A new Blue Sky project has been revealed... And I found out some things about another one...
Let's start with the new one.
It's called Frogkisser. It's based on an upcoming book by Garth Nix, a different take on the Frog Prince fairy tale. It is set to be, according to The Hollywood Reporter, a hybrid of live-action and animation. A first for the studio, but it will also be a co-production with Fox Animation, who have announced several projects before but haven't gotten around to doing them yet, such as Nimona, Welcome to the Jungle, and a few others. Apparently Anubis will also be a Blue Sky/Fox Animation co-production.
This frog prince story involves a woman named Anya, who has the "unfortunate ability to break curses with a magic-assisted kiss". She flees after her stepmother's new husband takes over her kingdom, joining forces with a talking dog and a boy thief trapped in the body of a newt.
As reported earlier in the month, this is part of Fox Animation's new plan. A long-time animation executive named Nate Hopper (previously from Sony Animation, and used to be part of Fox's live-action side in the 90s/early 00s) was named the spearheading force of a live-action/CG hybrid plan... So that makes me wonder what's going to happen to the previous Fox Animation projects.
If they plan to make every film a hybrid, it would differentiate them from Blue Sky... But apparently Blue Sky is involved in this frog picture, and apparently Fox Animation will have a hand in making Anubis. We'll get there in a second!
Either way, it sounds like an interesting take on the story, but it'll kind of hurt if this takes off because... Well, we all know... The Princess and the Frog, Disney Animation's great return to traditional animation, didn't quite make a mark at the box office. All of that aside, it sounds like it could be decent.
Now... The one that sort of fell off my radar: Pigeon: Impossible...
I was aware of this project's existence for a while, and I know it's also a 2009 short film. I also know that Box Office Mojo had it listed as a Fox-distributed, 1/18/2019 animated release. (The same day as the Playmobil movie.) That being said, I didn't see anything else on the movie in question. Looked all around, didn't see any report of a Pigeon: Impossible movie.
Now I came across this... A 20th Century Fox consumer products statement that a friend of mine found, it states that the film is indeed a Blue Sky production and will open in 2019. Also note that the thing mentions both this and Ferdinand, but not Anubis.
Anubis is a conundrum.
The earliest reports on that feature - based on the Bruce Zick novel The Anubis Tapestry: Between Twilights - date from April 2008, some reports said that it was just a Fox Animation production, no Blue Sky, others said it was going to be a Blue Sky film. The picture got a release date back in 2013, it was once thought to be ready for this past summer! Later in the year, Fox pushed it to March 2018, and it has remained there ever since.
Blue Sky's website doesn't have a page for upcoming films, so I couldn't find any information there. IMDb has nothing, and anyone can edit that site, ditto Wikipedia. But reports over the years have indicated that Blue Sky is/was involved, but what about Fox Animation? At this rate I doubt it hits in 2018, especially on the same day as Sony/Animal Logic's Peter Rabbit.
Other than that, the short Pigeon: Impossible is a cute, fun little send-up of Mission: Impossible and spy movies. Not sure how they'll stretch that out to 90 minutes or so, but if done right, it could be a very clever comedy. That's in Blue Sky's wheelhouse, as the first Ice Age and the first Rio exceed at what they set out to do. If Pigeon: Impossible is similar, it should be a fun cartoony comedy.
Also, what will it mean for Left Tern? That's a Blue Sky picture that was first announced in 2012, described as "Home Alone with birds". Still a go? Even with Pigeon: Impossible moving forward?
So, this appears to be the studio's slate...
12/22/2017 - Ferdinand
03/23/2018 - Anubis (likely moving)
01/18/2019 - Pigeon: Impossible
TBA - Left Tern
TBA - Mutts
TBA - Alienology
What say you?