Triggerfish has added more star power to its action-comedy animated feature Seal Team, with Dolph Lundgren and Emmy winner Matthew Rhys joining the team.
Seal Team is the story of Quinn, a seal who spends his days relaxing in the sun, splashing in the beautiful waters off the coast of Cape Town, and swimming for his life from Great White Sharks. When he decides it’s time for the food chain to bite back, Quinn recruits a ragtag team of likeminded seals brave, stupid and crazy enough to try teach those sharks a lesson – once and for all. Jaws will drop…
Lundgren (Universal Soldier, Aquaman, The Expendables franchise) has been cast as the cool, suave dolphin Dolph, who took showbizness by storm after his special ops military unit was disbanded, while Rhys (A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, Perry Mason, The Americans) will make the water ripple with his portrayal of Grimes, the mafia boss-like alpha shark.
“I wanted to be in Seal Team partly because my four-year-old son is obsessed with sharks and partly because Grimes isn’t evil, just misunderstood,” says Rhys. “Getting to voice an enormous, scary shark was more fun than I imagined.”
“I watched Matthew in A Beautiful Day In The Neighbourhood… and after crying for pretty much the whole of that emotional, moving, heart-warming film, I was like, ‘This is our terrifying villain!’ Well, not exactly, but it did show what an unbelievable actor he is,” says writer-director Greig Cameron, who has written and directed 45 episodes of the hit series Supa Strikas, broadcast on Disney XD in over 130 territories, and written on the likes of Mike Scott’s Moosebox, part of Nick Animated Shorts, and Sunrise Productions’ Munki & Trunk, which airs on Nicktoons.
“From his first line in the booth, it was clear that we had our baddie: he had all the sleazy salesman charm I was looking for, with constant menace lurking underneath. When he shouted he was scary; when he whispered he was even scarier! And Matthew was so funny as well. It is the fate of most animated film villains to spend their days dealing with idiot henchmen and the way he captured that on-edge exasperation cracks me up every time. What a pleasure!”
Seal Team is inspired by a true story. Kind of. “Believe it or not, our underwater military animal team is based on a real unit that trains seals and dolphins to disarm mines, so we wrote a dolphin in for ‘accuracy,’” says Cameron. “Admittedly, the real life versions don’t wear sunglasses, chew on (unlit) cigars and bust out catchphrases…”
“We called the dolphin character Dolph because we thought it was hilarious, and the snowball kept on rolling and growing until the man himself actually agreed to be in the film,” says Cameron. “A lot of this movie is an homage to the ‘80s and ‘90s action films I grew up with, so having an icon of that era actually be in our film is so tonally perfect. He was fun to work with and really gracious with all the silly, over-the-top stuff we asked him to do: Getting one of my favourite grizzled action stars to ‘Ek ek ek’ like a dolphin is the life-long dream I didn’t know I had until it happened.”
The VIP voice cast includes Academy Award winner J.K. Simmons (Whiplash, Justice League) as the seal team’s grouchy military-trained veteran, Claggart; four-time Annie Award nominee Patrick Warburton (Family Guy, Ted, Bee Movie) as the confident and boastful Geraldo; Emmy nominee Kristen Schaal (Toy Story 3 and 4, Despicable Me 2, Gravity Falls, Last Man on Earth) as the fast, funny, and off-kilter Beth; and South African Teen Choice nominee Sharlto Copley (Chappie, District 9, Maleficent) as the eccentric master of inventions, Switch. Also joining the band of seals is British musician, singer-songwriter, and Grammy Award winner Seal and The Lion King’s Rafiki, South African John Kani (Black Panther, Captain America: Civil War). The international voice cast is led by Jessie T. Usher (Shaft, Independence Day: Resurgence, The Boys) as the main character and hero, Quinn. Writer-director Greig Cameron has been working from an original story and screenplay by himself, Brian & Jason Cleveland, and Wayne Thornley.
Watch the first teaser: