From director Cal Brunker, who also co-wrote the film with Bob Barlen and Billy Frolick, the animated feature PAW Patrol: The Movie follows Ryder and everyone’s favorite heroic pups from the hit Nickelodeon series, as they face off with heir biggest rival and fight to save the citizens of the metropolis known as Adventure City. With new gadgets, gear and ultra cool vehicles, German Shepherd police dog Chase, Dalmation firedog Marshall, Cockapoo aviator Skye, construction Bulldog Rubble, mixed breed Rocky who can put any tool to good use, Labrador water rescuer Zuma, and their new pal and local miniature Dachshund Liberty must band together and overcome their own fears, in order to successfully complete their mission.
During this interview with Collider, Brunker and Barlen talked about telling a story that satisfies longtime fans of PAW Patrol while also bringing in a new audience, what makes the pups such lovable characters, getting to bring in a new pup, the process for developing the merchandise, the fun in working with this voice cast, which longtime question they finally provide an answer for, whether they’d like to make more PAW Patrol films, and what they love most about working in animation.
Collider: One of the things that I was really impressed about with this is that you are taking something that people are familiar with, and there’s a big fan base for this world and these characters, and you’re telling a story that’s not too repetitive for fans, but still accessible for people who aren’t familiar with it. How did you manage that?
CAL BRUNKER: I’ve got two young kids, six and three years old, so PAW Patrol was a staple at our house.
BOB BARLEN: I have five nieces and nephews that are all in the PAW Patrol range. We were both familiar with it, definitely. But in terms of actually then adapting it into a film, we had to dive a little deeper.
BRUNKER: One of the things is that, at the very beginning of the movie, the first rescue that takes place, that character has never heard of the PAW Patrol before and is shocked to see a puppy show up to save him. That was our way of trying to start the movie in an inviting way for people who maybe didn’t know anything about the show. It says, “Yeah, it’s weird that dogs are doing this, but that’s okay.” And then, you’ll have a laugh and come along for the ride. We wanted to address that, up front, for people who hadn’t seen it.
Read the full interview on Collider here.