2012 has seen some really great animated films so far. While computer graphics have taken up most of the animated market in the last decade, they have also improved in quality and spectacle at an almost geometric rate. This year film fans were treated to the likes of Brave, Madagascar 3 and Ice Age 4 which all did very well and proved to be feathers in the caps of their respective animation studios. But while we were excited about them, and they did well from huge marketing campaigns, they didn’t need much help from the blogging community due to their existing fan base.
That said however, here are 5 films that have either slightly smaller budgets and/or lesser notoriety but should still prove to be some engaging stories. Also, now that Summer in full swing it’s a given that some of us are in dire need of a ways to cool off. So aside from hitting the pool, or chasing every ice cream truck in sight, we can beat the heat by planning trips to the cineplex to catch any of these Highly Anticipated Animated Films Left In 2012.
ParaNorman – One of two stop motion (or “stop-frame” to your UK readers) on this list Laika studios’ latest is a Goonies-esqe adventure. Featuring a top notch cast of A-Listers, painstaking detail and a look that really is all its own, Chris Butler and Sam Fells throwback flick looks like a win.
ParaNorman opens this Summer in stereoscopic 3D on August 17th.
Hotel Transylvania – Adam Sandler sure has had a varied career and a bad string of misses at the box office. But when he’s funny, he can be delightful and you tend to forget the missteps. Who doesn’t love the old school Hollywood movie monsters? And while this idea may seem a bit tired or cliche (anyone recall John Cusack’s Igor?) this is the baby of one Genndy Tartakovsky…I think that’s a level of quality that speaks for itself.
Hotel Transylvania opens this Fall on September 28th.
Frankenweenie – Tim Burton’s long awaited feature length adaptation of his cult favotire short film Frankenweenie will soon be released to the masses. It’s a heart warming tale about a boy and his best friend. After losing Sparky the dog, poor Victor uses science to bring him back to life. He has to hide his home-sewn creation, but of course Sparky gets out, ultimately exposing his actions, in this stop-motion black and white animation.
Frankenweenine opens this Fall ind 3D on October 5th.
Wreck-It Ralph – This goes out to all you kids who grew up in the 8-bit era. While Brave, as a Pixar film, felt more like a Disney film, it’s very possible that Ralph, by Disney, will feel like a Pixar film especially with such an original idea/concept. After the success of Tangled and the merger with Pixar, Disney has upped their game 10 fold. If Wreck-It is even half as good as it looks now, it should still be a monster hit.
Wreck-It Ralph opens this Fall in Disney 3D on November 2nd.
Rise of the Guardians – DreamWorks has had Pixar in their sights for a while and it wasn’t until How To Train Your Dragon that they really started to close the gap on the animation powerhouse. Rise of the Guardians takes a very modern direction with the, um, source material, which takes the fairy tale creatures we grew up with and turns them into legendary super heroes. In this heavily comic book influenced film culture, would you expect any different?
Rise of the Guardians opens this Fall in 3D on November 21st.
So that’s what the second half of 2012 has in store for us and we’re excited mostly because of their highly original concepts. But if none of these are your cup of tea, here’s a glimpse just over the horizon in 2013 which includes one we’re really looking forward to, among many on the slate, Blue Sky Studios’ Epic. We posted the fantastic first teaser and are super excited to see how things shape up from there. Fingers crossed.
If you liked that and for those interested in the schedule even further out, you can also look forward to Dorothy of OZ, Monsters University, Despicable Me 2, How to Train Your Dragon 2, Turbo and for all you Studio Ghibli super fans (myself included) we’ll finally get a theatrical stateside release of From Up On Poppy Hill. Any of these sound like a winner? What are you planning to see??