The smurftastic first trailer for the new Smurf movie, Smurfs: The Lost Village, has arrived!
This fully animated reboot features an all-star cast of voice actors, including Demi Lovato as Smurfette, Rainn Wilson as Gargamel, Joe Manganiello as Hefty Smurf, Jack McBrayer as Clumsy Smurf and Mandy Patinkin as the one and only Papa Smurf.
“It’s great to be part of such an iconic franchise that I was a fan of as a kid,” Manganiello, 39, tells PEOPLE. “The animation is based off the original artwork, so this is really a throw back to what we grew up with.”
The film follows Lovato’s Smurfette, who discovers a mysterious map leading through the Forbidden Forest to a legendary lost village of Smurfs. Together with her smurfiest friends, Smurfette sets off on an adventure to find the lost village before the evil wizard Gargamel — and his hench-cat Azrael — beat them to it.
“Smurfette trying to fulfill her purpose and find out who she is,” says Manganiello. “She’s also the only girl in a giant tribe of rowdy boys, so it’s kind of this big adventure where the boy Smurfs go off with Smurfette to help her try to figure out her purpose, or ‘smurfose.’ “
Best of all, Manganiello gets to voice his favorite childhood character: “Hefty’s this tiny little guy who’s really tough and fun. He’s also heroic and there’s a little bit of romantic side to him,” explains the actor. “Hefty’s kind of a closet romantic.”
This is the first animated film for the True Blood star, who says he grew up watching the Smurfs during Saturday morning cartoons as a kid. “This movie really expands the universe that we loved as kids in a fun new way,” he explains. “It’s going to be nostalgic for all the adults who loved the show as kids, but it’s also going to introduce a whole new generation of kids to Smurfs.”
For instance, the actor says, “I have a 2-year-old niece and she likes Smurfs, she thinks they’re really cute. It’s really exciting that young kids will fall in love with the Smurfs again after seeing this movie. “
But there’s another reason Manganiello is excited to do this film that is especially close to his heart. “This past year I was named to the board of the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, which is a charity I’ve worked with for years, and it was always comical when I would make hospital visits because the kids had no idea who I was,” he explains.
“They just weren’t that interested in anything I had to say. The moms knew who I was but the kids didn’t. So it’s such a fun project to be involved with because I know next year I can go visit the hospital and talk to the kids and bring them little Hefty dolls and things like that,” adds the actor.
Smurfs: The Lost Village smurfs into theaters April 7, 2017.