Sony Pictures Animation has had some big blockbuster hits at the box office, even though their animated movie library isn’t as extensive as others.
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My favorite movie of theirs is Arthur Christmas. Which movie is your favorite?
- Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse
- Hotel Transylvania: Transormania
- Wish Dragon
- Mitchells vs. The Machines
- The Angry Birds Movie 2
- Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse
- Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween
- Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation
- Peter Rabbit
- The Star
- The Emoji Movie
- Smurfs: The Lost Village
- Hotel Transylvania 2
- Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2
- The Smurfs 2
- Hotel Transylvania
- The Pirates: Band of Misfits
- Arthur Christmas [Arthur Christmas characters]
- The Smurfs
- Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs
- Surf’s Up
- Open Season
Sony Pictures Animation History
At the mention of Sony Pictures, you already have that perfect movie scene in mind. For animation lovers, you must have encountered the Sony Pictures Animation logo several times.
Today we will take a look at this giant company’s history. Sony Pictures Animation is a computer animation film company and a subsidiary of the giant Sony Pictures Entertainment, which is owned by Sony. It deals in a range of films. If you enjoyed watching Angry Birds, you already know how good Sony Pictures Animation can be.
This gallant company has its roots in theatrical animated short films, television animated series, and theatrical animated feature films, with its headquarters in Culver City, California.
Sony Pictures Animation was founded close to two decades ago, on May 9th, 2002. This was a year after Sony unsuccessfully tried to sell Sony Pictures Imageworks, which was its visual effect facility.
Since they could not land a successful buyer, Sony Pictures Imageworks was split into two, with the original studio handling special effects and Sony Pictures Animation studio being in charge of TV and movies.
The animation studio was thus established to develop different characters, stories, and movies. Sony Pictures Imageworks, therefore, managed to retain both digital and Sony’s visual effects production.
What followed was the production of two films, The ChubbbsChubbs and Early Bloomer, which were meant to test Sony Pictures Imageworks’ ability to produce different types of Computer Graphic Imageworks animations. It was expected that its first movie would be Astro Boy, a plan that had been in place since 1997.
A year later, Sony Pictures Animation fully stepped into the animation world by announcing several projects that they were developing at the time. These were Open Season, Surf’s Up, and a full version of one of its first projects, The ChubbsChubbs.
Sony Picture Animation’s first feature series, Open Season, was released three years later, in September 2006. Open Season was a success and saw three sequels. In June 2007, the company released Surf’s Up, which received an Academy Award nomination and bagged two Annie awards.
The biggest film Sony Pictures later made was Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, which rakes in super-high income. It was based on a children’s book by Judi and Ron Barret and had a hilarious cast and super-amazing directors. In September 2009, the company released its first-ever 3D movie shortly after the IMAX 3D release of the Open Season. The film was nominated for four Annie Awards, the biggest one being Best Animated Feature.
The Smurf was released in 2011, being the company’s first CGI/live-action fusion. The other two films, Arthur Christmas and The Pirates! Band of Misfits was released shortly after the partnership between Sony Pictures and Aardman Corporation (2007).
The Pirates! Bands of Misfits was Sony Pictures Animation’s first stop-motion film. 2012 was one of the best years for the company after it released Hotel Transylvania, which amassed over $340m in gross. It also saw the launch of a successful franchise, two sequels, and a Television Series, The Smurf 2 and The Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, a year later.
In November 2014, Sony Pictures Animation in Collaboration with Frederator Studios’ Cartoon Hangover released Go! Cartoons had 12 short films. The company carried out the funding aiming at recruiting new talents for the studio.
The company released Angry Birds in May 2016, which was a huge success. The Angry Bird 2 followed after, produced by Rovio Animations. Sony Pictures Animations also released Spider-Man Into the Spider-verse, an animated superhero film based on the Spider-man character.
Possible Future Outlook
Sony Pictures Animation has grown exponentially over the years. With most of its films raking in super-high income, this company has continued to cement its place in the animated film production industry. What are some of the possible future outlooks for Sony Pictures Animation, therefore?
For a long time, Sony Pictures Animation has produced films targeting children’s entertainment. The future is, however, promising with Sony announcing projects that lean toward the adult audience. A good example is a reimagining of The Boondocks, which is an adult series, and the comedy series Superbago.
Some of the projects also include Wish Dragon, one of the best Jackie Chan’s friendly family projects. This does not, however, mean that the company is going out of the children’s entertainment scene.
One of the biggest obstacles in the film industry is to achieve a global appeal. Usually, some parts of the world do not relate to certain characters, which makes it challenging to reach out to them.
Sony has started working with talents from different regions, including China, Korea, Africa, Mexico, and Indonesia, among other areas, who will help expand and create international appeal for its animated series.
The company is also expected to incorporate more characters from different regions to gain more audience, an example being the project Wish Dragon, which features famous Chinese actor Jackie Chan.
Several Sequels In Production
Some of these include Hotel Transylvania 4, which is currently in progress, and a sequel to their comic-based film Spider-Man: Into the Spider-verse, which is expected to come out soon.
One of the most prominent possible outcomes for the company is a strategic partnership with Tencent, which is one of China’s biggest production banners.
Over the years, even with all the success that Sony Pictures Animation has amassed, there has been a noticeable production gap. Having announced several projects, however, the coming years may see a massive increase in the production of films.
Some of the films that are expected to come soon are Connected, which is a robot apocalypse film; Vivo, a Ghostbuster spin-off film; two different Tartakovsky projects; and a movie from Jon Saunders.
The time gap in production is also expected to fall low, ensuring that the audience is always entertained.
Sony Pictures Animation has managed to defend its place in the Film animation industry over the years. With an even brighter future, expect it to grow more and achieve heightened international appeal.
Also, check out Blue Sky Studios
Brandon is an animation enthusiast and animated film critic. He has been writing about animation since 2013 to celebrate animated movies, characters, and songs. His favorite animated movies include Finding Nemo, Aladdin, and The Lion King.