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Monday, June 20, 2016

Sony Pictures Animation Announces 2017 & 2018 Slate

Sony Pictures Animation Announces 2017 & 2018 Slate


CULVER CITY, Calif., June 20, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- In a move signaling an expansion of its output and increased year-round production across multiple platforms, Sony Pictures Animation announced today its slate through 2018 which includes five theatrical features, three television series and one direct-to-video movie.

Kristine Belson, President of Sony Pictures Animation, says, "We are meaningfully stepping up our level of production, while creating an environment that fosters the best talent. Our goal is to enlarge our presence in the animation landscape with a uniquely diverse slate, and our strategy to get there is to let artists drive the movies creatively."

Tom Rothman, Chairman of Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group, adds, "I could not be more proud of the way Kristine Belson has rebuilt Sony Pictures Animation into the boldest home for animation in the industry."

Sony Pictures Animation's slate includes a diverse mix of originals and franchises, some previously announced, each with its own unique style and tone, underscoring the Studio's pledge to develop projects aimed both inside and outside of the Sony Pictures Animation family brand intended for traditional, as well as online, distribution platforms.


-- SMURFS: THE LOST VILLAGE--a fully-animated comedy that delivers a fresh
new take on the famous blue creatures and marks a return to the tone and
style of the beloved comic book creations of Peyo--hits theaters April
7, 2017. The feature is directed by Kelly Asbury (SHREK 2, GNOMEO &
JULIET), produced by Jordan Kerner (THE SMURFS 1 & 2, CHARLOTTE'S WEB),
co-produced by Mary Ellen Bauder Andrews (HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA) and
written by Stacey Harman and Pamela Ribon, based on the characters and
works of Peyo. The voice cast includes Demi Lovato as Smurfette, Jack
McBrayer as Clumsy, Joe Manganiello as Hefty, Danny Pudi as Brainy, and
Rainn Wilson as Gargamel, with Mandy Patinkin as Papa.
-- EMOJIMOVIE: EXPRESS YOURSELF will offer a surprising and comic take on
the secret world of our phones and the beloved characters that have
become daily necessities in global interpersonal communication. The
feature, targeting an August 2017 theatrical release, is directed by
Anthony Leondis, produced by Michelle Raimo Kouyate, and written by
Anthony Leondis & Eric Siegel.
-- THE STAR (working title) is scheduled for a December 8, 2017 theatrical
release. The computer-animated feature is directed by Oscar nominee
Timothy Reckart (HEAD OVER HEELS); executive produced by DeVon Franklin,
Lisa Henson, and Brian Henson; co-produced by Jenni Magee Cook; and
written by Carlos Kotkin and Simon Moore. In The Star, a small but brave
donkey and his animal friends become the unsung heroes of the greatest
story ever told, the first Christmas. Sony Pictures Animation produces
in association with The Jim Henson Company.
-- HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA 3--the follow-up to Sony Pictures Animation's highest
grossing film in the U.S. and the biggest opening ever for a domestic
September release --is scheduled to hit theaters September 21, 2018.
Director Genndy Tartakovsky (DEXTER'S LABORATORY, STAR WARS: CLONE
WARS), who returns to helm this brand new adventure, says, "I thought I
was done exploring the world of HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA after the first two
films, but while I was away from the franchise finishing my TV show
SAMURAI JACK, an idea sparked that I got really excited about and made
it irresistible to return and helm myself this third adventure."
Michelle Murdocca is back producing, with Adam Sandler executive
producing, and Michael McCullers (AUSTIN POWERS: THE SPY WHO SHAGGED ME,
BOSS BABY) writing the screenplay. Adam Sandler, Selena Gomez and Andy
Samberg will be returning as the voices of Dracula, his vampire daughter
Mavis, and her human husband Johnny.
-- From Phil Lord & Christopher Miller, the geniuses behind THE LEGO MOVIE,
comes an animated SPIDER-MAN feature slated for theatrical release
December 21, 2018. The film is being written by Phil Lord. Avi Arad, Amy
Pascal, Phil Lord & Christopher Miller are producing; Craig Sost is
co-producing. Bob Persichetti (head of story on PUSS IN BOOTS and THE
LITTLE PRINCE) is directing.

-- A brand new animated television series, GHOSTBUSTERS: ECTO FORCE, will
further expand the Ghostbusters cinematic universe and focus on a new
generation of Ghostbusters in the year 2050 who capture ghosts around
the world with help from local teams--and some very cool gear! The
younger-skewing Sony Pictures Animation project is being creatively
spearheaded by Ivan Reitman and his production company Ghost Corps.
GHOSTBUSTERS: ECTO FORCE is eyeing an early 2018 debut.
airdate. The animated television series, produced in partnership with
Corus Entertainment's Nelvana, will focus on the teenage years of Mavis,
Dracula's daughter, and her friends. It will be airing on the Disney
Channel worldwide.
-- CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS is slated for its television series
incarnation airdate in 2017. The 2D animated small-screen series,
produced in partnership with DHX Media and commissioned by TELETOON in
Canada, will expand on the adventures of the computer-animated feature
films and will air on Cartoon Network in the U.S. and Turner channels
across EMEA, APAC and Latin American markets.

-- SURF'S UP 2: WAVEMANIA will debut on home entertainment in the Spring of
2017. Directed by Henry Yu and produced by Michelle Wong, the follow-up
to the 2007 Oscar nominee will hit the shores in time for the 10-year
anniversary of the franchise. The project is in partnership with WWE
Studios (NYSE:WWE) and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. The voice cast
includes WWE Superstars John Cena(®), The Undertaker(®), Triple H(®),
Diva Paige(TM) and Mr. McMahon(®) as an an infamous big wave riding
crew of penguins known as The Hang 5 which Cody Maverick convinces to
let him join on their journey to a mysterious surf spot where legend has
it they'll find the biggest waves in the world.
Senior Vice Presidents of Development Michael Lachance (EMOJIMOVIE: EXPRESS YOURSELF, GHOSTBUSTERS: ECTO FORCE), Jenny Marchick (THE STAR, HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA 3) and Mike Moon (untitled animated SPIDER-MAN) are in charge of creatively spearheading the Sony Pictures Animation slate.

Sony Pictures Animation produces a variety of animated and family entertainment for audiences around the world. The studio is following its worldwide comedy hits--the record-breaking monster comedies HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA and HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA 2, the hybrid live action/animated blockbusters THE SMURFS and THE SMURFS 2, and the mouth-watering CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OFMEATBALLS movies--with the fully animated reboot SMURFS: THE LOST VILLAGE in April 2017; a surprising and comic take at the secret world inside our phones with EMOJIMOVIE: EXPRESS YOURSELF in August 2017; the inspirational story THE STAR (working title) in December 2017; HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA 3 in September 2018; and an animated SPIDER-MAN feature from the minds of directors Chris Miller and Phil Lord in December 2018. The studio, in conjunction with Aardman Animations, has produced two critically acclaimed feature films: the CG-animated family comedy ARTHUR CHRISTMAS; and the Academy Award® nominated stop-frame animated high-seas adventure, THE PIRATES! BAND OF MISFITS. In 2007, SURF'S UP also received an Academy Award® nomination for Best Animated Feature Film. The division, whose first feature film OPEN SEASON led to a very successful movie franchise including the brand new OPEN SEASON: SCARED SILLY now available on digital, DVD and Blu-ray, turned 10 in 2012. Sony Pictures Animation is a division of the Sony Pictures Motion Pictures Group.

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SOURCE Sony Pictures Animation

Sony Pictures Animation

CONTACT: Olivier Mouroux, Vice President, Publicity & Corporate Communications, Sony Pictures Animation, 310-840-8230,

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