On December 24, five episodes of the Netflix original series Turbo: F.A.S.T. are set to start streaming on Netflix. The series, focusing on the adventures of racing snails who are also friends, is a spin-off based on the DreamWorks film Turbo, and is the first project to premiere from a massive deal between DreamWorks and Netflix, for multiple new series of dozens of episodes. But while Turbo wasn’t seen as a financial success, the new series and the rise of digital distribution means new options for of profitability.
Turbo: F.A.S.T. is a very different entity from Turbo, due in part to a completely different animation style. While the original film was rendered in 3D CGI, the animation studio Titmouse, which has a track record creating shows for Adult Swim, Nickelodeon and Disney XD, has taken a 2-D approach. (See the trailers below for the difference.)
Also, while the original film featured a star-studded voice cast including Ryan Reynolds, Samuel L. Jackson and Maya Rudolph, only one actor returned to voice his character - Community‘s Ken Jeong.
Instead, Turbo: F.A.S.T. features a cast of established voice actors from the world of animation, including Reid Scott, Phil LaMarr and Mark Hamill.
DreamWorks Animation head of television Margie Cohn said, was in part the desire to have all the actors working together — “The thing is that these actors are really busy, and we want to get talent in the same room at the same time to get that chemistry, And that’s a lot easier to do with professional voice actors,”
The choice to premiere on Christmas Eve was deliberate, she said. “We know that the time between Christmas and New Years, kids are home — it’s a good opportunity and chance for them to sample the show.”