'Astro Boy' Director & Kristen Bell Talk Plot And Themes Of Film

Astro BoyAs "Astro Boy" prepares to lift-off into theaters this weekend, the many cast and crew members of the film are making the press rounds to discuss the upcoming manga adaptation's plot and thematic elements.

In an interview with Comic Book Resources, director David Bowers described the basic set-up for the plot of "Astro Boy," which is essentially an origin story focusing on the relationship between a scientist named Dr. Tenma (Nicolas Cage) and his son Toby, who is tragically killed — paving the way for Astro Boy (Freddie Highmore) to enter the scene.

"Astro Boy is created and given Toby's memories," said Bowers of the plot. "When Astro comes back, he really is [much] the same kid, so I don't think you feel as though there's a horrible loss even though there has been."

"Imagi is an independent studio, so [they're] able to [do] things the bigger studios might not want to do or might shy away from," he continued of the film's tragic premise. "I was very explicit: if you're going to do an Astro Boy movie, you can't shy away from the more tragic elements."

Actress Kristen Bell, meanwhile, spoke with Superhero Hype about the various themes at play within "Astro Boy," which she hopes will impart important lessons to the movie's younger audience.

"It has all of these crazy elements, and even if kids don't grasp them, it's subliminally teaching them a little bit of a lesson," she described. "There are environmental issues, because we've destroyed the surface of the Earth in Astro Boy's world and everyone has to live in Metro City which floats above [the surface] because it's the only clean place."

"Robots are second class citizens, so it's sort of the idea of tolerance and acceptance and not judging a book by its cover," she added. "It really deals with the story of this little boy who just wants to be loved. There are all of these great themes that are really nice to have kids see at a really young age."

What do you think of the premise and themes at play in "Astro Boy"? Are you going to check the film out this weekend? Sound off in the comments section and let us know!

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