WTF is 'Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken'?
Updated: Jul 8
And why is Ariel a villain in a Dreamworks movie?
Seriously, what is going on and what is this movie all about? Dreamworks is releasing Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken in theaters on June 30th — just one month after Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures released The Little Mermaid. While mermaids are the stars of the show in the live-action remake, mermaids seem to be the most power-hungry and dangerous creatures in the sea, according to the Kraken.
Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken follows the story of Ruby, a shy highschooler, who learns she’s a descendent of royal kraken. The Warrior Queen of the Seven Seas happens to be Ruby’s grandmother, making Ruby the next in line for the throne. She teaches Ruby the history between Kraken and mermaids, and the importance of protecting the sea from mermaids.
Now, the main question is, how can Dreamworks use a Disney character and storyline without being sued? Because if you’ve seen the trailer, the main mermaid looks a whole lot like our beloved Disney princess. The story of The Little Mermaid, also originally known as, ‘Den lille havfrue,’ is a fairytale that originates from the early 1800s. The story was published by Hans Christian Anderson as part of a fairy tale book for children. Due to the age of the story and copyright laws, the story of The Little Mermaid is in the public domain and available for adaptations. Disney owns the rights to the characters and storyline created for their animated adaptation of the original fairytale, but they cannot copyright the baseline of the story or image of The Little Mermaid.
Dreamworks made a bold decision to compete with Disney with an anti-mermaid movie. Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken is targeting a younger audience who may feel like an outcast or unpopular in school by comparing mermaids to "the popular kids." This idea is putting a negative connotation on mermaids, thus The Little Mermaid.
The Little Mermaid ranked number five of the biggest Memorial Day weekend openings. Guests are now able to meet both animation-based Ariel and reimagined Ariel in Walt Disney World due to the popularity of the film. While the Dreamworks featured film is projected to perform well on its opening weekend, it’s not predicted to be anywhere near as successful as The Little Mermaid.