Up-and-coming studio Skydance Animation will be making its grand entrance on the big screen in 2022. It was reported via Deadline that Paramount Pictures had assigned release dates for the studio’s first two animated features for that year. The first of the two, Luck, will release worldwide on February 18, 2022, while Spellbound will follow-up on November 11, 2022. Paramount will also co-finance the two films with Skydance Media.
The new animation division of Skydance employs over 350 creative workers between its Los Angeles and Madrid bases. The latter of which being the company’s recently-acquired Ilion Animation Studios, the makers of Planet 51 and Wonder Park. Overseeing the division are former DreamWorks producer Holly Edwards as President, and former Pixar/Disney Animation CCO John Lasseter as the Head of Animation.
“‘Luck’ and ‘Spellbound’ create rich worlds and compelling characters that we know will resonate with audiences everywhere. It’s incredibly exciting to see our team of legendary creatives working around the clock and across the globe to bring these pictures to life.”Holly Edwards, President, Skydance Animation
For Skydance Animation’s debut, Luck looks into the concept of good and bad luck, with an unlucky girl being transported to an unseen world based around this phenomenon. The film is being directed by choreographer Peggy Holmes, who previously helmed several Disneytoon projects including The Little Mermaid: Ariel’s Beginning, as well as Secret of the Wings and The Pirate Fairy of the Tinkerbell franchise. Kiel Murray (Cars) and Jonathan Aibel & Glenn Berger (the Kung Fu Panda trilogy) serve as the writers.
Following up in the Skydance pipeline is Spellbound, a fantasy musical helmed by Shrek and Shark Tale director Vicky Jenson in her animation comeback. The story, written by Lauren Hynek & Elizabeth Martin (Mulan ) and Linda Woolverton (Beauty and the Beast), centres on a young girl who has to put an end to a cursed spell which has divided her kingdom into two.
Along with Jenson reuniting with Shrek co-executive producer David Lipman, Spellbound‘s soundtrack will see the big reunion of composer Alan Menken, lyricist Glenn Slater, and executive music producer Chris Montan. The three previously collaborated together on Disney’s Home on the Range and Tangled.
Also in development at Skydance is Pookoo (working title), an animated feature written and directed by Tangled‘s Nathan Greno. A release date for that project is yet to be set.
“‘Luck’ and ‘Spellbound’ mark the next phase of Skydance and Paramount’s commitment to feature animation for the theatrical experience. These films not only continue our longstanding relationship with Skydance, but, along with Paramount Animation’s own upcoming films, mean we will be releasing event-level animated films for years to come.”Chris Aronson, President, Domestic Distribution, Paramount Pictures
Founded in 2006 by David Ellison, Skydance Media is a frequent co-producing/co-financing partner of Paramount Pictures. The two studios have co-produced films such as Jack Reacher, World War Z, Annihilation, Gemini Man, and the recent Mission: Impossible sequels.
An up-to-date release schedule of mainstream animated features can be viewed on our Animation Calendar.
Are you intrigued to see what Skydance Animation will deliver with Luck and Spellbound, or does Lasseter’s involvement still make you hesitant? Let us know in the comments!
Edited by: Kelly Conley