DreamWorks Animation SKG is an American animation studio based in Glendale, California that creates animated feature films, television program and online virtual worlds. They have released a total of over 20 feature films, including “Shrek”, “Kung Fu Panda” and “How to Train Your Dragon”.
DreamWorks began it’s life in the animation industry as Amblimation, an animation production arm of Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment located in London, England. Though many projects were put into development (including an animated adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cats), the theatrical failures of this studio’s first two features, “An American Tail: Fievel Goes West” and “We’re Back!”, forced the studio to close down. In 1994, Spielberg, along with media moguls David Geffen and then recent Disney fireee Jeffery Katzenberg ambitiously began DreamWorks to create a new Hollywood studio of which they own 72% and Katzenberg appointed himself as head of the studio’s animation branch. In 1996 after production on “Balto” ended and Dreamworks’ first projects were put into production, Ambimation shut down and some of the staff of the London studio joined DreamWorks.
While the Glendale studio was hard at work on their own features, DreamWorks collaborated with then visual effects and animation studio Pacific Data Images to create computer-animated features in the wake of Pixar’s “Toy Story”. PDI today is now a permanent part of DreamWorks Animation. Although the studio also made traditionally animated films about serious subjects earlier and later in 2003 stopped production on 2D films after disappointing returns from “Sinbad” and “Spirit” and the over-powering financial failure of Disney’s “Treasure Planet” left in the animation industry, most of their computer-generated films and television series have now gained the studio a reputation for being focused on popular culture and satire. Though beginning with “How to Train Your Dragon”, DreamWorks have began to bring back the mature elements to their features, partly because of the recent creative collaborations with popular Mexican film director, Guillermo del Toro. DreamWorks was also joint producing films with the England-based Aardman Animation beginning with “Chicken Run”, but pre-maturely stopped with “Flushed Away” after creative differences. Aardman is now currently producing and developing films with Sony Imageworks’ animation branch.
DreamWorks Animation spun off into a separate public company in 2004. DreamWorks Animation currently maintains two campuses: the original DreamWorks feature animation studio in Glendale, California and the PDI studio in Redwood City, California. Films produced by DreamWorks Animation are currently distributed worldwide by Paramount Pictures, a subsidiary of Viacom, who acquired the DreamWorks live-action studio in February 2006, spinning it off again in 2008 and joining Reliance ADA Group and making a 30-picture deal with Disney that same year. DreamWorks Animation is in rumors to end it’s deal with Paramount Pictures in 2013, while Paramount has recently begun it’s own animation branch starting with “Rango” and “The Adventures of Tintin”.
What follows is the list of DreamWorks films in production or development:
Me and My Shadow
Mr. Peabody & Sherman
How to Train Your Dragon 2
Gil’s All Fright Diner
Good Luck Trolls
Monkeys of Mumbai
How to Train Your Dragon 3
Kung Fu Panda 3
The Penguins of Madagascar