FEATURES LAIKA Sets Its Next Feature: ‘Kubo and the Two Strings’
LAIKA and Focus Features announced Dec. 22 their fourth collaboration will be the stop-motion animated feature Kubo and the Two Strings, which will be directed by LAIKA president and CEO Travis Knight.
Based on an original screenplay by Marc Haimes and Chris Butler ( ParaNorman), Kubo and the Two Strings is a swashbuckling adventure set in a mythical ancient Japan. It is being brought to life at LAIKA’s Portland, Ore., studios via the company’s 3D stop-motion and CG hybrid technique.
In addition to directing, Knight is producing Kubo and the Two Strings with Arianne Sutner ( ParaNorman).
The all-star voice cast includes Academy Award winners Matthew McConaughey and Charlize Theron; Academy Award nominees Rooney Mara, Ralph Fiennes and Brenda Vaccaro; and Art Parkinson, who plays Rickon Stark on Game of Thrones and who is providing the voice for the title character of Kubo.
In the epic fantasy, scruffy, kindhearted Kubo ekes out a humble living while devotedly caring for his mother in their sleepy shoreside village. It is a quiet existence – until a spirit from the past catches up with him to enforce an age-old vendetta. Suddenly on the run from gods and monsters, Kubo’s chance for survival rests on finding the magical suit of armor once worn by his fallen father, the greatest samurai the world has ever known. Summoning courage, Kubo embarks on a thrilling odyssey as he faces his family’s history, navigates the elements, and bravely fights for the earth and the stars. The movie will open in theaters nationwide domestically on Aug. 19, 2016. As with the three previous LAIKA movies, Focus will release Kubo and the Two Strings in the United States and Universal Pictures International will release the movie internationally. It is the first movie in the new three-picture partnership between LAIKA and Focus.
Cano submitted an amended filing in federal court, which in part reads:
“The conspiracy deprived Plaintiffs and other class members of millions of dollars in compensation while the films they produced generated billions of dollars in revenues for Defendants.”
It goes on to name DWA’s CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg, Disney-Pixar’s Ed Catmull and others as well as stating that DreamWorks’ head of production technology reached out via email to human-resources heads at major studios to discuss comparative overtime payment policies — a sensitive issue in an industry where production schedules often demand employees work many, many overtime hours.
The case has been assigned to Judge Lucy Koh per plaintiff Nitsch’s request in September, which argued that his class-action complaint was “related” to the high-tech employee antitrust litigation Koh had been presiding over for several years.
Details of the animation studios’ antipoaching agreements came to light during a Department of Justice investigation pertaining to the high-tech case. Seven Dwarfs as seen in the studio’s Snow White film. The show currently airs daily on Disney XD in the U.S. and became part of Disney Channel’s Disney Junior block on weekends starting Dec. 26. ... The Visual Effects Society has named multi-award winning director and producer Ridley Scott as its 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, in recognition of his enormous contributions to the film world. The award will be presented at the Society’s 13th Annual VES Awards on Feb. 4 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. ... Iconic comic actor Mel Brooks will play the voice of Dracula’s father, Vlad, in Sony Pictures Animation’s upcoming Hotel Transylvania 2. The film will see Adam Sandler reprise his role as Dracula, head of the monstrous joint, whose world is thrown for a loop when Vlad arrives for an impromptu family reunion. ... Disney’s announced the all new short Frozen Fever, which reunites the CG stars and filmmakers of its Oscar winning feature, will open in theaters in front of the studio’s live-action fairy-tale Cinderella on March 13. ... Fox’s Animation Domination High-Def block has a new home, debuting Jan. 22 on FXX with new episodes of Lucas Bros. Moving Co. and Stone Quackers. ... Luxo Jr., the 1986 computer-animated short film directed by John Lasseter, has been named to the National Film Registry of the U.S. Library of Congress. The registry selects each year 25 films of cultural, historic or aesthetic significance to add to the list and be preserved. This year’s selections bring the number of films in the registry to 650.
22Find out which deserving animated feature and short will take home coveted Academy Awards tonight. (oscar. go.com)