Walt Disney Animation Studios' "Zootopia" Premiere - ArrivalsWhen Disney's "Zootopia" hits theaters Friday, audiences can expect the film to pack more than just laughs at the hilarious expensive of a DMV run by sloths.

In fact, "Zootopia" delivers just as resonate a message, if not more so, than Pixar's Oscar-winning "Inside Out."

The movie is about much more than the initial (and funny) trailers make it seem, a fact that voice actor Ginnifer Goodwin reinforced during a recent press day for the Disney flick. Goodwin voices Judy Hopps, a bunny from the countryside with dreams of being a cop in the big city. Instead, she gets stuck with meter maid duty. Hopps soon meets sly fox Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman), and the two team up on a case that reveals the truth beneath Zootopia's idyllic facade, as well as a very powerful message.

Moviefone recently sat down with Goodwin to discuss how different this version of the film is from the one she read years ago, her reaction to the final product, and how she can't wait for "Zootopia 2."
ZOOTOPIA – FLASH, THE FASTEST SLOTH AT THE DMV -- When rookie rabbit officer Judy Hopps (voice of Ginnifer Goodwin) has only 48 hours to crack her first case, she turns to scam-artist fox Nick Wilde for help, but he doesn't always have her best interests at heart. Their investigation takes them to the local DMV (Department of Mammal Vehicles), which is staffed entirely by sloths. Directed by Byron Howard and Rich Moore, and produced by Clark Spencer, Walt Disney Animation Studios' "Zootopia" opens in U.S. theaters on March 4, 2016. ©2015 Disney. All Rights Reserved.Moviefone: The trailers don't give away anything outside of the funny Judy and Nick moments. So when the big plot twist happens, it catches audiences off guard. Were you as surprised?

Ginnifer Goodwin: When I came on board, the movie was fairly different. It had the same themes, but the story was told from a different angle, and Zootopia was a different kind of world. I think it's a testament to Disney [...] that [they] will start over from scratch to make something better. The script was completely re-written and became what the movie is now. I worked on it for two-and-a-half years, and the filmmakers started five years ago, so the movie's had various incarnations.

Along the way, how did Judy's story change?

Judy was a sidekick in the version that I first read, and Zootopia was a bleak world. Nick was still the same character, but you saw everything through Nick's eyes in the [original version] that I read. The audience was part of his hustle, and I was an outsider trying to get through to him.

What was it like to see the final cut of the movie, with Judy going from sidekick to hero?

I've seen it several times. I was at the first screening of the completed movie and I was surprised -- I was gutted in all wonderful ways. I knew that I loved it, I knew that I had more fun than I had ever had before. I knew that the themes resonated with me, but I didn't know that it was going to be able to sweep me up in it and hook me emotionally the way that it did.
ZOOTOPIA – OFFICER HOPPS -- Judy Hopps (voice of Ginnifer Goodwin) believes anyone can be anything. Being the first bunny on a police force of big, tough animals isn't easy, but Hopps is determined to prove herself. Featuring score by Oscar®-winning composer Michael Giacchino, and an all-new original song, "Try Everything," performed by Grammy® winner Shakira, Walt Disney Animation Studios' "Zootopia" opens in U.S. theaters on March 4, 2016. ©2015 Disney. All Rights Reserved.Disney's brought up some pretty resonant topics lately. Last year, "Inside Out" helped people better understand how their minds and emotions work. "Big Hero 6" dealt with loss. What do you hope audiences take away from "Zootopia"?

What's brilliant about this one is that there are so many themes. The overlying theme is that battle between "you are what you are" and "'anyone can be anything,"which is the first thing that I hope that my kids learn when they are finally old enough to see this. As far as what we can take from it in terms of social commentary, I think that it's a ballsy move from Disney. I'm proud to be a part of it. It seems timely, when it was actually written years and years ago. There is the realization that these issues are timeless and it needs to be addressed -- and should have been addressed a long time ago.

I can't wait until my kids are old enough, so we can sit around the dinner table and have them ask the questions [the movie addresses]. It's almost more about the questions than it is about the answers at this point. We obviously want to figure out how to solve these problems. The first step is asking these questions.

This movie's message is so important, and the story leaves room for more adventures with Judy and Nick. Are you psyched at the possibility to explore Zootopia more with these characters?

I've been begging for a sequel. I want to do a sequel immediately. I know they have other things to work on, but I want a sequel now.

"Zootopia" hits theaters Friday.

Disney's Zootopia - Trailer No. 5
Zootopia
PG2016
Based on 39 critics

Police rabbit Judy Hopps works with a wily fox to solve a mystery in the metropolis of Zootopia. Read More

categories Interviews, Movies