co)
  • Joe Johnston (co)
  • Alonso Ramirez Ramos (co)
  • Ian Jones-Quartey (co)
  • Chance the Rapper (co)
Producer(s)Jackie Buscarino
Editor(s)Paul Douglas
Running time82 minutes[1]
Production company(s)Cartoon Network Studios
DistributorWarner Bros. Television Distribution
Release
Original networkCartoon Network
Original release
  • September 2, 2019 (2019-09-02)

The film was announced at San Diego Comic-Con 2018, and a short teaser trailer was later released on Cartoon Network's YouTube channel. At San Diego Comic-Con 2019, a trailer for the film was released, along with the announcement of a documentary based on the film's creation to be released along with the DVD. The film premiered on Cartoon Network on September 2, 2019.

Contents

Plot

After an introduction from the Diamonds ("The Tale of Steven"), Steven Universe (now 16 years old) greets the citizens of the Gem Homeworld. The Diamonds want him to stay to fulfill his mother Pink Diamond's role as leader ("Let Us Adore You"), but he refuses. Back on Earth, Steven sees Connie off to space camp. Steven, Pearl, Garnet, and Amethyst celebrate their newfound "Happily Ever After". Almost immediately afterwards, a giant drill lands on the hillside of Beach City and Spinel, a deranged and cartoonish Gem, appears, announcing her intent to kill Steven and the rest of the Earth ("Other Friends"). Using a scythe-like weapon, she "poofs" Pearl, Garnet, and Amethyst back into their gem forms; her attacks also weaken Steven's Gem powers, though his body is unharmed. Steven manages to poof Spinel with the scythe.

Steven calls his father, Greg, for help. The Gems regenerate their bodies (including Ruby and Sapphire separately), but their memories have been erased; Pearl assumes that she is Greg's servant ("system/BOOT.pearl_final(3).Info"). With her memories gone, Spinel is a goofy and happy-go-lucky Gem whose function is to entertain her companion. Steven and Spinel take Ruby and Sapphire to seek advice from Peridot, Lapis Lazuli, and Bismuth; they encourage Steven not to give up ("Who We Are"). Bismuth identifies Spinel's scythe as a "Rejuvenator", a device that can reset the mind of a Gem back to when it was first created. Spinel compares the situation to a puzzle, suggesting that they find the Gems' "missing pieces" to restore their memories, inspiring Steven to try to reenact Ruby and Sapphire's first fusion. Spinel's antics cause scaffolding to collapse, almost crushing Ruby; when Sapphire shoves her to safety, the pair fuse into Garnet ("Isn't It Love?"), but she still has no memory of her life.

After Steven recovers Amethyst's memory by reenacting experiences the two had together ("No Matter What"), Peridot discovers that the drill is injecting a toxic chemical that will kill all organic life on Earth. In order to revive Pearl's memory, the group takes her to a Sadie Killer and the Suspects concert, in the hope their music will bring back her memories of rebellion ("Disobedient"), but Pearl says that as long as Greg exists she will obey him. Steven uses what little energy he has left to fuse with Greg ("Independent Together"), which enables Pearl to recover her memory. She tells Steven that Spinel was once Pink Diamond's playmate; Spinel is suddenly overcome with sadness and flees.

After sending for Connie, Steven finds Spinel crying at his house. She takes Steven to a desolate garden in space and reveals her backstory: she was Pink Diamond's playmate until the other Diamonds gave Pink her own colony. Pink told Spinel to wait for her, and left her alone in the garden for 6,000 years until she learned of Pink Diamond's fate ("Drift Away"). Steven tells her that he will never abandon her and that he will make up for his mother's mistakes ("Found").

Back in Beach City, Spinel turns off the drill, but when Steven begins shifting his attention back to everyone else, she accuses Steven of just using her and then abandoning her or planning to wipe her memory again. She turns the drill back on and attacks Steven. As he tries to explain the truth to her, Garnet recovers her memory. Steven sends the others out to rescue the humans of Beach City while he confronts Spinel ("True Kinda Love"). Steven finally realizes why his Gem powers have not yet returned: his desire for an unchanging "happily ever after" has left him resistant to the very notion of growth and change, which he needs to re-experience. Embracing this fact, he regains his powers and battles Spinel, trying to convince her that she can change as well ("Change"). Their fight destroys the drill, and Spinel relents after realizing how much she hates what she has become.

The Diamonds suddenly arrive and state their intention to live on the Earth with Steven. He introduces Spinel to them and they take an immediate liking to her and her goofy personality ("Let Us Adore You (Reprise)"). The Diamonds accept her in place of Steven and she happily goes with them, now with people who will love her unconditionally. Steven and his friends gather to rebuild Beach City, thanks in part to Steven's healing powers undoing the poison's damage. Steven, Connie, Pearl, Garnet, Amethyst and Greg perform a Broadway-style "Finale".

Cast

The film features the main and recurring characters of the series,[2] and introduces the new characters Spinel and Steg.

  • Zach Callison as Steven Universe, a Gem-human hybrid member of the Crystal Gems and formerly The Great Diamond Authority.
  • Estelle as Garnet, a fusion who is the de facto leader of the Crystal Gems.
    • Charlyne Yi as Ruby, one of Garnet's components, a hotheaded soldier Gem and spouse of Sapphire.
    • Erica Luttrell as Sapphire, one of Garnet's components, a cool and collected precognitive Gem and spouse of Ruby.
  • Michaela Dietz as Amethyst, one of the Crystal Gems.
  • Deedee Magno Hall as Pearl, one of the original members of the Crystal Gems.
  • Sarah Stiles as Spinel, the main antagonist of the movie.
  • Tom Scharpling as Greg Universe, the father of Steven Universe.
  • Grace Rolek as Connie Maheswaran, Steven's best friend.
  • Matthew Moy as Lars Barriga, a friend of Steven Universe.
  • Kate Micucci as Sadie Miller, a friend of Steven Universe.
  • Shelby Rabara as Peridot, a member of the Crystal Gems who was formerly aligned with Homeworld.
  • Jennifer Paz as Lapis Lazuli, a member of the Crystal Gems who was formerly aligned with Homeworld.
  • Uzo Aduba as Bismuth, one of the original members of the Crystal Gems.
  • Patti LuPone as Yellow Diamond, a member of The Great Diamond Authority.
  • Lisa Hannigan as Blue Diamond, a member of The Great Diamond Authority.
  • Christine Ebersole as White Diamond, a member of The Great Diamond Authority.
  • Toks Olagundoye as Nanefua Pizza, the mayor of Beach City.
  • Aimee Mann as Opal, a fusion of Pearl and Amethyst.
  • Ted Leo as Steg, a fusion of Steven and Greg.

Production

The film is a musical, with songs written by the series creator Rebecca Sugar featuring musical collaborations with Aivi & Surasshu, Chance the Rapper, Gallant, James Fauntleroy, Macie Stewart, Mike Krol, Grant Henry (Stemage), Jeff Liu, Jeff Ball, and Julian "Zorsy" Sanchez, as well as Estelle, Ted Leo, and Aimee Mann, who have voice roles.[3] The film is executive produced by Rebecca Sugar.[4] The co-executive producers are Chance the Rapper, Kat Morris, Joe Johnston, Alonso Ramirez Ramos and Ian Jones-Quartey.[4] The film was directed by Rebecca Sugar, Kat Morris, and Joe Johnston. The story for the film was developed by Ben Levin, Hilary Florido, Ian Jones-Quartey, Jack Pendarvis, Joe Johnston, Kat Morris, Matt Burnett, and Rebecca Sugar.[5]

Marketing

The film was announced at San Diego Comic-Con 2018, and a short teaser trailer was later released on Cartoon Network's YouTube channel.[6] A poster was released a week before San Diego Comic-Con 2019, revealing a glimpse of the film's antagonist and a visibly older Steven,[7] setting the film two years after the events of "Change Your Mind".[8]

At San Diego Comic-Con 2019, a trailer for the film was released, along with the announcement of a documentary based on the film's creation to be released along with the DVD.[9]

Adult Swim’s action oriented Toonami block aired a second trailer for the film during their August 24 broadcast.[10]

Release

The film was released on September 2, 2019 on Cartoon Network; the Every Steven Ever marathon aired leading up to the movie,[3] followed by a digital release on September 3.[1] The Movie will be released on DVD by Warner Home Video on November 12, 2019; this release will contain the documentary Behind the Curtain: The Making of Steven Universe: The Movie and animatics with commentary.[11]

Viewership

Steven Universe: The Movie was seen by 1.57 million viewers on its original telecast, which was commercial-free.[12] This made the movie the highest rated broadcast of the series in over three years.

Critical reception

Steven Universe: The Movie was universally acclaimed by critics prior to broadcast, with the music, animation and characters highlighted in particular.[13]

Rotten Tomatoes gives the film a 100% approval rating.[14]

Speaking of its effectiveness as a stand-alone story in Forbes, Dani Di Placido described the film as "both approachable to newcomers and deeply rewarding for longtime fans of the series".[15] ComicBook.com's Rollin Bishop summarised that the film contains "amazing musical numbers with striking illustrations and breathtaking animation to outdo anything the franchise has attempted before",[16] while Shamus Kelley commented on the strong emotional content of the film for Den of Geek, saying that "this is a movie that will stick with you long after it’s finished airing. [...] Like the best entertainment, it holds up a mirror and lets you examine your life in a safe way".[17]

Music

The first single from the film's soundtrack, "True Kinda Love", performed by Estelle and Zach Callison, was released on July 19, 2019. The soundtrack was released on September 3, 2019.[18]

Steven Universe the Movie (Original Soundtrack)
Soundtrack album by
Steven Universe
ReleasedSeptember 3, 2019 (2019-09-03)
Length1:08:26
LabelWaterTower Music
Steven Universe chronology
Steven Universe, Karaoke
(2019)
Steven Universe the Movie (Original Soundtrack)
(2019)
Singles from Steven Universe the Movie (Original Soundtrack)
  1. "True Kinda Love"
    Released: July 19, 2019
Steven Universe the Movie (Original Soundtrack)[19]
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."The Tale of Steven (Christine Ebersole, Lisa Hannigan & Patti LuPone)"Jeff Ball & Rebecca Sugar1:17
2."Once Upon a Time"Ball0:55
3."Message to the Universe"Ball0:36
4."Let Us Adore You (Ebersole, Hannigan, LuPone & Zach Callison)"Jeff Liu & Sugar1:00
5."Home Sweet Home" 1:14
6."Happily Ever After (Callison, Deedee Magno Hall, Estelle, Michaela Dietz, Tom Scharpling, Uzo Aduba, Jennifer Paz & Shelby Rabara)"Liu & Sugar5:10
7."The Arrival" 0:53
8."Other Friends (Sarah Stiles, Callison, Hall, Estelle & Dietz)"Liu & Sugar2:47
9."One on One" 1:02
10."system/BOOT. PearlFinal (3).Info (Hall, Scharpling, Callison, Charlyne Yi, Erica Luttrell, Dietz & Stiles)"Liu & Sugar3:01
11."With Friends Like These" 0:59
12."Crystal Gem Huddle" 1:52
13."Who We Are (Aduba, Callison, Paz, Rabara & Stiles)"Sugar2:53
14."Hijinks Will Ensue" 1:56
15."Isn't It Love? (Estelle)"Estelle, James Fauntleroy & Sugar1:26
16."Search Party" 0:20
17."Echoes of Friendship" 0:30
18."No Matter What (Callison & Dietz)"Liu & Sugar2:11
19."Our Handshake" 0:26
20."No Ordinary Injector" 2:12
21."Disobedient (Kate Micucci & Dietz)"Mike Krol & Sugar2:27
22."Let's Duet"Stemage1:06
23."Independent Together (Ted Leo, Hall & Aimee Mann)"Leo, Sugar & Stemage3:16
24."Running Out of Time" 0:32
25."Feelings Flooding Back"Ball0:40
26."A Special World" 1:09
27."Drift Away (Stiles)"Mann & Sugar3:13
28."Found (Stiles & Callison)"Liu & Sugar1:26
29."Downward Spiral" 2:40
30."True Kinda Love (Estelle & Callison)"Estelle, Fauntleroy, Chance the Rapper, Macie Stewart, Sugar, Surrasshu, Aivi Tran & Zorsy4:54
31."The Missing Piece"Ball2:06
32."Change (Callison)"Liu & Sugar1:33
33."Not Good at All" 1:20
34."There's No Such Thing as Happily Ever After" 1:07
35."Are We Interrupting Something?"Ball1:55
36."Let Us Adore You (Reprise) (Ebersole, Hannigan, LuPone & Stiles)"Liu & Sugar1:52
37."Finale (Callison, Hall, Estelle, Dietz, Grace Rolek, Aduba, Paz, Rabara, Micucci, Mathew Moy, Scharpling & Toks Olagundoye)"Gallant & Sugar2:02
38."True Kinda Love (Estelle & Callison) (Bonus Track)"Estelle, Fauntleroy, Rapper, Stewart, Sugar, Surrasshu, Tran & Zorsy2:37

References

  1. ^ a b "Cartoon Network: Steven Universe the Movie". iTunes. CARTOON NETWORK. Retrieved August 14, 2019.
  2. ^ Trumbore, Dave (July 9, 2019). "First Poster for 'Steven Universe The Movie' Reveals the Looming Threat". Collider. Retrieved July 20, 2019.
  3. ^ a b "Steven Universe The Movie | Official Trailer | Cartoon Network". Cartoon Network. July 19, 2019. Retrieved July 20, 2019.
  4. ^ a b Haring, Bruce (June 13, 2019). "'Steven Universe The Movie' Adds Chance The Rapper, Patti LuPone And More To Musical". Deadline. Retrieved June 13, 2019.
  5. ^ "Cartoon Network: Steven Universe The Movie". YouTube. Retrieved August 11, 2019.
  6. ^ Patches, Matt. "Steven Universe movie announcement, teaser surprises at SDCC". Polygon. Retrieved July 21, 2018.
  7. ^ Romano, Nick (July 9, 2019). "Steven Universe The Movie first look: Poster reveals new villain". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved July 9, 2019.
  8. ^ "Steven's New Neck | Steven Universe The Movie | Cartoon Network". YouTube. Cartoon Network. July 11, 2019.
  9. ^ Crucchiola, Jordan (July 19, 2019). "Watch the First Steven Universe Movie Trailer and Hear a New Song From Estelle". Vulture. Retrieved July 20, 2019.
  10. ^ "Toonami SU Movie Promo". Toonami. August 24, 2019. Retrieved August 24, 2019.
  11. ^ "Steven Universe The Movie DVD". Right Stuf. Retrieved August 14, 2019.
  12. ^ Mitch Metcalf (September 4, 2019). "Top 150 Monday Cable Originals & Network Finals: 9.2.2019". Showbuzz Daily. Retrieved September 4, 2019.
  13. ^ Pulliam-Moore, Charles (August 22, 2019). "Steven Universe: The Movie Is a Mindblowingly Heartfelt, Musical Masterpiece". io9. Gizmodo Media Group. Retrieved August 22, 2019.
  14. ^ Steven Universe: The Movie (2019), retrieved September 4, 2019
  15. ^ Di Placido, Dani (August 22, 2019). "'Steven Universe: The Movie' Review: A Beautiful, Reflective Gem". Forbes. Forbes Media LLC. Retrieved August 22, 2019.
  16. ^ Bishop, Rollin (August 22, 2019). "Steven Universe: The Movie Review: Love and War on the Planet Earth". ComicBook.com. Pop Culture Media. Retrieved August 22, 2019.
  17. ^ Kelley, Shamus (August 22, 2019). "Steven Universe: The Movie Review (Spoiler-Free)". Den of Geek. Den of Geek World Limited. Retrieved August 22, 2019.
  18. ^ Walsh, Michael (July 19, 2019). "Steven Universe: The Movie Drops First Trailer". The Nerdist. Retrieved July 23, 2019.
  19. ^ "Steven Universe the Movie (Original Soundtrack)". Apple Music. Apple Music. August 24, 2019. Retrieved August 24, 2019.

External links