Locksmith Animation has found a new home for their movies. Warner Bros. Pictures announced (via Deadline) they have signed a multi-year deal with the up-and-coming UK animation studio to release their animated features.
Locksmith was founded in 2014 by two Aardman personnel, including Shaun the Sheep producer Julie Lockhart and Arthur Christmas director Sarah Smith (hence the company’s name). The studio first gained momentum back in October 2017 when they signed a multi-year deal with 20th Century Fox. However, following Disney’s purchase of Fox, the deal was severed.
The new deal with Warner Bros. ensures that Locksmith will have a bright future in the industry. The London-based studio will collaborate with Allison Abbate, Executive Vice President of Warner Animation Group. This suggests that their movies will be released under the WAG label alongside The Lego Movie series, Storks, and Smallfoot.
Toby Emmerich and Courtenay Valenti, Chairman and President Production and Development of Warner Bros. Pictures respectively, issued the following statement on the deal:
“In recent years, animation has become a tremendously important part of our slate, and this deal with Locksmith dovetails perfectly with our forward-going plans. We love Sarah and Julie’s sensibilities and work, and look forward to working with them to create titles that will enchant today’s audiences and become classics for future generations of animation lovers.”Toby Emmerich, Chairman, Warner Bros. Pictures Group, and Courtenay Valenti, President Production and Development, Warner Bros. Pictures
Lockhart and Smith added to the announcement in a joint statement:
“We’re absolutely delighted to become part of the Warner Bros. family with this partnership. The studio has not only a revered legacy in animation, but an outstanding record in bringing contemporary family classics to global audiences. We look forward to working with its visionary leadership team to bring our unique voice and brand to worldwide audiences.”Julie Lockhart and Sarah Smith, CEOs, Locksmith Animation
Locksmith’s debut feature, Ron’s Gone Wrong, is not included in the new deal. The movie will still be theatrically released by Disney under the Fox banner on November 6, 2020. Afterwards, Warner Bros. will handle future Locksmith releases.