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How to Train Your Dragon 2: The Complete Guide

Introduction

Released in 2014, How to Train Your Dragon 2 quickly became a beloved animated film among both children and adults. This sequel to the original movie follows the continued adventures of Hiccup and Toothless as they navigate dragon-filled skies and new challenges in their Viking village of Berk. DreamWorks Animation once again delivered a visually stunning film with memorable characters, but there is much more to this movie beyond its surface entertainment value. From the intricate animation techniques to the development of new villains and plot points, there is a wealth of information to explore when it comes to How to Train Your Dragon 2. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into the details of this popular animated film, exploring the plot, characters, animation techniques, marketing, and box office performance to uncover everything you need to know about How to Train Your Dragon 2.

Introduction

Introduction

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on the beloved animated film, How to Train Your Dragon 2. Released in 2014, this sequel to the popular original film was produced by DreamWorks Animation and directed by Dean DeBlois. Fans of the first movie were eager to see what new adventures awaited Hiccup and Toothless, and they were not disappointed with the results.

The film takes place five years after the events of the first movie and sees Hiccup now a young adult who is being prepared to become the chief of his village, Berk. Meanwhile, Toothless discovers a hidden dragon paradise that is threatened by a new villain named Drago Bludvist, who has amassed a powerful dragon army. Hiccup must once again team up with Toothless and their friends to save their village and the dragons they have come to love.

As a sequel, How to Train Your Dragon 2 had big shoes to fill. However, it managed to exceed expectations with its stunning animation, immersive storyline, and memorable characters. It also tackled more mature themes than its predecessor, such as loss, acceptance, and coming of age.

DreamWorks Animation spared no expense in creating this masterpiece. The studio employed some of the best animators in the industry to bring the dragons to life through computer-generated imagery. They also enlisted award-winning composer John Powell to create the score that beautifully captures the emotions of the film.

In terms of box office performance, How to Train Your Dragon 2 grossed over $600 million worldwide and received critical acclaim, earning a nomination for Best Animated Feature at the Academy Awards.

Overall, How to Train Your Dragon 2 is an exceptional sequel that builds upon the success of the original film. In the following sections, we will delve deeper into the plot, characters, making-of, marketing, and box office performance of this unforgettable animated film.

The Plot and Characters of How to Train Your Dragon 2

Hiccup and Toothless: A Dynamic Duo

Hiccup and Toothless: A Dynamic Duo

Hiccup, the Viking hero of How to Train Your Dragon 2, and Toothless, his inseparable dragon companion, have become one of the most iconic duos in animated film history. Their unlikely bond has captured the hearts of millions of fans around the world, and for good reason.

At the heart of their relationship is the Night Fury, a rare and elusive dragon species that Toothless belongs to. In the first film, Hiccup was the first Viking to ever touch a Night Fury and he quickly realized that they were not the vicious beasts his tribe believed them to be. This realization sparked a deep curiosity in Hiccup that led him to study and eventually befriend Toothless. Together, Hiccup and Toothless form an unbreakable bond that allows them to overcome incredible challenges and go on unforgettable adventures.

One of the most remarkable aspects of their relationship is the way in which they communicate with each other. Despite their different languages, Hiccup and Toothless are able to understand each other on a profound level. For example, when Hiccup lost his leg during a battle, Toothless immediately sensed his pain and guilt. In response, Toothless flew into the sky with Hiccup on his back, showing him that he was still capable of incredible feats despite his injury. It’s these moments of connection that truly make Hiccup and Toothless a dynamic duo.

Their bond also manifests in their ability to fly together. Toothless is a highly skilled flyer, and Hiccup invents a prosthetic tail fin that allows him to ride on Toothless’ back while they soar through the skies. The exhilaration and freedom they experience while flying together is unparalleled, and it’s clear that they are happiest when they’re in each other’s company.

In conclusion, the bond between Hiccup and Toothless is what makes How to Train Your Dragon 2 such a special film. Their relationship is built on trust, understanding, and mutual respect, and it’s a reminder that true friendship can overcome any obstacle.

The New Villain: Drago Bludvist

The New Villain: Drago Bludvist

In “How to Train Your Dragon 2,” the audience is introduced to a new villain – Drago Bludvist. This character, voiced by Djimon Hounsou, is presented as a menacing and powerful force to be reckoned with.

Drago Bludvist is the leader of a massive army of dragons that he has trained to do his bidding. His goal is to conquer all other kingdoms and become the ultimate ruler of the land. This makes him a significant threat to Hiccup and his fellow Vikings in Berk.

The conflict between Drago Bludvist and the protagonists of the story is central to the plot of the movie. Unlike the first film, where the dragons were the primary antagonists, this time around, it’s a person who poses the greatest danger.

What’s interesting about Drago Bludvist’s character is that he sees himself as a savior rather than a villain. He believes that by controlling the dragons, he can bring peace to the world. However, his methods are cruel and violent, making him a clear antagonist in the eyes of the audience.

Overall, Drago Bludvist is a well-crafted villain who adds depth and complexity to the storyline of “How to Train Your Dragon 2.” His powerful dragon army and his threatening presence make him a formidable opponent for our heroes, creating an engaging and exciting conflict that keeps viewers on the edge of their seats.

The Making of How to Train Your Dragon 2

Animation and Visual Effects

Animation and Visual Effects

In “How to Train Your Dragon 2,” the animation and visual effects play a crucial role in creating the breathtaking flying scenes, as well as the intense action sequences. The film’s animators used computer-generated imagery (CGI) to bring the dragons and their movements to life.

One of the most impressive aspects of the film is the way the dragons move. Each dragon has its own unique style of flight, which was carefully crafted by the animators. Toothless, the Night Fury dragon, has a sleek and fast flying style, while the larger dragons like the Bewilderbeast have a more lumbering and powerful feel to their movements.

The use of 3D technology was also instrumental in creating a sense of depth and immersion for the audience. The film was released in both 2D and 3D formats, with the latter allowing viewers to experience the thrilling flying scenes in a whole new way.

Overall, the animation and visual effects in “How to Train Your Dragon 2” are a testament to the skill and creativity of the film’s animators. Their attention to detail and dedication to bringing the dragons to life on screen is what makes the film such a beloved classic among both children and adults.

The Art Department

The Art Department

One of the most important aspects of any animated film is its visual design. In How to Train Your Dragon 2, the art department played a crucial role in bringing the world of Berk and its inhabitants to life.

Concept Art

Before any animation could begin, the team at DreamWorks spent months creating concept art for the film. This involved designing everything from the landscapes and buildings of Berk to the individual characters and dragons themselves. The goal was to create a cohesive and visually stunning world that would captivate audiences young and old.

Character Design

Perhaps the most challenging aspect of the art department’s work was designing the film’s numerous characters. As with the first film, each Viking and dragon needed to be unique and instantly recognizable. This meant taking into account factors such as age, body type, and personality when creating their designs.

For example, Hiccup’s design had to reflect both his status as a young leader and his close bond with Toothless. Meanwhile, the villainous Drago Bludvist needed to look imposing and powerful, with enough menacing features to make him a formidable foe for our heroes.

Color Palette

Another key element of the art department’s work was choosing the film’s color palette. How to Train Your Dragon 2 features a wide range of locations, from lush forests to icy tundras, and each required its own distinct color scheme.

The art department chose to use earthy tones throughout much of the film, giving it a grounded and naturalistic feel. However, they also incorporated brighter colors for more fantastical elements such as dragon fire and magic.

Overall, the art department’s work on How to Train Your Dragon 2 was essential in creating a rich and immersive world for audiences to explore. From concept art to character design to color palette, every detail was carefully considered and crafted to perfection.

The Soundtrack

The Soundtrack

When it comes to the music of “How to Train Your Dragon 2,” one name stands out: John Powell. The British composer known for his work on films like “The Bourne Identity” and “Kung Fu Panda” brought his unique talents to this beloved animated sequel, crafting a score that perfectly captures the film’s sense of epic adventure and emotional depth.

Powell’s work on “How to Train Your Dragon 2” is notable not only for its quality but also for its attention to detail. The score features intricate musical motifs that help to convey key themes and emotions throughout the film. For example, the main theme of the movie, which is introduced in the opening scene, is a soaring melody played on the violin that represents the bond between Hiccup and Toothless.

In addition to the original score, “How to Train Your Dragon 2” also features several memorable songs. Perhaps the most notable is “For the Dancing and the Dreaming,” a tender duet between Hiccup and his mother that showcases both Powell’s songwriting skills and the vocal talents of actors Jay Baruchel and Cate Blanchett.

Overall, the soundtrack of “How to Train Your Dragon 2” is a triumph of cinematic music. Powell’s score and songs elevate the film to new heights, providing an immersive audio experience that enhances every moment of the story. If you’re a fan of movie soundtracks or just great music in general, this is definitely one worth checking out.

The Voice Actors

The Voice Actors

The voice acting in How to Train Your Dragon 2 is one of the many reasons why the film became so beloved among audiences. The cast is filled with talented actors who brought their characters to life in a way that was both entertaining and heartwarming.

One of the standout performances comes from Jay Baruchel, who voices the film’s main character, Hiccup. Baruchel perfectly captures the essence of Hiccup, bringing a sense of humor and vulnerability to the role. His chemistry with Toothless, the loveable Night Fury dragon, is palpable, making their bond all the more endearing.

Cate Blanchett also delivers an exceptional performance as Valka, Hiccup’s long-lost mother. Blanchett brings a sense of gravitas to the role, infusing Valka with strength and courage. Her portrayal of the character adds depth to the film and helps elevate it beyond a simple children’s movie.

Gerard Butler returns as Stoick the Vast, Hiccup’s father and the chief of Berk. Butler brings a commanding presence to the role, imbuing Stoick with a sense of authority and wisdom. His relationship with Hiccup and the other Vikings is central to the film’s plot, and Butler’s performance helps anchor it.

Craig Ferguson, known for his comedic roles, provides comic relief as Gobber the Belch, the village blacksmith. His witty one-liners and quips add levity to the film, providing a balance to the more serious moments.

Finally, America Ferrera shines as Astrid, Hiccup’s love interest and fellow dragon rider. Ferrera brings a sense of toughness and determination to the role, making Astrid a force to be reckoned with. Her chemistry with Baruchel is palpable, and their romance adds a layer of complexity to the film.

Overall, the voice acting in How to Train Your Dragon 2 is top-notch, with each actor bringing something unique and special to their respective roles. Their performances help make the film the beloved classic that it is today.

Marketing and Box Office Performance

The Trailers and Promotions

The Trailers and Promotions

One of the most important aspects of any movie release is the marketing campaign. How to Train Your Dragon 2 was no exception, as DreamWorks Animation spared no expense in promoting their highly anticipated sequel.

Teasers

The first teaser trailer for How to Train Your Dragon 2 was released in July 2013, almost a year before the film’s premiere. The teaser was a hit with fans, as it offered a brief glimpse of Hiccup and Toothless soaring through the skies together once again. The teaser also hinted at the introduction of a new villain, Drago Bludvist, who would pose a significant threat to Hiccup and the citizens of Berk.

Posters

DreamWorks Animation released a series of posters leading up to the release of How to Train Your Dragon 2. These posters showcased the stunning visuals of the film and featured the beloved characters from the first movie, including Hiccup, Astrid, and Stoick. Some of the posters also hinted at the arrival of new dragons, such as Cloudjumper and Valka’s Bewilderbeast.

TV Spots

In addition to teasers and posters, DreamWorks Animation aired several TV spots to promote How to Train Your Dragon 2. These spots provided more insight into the plot of the film, while also showcasing the action-packed sequences and emotional moments that would be present throughout the movie. One of the most memorable TV spots featured Hiccup and Toothless gliding through the clouds together, set to the song “Where No One Goes” by Jónsi.

Overall, the marketing campaign for How to Train Your Dragon 2 was a massive success. The teasers, posters, and TV spots generated buzz and excitement among fans, while also introducing new audiences to the world of dragons and Vikings.

Box Office Performance

Box Office Performance

The success of any movie is often measured by its box office performance, and How to Train Your Dragon 2 was no exception. The film was widely anticipated by fans of the first installment, and it was hoped that the sequel would live up to expectations. So how did it fare?

Reception

How to Train Your Dragon 2 received largely positive reviews from both critics and audiences alike. Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a 92% approval rating, with many reviewers praising the animation, characters, and storyline. The film was also praised for its mature themes, which tackled issues such as loss, grief, and growing up.

Awards

The film garnered several award nominations, including an Academy Award nomination for Best Animated Feature. It also won the Golden Globe Award for Best Animated Feature Film, as well as several other accolades at various film festivals and award shows.

Sequel Plans

The success of How to Train Your Dragon 2 paved the way for a third installment in the franchise, which was released in 2019. The film was highly anticipated by fans of the series, and it lived up to expectations, receiving positive reviews and performing well at the box office.

Overall, the box office performance of How to Train Your Dragon 2 was impressive, grossing over $620 million worldwide. The film’s critical acclaim and numerous accolades further cemented its place as one of the most beloved animated films of recent years.
After learning about the story, characters, making process, and marketing of How to Train Your Dragon 2, it is clear that this beloved animated sequel holds a special place in the hearts of fans around the world. From Hiccup and Toothless’s bond to the introduction of new characters and the epic conflict with Drago Bludvist, the film’s plot captivates audiences of all ages.

Moreover, the stunning animation, beautiful concept art, and iconic musical score bring this magical world to life. The hard work and dedication of the art department, voice actors, and animation teams shine through in every frame of the film.

Finally, the box office success of How to Train Your Dragon 2 and its plans for future sequels demonstrate the overwhelming popularity and enduring impact of this franchise. It has sparked imaginations, inspired creativity, and brought joy to countless viewers worldwide.

In conclusion, How to Train Your Dragon 2 is more than just a movie – it’s a cultural phenomenon that continues to enthrall and enchant audiences years after its release. With its unforgettable characters, breathtaking animation, and timeless message of friendship, this film will undoubtedly continue to be a classic for generations to come.

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