Monday, January 12, 2015

Foreshadowing: DreamWorks' 'Me and My Shadow' Seemingly Back On Track!

It looks like an ambitious, exciting DreamWorks film might be coming back...

A while back, DreamWorks announced a little project called Me and My Shadow. It was set to be a hybrid film, and not the kind of hybrid film you may be thinking of. The film was going to combine CG and traditional animation. The story was about shadows and how they are assigned to people, they have this whole little world of their own. However, one shadow is stuck with a man who literally can't leave his own house. He breaks the rules and unleashes chaos...

The shadows were going to be done in traditional animation, and the shadow world itself. At one point it was scheduled for a spring 2014 release, until something happened...

When Rise of the Guardians became DreamWorks' first money-loser since 2006's Flushed Away, the company laid off 350+ employees and rearranged the release slate. Instead of pushing Me and My Shadow back, it was taken off of the slate completely. We were told, however, that it wasn't going to the way of Pixar's Newt. Or canceled-for-good DreamWorks projects like Rex Havoc and Route 66. It simply had to go back to the drawing board, and we heard nothing since... That happened back in February 2013. I heard rumors about the higher-ups being unsure about it, too.

But recently we saw a corporate shake-up at the moon boy house. Veterans Bonnie Arnold and Mireille Soria are now their Presidents, replacing Ann Daly. Chief creative officer Bill Damaschke is out, and I have no idea who his replacement will be. Some of us hoped that they would evaluate the current slate and bring more creative projects like Me and My Shadow to the forefront.

Well, the awesome Brendon Connelly over at Bleeding Cool hears the project is supposedly "coming together nicely". It's unknown whether Josh Gad, Bill Hader, and Kate Hudson are still attached to voice their characters though. I don't see why not, Gad voiced a snowman everyone knows and Hader's done a lot of animation voice work.

Film Divider recently got some beautiful concept artwork. Here are a few pieces...

Also, this...

DreamWorks, this is too good to pass up. It's good to know that they simply gave it more time, rather than outright cancel it. Film Divider's Charles Madison also mentions at one point Tom Hiddleston was eyed to voice the villain, which would be ideal.

I just hope it all comes together soon and we actually get it. It's very possible that DreamWorks' slate will change radically now that new people are in charge, because it's arguable that the right projects weren't greenlit. I mean... Turbo? Boss Baby? Trolls? Granted, some good/potentiall good stuff was greenlit too, like Monkeys of Mumbai and Larrikins. I wonder how many of the films currently dated will go, if any go at all? If Me and My Shadow is indeed close to getting the green light again, when will they release it? Any time before 2018, when the deal with Fox ends?

Out of all of DreamWorks' projects that are in some form of development, this one excites me the most. I was very upset when I heard it was taken off the slate, I worried it wouldn't come back. It's not just the blending of traditional and CG animation, it was also the story which sounded super creative and intriguing.

Here's to the shadows. Here's hoping they come back!

UPDATE: Iry over at Impero Disney (who interviewed James Lopez, the creator of Hullabaloo) told me that she interviewed Carloni... According to him, it's coming back for sure, he's writing it, the story has been completely re-written (think The Good Dinosaur), and it'll probably be released some time after 2017...

That sounds about right, too. That gave it plenty of time, over five years to be exact. In order to get it out in 2018 while still releasing 2-3 films a calendar year (not 4, like they currently want to do in 2017), they'll have to "back burner" a film or two, or move some forward. Personally, I'd wouldn't mind seeing some films move in order to get Me and My Shadow when it's ready. It could very well be ready after 2018, though...

Either way, this is super-exciting news.


  1. I hope they keep the traditionally-animated parts.

  2. This will probably teach Disney a lesson for not doing hand drawn animation like they're suppose to do.

  3. I really hope this ends up doing well, cause if it does, we might end up seeing traditional 2D on the big screen again.