10 Wild Things Fans Didn’t Know About Nick

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The suave, smart, sneaky fox who has won the hearts of many Disney fans and perhaps a special rabbit too – he is the one and only, Nick Wilde. Next to his bunny friend, Judy Hopps, Nick is one half of Zootopia a dynamic duo and both are easily some of Disney’s best animal characters.


But there’s more to the smart guy than popsicles and Hawaiian shirts. Of course, the fox is known to many fans and is loved far from the original concepts in the early versions of the film. So what was he like before he went from cop to lawman? Or even before Judy entered the script?

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UPDATE: 2023/01/03 00:15 EST BY SHAWN S. LEALOS

Zootopia+ Disney + hit in 2022, and the title of the animated series is a joke for a couple of reasons. The most obvious joke was the play on the name of the streaming service, Disney +. However, the other man was the real story in it Zootopia+. The series was similar to the previous animated short series Groot and Bay. However, although they were all very short, at only a few minutes in a program, the difference came in the fact that Zootopia+ it was actually an addition to the original film, almost like a set of behind-the-scenes stories. All the fun characters from the original series got their own side stories, and the movie played behind them at certain moments. While Nick Wilde and Judy Hopps were solving their big case, this series showed what their supporting team was doing.

His first appearance (technically) was in Big Hero 6

Nick Wilde's cameo in Big Hero 6.

Every Disney fan worth their salt knows that the studio religiously likes to hide Easter eggs in their movies. But once in a while, they sneak in a tidbit that’s a nod to a movie either in production or yet to be released. Big Hero 6, as Honey Lemon takes a group selfie, pay close attention to her cell phone case.

RELATED: 10 things we want to see in the new Zootopia+ series

That familiar vulpine shape is more than just a cute design. That’s only Nick Wilde in a previous Disney movie Zootopia ever came This is a better inside joke Zootopia as the film also had its own homage to another yet to be released film Frozen 2.

Nick Wilde was partially inspired by Robin Hood

Nick in Zootopia and Robin Hood.

Anthropomorphic animals in Disney flicks are nothing new, so it makes sense that Disney would draw from their library of animated features for inspiration. And there are similarities between Nick and another man from Sherwood Forest. Disney’s adaptation of Robin Hood and Nick is so similar that fan theories have paired the world of Zootopia with the world of Sherwood Forest. One obvious theory even says they share a timeline. Maybe Robin and Nick are related?

Nick Wilde was originally the focus of the film

Nick teasing Judy in Zootopia.

In some of the earliest drafts of the film, Nick was intended to be the main character in the final product. In one concept, Nick and Judy were both agents in a colorful Disneyfied spy thriller on an exotic jungle island. In another, he was a tried and tested predator trying to live out his lifelong dream with the help of a shady mob boss. But once Judy entered the scene, he was recast in a more humorous role.

Nick Wilde originally had a difficult backstory

Wild Times concept art from Zootopia.

At one time, Zootopia there were more than a few shades darker in tone and story. In one of the original predator versus prey angles, the prey had to wear shock collars so they wouldn’t “go sad.” Nick’s ultimate goal in this plot was to create a theme park called “Wild Times” where predators could take off their collars and be themselves. Although this idea was deleted, the Wild Times warehouse is still featured in the film.

And Literary Torment View

Nick Wilde is beaten in Zootopia.

Along with the Wild Times plot, the idea of ​​”Tame Collars” was devised as a not-so-simple form of discrimination against predators. The collars would mostly surprise predators into submission if their emotions and feelings were running high. This idea also featured Nick having a violent panic after a scuffle with some other animals and, obviously, it was too dark and even a little sad. But this mirrored the use of a muzzle in Nick’s backup sequence.

Nick and Judy were spies in early development

Nick and Judy in Zootopia artwork.

On the other hand, there was also an idea that saw both Nick and Judy as a pair of secret agents, but it featured Nick as the experienced professional and Judy as the eager young cadet.

RELATED: 10 Funniest Quotes From Zootopia

He would see them on a mysterious trip to a tropical island, which eventually became the city of Zootopia, where mammals had gone missing. It was an interesting idea, but unfortunately it never left the storyboards.

Nick Wilde’s shirt came from a Clawhauser prototype

Nick's artwork from Zootopia.

Speaking of storyboards, check out this image from the original development sketches for the spy idea. Hugo, the orange cat behind the bar, was crucial in the development of two characters. The first, and perhaps most obvious, was that of Officer Clawhauser, a big-bellied man with a heart of gold. The second was, of course, Nick’s island-inspired outfit. Take another look at that shirt. Look familiar?

John Lasseter inspired the way Nick Wilde eats cake

Nick and Judy at the wedding in Zootopia.

A small detail, but one that needed mentioning. Sound and movement are two elements that play subconsciously in character development. The scene where Nick enjoys a piece of cake the size of a shrew at Fru Fru’s wedding is hilarious and funny, but it was also carefully choreographed.

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In the film’s special features, when the filmmakers were puzzled as to how a fox would make such a gentle dessert, John Lasseter stepped in and showed himself, essentially becoming the model for the scene.

Jumbeaux’s Pop Scene Was Ad-Libbed

Nick Wilde meets Judy Hopps in Zootopia.

Jason Bateman is an actor who has serious comedic chops, so he was practically made to voice an animated character. Nowhere was this more evident than in Nick’s haste towards the second act of the film. This scene was completely ad-libbed, and even further in the deleted scenes. Let’s just say the results were hysterical. It’s a shame that the full version didn’t make it to the final film.

Nick Wilde’s Cameo in Ralph Breaks the Internet

Nick Wilde from Zootopia in Ralph Breaks the Internet.

Ralph breaks the internet it’s probably the most Easter-egg-heavy movie the studio has ever released. Not only does this film feature cameos from Stormtroopers, Disney Princesses, and even Stan Lee himself, but also a pair of familiar faces from the urban jungles of Zootopia. Nick can be seen enjoying a Pawpsicle next to the cast ball entrance. Judy is also seen in one of the crowd scenes talking to a certain furry member of the Guardians of the Galaxy. It seems like a small world after all.

Next: 10 Zootopia characters getting more screen time in the Disney+ show

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