Browntable's "Zootopia 2" Fanfilm Project and Why It Kinda Irks Me

Discussion in 'TV, Video, and Film' started by Dolphanatic, Jun 14, 2016.

  1. Dolphanatic

    Dolphanatic Member

    Okay, I know I might kinda sound like a killjoy here, but I think what I'm about to say here needs to be said. So for those of you who who don't know, a couple months back, a YouTube user by the name of "Browntable" posted a video in which he discussed some ideas for what a possible sequel to Zootopia could be about. I 'll show you the video in a little bit, but basically, he said that Zootopia 2 should be about heterosexism under the guise of inserspecies relationships (specifically, romance between a certain rabbit and fox). Now don't get me wrong, I ship Judy and Nick as much as the next person, but this idea in particular sounds like slight overkill to me. I mean sure, there's a bit of truth to be told with that context in mind, but to have that as the only major conflict sounds rather uninteresting, especially for an entire feature-length movie.

    While I didn't completely agree with all the ideas he discussed (and yes, I'll get to more on to that later), I found them relatively harmless at the time, as he seemed to just be pitching some ideas out of the blue to spark a discussion in the comments (which I've participated in, by the way). However, that all changed a few weeks ago when he posted a follow-up video titled "Zootopia 2 Fan-Film is Coming!".

    As you can see, he hasn't learned a thing since his previous Zootopia video, as he's simply going to stand firm on what his initial ideas were. Not only is that naïve, but it also completely misses the point of his aforementioned sequel ideas video. Just to make matters worse, most of the top comments were from people who agreed with all his ideas, which certainly didn't help, since all he's been doing up to this point was going about cherrypicking the ideas that were compatible with his. Remember, that earlier video was supposed to be a venue for us fans to share our different ideas with each other, not a means to say his ideas were perfect. But now, he's shown that he really just wanted us to give him more ideas for his own fan-made sequel because apparently, he knows best. And chances are, we're not even going to be given any credit for it, anyway.

    Since then, he's been making videos about it almost nonstop. I'm talking audition requests, voice reels, progress announcements, and various other kinds of pretentious content to get Zootopia fans like me hyped. As you can probably tell, I'm not buying into it at all. Just when it was all starting to get on my nerves, he went ahead and made his own trailer (and I'm warning you, it'll probably make you cringe)!

    Now I'm really mad! For starters, he's been spending more effort on making hype-related content than on the actual project itself!

    Secondly, like I said earlier, I didn't even agree with all his ideas to begin with, so of course it's going to drive me insane when I see that my feedback has done next to nothing! All he's done so far is state his ideas, ignore the opposing ideas from people like me, and cherrypick the ones that fit with his.

    Those two things alone are already enough of a reason to cringe. But most prominently, the trailer reeks of in your face political correctness! I literally found myself struggling to keep a straight face while actively trying not to scroll down or just leave the video entirely! It's just that bad (at least for me, anyway). Look, I get it, Browntable. You're trying to parody the official first reveal trailer. The problem is, that trailer was all about introducing us to the basics of the Zootopia universe, focusing on the inherent hostility between predator and prey. It fit perfectly within the animal world being presented. That's where the fan-made trailer goes wrong. Right off the bat, it immediately throws around terms like "progressive" and addresses stereotypes way too blatantly. Not to mention, it's just not all that impressive to look at. Overall, it's just a rehash of the aforementioned official first reveal trailer, only with painfully obvious progressivism shoehorned into it in a pathetic attempt to try to be relevant, despite the fact that Zootopia was already as relevant as it needed to be. This whole politically correct "some animals are more progressive than others" concept is not only ludicrous when it comes to initially introducing people to a city full of animals, but it also completely misses the point of Zootopia to begin with!

    Let me explain. Part of what made Zootopia so good was how it was not politically correct in a lot of ways. The story doesn't go out of its way to try to make real world comparisons because it can already do all that and more naturally by simply making sense and being relatable in its own right. That's why Zootopia's message about prejudice works so well. It never plays favorites and idealizes one side or demonizes the other. Instead, it acknowledges that both sides have their fair share of flaws to overcome. That's a realistic setup that's just as relevant and timely as it is politically incorrect. There was never one "over-privileged" majority oppressing an innocent minority. For example, when the manager of that ice cream shop denies service to a couple customers, it's later revealed that he had a good reason for doing so, since said customers went on to make an obscene profit after melting down and redistributing one of his Jumbo Pops that someone else had been tricked into buying for them. It's instances like this where the writing truly shines, since it gets the message across without preaching "love and tolerance" to the audience. The writers don't ever draw direct comparisons to the distrust between predator and prey and real life discrimination because there's no need to, they never once tell us that what's going on with the stereotyping is bad from the get-go because they know we can understand why it is, and they never state that Judy's noisy neighbors who share the same last name are gay because it just isn't that relevant to the story. In fact, for all we know, they could be brothers. It's never in your face about anything because it respects the audience enough to let them figure it out on their own. That's a sign of great storytelling.

    This is why I disagree with so many of Browntable's ideas. They're mostly one-sided and cliché. We don't need another story about some couple in a "forbidden" romance facing discrimination, then deciding not to be together after being pressured by everyone else to break up, then changing their minds and getting back together after everyone else suddenly has a change of heart after seeing them in trouble and having pity for them, deciding that they were wrong to judge them and now embrace our protagonists' "special" relationship with open arms, apologizing last minute for being so "close-minded". That whole concept has already been done to death and it's not even that good of a story to begin with. There are so many better stories that could be told with this rich universe than something so one-dimensional and politically correct. If anything, Zootopia 2 should be more focused on breaking down political correctness, not reinforcing it. Having everyone be so opposed to interspecies romance for no reason other than to be jerks to our protagonists presents a very unrealistic representation of society. Not to mention, it also sends a very unhealthy message to kids: "If anyone ever says what you're doing is wrong, it's always their fault for being such intolerant bigots and they should check their privileges!"

    However, despite all of this, what really brings my blood to a boil is the fact that Zootopia just came out! It's literally only been a few months and yet already, people like Browntable are impatiently demanding a sequel without thinking things through! Give the makers of the movie some time! The worst thing we fans of Zootopia can do right now is pressure the writers into rushing the sequel for the sake of getting the movie out as soon as possible, bogging down the movie in the process, which could in turn be ruinous to Zootopia's reputation. Do you guys really want Zootopia to be remembered as one of those movies with a horrible sequel that retroactively destroyed the franchise? I certainly don't. Listen, if you guys are really that worried about Zootopia not getting a sequel because there aren't any official trailers for it out yet, rest assured, it's already pretty much confirmed at this point. Just about all the writers and voice actors are totally on board with the idea, as can be seen in countless interviews. Byron Howard, Ginnifer Goodwin, and Jason Bateman, to name a few, have shown that they're all more than enthusiastic about the idea of a sequel on multiple occasions. In fact, Byron Howard even talked about the possibility of a subplot involving intersperses romance. He's even acknowledged the idea of Judy and Nick being together numerous times. It's really not a matter of if it will happen as much as it is a matter of when.

    -Continued on the next post-
  2. Dolphanatic

    Dolphanatic Member

    What's really remarkable about this situation is just how open the writers are to our ideas right now. They're listening to us, and we have a special opportunity to pitch our best ideas to them out of pure love for the series and as a way of showing our appreciation for their work. Unfortunately, this is where Browntable's actions really start to rub me the wrong way. Instead of using this as an opportunity to discuss his ideas with other fans like me, he might as well be saying "Never mind all of you, I'm just gonna make my own Zootopia sequel because I and only I know what's best for the series! My Zootopia 2 is the definitive Zootopia 2!" Obviously, he isn't actually saying that, but as they say, actions speak louder than words. There are a lot of vastly different ideas for a Zootopia 2 floating around the fandom right now. In fact, even I have some ideas of my own. But of course, my ideas will most likely never have the opportunity to be given flashy original animation, voice acting, or thousands of views through a collaborative project because I guess I'm just not popular enough, am I? Regardless, "Zootopia 2", which is based on a variety of lots of fans' ideas, is now one of his main projects. This means that while he selectively picks and chooses from our ideas to use on his big fancy fanfic without giving us credit, he's essentially claiming them as his own.

    In fact, you know what this is starting to remind me of? Double Rainboom! For those who don't know, Double Rainboom was a prestigious fan project done by a group of dedicated Bronies who wanted to try their hand at writing their own episode of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. Being a Brony myself, I heard a lot of buzz revolving around the project for a long time. It was even dubbed "the first ever fan-made episode". Unfortunately, this is where things started to go sour for the project. You see, the person who pitched the idea, know as "Flamingo Rich", oversaw everything, meaning that he was always the one to make the final judgement call when it came to the story, animation, character designs, sound design, music, and so on. While this initially might not have sounded like such a bad idea, seeing as he was the one who first pitched the idea for the collaborative project, it meant that he didn't have to listen to anyone else's advice, which, apparently, is exactly what happened. He stubbornly abused his power to stroke his own ego and it clearly shows in the final product. For example, he was the one who got to have a fancy intro, whereas everyone else who was involved in the project got little more than an obligatory appearance in the opening credits sequence. In fact, he even went a far as to claim it as if it were his own and post it on his own website as such, causing a massive backlash soon after. This behavior was simply unacceptable and shouldn't have been tolerated by his collaborators, especially considering how many great ideas pitched to him were turned town in favor of his own.

    And guess what? Surprise surprise, after years of development and fandom hype, Double Rainboom failed miserably! Not only did it not feel like an actual episode at all, but it wasn't nearly as ambitious as anyone had hoped for. The story made no sense, the animation that took years to complete still somehow managed to look stilted and choppy in comparison to many other fan animations that were made in far less time, the dialogue consisted of little more than forced fan pandering, and the humor was literally nothing but poorly-executed meta jokes that weren't even very funny in the first place. Alas, all those years of hard work were all but wasted, thanks to one person working on the project thinking he always knew what was best, not using proper judgement to take anyone else's opposing advice into consideration. In fact, it was such a disaster that it quickly became a warning story of how not to do a fan project, as well as an Internet meme of sorts, with people joking over how awful it was.

    I bring Double Rainboom up as an example because right now, Browntable's "Zootopia 2" fan project is showing all the same warning signs and more. Not only is it being overwhelmingly dictated by one person who acts as if only he knows what's best for the story, using his willing collaborators like underlings who do freelance voice acting and nothing else, but it also features somewhat lazy animation, forced preachy messaging, and last but not least, a rushed deadline. It's literally planned to come out at the beginning of next year! It's simply a recipe for disaster, and yet, people seem to be okay with it! It's been said that history tends to repeat itself. Double Rainboom's failure was an embarrassment to the fandom that shouldn't have been allowed to happen, and it just might happen again in the form of the "Zootopia 2" fan project if we don't do anything about it, so let's change that!

    Like you saw earlier, Browntable has been trying to get us Zootopia fans all hyped over this fan project, with "original" trailers that claim to promote an "all-new" storyline, despite the fact that it's really nothing more than our stolen fanfic ideas in the form of regurgitated fan pandering. And right now, he's somewhat succeeding at it, too! People are eating it up, relentlessly praising him left and right, saying his ideas would be "great sequel ideas" and that they all "should happen if there's an actual Zootopia 2". But here's the thing, it doesn't have to be this way. Now's our chance to set the record straight and tell Browntable what we as the Zootopia fandom really think, so let's take the talk to him! As I speak, he's most likely working on more "Zootopia 2"-related content on YouTube, which is a great place to give him a piece of your mind. If he asks for more ideas, tell him that if he keeps selectively siphoning our ideas without our consent, it's just as much his story as it is ours. If he posts more "Zootopia 2" trailers on his YouTube channel in an attempt to get us hyped, let him know that he's most likely setting himself up for failure if he keeps doing what he's doing. Like Judy Hopps said, "Change starts in all of us", so let's help change things for the better! Together, we can share our own ideas, no matter how varied they might be, and help make a real Zootopia sequel happen!

    Again, I'm not here to rain on anyone else's parade. I've just been wanting to get all this off of my chest for a while, since I really do think it's worth discussing with other people. Thanks for taking your time to read this!
  3. nerdbat

    nerdbat Green butt of reason

    Why everybody tries to ship Judy and Nick anyway? One of the movie's many stand-outs from majority of other formulatic "talking animal" cartoons is a lack of shoehorned love tension between main cast - instead of typical "meet on the 1st act, befriend on the 2nd, kiss on the 3rd" thingie, creators decided to make two rounded and complex characters of opposite gender and write their interactions in somewhat interesting way. And the guy's, like, "Screw that, I want them smooch". At least from looking at the videos, it seems to me that he has some unreleased sexual tension or something, since stuff he says on that subject, no matter how complex, comes off to me like an attempt to find excuses and logical reasons for this shipping to happen in form of a sequel.
    Dolphanatic likes this.
  4. Dolphanatic

    Dolphanatic Member

    While I do somewhat agree with you here, I'm honestly not completely against the idea of them being in a romantic relationship. While I am glad they didn't try to shoehorn a romantic subplot into the first movie where it didn't belong, I actually think there's a possibility that it could work later on down the road if it's done right. That's why I can't fully get behind what Browntable is proposing. He wants them to be dating from the get-go, which is far too much too soon. Judy and Nick may be best friends at the end of the first movie, but they've only known each other for what? A couple weeks at most? If there's going to be romance, it should be built up first in order to be believable. Relationships need to be given time to develop. That's why it would be a bad idea to suddenly make them a couple right off the bat and force the audience to roll with it despite not being given a reason for why they're together. Instead, it should be another step in the development of their relationship, allowing us to see them grow closer together. That way, it's far more rewarding, as we learn why they are as close as they are and we have more of a reason to want to root for them.

    Don't get me wrong, I do think Browntable's do-it-yourself work ethic is commendable, but it just seems like he's going about it the wrong way and he's trying to take the story in a direction that forces the audience to assume far too many things.

    So basically, it's not the idea itself that's flawed, it's the execution. Like I said earlier, I've actually got nothing against Judy and Nick being together. It's just that I'd rather the writers let the characters develop naturally instead rushing it just to pander to all the shippers. Relationships need to be given the proper amount of time in order to be plausible.
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2016
    Helios276 likes this.
  5. Phoenix-Kat

    Phoenix-Kat Guest

    I'll admit Nick and Judy do make a cute couple, but all this "shipping" is kinda annoying. Why do people always assume just because two characters (or even real life people) of opposite gender are friends that they have to be in a romantic relationship? Even two characters of the same gender who are friends (and even those that aren't) is popular. If a character isn't in a relationship at the moment, people tend to assume they are gay. Not that I have anything against homosexual parings or couples, but the idea that EVERYONE has to be in a relationship is annoying.
    Sogreth and Dolphanatic like this.
  6. Zaedrin

    Zaedrin Active Member

    Nothing good can come of this...
  7. Stratelier

    Stratelier Well-Known Member

    Yeah, that formula generally goes [Base #] = [Act #] - 1.
  8. Helios276

    Helios276 Guest

    Just leave zootopia be, and if there is a sequel let Disney handle , I Know a lot of furs probably want a rated R version of Zootopia ( that's why there's art) . I don't have any issues with their being a fan made movie, as long as 1. Its for all audiences and 2. It doesn't make the fandom look worse than it already does.
  9. Dolphanatic

    Dolphanatic Member

    Okay, so this just in. Browntable posted yet another video in an attempt to get us all "hyped up" over his fanfilm recently. Not even a month into development and already he's changed the title to "Return to Zootopia" and pushed the deadline back another year. Yeah, I spoiled that, but who cares? He needlessly left us hanging until the end of the video, thinking it would make a lot of us more excited for the project, which we're not (at least I'm not, anyway). But of course, he still finds a way to make it look like it was all a part of his master plan or something. He's still taking voice auditions for almost all the characters except for Nick Wilde. "Why not Nick Wilde?", you may ask. Well it's simple. Browntable apparently considers himself to be the definitive voice for Nick Wilde, despite all the far better impressions I've heard across YouTube in just the past couple of months! In fact, he even mentioned the fact that's he's gotten a large amount of auditions for Nick Wilde recently, and he just kinda shrugged them off like they were nothing! In fact, I'd be curious to hear from some of those rejected voice actors, not just to hear all the vastly superior voices we could've gotten for the project, but also to just talk to them and hear what they think of this guy and his over-glorified, cliché shipfic! Seriously, this guy just keeps closing himself off more and more from the fanbase with every video update he makes that honestly, it's a miracle people are still auditioning for him in the first place!

    It's like he thinks he owns the fanbase or something! He constantly goes around parading "Zootopia 2" around his channel like the "original fan project" is completely his and that he always has the final say in everything Zootopia 2-related! Uggh! It makes me so mad! His ideas aren't original or creative in the slightest, his animation is underwhelming (and frankly, looks kinda lazy, to be brutally honest), his strategy is reckless, his judgement is crooked, and he doesn't listen to others at all! :mad:

    *Takes deep breaths to calm down*

    Listen, I'm not trying to be all ultra-negative toward the fanfilm just because I disagree with a few of the ideas being presented (although that is a major issue I have with it). I actually hope it can prove me wrong. I want to be blown away by how good it could be, but I honestly don't think it's going to happen. Believe me, I really do feel bad about criticizing a fanfilm that I haven’t even seen, but I'm seeing so many red flags left and right that it's hard not to notice, and besides, the whole point of these videos is to give us a first impression, anyway. Again, I hope that I'm wrong about all this. I want to like this fanfilm, but instead, I'm finding more and more reasons to hate it. Does anybody else here feel the same way?
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2016
  10. Blu-wolf

    Blu-wolf Blu-ray howl!

    One of the things I liked the best about Zootopia is they didn't try to make a love angle between Judy and Nick. They just happened to "click" when it comes to solving things and figuring things out. This occurs often in the real world where you get two people who happen to just work well together in their line of work. It doesn't need to go beyond that and create something its not--a love relationship. If there ever is a real Zootopia 2, not some fan based creation, I suspect Disney will keep them as good friends and nothing more. It works fine that way. Why shouldn't Judy be able to find a good bunny for her to fall in love with and thereby bringing in another plot line (how does Nick deal with a partner in love?). Without getting crazy, a good movie can be made.
    Dolphanatic likes this.
  11. Dolphanatic

    Dolphanatic Member

    Well, to be honest, I actually think there is some potential for an interesting story to be told about Judy and Nick (supposing they decide to take their relationship in that direction) that would be far more interesting than simply having Judy fall in love with some other rabbit background character just for the sake of having a love interest. I mean, since when has she ever shown any interest in having a hundred or so kids of her own? It isn't that unlikely that she could have a thing for Nick or vice versa. It's just that it needs to be done right in order to work. If Judy and Nick fall in love, then allow it to be properly built up and let the characters develop naturally. Otherwise, there's no need to shoehorn in an unnecessary romantic subplot where it doesn't belong.
  12. um_pineapplez

    um_pineapplez Mage of Void, dammit.

    It's not his f***ing story. If he wants to make a fanfiction, good for him. But if he goes as far as to call it "Zootopia TWO", that's crossing the line. Unless it's approved by the creators, it's not canon. Overtale was greenlighted by Toby Fox. This thing hasn't been greenlighted by Disney. I just don't like this guy, either. He comes off as.....arrogant.
    Dolphanatic likes this.
  13. Dolphanatic

    Dolphanatic Member

    Yeah, he kinda does come off that way, doesn't he? But, to be fair, he did just change the title to "Return to Zootopia" in his latest video, so at least there's that.

    Still, his ideas are hardly creative or original in the slightest and it all feels forced. Everybody here is complaining about WildeHopps when that's not really the problem. It's how he's going about telling the story that's the real issue.
  14. Dolphanatic

    Dolphanatic Member

    I hate to double post, but someone's gotta bump this thread. :p

    Anyway, I'm still not too happy with where the fan-film is going. I'll spare posting every single video he uploads about it, but basically, every update this guy makes follows the same basic format. He's always like "I've heard some people disagreeing with me, but I don't care. I'm here to tell you why I think my fan-film is a great idea and you're gonna agree with me." This guy really needs to learn to take other people's advice, even if he doesn't like hearing criticism. It's just fair that he holds his end of the bargain, seeing as he said he'd be open to our ideas, with this being fandom-wide project and all. But I guess that's just too much to ask for, apparently.

    As for the fan-film itself, well, just like I expected, the story, which these trailers and update videos all but spoil, is shaping up to be nothing more then the bland, unoriginal, clichéd mess I feared it would be. Though despite all that, it's the fact that he's trying to pass it off as an "original sequel" that bothers me the most. It's just every typical fanfic trope mashed together into one contrived pile of blatant fan pandering with a forced, preachy message shoehorned in to beat people over the head with. Why the majority of people on YouTube (and even some people on ZNN) seem to be jumping on the hype bandwagon for this fan-film is beyond me,

    I've actually had the opportunity to speak with the man himself a few times, and let me tell you, it has not gone over very well. Basically, he's shrugged off my differing opinions and claimed I was being "facetious", even thought I was only trying to help guide him in the right direction. Like they say, "Kill 'em with kindness." Just today, I wrote down my thoughts on how the fan-film looked so far in the comments of the trailer above and, well, umm... o_O Let me just show you all how that conversation went down...

    Browntable is Angry.png

    Well, it looks like he's finally shown his true colors! Seriously, what a disrespectful attitude to have! All I did was give him some advice on how the fan-film could be improved and he cusses me off like my opinions don't matter! Obviously, as you can see, I quickly took the matter into my own hands and kept my cool, hoping to show who's truly applying Zootopia's message to real life.

    So yeah, needless to say, I've definitely got more than my fair share of reasons for not supporting this mess of a fan-film.
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2017
  15. Mobius

    Mobius Mech pilot.

    Whew, politically-charged propaganda fanfiction with a budget. That can't end terribly at all.
    Dolphanatic and Troj like this.
  16. Troj

    Troj Well-Known Member

    I've always thought the Zootopia sequel could explore immigration and climate change with either birds or reptiles (or both, conceivably).
  17. Mobius

    Mobius Mech pilot.

    Haven't seen any birds in Zootopia tbh. I've always thought Zootopia 2 could be about nationalism and borders, seeing that the city is pretty much an independent utopia of sorts.
    Troj likes this.
  18. Troj

    Troj Well-Known Member

    Nope, Zootopia only has mammals (but no primates, interestingly). That's why I'd be keen to have them have birds, amphibians, and/or reptiles in the sequel.
  19. modfox

    modfox The poltergheist that haunts the forum

    cant they wait like a couple years for the official zootopia 2?
    Dolphanatic and Sogreth like this.
  20. Lcs

    Lcs Well-Known Member

    I feel like you're forgetting that the Youtuber (who, it should be mentioned, only has 9k subscribers) intends to make this fan film entirely free for others to watch. So while I agree with many of your criticisms, I feel like you're getting more annoyed over the perceived shortcomings than you should be. Amateur content such as this film, are often terrible since they are unprofessionally made with small budgets, so you should probably lower your expectations.
  21. JumboWumbo

    JumboWumbo Banned in two states.

    It's fuckin' Disney, man. I guarantee there will be an official sequel within the next ten years.
  22. Dolphanatic

    Dolphanatic Member

    True, but it's really the guy's attitude that bothers me. His ego is through the roof and he deliberately shuts down anyone whose ideas differ from his (even when he claims to be open to others' ideas). That and the fact that he acts like he's a professional, talking down to everyone else and all, just makes it hard to shrug it off as "just an amateur fanfic". He's seriously convinced himself that he's making a legitimate sequel to Zootopia of sorts and that he deserves praise for doing so, going as far as to release cinematic trailers and behind-the-scenes updates, and even initially announcing it under the title of "Zootopia 2", for crying out loud! He clearly wants us to have high expectations, so what's the point of saying it's simply harmless fanfiction when he clearly treats it as more than such? In fact, he's even gone on to say that he actively dislikes the term "fanfiction" because it's supposedly insulting to writers, according to him. If he wants his fan-film to be treated like an actual sequel to Zootopia, then it only makes sense for people like me to critique it as such.

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