In a magical town in a faraway time … fantastic creatures guarded a legendary treasure that kept the town hidden from the world, whose residents lived in happiness and harmony. Then came Puss in Boots – and the cat let everything out of the bag.
His one false move paves the way for the incredible stories and eye-popping action that fill DreamWorks Animation’s THE ADVENTURES OF PUSS IN BOOTS, an all-new Netflix original series, which debuts today.
A legendary treasure has always been at the heart of the town of San Lorenzo – a treasure with magical powers that helped protect the town from intrusion. The trove of magical jewels, coins and precious items provided a cloak of invisibility for quirky San Lorenzans.
By accident, Puss in Boots finds his own passage into the town, and while touring the treasure, his paws get a little sticky. No one, he figures, could possibly miss one stray gold coin. It’s a small misdeed with big consequences, because it lifts the spell that has kept San Lorenzo hidden and safe for hundreds of years
Puss in Boots must assume the role of protector against all comers for the sake of the town’s quirky, lovable inhabitants and its renowned treasure. After his Oscar®-nominated feature film, it’s Puss in Boots’ first starring role – and a swashbuckling adventure-comedy series unlike anything else on TV.
“This is a comedy show, but it’s filled with lots of action,” says executive producer Doug Langdale. “Puss in Boots is a hero – so, naturally, our show really focuses on how he saves the people of this magical town and defeats the bad guys, and there’s lots of swordplay and combat action. But wrapped around that action is a great ensemble character comedy that brings unexpected depth and nuance to the character of Puss in Boots.”
Feeling a sense of responsibility for his faux pa(w)s, Puss commits his intellect, resourcefulness and trusty sword to protect the town. He has no lack of action: Villains and thieves approach from every direction, ensuring the feline hero a constant array of challenges – dangerous and hilarious alike.
Along with the residents of San Lorenzo and the mystical beings who live nearby, the ensemble is as varied as it is comedic – humans, animals and even famous names from fairy tales and nursery rhymes all live comfortably amongst each other. From cats and cows to pigs and a hairless, winged sphinx, they are a diverse lot, as different at sight as they are in personality.
“This is a town that is, at its core, odd and quirky” Langdale said. “The townspeople have been isolated from the world from a long time, so they’ve gotten weird.”
That eccentricity has allowed Langdale and his creative team enormous leeway to utilize the latest technologies to craft a singular look and memorable setting for THE ADVENTURES OF PUSS IN BOOTS. San Lorenzo itself has a rustic charm mixed with storybook creativity that will wow viewers’ eyes with cinematic flair.
“Technology has improved so far in such a short time that we’re able to do some truly amazing things in television animation,” Langdale says. “As recently as our series Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness, we couldn’t digitally manufacture fur. Now the technology is so good, we’re practically putting fur on things that don’t even need it!
“The production values are really high on The Adventures of Puss in Boots. Everyone is going above and beyond to make the series shine.”
Not surprisingly, a magical town has no shortage of magical effects. “The show is filled with magic,” Langdale says. “There’s fire and explosions and magical blasts – we’ve even got a tornado in one episode that looks absolutely amazing.”
Most importantly, perhaps, the series offers an altogether new perspective on the legendary reputation of the swashbuckling feline.
“He’s been a nomad, a loner to this point,” Langdale says. “That’s why this is an essential segment in Puss’s life, the passage where he learned how to get along with other people, and came to understand the value of friendships and relationships.”
Many of the stories (and jokes) about Puss in Boots play on his size – he’s small in stature, but huge in personality. The juxtaposition offers a wealth of fun for writers and animators alike in crafting stories about the sword-fighting cat.
“On the surface, Puss is the coolest guy in the world,” Langdale says. “He’s great at everything, he saves and protects people, he seems like he can defeat anyone. But because he’s tiny, he’s got this wonderful vulnerability. Ultimately, he’s just a regular-sized cat in a people-sized world. It’s his elephant-sized personality – all that charm, charisma and appeal – that makes you feel like you can go anywhere with this guy, and the audience will willingly follow.”
While the series is comedy-driven, Langdale says one of the key differences between the Puss in the films and the Puss in this TV series is the physical, action-centric portions of the episodes.
“We do have Puss fight a lot more than in the movies,” he says. “The films regarded him as no stronger than your average cat, but we like to amp up the adventure. So we’ve played him more as a master swordsman with lots of extra punching, kicking and action.”
The Adventures of Puss in Boots is also packed with the unique sense of humor and heart for which animation veteran Langdale is known. He’s the writer of the Golden Globe-nominated theatrical film The Book of Life, and also created the hit TV series Dave the Barbarian and The Weekenders. From his work on Darkwing Duck to current hits like 2014’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and the series Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness (for which he’s been a part of three Emmy writing nominations), Langdale has helped create some of the most memorable moments in television animation.
Lane Lueras (Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness, The Iron Giant) serves as primary director for The Adventures of Puss in Boots; Corey Heis (Kung Fu Panda, Puss in Boots) is art director. The writing staff, headed by story editor Greg White (CREDIT), includes such notable names as Thrilling Adventure Hour creators Ben Acker & Ben Blacker, Jesse Porter ($#*! My Dad Says); Darkwing Duck creator and Disney Afternoons icon Tad Stones; and Candie Kelty Langdale (Scooby-Doo! Stage Fright).
The voice cast runs the gamut of experience from longtime animation notables and stand-up comedians to stars of primetime television and feature films. Led by Eric Bauza (The Book of Life, Turbo FAST, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) as Puss in Boots, the cast also features Jayma Mays (Glee, Getting On) as Dulcinea, Paul Rugg (Animaniacs, Freakazoid!) as Artephius, Carla Jimenez (Nacho Libre) as Señora Zapata, Carlos Alazraqui (Reno 911) as Mayor Temeroso, Laraine Newman (Saturday Night Live) as Pajuna, Joshua Rush (Mr. Peabody & Sherman) as Toby, Grey Griffin (The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy, Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends) as Vina, Candi Milo (Dexter’s Laboratory) as Kid Pickles, John Leguizamo (Ice Age, Moulin Rouge!) as Jack Sprat, and Danny Trejo (Machete, The Book of Life) as El Moco.
Puss in Boots - His name is legendary, his adventures and swordsmanship are renowned, and his ability to cough up hairballs is seemingly limitless. He is Puss in Boots, the world’s most famous fortune-hunting feline. Puss in Boots is the hero of our story – even if he was the catalyst for the villains arriving in the first place. Blessed with irresistible charm, cunning ingenuity and unparalleled swordsmanship, Puss in Boots has gone from happy wanderer to having found a home amidst the quirky villagers he’s now sworn to protect in San Lorenzo.
Dulcinea -The embodiment of everything innocent, naïve, and pure, Dulcinea lives her life by the wisdom of a book she found when she was very young. The sweet cat just never realized it was a book of nursery rhymes – though the lines always seem to apply to the goings-on. She and Puss in Boots have an undeniable attraction to each other – but, for now at least, it’s only sweet and entirely harmless.
Artephius - An elderly alchemist with a perchant for forgetfulness, Artephius is the “mad scientist” of San Lorenzo, a befuddled 15th-century alchemist in a fairytale town.
Señora Zapata - Administrator of the town’s orphanage, Señora Zapata is the beloved (though sometimes cranky) surrogate parental figure to the town’s orphaned children.
Mayor Temeroso -Timid town politician who, despite his bulky figure and imposing physique, spends most of his time hiding in barrels, afraid of just about everything.
Pajuna - Local cantina owner Pajuna is a Scottish cow with a shady past. She occasionally lets slip intriguing tidbits from her background like, “So, when I was an assassin for the King …”
Toby is the “leader” of the orphans – a huge, strong, sweet-yet -dim-witted pig who idolizes Puss. Vina is a slightly older human child with a fondness for facts that she has clearly made up, and has no consciousness of personal boundaries. Toby has no idea that Vina is in love with her. Kid Pickles is a Runyon-esque human, 11 years old with a huge appetite for pickles. Esme is a too-adorable-for-words 5-year-old human, and Cevuil is an street-smart goblin girl in her early teens.
Sphinx - The Sphinx is part Valley Girl, park hipster, part all-powerful magical creature all rolled into the pierced, tattooed body of a hairless, winged cat. She’s tasked with protecting San Lorenzo’s magical hourglass – but she’s a little ambivalent about her job.
The Duchess - One of the series’ recurring villains, The Duchess has a romantic past with Artephius that didn’t end well. Now, she steals the souls of magicians and sorcerers, using their powers as her own. Duchess also has a bit of a skewed history with Puss: A past altercation resulted in Puss cutting off one of Duchess’s feet. She hasn’t forgotten.
Jack Sprat - One of Puss’s oldest friends, Jack is more con man than adventurer – and their wild-at-heart outings usually put Puss in hot water. Regardless of the tricks and double-crosses, Puss is forgiving of his loveable rogue pal.
El Moco - The bandit king El Moco is a villainous presence in San Lorenzo. Huge in size and far more intelligent and articulate than most would expect, El Moco develops a grudge against Puss … and despite losing each time, he keeps coming back to seek his revenge.
The Voice Cast
Eric Bauza (Puss in Boots) One of the most active voice actors in the business, Eric Bauza is an ever-present voice in film, television and video games. Bauza’s most prominent credits include DreamWorks’ Turbo FAST, as well as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Uncle Grandpa, The Fairly OddParents, Breadwinners, Ben 10: Omniverse, and the Golden Globe-nominated feature film The Book of Life.
Jayma Mays (Dulcinea) Jayma Mays makes her animation voiceover debut in The Adventures of Puss in Boots. Currently featured in several primetime television series, Mays is best known for her four seasons as Emma Pillsbury on Glee. She can currently be seen on The Millers, Getting On and The League. In addition to a starring role opposite Kevin James in Paul Blart: Mall Cop, Mays was also the female lead in The Smurfs, opposite Neil Patrick Harris. Jayma also had multi-episode character arcs on Heroes and Ugly Betty, and had cameo roles in Six Feet Under, The Comeback, Entourage, Pushing Daisies, and many more.
Paul Rugg (Artephius) Renaissance man Paul Rugg continues to touch all aspects of animation as a producer, story editor, writer and voice actor with his goofy touch as alchemist Artephius. The Adventures of Puss in Boots is Rugg’s third DreamWorks Animation series following recurring roles in DreamWorks Dragons and Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness. Rugg broke into animation filling multiple roles behind and before the microphone on Steven Spielberg presents The Animaniacs and Pinky and the Brain, pausing in between to produce, write and star in Freakazoid! Other notable credits include his live-action starring role in the landmark series Disney’s One Saturday Morning, as well as voice roles in Buzz Lightyear of Star Command, Dave the Barbarian and American Dragon: Jake Long. He is also currently heard in Disney’s The 7D.
Carla Jimenez (Señora Zapata) A veteran character actor of more than 70 primetime series and films, Carla Jimenez has been featured on such television hits as Desperate Housewives, Raising Hope and Last Man Standing. In addition to feature film appearances in Nacho Libre, The Lady in the Waterand The Purge: Anarchy, Jimenez’s list of credits include roles on E.R., The Shield, Dexter, Entourage, My Name is Earl, Justified, Bones, Community and Hannah Montana.
Carlos Alazraqui (Mayor Temeroso) Argentinean parents and his best friend’s Scottish parents created the template for future comedian/actor/voice actor Carlos Alazraqui. Rocko’s Modern Life launched his voiceover career, and the Taco Bell Chihuahua followed; Garcia on Reno 911! came next, along withHappy Feet and Happy Feet 2. Additional credits include: Billy Crystal/Mike Wasowski sound alike since 2001; Mr. Crocker, Mrs. Crocker, Jaundissimo and Dinkleberg on Fairly Odd Parents since 2001; “El Chupacabra,” the breakout star of Disney’s Planes; and 2014’s Sexy Liberal Comedy Tour 2014.
Laraine Newman (Pajuna) Founding member of The Groundlings and Original Saturday Night Live cast member Laraine Newman continues to balance her successful on-camera career, working for directors ranging from Woody Allen to Rob Zombie to Guillermo Del Toro with an equally respected voiceover resume that is nearing 100 different series, films and video games, including Golden Globe nominee The Boxtrolls. She is a regular contributor to some of the most popular animated theatrical releases, including Up, Toy Story 3, Tangled, WALL-E, Cloudy with A Chance Of Meatballs, Monsters University, Cars, as well as animated TV series like DreamWorks Animation’s TurboFAST and Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness, Garfield, Doc McStuffins, Metalocalypse, The Fairly OddParents, SpongeBob SquarePants, Justice League, As Told By Ginger, Superman: the Animated Series, The New Adventures of Batman and Rugrats.
Joshua Rush (Toby) Just 13 years old, Joshua Rush has already stolen the spotlight with his work in both live-action and voiceovers. Rush has captivated audiences on-screen with his portrayal of a young Sylar in Heroes and a young Chuck in Chuck, as well as in roles in Private Practice, Medium, Criminal Minds, CSI: NY and Children’s Hospital. Rush has provided ancillary voices for the original animated feature Puss in Boots -- and gained notice for his voice work in the film Mr. Peabody & Sherman and Escape From Planet Earth, and the hit television series Family Guy.
Grey Griffin (Sphinx, Vina) With voice credits in the thousands, Grey (DeLisle) Griffin is one of the true darlings of the animation community. Her benchmark roles include Daphne Blake in Scooby-Doo movies, TV series, shorts, video games for the past 14 years; as Vicky in The Fairly OddParents; Mandy in The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy; Wubbzy in Wow! Wow! Wubbzy; Frances “Frankie” Foster in Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends; and Yumi Yoshimura in Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi. Griffin’s other notable TV series include DreamWorks’ Turbo FAST, Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness and The Penguins of Madagascar, The Legend of Korra, Green Lantern: The Animated Series, Generator Rex, Handy Manny, The Super Hero Squad Show, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, The Replacements, The Spectacular Spider-Man, Avatar: The Last Airbender, Kim Possible, Xiaolin Showdown, Star Wars: Clone Wars, The Weekenders, Rugrats, Clifford the Big Red Dog and many more.
John Leguizamo (Jack Sprat) Commanding every medium available to him, John Leguizamo continues to craft one dazzling performance after another – whether it be in a one-man stage show, as a stand-up comedian, in front of the camera or behind the microphone. The Emmy® Award winner devoured the small screen as a series regular on E.R., The Brothers Garcia and his personal creation House of Buggin’, and has built a lengthy resume of starring roles in films like Moulin Rouge!, Romeo + Juliet, Spawn, Summer of Sam, Carlito’s Way, Super Mario Bros., Die Hard 2, Hangin’ With the Homeboys and Executive Decision. A great fan of the animation genre, Leguizamo has forever etched his place in voiceover annals with his 13-year (and growing) run as Sid in the popular Ice Age franchise.
Danny Trejo (El Moco) Popular movie tough guy Danny Trejo puts a smart, funny edge on the classic villain as El Moco in The Adventures of Puss in Boots. The star of such thrillers as Machete, From Dusk ‘Til Dawn and Heat has been a staple of American action films for more than three decades, giving notable performances in films like Con Air, Reindeer Games and Spy Kids, as well as TV series such as Sons of Anarchy, The X-Files, Bones, Burn Notice, Breaking Bad and Modern Family. He made his first series regular appearance on FX's St. George, starring alongside George Lopez. Trejo even did a 15-episode run on The Young and the Restless. Trejo has increased his voiceover work in recent years, taking a recurring role on King of the Hill and guest roles in cartoons Phineas and Ferb, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Young Justice and Golden Globe animated film nominee The Book of Life.