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After being stuck in development hell for some time, there's finally a big screen adaptation of The Jetsons in the works, but it won't be live-action as was originally the plan. Instead, the classic Hanna-Barbera cartoon will be getting an animated feature film from Warner Bros. Pictures, and the studio has just hired Matt Lieberman, who has scripted a lot of films that are in development at various studios. Since this is an animated adaptation of the cartoon, we're guessing that the plans for a live-action version that somehow involved Kanye West. Honestly, we're a little bummed that we'll probably never get to see that version.
Though DreamWorks Animation just landed an Oscar nomination for How to Train Your Dragon 2 in the Best Animated Film category, the studio still isn't doing so hot. Even though The Croods was a success, other recent releases like Rise of the Guardians, Turbo and Mr. Peabody & Sherman haven't done as well at the box office as anticipated, resulting in their stock prices dropping and more layoffs happening as the company begins a massive restructuring of their feature animation business. And part of that restructuring includes a plan to only release two films each year now, one original project and one sequel. More below!
Almost a year ago we featured a trailer for a short film called Confusion Through Sand, which was set to premiere at the SXSW Film Festival. The short is hand-drawn on recycled paper, and looks nothing like anything we've ever seen before. Not only that, but the camera movements are amazing. It tells the story of a young soldier "in a hostile desert, scared as hell and trained to react," no doubt referencing the Iraq war. The director tipped me to let me know the short is now available online in full. Suffice it to say, it's a must watch, well worth the wait. One last warning: "this gets loud and intense and may be hard for some people."
There's a chance you might remember an Argentine and Spanish animated foosball film from back in 2013 that was called Futbolin or Metegol. Well, that film got picked up by The Weinstein Company, and they're releasing a dubbed version of the movie featuring an American cast and the new title of Underdogs. Matthew Morrison ("Glee"), singer Ariana Grande, Nicolas Hoult (X-Men: Days of Future Past), Bell Thorne (Blended), Katie Holmes (Batman Begins) and John Leguizamo all lend their voice to the film about two childhood foosball rivals who battle as one finds their home threatened by the other. Watch!
In March, it will have been one year since The LEGO Movie hit theaters and blew everyone away. The hilarious, animated wonder made it on my Top 10 Films of 2014, and we're very interested to see what Phil Lord & Chris Miller are coming up with for The LEGO Movie 2, which they will produce for director Chris McKay, who was the animation co-director on the first film. Considering the wild journey that the third act took us on, many have been curious to see where a sequel will take our LEGO heroes, and even the live-action kid who created their whole world in his mind. Well, Lord & Miller have given us some hints.
It's no secret that Disney loves putting easter eggs referencing their previous films in all their animated projects, and Big Hero 6 is no exception. And since the production of Frozen overlapped with the Marvel comic book adaptation, there are a few little nods to the monstrous musical hit in the film. Of course, there are many more easter eggs to be found in the film outside of Frozen, and you'll be able to track them all down when the film hits Digital HD & Disney's Movies Anywhere service on February 3rd followed by the Blu-ray Combo Pack on February 24th. But for now, check out the Frozen easter eggs in the video below!
There's no doubt that The LEGO Movie is awesome. It made Jeremy's Top 10 Films of 2014, my own list of favorite films, and countless other year-end lists of the best films of the year. Last night the film won the New York Film Critics award for Best Animated Feature, it's up for a Golden Globe, the PGA Award for animated films, tons of other animation awards, and it will likely get an Oscar nomination too. And so, Warner Bros. has just put out an awesome new featurette showing off just how this magical flick came together, with plenty of insight from directors Phil Lord & Chris Miller, the latter of whom brought in his own LEGO spaceman figure as the model for Benny in the movie. Watch below!
Back in November of 2014, a second teaser trailer for the animated Peanuts movie debuted, showing off Snoopy getting into an aerial doghouse battle over Paris. Now a new teaser trailer has arrived using that same footage, but with completely different bookends surrounding that sequence. In the last trailer, there were Christmas lights and wreaths, but this time, it's just a bunch of snow, and Snoopy hiding from an unseen enemy. Perhaps that other bookend was just used around the time of the holidays and isn't actually in the movie. Anyway, there's some adorable new footage of Snoopy and his friend Woodstock. Watch!
It's not often that Death is this entertaining to watch, but here we have a film that will throw you for a loop and make you believe in the magic of filmmaking. After posting new shorts to the Short Films section all the time, I constantly receive emails from filmmakers sharing their new short to be featured. Not many of them will make the cut, but some of them do, and I try to give each one a good look before I decide. This one stood out, and really left a good impression on me, even though it's technically a year old (or so the Vimeo upload date says). It's called Death and the Robot from animator/director Austin Taylor, and it's about Death in this case personified by a woman, as well as an adorable Wall-E-esque robot character. Take a look below.
Just before the year ended, we found out that the next project from the animation masters at Laika would be Kubo and the Two Strings. That film won't arrive until August of 2016, but in the meantime, Laika's most recent film, The Boxtrolls, is hitting Blu-Ray and DVD this month on January 20th. And if you didn't partake in the animated adventure, you're missing out on one of the best family films of the year. So if you need any convincing to check out this film once it's on home video, check out this credits scene from the film that simultaneously uses time-lapsed video to show show it was stop-motion animated. Watch below!
In 2010, Pixar Animation delivered a rather perfect sequel in Toy Story 3. Unfortunately, it looks like Toy Story will continue with a fourth installment, but that's not what this post is about. Instead, this is about the Toy Story 3 that could have been. Back in 2005, Disney Animation was working on their own new Toy Story without Pixar mastermind John Lasseter and his crew. There have been details that have surfaced online about the sequel they were working on, and now a whole slew of concept art has surfaced online, showing us what Disney had in store, and you'll probably be glad Pixar came back to do their own thing.
After delivering beautiful, stop-motion animated masterpieces like Coraline, ParaNorman and this year's The Boxtrolls, Laika and Focus Features have just announced their next collaboration to be Kubo and the Two Strings. The original production is described as sweeping, swashbuckling adventure set in a mythical ancient Japan, and they've rounded up quite a voice cast with Matthew McConaughey, Charlize Theron, Rooney Mara, Ralph Fiennes and Brenda Vaccaro. They'll all be under the direction of Annie Award winner Travis Knight, who is also Laika president and CEO, making his directing debut.
Just before Thanksgiving, we learned that Mel Brooks was joining the voice cast of Hotel Transylvania 2, the animated comedy from Sony Pictures Animation and director Genndy Tartakovsky. The iconic comedian and spoof master is voicing Vlad, the father of Dracula (Adam Sandler) in the sequel coming next fall. And along with the first look photos that accompanied the news last month, a holiday message has just surfaced featuring Dracula, his daughter Mavis (Selena Gomez), and human boyfriend Jonathan (Andy Samberg). Though it sounds like Sony couldn't afford to pay the voice actors to do this. Watch!
Well, now we know what Kyle MacLachlan and Diane Lane were announced as the parents in Pixar Animation's next film Inside Out. The full trailer for next year's summer release has just arrived and shows them trying to interact with their 11-year old daughter Riley, each with the help of their own emotions, which each look similar to those seen inside Riley's mind, but with the attributes of the person they control (like a mustache or glasses). We didn't anticipate seeing the emotions of everyone in this fashion, and this just gets me even more excited for this movie with the voices of Amy Poehler, Bill Hader, Lewis Black, Mindy Kaling and Phyllis Smith playing the emotions Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust & Sadness. Watch now!