Taking inspiration from some stalwarts of seafaring media, The Sea Beast looks to take kids off the edge of the map with a fun, original animated adventure. Academy Award winner Chris Williams (Moana, Big Hero 6) directs a heavy-hitting voice cast that includes The Boys’ Karl Urban as well as Zaris-Angel Hator, Jared Harris (Foundation), Marianne Jean-Baptiste, Dan Stevens (Legion), and Kathy Burke.
Netflix is certainly no stranger to animation, but the streamer loves leaning into franchises rather than standalone adventures — with some high-profile exceptions, of course — and this entertaining-looking coming-of-age tale looks to make an argument for more to come. The Sea Beast follows famed monster hunter Jacob Holland, who’s often called upon to go seek out the terrifying beasts at the edge of the world. When he discovers a stowaway, Maisie Brumble, has stashed herself away on his ship, he finds that he’s got to work together with the young girl in order to survive the sea serpent-infested seas. Check out the first teaser!
Williams and Nell Benjamin co-wrote the screenplay for The Sea Beast, which is a fascinating choice, in my opinion, because Benjamin is a Tony-nominated lyricist and composer best-known for her work on the stage versions of Legally Blonde and Mean Girls. What does this mean for The Sea Beast? Will it be a musical? There’s no hint of that in the teaser, but Netflix has dropped bigger twists before, and while some furious googling of “can Karl Urban sing?” has proved fruitless (though he is versatile, make no mistake), his teenage co-star, Zaris-Angel Hator, has performed on Broadway and the West End — and Williams previously co-directed Moana, a famously well received musical sensation. So maybe there’ll be a sea shanty or two along the way?
The Sea Beast will be available on Netflix on July 8.