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Warner Animation Group

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Warner Animation Group
PredecessorWarner Bros. Feature Animation (1994–2004)
FoundedJanuary 7, 2013; 9 years ago (January 7, 2013)
FounderJeff Robinov
Key people
ProductsAnimated films
ParentWarner Bros. Pictures

The Warner Animation Group (WAG) is an American animation studio which is the feature animation label of the Warner Bros. Pictures, the film production and distribution division of Warner Bros., through Warner Bros. Pictures Group. Established on January 7, 2013, the studio is the successor to the dissolved 2D traditional hand-drawn animation studio Warner Bros. Feature Animation, which shut down in 2004, and is also a sister to the regular Warner Bros. Animation studio.

Its first film, The Lego Movie, was released on February 7, 2014, and its most recent film was Space Jam: A New Legacy on July 16, 2021; their upcoming slate of films includes DC League of Super-Pets on July 29, 2022, Scoob! Holiday Haunt in 2022, Toto on February 2, 2024, and Coyote vs. Acme on an unspecified date. Films produced by WAG have grossed a total of $1.8 billion at the box office.


On January 7, 2013, Jeff Robinov (then head of the studio's motion picture division) founded a screenplay development department, nicknamed a "think tank" for developing theatrical animated films, known as the Warner Animation Group.[1] The group includes John Requa, Glenn Ficarra, Nicholas Stoller, Jared Stern, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller.[1] Warner Bros. created the group with the hope that the box office reception of their films will be competitive with other animation studios' releases.[1]

On February 7, 2014, Warner Animation Group released their first film, The Lego Movie, a film animated by Animal Logic, which also provided the animation for both spinoffs. It was met with critical praise and proved to be a box office success.

WAG's second film, Storks, was released September 23, 2016.[2] It received mixed reviews from critics.

On February 10, 2017, Warner Animation Group released The Lego Batman Movie, which received positive reviews from critics and was a box office success.[3][4] On December 14, 2017, Warner Bros. announced Allison Abbate had been named Executive Vice President, and Chris Leahy has been named Senior Vice President.[5]

The Lego Ninjago Movie, based on the Lego Ninjago toys, was released on September 22, 2017. Upon release, the film was met with mixed reviews from critics and became the first film from the studio and franchise to fail to recoup its budget.[6][7]

The WAG shield used as the print logo from 2014–2021; extensively used in trailers
The WAG shield used as the print logo from 2014–2021; extensively used in trailers

Smallfoot, released September 28, 2018, earned a 76% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes with mostly positive reviews from critics and has become the box office success, grossed over $214 million worldwide.[8][9]

The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, a sequel to The Lego Movie, was released February 8, 2019 and earned an 85% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes with generally positive reviews from critics but only grossed around $192.3 million worldwide, almost barely recouping its budget and becoming the studio and franchise's second box office disappointment.[10][11][12]

In October 2019, Locksmith Animation formed a multi-year production deal with Warner Bros., which will distribute Locksmith's films.[13]

An animated reboot of the Scooby-Doo film series titled Scoob! was initially set for a theatrical release on May 15, 2020,[14] but then it was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[15] On April 21, 2020 it was announced that it would instead go to video on demand in response to the pandemic.[16] It received mixed reviews from critics.

A live action/animated film based on Tom & Jerry was released internationally on February 11, 2021 and on February 26 in the United States in theaters and HBO Max simultaneously (which also debuted the company's new logo to match with the design of the new shield logo that Warner Bros. debuted back in November 2019, and like its regular WB logo, which was revamped earlier that year with Locked Down, it is made by Devastudios, with clouds created using Terragen[17]). It received generally negative reviews from critics, and is the first film from the company to have met so, but became a box office success.

Space Jam: A New Legacy, starring LeBron James, was released on July 16, 2021, and was the first film from Warner Animation Group to incorporate traditional animation. It also received generally negative reviews from critics, and is the second film from the company to have met so after Tom & Jerry, and the studio’s third box office disappointment despite of being successful enough thanks to the streaming service.

Upcoming releases

An animated film based on the Legion of Super-Pets titled DC League of Super-Pets is scheduled for release on July 29, 2022.[18]

A Christmas-themed spin-off prequel titled Scoob! Holiday Haunt is set for release in 2022. The film takes place in the gang's youth, with the actors who portrayed their younger selves reprising.[19]

A musical feature adaptation of Michael Morpurgo's children's book Toto: The Dog-Gone Amazing Story Of The Wizard Of Oz began animation production in February 2021. It is being directed by Alex Timbers, from a screenplay by John August, and produced by Derek Frey.[20] It is set to be released on February 2, 2024.

WAG's third live-action/animation hybrid, a Wile E. Coyote film titled Coyote vs. Acme, was originally scheduled to be theatrically released in the United States on July 21, 2023, by Warner Bros. Pictures.[21] On April 26, 2022, it was taken off the release schedule, with Barbie taking over its original release date.[22] The film will be directed by Dave Green and produced by Chris DeFaria and James Gunn.[21]


Similar to Disney's 20th Century Animation, NBCUniversal's DreamWorks Animation and Illumination, Paramount Animation, Netflix Animation and Sony Pictures Animation, WAG outsources their animated films' production to other studios, such as Animal Logic (The Lego Movie franchise, DC League of Super-Pets and Toto), Sony Pictures Imageworks (Storks and Smallfoot), Reel FX Creative Studios (Scoob!), Framestore (Tom & Jerry), Industrial Light & Magic (Space Jam: A New Legacy) and DNEG (Coyote vs. Acme). However, Space Jam: A New Legacy did included in-house animation by WAG, with several animators hired by the studio to work on the film's hand-drawn animated segments.[23][24][25][26][27]

The budgets for their films tend to range within $60–80 million. Their most expensive films to date, The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, Scoob! and Space Jam: A New Legacy, cost $99 million, $90 million and $150 million respectively.

The screenplay department is reportedly somewhat similar to Pixar Animation Studios' "brain trust" in terms of how its members consult with one another and give feedback on each other's projects. The group is nicknamed the "think tank".[28]


# Title Release date Co-production with Animation services Notes Budget Gross Rotten Tomatoes Metacritic
1 The Lego Movie February 7, 2014 Village Roadshow Pictures
Lego System A/S
Vertigo Entertainment
Lin Pictures
Animal Logic [S] $60–65 million $469 million 96% 83
2 Storks September 23, 2016 RatPac-Dune Entertainment
Stoller Global Solutions (uncredited)
Sony Pictures Imageworks $70 million $183.3 million 66% 56
3 The Lego Batman Movie February 10, 2017 DC Entertainment
RatPac-Dune Entertainment
Lego System A/S
Lord Miller Productions
Vertigo Entertainment
Lin Pictures
Animal Logic $80 million $312 million 90% 75
4 The Lego Ninjago Movie September 22, 2017 RatPac-Dune Entertainment
Lego System A/S
Vertigo Entertainment
Lord Miller Productions
Lin Pictures
[S] $70 million $123 million 56% 55
5 Smallfoot September 28, 2018 Zaftig Films Sony Pictures Imageworks $80 million $214 million 76% 60
6 The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part February 8, 2019 Lego System A/S
Vertigo Entertainment
Lord Miller Productions
Animal Logic [S] $99 million $192.3 million 84% 65
7 Scoob! May 15, 2020[nb 1] N/A Reel FX Creative Studios $90 million[32] $26.2 million 48% 43
8 Tom & Jerry February 26, 2021 Framestore [S] $79 million $131.1 million 31% 32
9 Space Jam: A New Legacy July 16, 2021 Proximity
The SpringHill Company
Industrial Light & Magic
Luma Pictures
Company 3 Animation
Tonic DNA
House of Moves
Day For Nite
Studio D
[S] $150 million $162.8 million 25% 36
# Title Release date Co-production with Animation services Notes Current Production Status Ref(s)
10 DC League of Super-Pets July 29, 2022[18] DC Entertainment
Seven Bucks Productions[34]
A Stern Talking To
Animal Logic[35] Post-production [36][37]
11 Scoob! Holiday Haunt 2022 N/A Reel FX Creative Studios [38]
12 Toto February 2, 2024[39] Animal Logic[40] In production [41]
13 Coyote vs. Acme TBA[21][42][43] Two Monkeys, A Goat and Another, Dead, Monkey[21] DNEG [S] [44]


Title Films Short films Release dates
The Lego Movie 4 11 2014–2019
DC Comics 1 4 2017–present
Scoob! 1 0 2020–present
Looney Tunes 1 0 2021–present


See also


  1. ^ Released on Premium VOD in the United States and Canada in lieu of a planned theatrical release on this date,[29] and later released in theaters in select countries with relaxed COVID-19 restrictions beginning July 8, 2020.[30][31]


  1. ^ a b c Kit, Borys (January 7, 2013). "Warner Bros. Creates Animation Film Think Tank". The Hollywood Reporter. Prometheus Global Media LLC. Retrieved September 28, 2014.
  2. ^ "Warner Bros. Pictures Dives Into Animation Think Tank". January 7, 2013. Retrieved January 26, 2018.
  3. ^ Kit, Borys (April 20, 2015). "'The Lego Batman Movie' Gets Release Date". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved April 21, 2015.
  4. ^ "The Lego Batman Movie (2017)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved June 19, 2017.
  5. ^ "WARNER ANIMATION GROUP NAMES SENIOR CREATIVE TEAM". December 14, 2017. Archived from the original on February 6, 2019.
  6. ^ "Warner Bros Dates Lego Spinoff 'Ninjago' For Fall 2016". Deadline Hollywood. May 20, 2014. Retrieved May 23, 2014.
  7. ^ "The Lego Ninjago Movie (2017)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved September 27, 2017.
  8. ^ "Smallfoot (2018)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved January 9, 2019.
  9. ^ "Smallfoot (2018)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved November 27, 2018.
  10. ^ "The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part (2019)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved February 24, 2019.
  11. ^ "The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part (2019)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved April 2, 2019.
  12. ^ Mendelson, Scott. "Why 'The LEGO Movie 2' Is A Franchise-Ending Box Office Failure". Forbes. Retrieved 2019-07-27.
  13. ^ Clarke, Stewart (October 31, 2019). "Warner Signs Multi-Picture Deal With Elisabeth Murdoch's Locksmith Animation". Variety. Retrieved November 1, 2019.
  14. ^ McNary, Dave (August 26, 2013). "Warner Bros. Developing Animated 'Scooby-Doo' Film (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  15. ^ Galuppo, Mia (March 24, 2020). "Warner Bros. Delays Release of 'In the Heights,' 'Scoob!' Due to Coronavirus". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 24, 2020.
  16. ^ Rubin, Rebecca (April 21, 2020). "'Scoob' Will Skip Theaters and Debut on Digital Platforms in May". Variety. Retrieved April 21, 2020.
  17. ^ Rubin, Rebecca (2020-12-14). "Warner Bros. Shifts 'Mortal Kombat,' 'Tom and Jerry' Release Dates". Variety. Retrieved 2020-12-15.
  18. ^ a b "Warner Bros' 'DC Super Pets' Animated Movie Moves To 2022". May 22, 2019. Retrieved May 24, 2019.
  19. ^ Burlingame, Russ (December 22, 2021). "Scoob!: Holiday Haunt First Look Revealed in HBO Max Teaser". Retrieved December 22, 2021.
  20. ^ Grater, Tom (February 9, 2021). "Warner's 'Toto' Animation Gears Up; Federation Adds To Doc Slate; New BASE UK Chair – Global Briefs". Deadline. Retrieved February 9, 2021.
  21. ^ a b c d D'Alessandro, Anthony (2020-12-23). "Warner Bros. Dates Three Pics For 2023 Theatrical Release (Not HBO Max): 'Furiosa', 'Coyote Vs. Acme' & 'The Color Purple'". Deadline. Retrieved 2020-12-23.
  22. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (April 26, 2022). "'Barbie' Heads To Summer 2023 – CinemaCon". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 26 April 2022.
  23. ^ O'Connor, James (March 15, 2020). "Space Jam 2 Is Being Worked On By Director Of Original Mulan". GameSpot. Archived from the original on June 28, 2020. Retrieved May 28, 2020.
  24. ^ Dan Haskett (Podcast). The Bancroft Brothers Animation Podcast. July 3, 2020.
  25. ^ "Tweet by Matt Williames". Archived from the original on August 12, 2020. Retrieved August 12, 2020.
  26. ^ "Williames at RCC". Archived from the original on September 8, 2020. Retrieved August 13, 2020.
  27. ^ "Tweet by Ole Loken". Archived from the original on May 30, 2020. Retrieved August 15, 2020.
  28. ^ Shaw, Lucas (February 9, 2014). "'The Lego Movie' Snaps a Bright, Colorful Franchise Into Place for Warner Bros. Animation". The Wrap. The Wrap News Inc. Retrieved September 28, 2014.
  29. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (April 21, 2020). "'Scoob!' To Skip Theaters & Head Into Homes; How Director Tony Cervone Got Animated Pic Across The Finish Line In COVID-19 Climate". Deadline Hollywood. Archived from the original on April 21, 2020. Retrieved April 21, 2020.
  30. ^ "Scooby-Doo Is Heading To The Big Screen After All — Just Not In The U.S." Cartoon Brew. July 1, 2020.
  31. ^ Tartaglione, Nancy (July 15, 2020). "'Scoob!' Is Weekend Top Dog With $1.8M From 5 Overseas Markets; 'Peninsula' To Thrill Korea – International Box Office". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved July 15, 2020.
  32. ^ Brueggemann, Tom (October 9, 2020). "Why Disney+ Made Sense for 'Soul' and 'The Croods' Could Be Next to Move". Indiewire. Retrieved October 12, 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  33. ^ @Cinesite (9 June 2021). "Have you seen the new @spacejammovie..." (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  34. ^ "Dwayne Johnson to Star as Krypto the Superdog in Animated 'DC League of Super-Pets'; Seven Bucks Producing". 21 May 2021.
  35. ^ "Careers Archive - Animal Logic". January 28, 2020. Archived from the original on 2020-01-28.
  36. ^ "Exclusive: 'Super Pets' Movie From 'Lego Batman' Writer In the Works at Warner Bros". July 31, 2018. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  37. ^ "'The Batman,' 'The Suicide Squad' And 'DC Super Pets' Get Release Dates". January 30, 2019. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  38. ^ Burlingame, Russ (December 22, 2021). "Scoob!: Holiday Haunt First Look Revealed in HBO Max Teaser". ComicBook. Retrieved December 22, 2021.
  39. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (December 16, 2021). "Warner Bros. Dates Blue Beetle, Last Train To New York & Toto For 2023 & Beyond". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved December 17, 2021.
  40. ^ Grater, Tom (February 9, 2021). "Warner's 'Toto' Animation Gears Up; Federation Adds To Doc Slate; New BASE UK Chair – Global Briefs". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved February 9, 2021.
  41. ^ Galuppo, Mia (July 12, 2018). "Animated 'Oz' Movie in the Works From Warner Bros., 'Madagascar' Writer (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Valence Media. Retrieved September 25, 2019.
  42. ^ Donnelly, Matt (December 17, 2019). "Warner Bros.' Wile E. Coyote Movie Sets Dave Green to Direct (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Penske Media Corporation. Retrieved December 18, 2019.
  43. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (April 26, 2022). "'Barbie' Heads To Summer 2023 – CinemaCon". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 26 April 2022.
  44. ^ McNary, Dave (August 29, 2018). "Wile E. Coyote Movie in the Works at Warner Bros". Variety. Retrieved August 29, 2018.
This page was last edited on 15 May 2022, at 12:55
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