In a city of anthropomorphic animals, a rookie bunny cop and a cynical con artist fox must work together to uncover a conspiracy.
From the largest elephant to the smallest shrew, the city of Zootopia is a mammal metropolis where various animals live and thrive. When Judy Hopps becomes the first rabbit to join the police force, she quickly learns how tough it is to enforce the law. Determined to prove herself, Judy jumps at the opportunity to solve a mysterious case. Unfortunately, that means working with Nick Wilde, a wily fox who makes her job even harder.
From the biggest elephant to the tiniest shrew, the city of Zootopia is a beautiful metropolis where all animals live peacefully with one another. Determined to prove her worth, Judy Hopps becomes the first official bunny cop on the police force. When 14 predator animals go missing, Judy immediately takes the case. Partnering with a smooth talking fox named Nick Wilde, Judy must piece together all the clues as to where the predators are and who is behind it all.
Being the first one is never easy, especially for Judy Hopps, the first bunny cop. When strange things happen in the city, Judy decides that she will try to solve the case, but she only has 48 hours to do so. To help her, she partners with a con artist fox named Nick Wilde, even though he makes the job harder.
In a world where animals have no intention of eating each other, a little bunny named Judy Hopps who grew up on a farm leaves her family to pursue her dreams of being the first bunny cop in Zootopia. While there, she runs into a con artist fox named Nick Wilde, and they have to work together after an incident threatens Zootopia.
Judy Hopps has had the dream of being the first bunny police officer since she was a kid, and when she moved to Zooptopia- a city where animals live in harmony- that dream becomes a reality. But when she teams up with a mysterious, sly fox, a Zootopia wide scandal reveals that maybe not ALL animals live in harmony.
- In the town of Bunnyburrow, 9 year old bunny, Judy Hopps (Della Saba) is performing in a school play. Her theme explains that animals, once primitive and wild, have now evolved to where predators and prey can live side by side in harmony. The founding mammal city, Zootopia, is hailed as a place where anyone can be anything. Judy then announces that she wants to be a police officer. A kid fox in the audience, Gideon Grey (Phil Johnston), sneers at the idea and even Judy's parents, Bonnie and Stu (Bonnie Hunt and Don Lake) tell her that there's never been a bunny officer. However, Judy is willing to try against all odds. When Judy sees Gideon bullying some kids by taking their fair tickets she boldly confronts him, but Gideon responds by taunting Judy's dreams and slashing her in the face. He leaves and, though she's hurt, Judy shows her friends the tickets she got back and declares that she doesn't know when to quit.
Years later Judy attends the Zootopia Police Academy. Judy is tiny compared to the other recruits and faces difficulties managing the obstacle courses run by the drill sergeant (Fuschia!). But through sheer determination, and by using her wits, Judy makes it to graduation as valedictorian. Zootopia Mayor Lionheart (J.K. Simmons) oversees the ceremony and Assistant Mayor Bellwether (Jenny Slate), a sheep, formally congratulates Judy as the first bunny police officer, saying it's a big day for all small animals. She is assigned to Precinct 1 in the heart of Zootopia, much to the apprehension of her parents.
A few days after, Judy, her parents, and many siblings head to the train station. Stu convinces Judy to take a can of fox repellent with her before she gets on the train to Zootopia. Judy listens to a hit by pop singer, Gazelle (Shakira), as she zooms through the diverse districts of the city, from the frozen tundra to the sultry rainforest. She finds her apartment, a run-down single room with a rickety bed, paper-thin walls, and two noisy neighbors, Bucky and Pronk Oryx-Antlerson (Byron Howard and Jared Bush). Despite this, she's all to excited for her first day. She gets up bright and early and makes it to the police station where she is directed to role call by the pudgy desk sergeant, a cheetah named Benjamin Clawhauser (Nate Torrence). All the other officers (elephants, rhinos, hippos, and bears) tower over Judy. Police Chief Bogo (Idris Elba) calls them to order and explains their first priority is handling the case of fourteen missing animals; all predators. Bogo divides everyone into teams but assigns Judy to parking duty.
Judy is disappointed but sets her standards high and uses her sharp ears to help her write 200 tickets before noon. Around then, she notices a fox who appears to be up to something enter a local ice cream shop run by Jerry Jumbeaux Jr. (John DiMaggio). Though suspicious at first, Judy then sees the fox, Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman), is just trying to purchase a jumbo-pop for his son who is wearing an elephant costume. Jerry refuses service to the fox with sneering bigotry and this angers Judy who steps in and proposes a compromise; she'll let the elephants off with a warning for the health code violation of serving ice cream without gloves on their trunks if Nick can have a jumbo-pop. When Nick confesses he doesn't have his wallet, and apologizes to his son for the worst birthday, Judy goes further and pays for the treat. She tells Nick she can't stand it when people are mistreated for being predators or prey and walks away with a spring in her step, happy to have helped someone in need.
Later that day, Judy is writing more tickets when she notices the little fox in his elephant suit. She approaches to say hello but then notices that he and Nick are melting the jumbo-pop from the roof of a building and letting the drippings collect in large jars. They drive away together, with the little fox at the wheel. Judy follows them into Tundratown and sees them making mini pops with the melted juice. They take them into the Savannah District and sell them to hamsters coming out of work. The hamsters chomp on the pops and leave the sticks in a recycling bin. The little fox collects the sticks and he and Nick take them to a construction zone in Little Rodentia where they're sold as lumber. Later, Nick and his 'son', a full-grown fennec fox named Finnick (Tommy 'Tiny' Lister), part ways and Judy confronts Nick. Nick doesn't deny that he's a hustler but provides Judy with all the paperwork he needs to make his endeavors technically legal and humbles her by saying that the city is not a magical land where dreams come true and a meter maid can never be a real cop.
Judy returns to her apartment, sullen, and bears through a call from her parents who are relieved to see she has the safest job on the force. The next day, Judy is writing more tickets and enduring unending verbal abuse from the citizenry for her duty when she is approached by a frantic pig (Josh Dallas) who tells her he's just been robbed. Judy springs into action and chases the thieving weasel (Alan Tudyk) through the city square and into Little Rodentia. During the chase, in Judy has to take considerable pains to avoid accidental harm to the tiny citizenry and their property, Duke kicks a plastic doughnut from a shop toward Judy and it nearly crushes a lady shrew, but Judy stops it in the nick of time and uses the doughnut to apprehend the weasel. Judy rolls him into the station but is called to Bogo's office. He reprimands her for leaving her post and endangering the public to retrieve a bag of moldy onions. Judy objects, saying that the 'onions' are actually flower bulbs called Midnicampum holicithias and that she only wanted to serve as a real cop. However, Chief Bogo responds that she had her orders as a parking attendant and disobeyed them, making a political appointee like her intolerable to him.
Just then, an otter named Mrs. Otterton (Octavia Spencer) barges in, begging Chief Bogo to find her husband, Emmitt, who has been missing for ten days. Bogo offers empty assurances until Judy steps up and promises to find him. Bogo escorts Mrs. Otterton out of the office before firing Judy for insubordination. However, when he opens the door again, he finds Mrs. Otterton speaking with Assistant Mayor Bellwether who promptly sends a notice to the mayor about Judy's willingness to take the case and tells Judy to come to her for any assistance. Bogo reluctantly allows Judy to take the case but gives her a 48 hour ultimatum; she finds the otter or resigns. Judy agrees.
At the front desk, Clawhauser gives Judy the case file but there are no leads or witnesses and, since she's new, she has no technological resources. However, Judy notices in the lone photograph they have that Emmitt is eating a familiar looking popsicle. She locates Nick on the streets and demands his help but he refuses. When she says his ten dollars' worth of mini pops can wait, he claims to have made two hundred a day since he was twelve. Judy records Nick on her carrot pen recorder and puts his own words against his tax files which show he's claimed zero income. Judy says she'll report him for tax evasion, a federal offense, unless he helps her. Finnick, who was asleep in the stroller Nick was pushing, laughs at the reverse hustle and wishes Nick good luck working with the fuzz before walking off.
Nick takes Judy to Mystic Springs Oasis, the last place he saw Otterton going. They're met by a yak named Yax (Tommy Chong), doing yoga behind a desk. He recognizes Mr. Otterton but says he hasn't seen him in a couple of weeks. He then takes them into the oasis to find Emmitt's yoga instructor, an elephant named Nangi (Gita Reddy), and Judy is shocked to find the oasis is a haven for naturalists; nude animals. Nangi has no memory of Otterton, but Yax unwittingly gives Judy all the information she needs, including the plate number for the car Otterton was picked up in the last time he was there. Nick says he has a friend at the DMV who can help them run the plate number. There, Judy is disheartened to see that the DMV is run solely by sloths. Nick's friend, Flash (Raymond S. Persi) is able to run the plate number for them but, naturally, takes forever to do so. This isn't helped when Nick, in an attempt to push Judy's buttons, delays them with a joke. By the time they exit, it's nighttime.
Judy finds out the car in question is a limo in Tundratown but, by the time she and Nick arrive, the lot's closed. Without a warrant, Judy cannot get in. Defeated, she holds out her recording pen to Nick but flings it over the fence. Nick goes to retrieve it and Judy meets him on the other side, slyly saying that she doesn't need a warrant if she has probable cause - and a shifty-looking fox climbing over the gate qualifies. They locate the limo and search it, finding polar bear fur, claw marks all over the back seat, and Otterton's wallet. Then, Nick recognizes an insignia on a drinking glass and panics; he knows who's car this is. When they open the car door to leave they're confronted by a couple of polar bears who shove them into a car.
Squeezed in the back seat between two polar bears, Nick explains that the car belongs to a thug boss named Mr. Big with whom he's not on good terms because Nick sold him an expensive rug made from the fur of a skunk's butt. Nick and Judy are brought into a study where Mr. Big (Maurice LaMarche), a shrew, is carried in by his polar bear guards. He berates Nick for tarnishing his trust and the hospitality of his grandmother who he recently buried in the skunk rug, and scolds him for returning on the day of his daughter's wedding. Unafraid, Judy steps forward and tells Mr. Big that she knows Emmitt Otterton was with him last and will find out what happened to him if it's the last thing she does. Unfazed, Mr. Big orders his bears to 'ice' Nick and Judy and they're held over a trap door in the floor that reveals icy water. Mr. Big's daughter, Fru Fru (Leah Latham), then walks in wearing her wedding dress and recognizes Judy as the bunny that saved her the previous day from being crushed by the doughnut. In gratitude, Mr. Big releases Judy and Nick and invites them to Fru Fru's wedding reception where he explains that Otterton was his florist but, before meeting with him to discuss something important, went crazy in the limo he sent, attacked his driver, and disappeared. Mr. Big directs them to speak with the driver, Manchas (Jesse Corti), in the Rainforest District for more information.
Manchas, a melanistic jaguar, cracks open the door when Nick and Judy arrive, showing scratches all over his face and acting fearful. He tells them that Otterton kept talking about the 'night howlers' before he went wild and savagely attacked him. Nick says they're there to talk about the night howlers too and Manchas agrees to let them in but, just after he unlocks the chain, Judy and Nick hear him groan followed by a thud. They push the door open to see Manchas on all fours, growling viciously at them. Nick and Judy run for their lives, pursued closely by Manchas. Judy manages to call for backup as she and Nick tumble and fall through the slick canopy. Finally, Judy is able to cuff Manchas to a light pole near a gondola station and throws herself and Nick off it into some vines away from the jaguar's claws. They meet up with the responding police units and Judy explains to Chief Bogo that she believes Manchas, like Otterton, went 'savage'. However, when she takes them back to the gondola station, Manchas is gone. Bogo, irritated and not believing Judy's story demands her to hand over her badge for failing to complete her assignment, but Nick stands up for Judy. He says that Bogo gave them 48 hours, which means they have ten left to find Otterton. He takes Judy onto a gondola and they leave.
Over the rainforest, Nick explains that he was idealistic like Judy once. As a kid, he wanted nothing more than to join the Junior Ranger Scouts. His mother bought him a new uniform and he was excited to become part of the group, despite the fact that he was the only predator to join. Upon arriving, however, the other animals bullied and muzzled him, saying that he was stupid for thinking they'd trust a fox. After that day he decided he would never let anyone see that they had gotten to him and if people only thought of foxes as shifty and untrustworthy, then that's what he would be. Judy consoles him but Nick deflects from her affections by looking at traffic below. He then realizes that there are traffic cameras all over the canopy and they can use them to find out where Manchas was taken.
Judy recalls that Assistant Mayor Bellwether offered to help them. They meet her at City Hall and she takes them to her office which is nothing more than a janitor's closet. Despite her upbeat personality, it's no secret that she's woefully mistreated by the Mayor. She opens the database for the Rainforest District traffic cameras before being called away by Lionheart. Judy and Nick find the footage of Manchas and see that he was netted and hauled away by timber wolves. Judy realizes that the wolves must be the Night Howlers. They watch as the wolves' van drives through a tunnel but fails to come out the other side. Nick says that there's a maintenance tunnel and, if he were to do anything illegal, that's the route he'd take to avoid observation. They relocate the van and go to where it was headed - an old building outside of town called Cliffside Asylum. Nick and Judy make it past the guards by inciting a group howl; something the wolves can't resist. Inside, they find new equipment in an old hospital ward. Following claw marks on the floor, they find fifteen cells inhabited by various predators, all feral and savage, including Manchas and Mr. Otterton.
Judy realizes she's just found all of the missing mammals but, just then, Mayor Lionheart enters with a badger doctor (Katie Lowes). Judy and Nick hide in an empty cell and Judy records Lionheart as he demands to know why predators are going savage. The doctor has no answer and says that they must come forward to Chief Bogo but the Mayor refuses, saying his reputation as a predator official is at stake. At that moment, Judy's phone rings with a call from her parents. Lionheart is startled and the doctor orders security to investigate before locking off the wing. Nick and Judy escape by flushing themselves down a toilet just before the guards arrive and they manage to get the evidence Judy recorded back to Bogo.
The ZPD arrive at the asylum and place everyone, including the Mayor, under arrest. Lionheart contests that they still don't know why predators are going savage and he was trying to protect the public. Later, Chief Bogo, deeply impressed at Hopp's achievement, holds a press conference where Judy gives Nick her pen recorder and offers him the chance to sign up as her partner. Nick is flattered and watches as Judy is called to the stand to answer some questions. Judy starts simple, mentioning that all the savage mammals are predators, but when pressed as to why, she speculates that it could be something to do with their DNA. As predators, the inflicted may have reverted back to their primal origins. The reporters go into a frenzy before Bellwether shuts down the conference. Judy is relieved to be off the podium but Nick is angered by what she said. Judy says she was just stating facts but Nick asks her if a fox such as himself should indeed be trusted. When he raises his arms, asking if Judy is afraid of him, she instinctively puts her hand on her fox repellent. He hands her back the application, telling her that it's best she doesn't have a predator for a partner, before leaving.
A wedge is driven between the predator and prey populations, with prey acting fearful against all predators. Gazelle hosts a peaceful protest against discrimination, despite backlash, and savage attacks continue in the city as more predators go primal. Judy feels responsible for the ensuing tensions between the animals and goes to see Mrs. Otterton where she's watching Emmitt meander mindlessly in his hospital room. At the police station, Judy is summoned by Bogo to see the new mayor, Bellwether. Bellwether explains that with the population in Zootopia being 90% prey, she wants Judy as the face of the ZPD to inspire hope. But Judy claims that she's no hero and says she's done the opposite of what she wanted; to make the world a better place. She says a good cop should help the city, not tear it apart, and hands over her badge before leaving.
Judy returns to Bunnyburrow where she manages her parent's vegetable stand. She wonders aloud to them how she ever thought she could make a difference but they console her as a pie truck pulls up. As the driver, a grown Gideon Grey, gets out, Judy's parents explain that they've partnered up with him and never would have done so had Judy not opened their eyes. Gideon apologizes to Judy for what he did when he was younger, stating that his own insecurities manifested into unchecked rage, but Judy forgives him and says she knows a thing or two about being a jerk. Just then, some bunny children run through the field behind them and Judy's father warns them to stay away from the growing Midnicampum holicithias near the edge. Gideon laughs and says his family just called them night howlers. Judy perks up at this and her father explains that the flowers keep away pests but are toxic. His brother Terry ate one and went into a rage, biting Judy's mother. Judy realizes that the night howlers weren't the wolves - they were flowers. Not only that, but they make animals go savage.
She grabs the keys to the truck and races back to Zootopia. She finds Finnick and he points her to Nick, sitting in the sun beside a small bridge. Judy runs up to him and reveals the truth about the night howlers but he walks away. Desperate, Judy apologizes to him and says she needs his help. She begins to cry and admits that she was a jerk to him and really is a dumb bunny as he once said. Nick doesn't seem to react until he replays a recording of her repentance and holds up her pen recorder enabling that and smiles, saying he'll erase it after 48 hours, before embracing a profoundly relieved Judy. They climb into the truck and Nick helps himself to some of Judy's blueberries while she shows him a picture of the weasel thief she caught stealing the Midnicampum holicithias; Duke Weaselton. They find him on a street corner selling bootleg DVDs such as 'Wrangled', 'Pig Hero 6', and 'Meowana'. Judy confronts him and demands to know what he was doing with the night howler flower bulbs, but he says he won't talk. Judy and Nick smile slyly and take the weasel to Mr. Big. Duke is incredulous as to why Mr. Big would help a cop, but Mr. Big smiles and says Judy is the godmother of his future grandchild. A very pregnant Fru Fru says she's going to name her daughter after Judy. On threat of being iced, Duke relents and confesses he sold bulbs to a ram named Doug who works out of an abandoned rail station.
Nick and Judy follow the directions to a rusty subway car underground. They sneak inside and find Doug (Rich Moore) in a yellow jumpsuit preparing the blue flowers and harvesting them chemically to produce a serum which he puts into fragile pellets. He loads a pellet into a gun as his phone rings, telling him his next mark is a cheetah in Sahara Square. He assures the caller he can make the hit since he was able to get an otter in a moving car. He places the gun in a briefcase and goes to answer a knock at the back of the car, saying that Woolter and Jesse have come back with coffee. Judy takes the opportunity to knock Doug out of the car and locks the door before ordering Nick to get the car moving. With some finagling, they're able to start it and the car moves down the track, slowly gaining speed. Judy is intent on bringing the evidence to police headquarters but two rams jump onto the moving car. They manage to knock Jesse off the car inside the tunnel, grazing him as he hugs the wall and shaving his belly pink. Woolter head-butts his way into the front of the car as they make their way outside but they soon face another oncoming train. Judy tells Nick to speed up and kicks Woolter into a switch lever just in time, but they are traveling too fast around the next curve and the car derails into the next empty station. Judy and Nick jump from the car as the friction causes it to go up in flames and watch from the platform as it explodes. Judy thinks all the evidence is destroyed but Nick holds up the briefcase with the gun inside.
They run upstairs out of the station and into the Natural History Museum, empty due to renovations. As they near the exit toward the police station they are called from behind by Mayor Bellwether, accompanied by two rams in police uniform. Bellwether thanks Judy for discovering the perpetrators behind the predator conspiracy and reaches for the briefcase but Judy wonders aloud how she knew where to find them. They edge toward the exit but are blocked by a disheveled Woolter. Realizing Bellwether was behind the plot all along, Judy and Nick run and attempt to hide down a corridor. Along the way Judy runs into a protruding mammoth tusk and cuts her leg. Nick pulls a handkerchief out of his pocket, blueberries spilling everywhere, and bandages Judy's leg but she tells him to leave her since she can't walk. They try to think of something as they are surrounded by the sheep.
Bellwether calls out to Judy, saying that in the city prey outnumber predators 10 to 1. They need to band together to end their mistreatment against the more powerful and loud predators and, once united, will be unstoppable. Judy and Nick run for it but are knocked into a sunken diorama and Nick drops the briefcase. Bellwether retrieves it and looks down on Nick and Judy before taking aim with the gun and shooting Nick. The blue solution covers his neck and he trembles while Bellwether calls the police and feigns alarm, saying Officer Judy is down and being attacked by a savage fox. Judy tells Bellwether her plan won't work as Nick advances on her, growling. Bellwether says that fear always works and, with a predisposition to savagery, predators will be forced out of Zootopia and she'll dart every one to keep it that way.
Nick then lunges at Judy and puts his jaws around her neck, but just as quickly releases her as Judy puts on a dramatic performance. Nick and Judy then reveal they switched out the serum in the gun with blueberries and have recorded everything Bellwether said on Judy's pen recorder. Horrified, Bellwether backs up to flee only to be stopped and arrested by the responding ZPD.
On the news, an anchor reads that Bellwether was charged for masterminding the savage predator conspiracy. Former Mayor Lionheart gives an interview where he says he didn't know about Bellwether's plot and only caged the savage predators to protect the city, citing he did a wrong thing for the right reasons. It is announced that an antidote has been created with positive effects. Judy goes to the hospital where she sees Emmitt Otterton recovering and embracing his concerned wife.
Months later, Judy, a police officer again and much wizened by her experience, addresses the new police academy graduates, one of them being Nick Wilde. She says, "When I was a kid, I thought Zootopia was this perfect place where everyone got along and anyone could be anything. Turns out, real life's a little bit more complicated than a slogan on a bumper sticker. Real life is messy. We all have limitations. We all make mistakes, which means...hey, glass half full! We all have a lot in common. And the more we try to understand one another, the more exceptional each of us will be. But we have to try. No matter what type of animal you are, from the biggest elephant to our first fox, I implore you: Try. Try to make a difference. Try to make the world a better place. Try to look inside yourself and recognize that change starts with you. It starts with me. It starts with all of us."
Nick approaches the stage and Judy pins on his cop badge. The next day, Chief Bogo hands out assignments, giving Nick and Judy the task of catching a hot-rodder tearing up the roads downtown. Judy and Nick come across the speeder in their patrol car and pull him over, surprised to see Flash the sloth behind the wheel. Flash smiles slyly at Nick and the credits roll as Gazelle (Shakira) performs 'Try Everything' at a concert in Zootopia with everyone in attendance save for Bellwether who watches the show on TV from prison.