Wes Anderson has just released the trailer for his highly anticipated stop-motion film, Isle of Dogs. The movie’s impressive cast includes Anderson veterans Tilda Swinton, Bill Murray, Edward Norton, Frances McDormand, Harvey Keitel, Bob Balaban, Jeff Goldblum, and F. Murray Abraham, as well as newcomers Bryan Cranston, Scarlett Johansson, Greta Gerwig, Yoko Ono, and Liev Schreiber.
Arriving almost a decade after his first animated movie, The Fantastic Mr. Fox, Anderson’s new action-packed film will feature government conspiracies, political intrigue, robots, and a boy’s journey to find his best friend.
The movie takes place 20 years into the future in the dystopian Japanese city of Megasaki. According to the trailer, “Canine saturation has reached epidemic proportions. An outbreak of dog flu rips through the city of Megasaki. Mayor Kobayashi issues emergency orders.” As a result, the city’s dogs are exiled to Trash Island, supposedly to prevent the epidemic from spreading further. Atari, a 12-year-old boy, sets out to navigate the perilous island in search for his lost dog, Spots. Isle of Dogs will involve more adventure than previous Wes Anderson films, but will still feature Mr. Anderson’s characteristic deadpan humor and distinct visual style.
The upcoming feature has garnered some controversy, given that the Japan-based movie is predominantly voiced by white actors such as Scarlett Johansson, Bryan Cranston, and Tilda Swinton. Although Anderson did cast several Japanese actors and musicians—such as Yoko Ono, Ken Watanabe, Yôjirô Noda, and Mari Natsuki—they seem to be billed well below the movies' white actors.
Kevin Nguyen, writer and editor for GQ Magazine tweeted, “ScarJo and Tilda are in it, but how rude of Wes Anderson to leave Emma Stone out of puppy whitewashing movie.” Many are dazzled by Anderson’s all-star cast, while others are less enchanted with what they perceive as a whitewashing disappointment.
Isle of Dogs is Anderson’s first feature-length film since 2014 and opens in theaters March 23, 2018.