Thursday, August 16, 2012

J.J. Abrams Gets Animated

Paramount certainly made a wise decision by setting up their own animation studio last summer. They'll be able to compete with the big guns after the deal with DreamWorks comes to an end while also making a name for themselves. Early on, I was hoping that the then-new studio would tackle projects like Rango, films that were unconventional and bold.

Until today, we only knew that a sequel to The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie was in the works along with an adaptation of the short-lived Penny Arcade webcomic, The New Kid, which is to be directed by long-time executive and producer Mary Parent alongside Cale Boyter. Gary Whitta (The Book of Eli) will pen the script.

Today, /Film revealed that Paramount Animation added a new production to its upcoming slate, and it will be directed by none other than J.J. Abrams, the creator of Lost and the director of Star Trek. Knowing Abrams, we probably won't know much about it until a trailer shows up. The sequel to The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie is set to open sometime in late 2014, so we can only imagine when Abrams' project will be released. It'll probably kept in great secrecy, which Paramount executive Adam Goodman is encouraging. Goodman stated, "the longer-than-average development time for animated films requires some level of secrecy to ensure the kind of original ideas being developed here are protected, so holding back on specific announcements enables us to reveal projects when they are further along in the creative process."

Certainly a smart idea, and one that will keep the animation community guessing and speculating. Though I will admit I am not that familiar with Lost, Abrams did a fine job with Star Trek. He also produced a personal favorite of mine, Matt Reeves' Cloverfield. I am certainly looking forward to what he has in store for us. With that, it looks like Paramount Animation isn't going to take things lightly. Rango was certainly a watershed event for mainstream animation, so it seems as if they are looking to aim high while also making bank with safer projects like the SpongeBob film.

What's your take on this? Are you excited to see an animated film directed by J.J. Abrams? Are you looking forward to Paramount Animation's upcoming projects? Sound off!

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