First, Ryan Schneider (chief brand officer for Insomniac Games) made the exciting announcement yesterday that the film finally has a definite release date. Originally set for a nebulous 2015 release window, Ratchet & Clank is now set to open in theaters on April 29, 2016. The film will be distributed in the US by Focus Features (best known as LAIKA’s current distribution partner). This will ultimately give Focus a stronger foothold in animation outside of its partnership with LAIKA .
Furthermore, Ratchet & Clank joins the growing number of animated ‘genre’ films that have begun to fill out the oncoming 2016 year in animation. These films include DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu Panda 3, Toonbox/Red Rover’s Spark, Rainmaker Entertainment/New Line Cinema’s Sly Cooper (from the same team behind Ratchet & Clank), Disney’s Moana, and LAIKA’s Kubo and the Two Strings (from the same distributor).
Ratchet & Clank has also beefed up its cast with a handful of A-list talent. Joining original actors James Arnold Taylor, David Kaye, and Jim Ward (as Ratchet, Clank, and Captain Qwark respectively) is Paul Giamatti as Chairman Drek (the main villain), John Goodman as Grimroth (Ratchet’s mentor), Bella Thorne as Cora (a member of Qwark’s Galactic Rangers), Rosario Dawson as Elaris (A member of the Galactic Rangers’ support team), with Sylvester Stallone as Victor Von Ion (Drek’s lieutenant), and Armin Shimerman rounding out the cast as Doctor Nefarious (the games’ overall antagonist).
“The collaborative relationship between Rainmaker Entertainment, Sony PlayStation, Insomniac Games and all our partners has helped us to bring this massive game franchise to the big screen,” said Rainmaker Entertainment president Michael Hefferon in a statement. “Our outstanding celebrity talent together with the original voices from the game really bring these characters to life, and we are confident that Ratchet & Clank will delight fans with its authenticity and charm, while families everywhere will find a new family-friendly buddy duo to love.”
“We are honored and thrilled to have these actors join our cast,” added Blockade Entertainment CEO Brad Foxhoven. “Their unique voices, and the level of humor and emotion they bring to their roles will help to create some endearing and memorable characters in the film.”
“Everyone at Insomniac is thrilled that Ratchet & Clank will be shared in cinemas around the world with new and longtime fans alike,” said Insomniac Games founder and CEO Ted Price. “It’s been particularly exciting to collaborate closely with PlayStation, Rainmaker and Blockade on character design, story, animation, game asset sharing and marketing support to ensure an authentic Ratchet & Clank intergalactic adventure.”
Fans of the video game will also like this little tidbit: A new video game will also be released to coincide with the movie. Like the movie, the game will retell the origin story and is expected to heavily tie in and expand upon the film’s story.
Screenings for the film will be held at Cannes tomorrow and Saturday at 4 PM.
The film is directed by Kevin Munroe and Jericca Cleland from a screenplay by Insomniac Games writer TJ Fixman.
We will keep you updated as more news surfaces regarding Ratchet & Clank (including any animation-related updates from this year’s Cannes Film Festival).
Do you have any thoughts on this news? Does this news make you look forward to Ratchet & Clank?
Edited by: Hannah Wilkes