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"Tom & Jerry" "Tom & Jerry"

The long-anticipated trailer for Tom & Jerry, the cat-and-mouse duo’s first theatrical outing in almost 30 years, has officially landed. If you want to watch Jerry run rings around his old foe and an entire cast of human actors, now you can.

First impressions: as promised, Tom and Jerry’s cg incarnations are pretty faithful to the originals, and the design, rigging, and animation is reverent to the hand-drawn not to mention the cartoonish effects. No uncanny new look, no talking animals; there’s even a gag that pays tribute to their 2d roots. What we can’t gauge from the trailer is how much Tom and Jerry there will be — many scenes here don’t feature them at all. Watch it and read the official synopsis below:

One of the most beloved rivalries in history is reignited when Jerry moves into New York City’s finest hotel on the eve of “the wedding of the century,” forcing the event’s desperate planner to hire Tom to get rid of him, in director Tim Story’s Tom & Jerry. The ensuing cat-and-mouse battle threatens to destroy her career, the wedding and possibly the hotel itself. But soon, an even bigger problem arises: a diabolically ambitious staffer conspiring against all three of them. … Tom and Jerry’s new big-screen adventure stakes new ground for the iconic characters and forces them to do the unthinkable … work together to save the day.

Industry legends William Hanna and Joseph Barbera created the violent critters 80 years ago at MGM; the characters starred in 161 theatrical shorts through 1967. Since then, they have appeared in a variety of tv series and over a dozen direct-to-video movies. The new film is the first theatrical feature in the franchise since 1992’s poorly received Tom and Jerry: The Movie.

Warner Bros. first mooted a hybrid reboot more than a decade ago. The live-action shoot began last year and wrapped up just in time before the pandemic hit; Framestore has since been busy adding the cg elements. In May, we spoke to Arslan Elver and Pete Warbis, respectively animation supervisor and senior animator on the film, about the upsides and downsides of working remotely.

Tom & Jerry is directed by Tim Story, who has a strong background in live-action comedies: his credits include the Think Like a Man and Ride Along films. He also helmed two Fantastic Four films in 2005 and 2007.

The script is by Kevin Costello (Brigsby Bear) and the producer is Chris DeFaria (The Lego Movie 2). Executive producers are Story, Adam Goodman, Steven Harding, Sam Register, Jesse Ehrman, and Allison Abbate. The cast is led by Chloe Grace Moretz and Michael Peña, and also includes Colin Jost, Ken Jeong, Rob Delaney, and Pallavi Sharda.

The film was slated to hit theaters on March 5, 2021. Warner Bros. is now saying only that it is “coming to theaters 2021.”

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