Watch the stunning trailer for Netflix's Dark Crystal prequel

Netflix's prequel to 80s classic The Dark Crystal looks to marry the tactile qualities of Jim Henson's puppets with the epic canvas of GCI

Video by Jamie Dunn | 30 May 2019

We all know the iconic characters created by Jim Henson on shows like The Muppets and Sesame Street, but the run of films he made with his Creature Shop in the 1980s will be well remembered by children of that decade for their more nightmarish qualities. Particularly well-loved was the company's first feature The Dark Crystal, a dark fantasy populated exclusively by creepy latex puppets, including an evil race of avian monsters called Skeksis and heroic elf-like creatures who're destined to end the Skeksis' reign.

This 1982 feature, directed by Jim Henson and Frank Oz, was groundbreaking in its day, but to modern eyes the puppets' movements can look rather arthritic. The announcement that Netflix planned to make a prequel series to the film was welcome, but the big question was whether the tactility of Henson's puppets would survive the marriage with CGI techniques unavailable to Henson in the early 80s?

The debut trailer for The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance suggests its creators might have pulled this balance off. The puppet characters look like real breathing creatures, and the small clips we see suggest that the CGI effects have been integrated with these old-school techniques well, keeping the magic of the puppetry intact while also creating an expansive fantasy world.

Taron Egerton, Anya Taylor-Joy and Nathalie Emmanuel provide the voices for the main characters, while the likes of Eddie Izzard, Andy Samberg, Mark Hamill, Helena Bonham Carter, Natalie Dormer, Simon Pegg, and Alicia Vikander are among the supporting voice cast. Director Louis Leterrier (Now You See Me, The Transporter, The Incredible Hulk) is at the helm of the ten episodes. Take a look at this first look trailer in the player above or on YouTube.

The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance comes to Netflix 30 Aug