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Is Shrek 5 Happening? Everything We Know About the Sequel

Is Shrek 5 Happening? Everything We Know About the Sequel

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The Shrek franchise has been going strong for over 20 years, even if the more recent movies have switched focus to characters other than the titular ogre.

But all signs point to another installment featuring Shrek, Donkey, and maybe even Fiona being still in the works after all these years. Keep reading to find out more about Shrek 5, including when it could be coming out and who could be returning to voice their classic characters.

Is Shrek 5 Still In Development?

Although the process has been slow, work on Shrek 5 is reportedly still going, and the movie has not been cancelled.

News of a fifth Shrek movie came about in 2016, six years after the last movie, Shrek Forever After. At the time, DreamWorks expected to release the movie in 2019.

Since then, information about the newest Shrek installment has been sporadic, with 2019 passing by with no release. But DreamWorks never announced a cancellation of the project, so rumors still went around about its release.

The Shrek franchise also still continued outside of it’s original characters of Shrek, Donkey, and Fiona. The movies Puss in Boots and its sequel The Last Wish followed the exploits of Puss, introduced in Shrek 2.

Promotional photo for Shrek 4 on Apple TV

Both movies were huge successes, with The Last Wish earning an Oscar nomination. And although the original trio didn’t appear in either movie, The Last Wish hinted that DreamWorks still planned to have them return.

The movie ends with Puss on a boat heading for the kingdom of Far Far Away, the setting of the original Shrek movies. Puss even says that he’s going to visit “some old friends,” implying Shrek and the others.

Finally, in April 2023, official word came from Chris Meledandri, the CEO of Illumination and creative partner of DreamWorks, about the latest sequel.

He explained that talks are ongoing with the original cast to return, and he was feeling positive about the outcome. So, while there’s still limited information, Shrek 5 is definitely in the works.

When Is The Release Date For Shrek 5?

There is no official release date for Shrek 5, but it could arrive in 2025. DreamWorks and Illumination are reportedly in negotiations with voice actors for Shrek 5. But that doesn’t give us much information about where they are in the actual development process, unfortunately.

While animation and script take precedence over hiring voice actors in an animated movie, the Shrek franchise has an all-star cast as part of its appeal. So, it’s not unreasonable to think they would try to secure those big names even before the animation on the movie starts.

Since there hasn’t been word on a script in several years, it’s likely the movie is still relatively early in its development. Therefore, it will likely be at least a year before the movie gets a release.

That puts it in 2025 at the earliest, so Shrek fans may have a while to wait for the new movie.

What Is The Plot For Shrek 5?

There’s no official description of Shrek 5 yet, but it will likely include Puss in Boots as a main character. It could also be a soft reboot of the entire franchise.

Back in 2018, Chris Meledandri said that while he did want a fresh new take on the story and characters, he didn’t want to reinvent them completely.

Shrek hugging Puss in Boots

“When you look back on those vocal performances, they’re awesome,” he told Variety. “And while you certainly could make a case for a complete reinvention, I find myself responding to my own nostalgic feelings of wanting to go back to those characterizations.”

“The challenge for us has been to find something that really does feel like it’s not simply yet another film in a series of sequels.”

These feelings seemed to bear out in Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, which ended with Puss heading back to Far Far Away. So, while there could be a semi-reboot quality to the new Shrek movie, it’s likely the characterizations will stay generally the same.

The Original Cast Want To Come Back For the Sequel

The team behind Shrek 5 is working to get the original voice cast back, and some of the stars are reportedly enthusiastic about returning.

Eddie Murphy in particular has been very vocal about his desire to return to the Shrek franchise. At the beginning of 2023, Murphy told EW that he’d be “absolutely open” to do another Shrek. “If they ever came with another Shrek, I’d do it in two seconds. I love Donkey.”

“DreamWorks,” he said, “if you all want to do it, just call me. I’m ready. I’m sitting and ready to do Donkey.”

Mike Meyers also expressed his love for Shrek in a 2023 interview with GQ. “If I had to do one Shrek a year,” he said, “I’d be thrilled.”

Chris Meledandri says he’s encouraged and “thrilled” by the actors’ comments. “It’s evidence of his strong enthusiasm for a role that he so brilliantly inhabited and really created alongside the artists at DreamWorks,” he said about Murphy’s interview.