Movies

7 Fan Theories That’ll Make You Look at Disney’s Zootopia in a Whole New Light

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Disney

Disney

If there’s one good thing that came out of 2016, it’s Zootopia. The Disney cartoon was released on March 4, and remained one of the top movies of the year, animated or otherwise. Not only does it still hold a 98% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, but it’s actually up for an Academy Award (for Best Animated Film)! Not even Finding Dory pulled that off!

Keeping that in mind, we wanted to delve a little deeper into the Ginnifer Goodwin– and Jason Bateman-led film. (Let us tell you, there are a lot of, umm, naughty things on the Internet about this animated feature… but we won’t get into those today.) Lo and behold, there are a whole bunch of fan theories surrounding the eventual classic. Here are the ones that’ll make you look at Zootopia totally differently:

1. Zootopia takes place in a future in which man was overthrown by animals. Ever since the movie hit theaters, many have hypothesized statements like this one. Reddit user Snak_The_Ripper explains, “My theory is humanity became so advanced they decided to create new mammals with human DNA. These new mammals received the most beneficial of our human traits: bipedalism, speech, higher cognitive function, and opposable thumbs. These anthropomorphic animals saw how their wild counterparts were treated and were understandably disgusted. Eventually they revolted against, and killed off humanity.

Disney

Disney

2. As for why there are no cats or dogs in this universe… Going off the aforementioned theory, some believe that felines, canines and other species with strong connections to humankind were wiped out. “So in this movie’s backstory, mammals overthrew humanity in the Great Purge, a bloody revolution in response to the sixth great extinction,” says Reddit user thundersaurus_sex. “However, it’s not just humanity that’s… absent. There aren’t any cats, dogs or other very domesticated animals in the world either. I think it’s because they refused to betray us and were wiped out fighting by our side.”

Some people argued against the theorist, noting that there’s a corgi present in the UK version of the film. To that, thundersaurus_sex says, “Congrats, Britain, on producing the blood traitor that led enemy forces down the secret path through the Great Hamburger Line to the defeat and extinction of humanity and our allies.”

3. Or maybe there never was any sort of uprising. If you don’t believe in Theory #1, Theory #3 is an alternate possibility. According to Hollywood.com, there are those who claim that mankind never became the dominant species. Instead, Zootopia is an entirely different realm in which homo sapiens don’t exist, and animals run the world.

4. Speaking of animals ruling the world… One theorist believes that after the events of 2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes, all the animals you see in Zootopia become more highly intelligent than humans and apes… and take over! Thus, the beginning of the Disney flick.

5. Zootopia and Robin Hood take place in the same universe. Both films are helmed by Disney and have male foxes as leading characters… Could it be that their worlds intersect? Zootopia directors Byron Howard and Rich Moore are into the concept. “Was Robin Hood in the world of Zootopia?” Byron pondered during an interview with ComingSoon.net. “You’re the first to propose that, but I like that idea.”

Rich added, “Right. So Robin Hood could have taken place in, like, the Middle Ages. That’s a neat idea and it makes sense.” Hear that? It makes sense!

6. Oh, and there may be a connection to The Lion King as well. It’s been said that Mayor Lionheart is based off of Robin Hood‘s King Richard (the Lionheart) and The Lion King‘s Mufasa, but there may be more to it than that. Reddit user PawnMicama devised a story that suggests the two aforementioned lions’ families… got together, saying, “Simba’s great-grand daughter went as a envoy to meet with Lionheart and he took her as a young bride, as some European kings were known to do.” Well then.

7. The plot is about the invention of… crack-cocaine?? Though you can clearly see that the film serves as a parable for racism, there is a Reddit thread that will blow your mind. “A lot of people believe that crack was manufactured by the U.S. government and distributed to poor urban areas in an attempt to tear apart the black community,” it notes. “The parallels are so clear it almost seems like that was the literally the filmmakers intent.” More on the theory here.


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Zootopia was one of the greatest films of 2016! Here’s what we’re looking forward to this year:

You can reach this post’s author, Kaitlin Cubria, on Twitter and Instagram!

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