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See the first trailer for Guillermo Del Toro's Pinocchio, filmed in Portland

The stop-motion film was made in Portland during the pandemic. Netflix issued the first trailer Monday with a release date of December 2022.
Credit: Netflix
Guillermo del Toro won an Oscar for directing his 2017 film, "The Shape of Water." His version of "Pinocchio" filmed in Portland.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Jiminy Cricket, this looks nothing like Disney!

Netflix issued the first trailer Monday for Guillermo del Toro’s forthcoming interpretation of “Pinocchio,” a stop-motion film made in Portland during the pandemic. And the studio set a release date of December 2022.

The teaser trailer suggests a marked departure from Disney’s song-and-dance classic. This one promises “a story you may think you know, but you don’t.” The trailer is introduced by “Sebastian J. Cricket,” an anatomically detailed insect who says he “actually lived in the heart of the wooden boy.”

Oscar-winner del Toro had been musing about making his own version of Pinocchio for many years. Work finally got underway in 2019, with the animation studio ShadowMachine filming the movie at a studio in Northwest Portland. Veteran Portland animator Mark Gustafson directed the film with del Toro, whose most recent film is Oscar contender “Nightmare Alley.”

Oregon has a rich heritage in stop-motion animation, dating to the 1970s and pioneering Portland filmmaker Will Vinton.Vinton’s former studio, Hillsboro-based Laika, is preparing an adaptation of “Wildwood,” the fantasy novel from Decemberists frontman Colin Meloy. And legendary stop-motion animator Henry Selick filmed another Netflix movie, “Wendell and Wild,” due out sometime this year. Comedy duo Jordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key co-wrote the script and star in that film. The new “Pinocchio” features Cate Blanchett, Ewan McGregor and Tilda Swinton. It promises a darker take on the fairy tale, with del Toro setting his version in Mussolini’s fascist Italy. Monday’s trailer doesn’t show us Pinocchio himself, saving that reveal for later.