More than a decade after Antonio Banderas’ Puss in Boots successfully made the leap to his own franchise, and 12 years removed from the still most recent Shrek vehicle, Shrek Forever After, the blade-wielding tomcat is ready to make a triumphant return. Universal Pictures and DreamWorks Animation have lifted the veil on the secretive Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, announcing a bevy of casting notices at the same time as a first trailer for the film has hit the web. The heroic Puss will swing back into theaters on Sept. 23, 2022, chasing after a film that raked in more than $550 million at the global box office back in 2011.
The style of Puss in Boots, meanwhile, looks to have undergone a substantial evolution in the decade since we last saw the character, blending more of the “2.5D” influences that have more recently become popular with a mixed media look that evokes the likes of Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. Suffice to say, the character has never looked better. The story, meanwhile, reveals that Puss isn’t quite as lucky as he’s always appeared—he’s actually died eight times already, using up almost all of his allotment of “nine lives.” Down to his last strikes, it’s clearly time for Puss to really start living.
Banderas of course returns as the suave voice of Puss in Boots, joined by a returning Salma Hayek as Kitty Softpaws. They’re likewise joined by an all-star team that also includes Olivia Colman, John Mulaney, Ray Winstone and the delightful Harvey Guillén of What We Do in the Shadows. Also certain to generate headlines: Florence Pugh, voicing a rather dangerous-looking version of Goldilocks, bears in tow.
Perhaps more than anything, this long-awaited Puss in Boots revisit is bound to ignite more speculation on an even longer-gestating Shrek reboot. Somehow, we wouldn’t be surprised if the former finds a way to lead into the latter. In the meantime, check out the trailer below.