Paramount Animation

Paramount Animation is the animation division and label of Paramount Pictures.[4] The division was founded on July 6, 2011 in response to the success of Rango and DreamWorks Animation's contract with Paramount expiring in 2012. Its first animated film The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water was released on February 6, 2015,[5] and its most recent release, Wonder Park, was released on March 15, 2019. Their next release, The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run will be released on May 22, 2020.

Paramount Animation
Motion pictures
PredecessorFamous Studios
FoundedJuly 6, 2011 (July 6, 2011)
Key people
ProductsAnimated films
Animated television shows
Number of employees
10 (2017)[3]
ParentParamount Pictures


In July 2011, in the wake of critical and box office success of their animated feature, Rango and the departure of DreamWorks Animation upon completion of their distribution contract with Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted and Rise of the Guardians in 2012, Paramount announced the formation of a new division, devoted to the creation of animated productions.[4]


Brad Grey era (2011–2017)

In October 2011, Paramount named a former president of Walt Disney Feature Animation, David Stainton, president of Paramount Animation.[6] In February 2012, Stainton resigned for personal reasons, with Paramount Film Group's president, Adam Goodman, stepping in to directly oversee the studio.[7] It was also announced that The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water, a standalone sequel to 2004's The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie and based upon the popular Nickelodeon TV show, SpongeBob SquarePants, is the studio's first film and would be released in 2014.[5]

In August 2012, Variety reported that Paramount Animation was in the process of starting development of several animated films with budgets of around US$100 million.[8]

On July 31, 2013, Paramount Animation announced that they were developing a new live-action/animated franchise in the vein of the Transformers series, which was titled Monster Trucks. Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger were set to write the film's script, Chris Wedge (director of 2002's Ice Age) was set to direct the film, and Mary Parent was set to produce the film, with an initial release date set for May 29, 2015.[9]

The studio's first film, The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water on February 6, 2015 to positive reviews[10] and was a box office success, grossing over $325 million worldwide and becoming the fifth highest grossing animated film of 2015.[11] That same month, Paramount fired Adam Goodman due to the studio's thin film slate and Goodman greenlighting box office bombs at the studio.[12] Paramount announced another SpongeBob film later that year.[13]

In the summer of 2015, Paramount Pictures participated in a bidding war against Warner Bros. and Sony Pictures Animation for the rights to produce The Emoji Movie, based on a script by Tony Leondis and Eric Siegel. Sony won the bidding war in July and released the film in 2017.[14] The studio's head Bob Bacon also left Paramount Animation that summer.[12]

In June 2015, it was revealed that Spain's Ilion Animation Studios (the studio behind 2009's Planet 51) won a bidding war against other animation studios to produce a 3D animated tentpole film for Paramount Animation, which was already in production since 2014.[15] In November 2015, Paramount Animation officially announced the project as Amusement Park, (later renamed Wonder Park) with former Pixar animator Dylan Brown helming. The studio also announced Monster Trucks, The Little Prince, Sherlock Gnomes, and the third SpongeBob film.[16]

On May 2016, Paramount Pictures announced that they had signed a deal with UK-based Locksmith Animation to co-develop and co-produce three original animated projects to be released under the Paramount Animation label (with animation produced by DNEG).[17]

The studio's second film, Monster Trucks was released to mixed reviews[18] and became a box failure, grossing $64.5 million on a $125 million budget and losing the studio $120 million.[12][19][20]

On March 2017, Skydance Media formed a multi-year partnership with Ilion Animation Studios and in July, announced its first two animated feature films — Luck and Split — which would be distributed by Paramount Pictures as part of their deal with Skydance. On October 10, 2017, Bill Damaschke was hired to head the division as president of animation and family entertainment.[21]

Jim Gianopulos era (2017–present)

In April 2017, Paramount ended its deal with Locksmith Animation when Paramount chairman and CEO Brad Grey was replaced by Jim Gianopulos, who decided that their projects did not fit in with Paramount's other upcoming releases. Locksmith formed a multi-year production deal with 20th Century Fox four months later.[22][23]

In July 2017, Paramount Pictures named former DreamWorks Animation co-president Mireille Soria as the president of the studio.[1]

The studio released its third film, Sherlock Gnomes on March 23, 2018 and became a critical[24] and financial disappointment, grossing $90.3 million on a $59 million budget.[25]

In April 2018, Paramount Pictures named former Blue Sky Studios and Nickelodeon Movies producer Ramsey Naito as the executive vice president of the studio.[2]

The studio's next film, Wonder Park was released on March 15, 2019. It received mixed reviews[26] and it became a box office flop, grossing only $119.6 million worldwide on a budget of less than $100 million.[27]

In September 2019, Paramount Animation introduced a new animated logo and a mascot named Star Skipper.[28]


Similar to Warner Animation Group and Sony Pictures Animation, the studio outsources their films to different animation services and visual effects companies,[3] including Rough Draft Studios (The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water), Moving Picture Company (Monster Trucks), Mikros Image (Sherlock Gnomes and The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run), Allspark Animation (Untitled Hanazuki: Full of Treasures film, Untitled My Little Pony film), Ilion Animation Studios (Wonder Park and Luck), and Reel FX Creative Studios (Rumble and Sherlock Gnomes).

Rumble and Luck are created outside of Paramount Animation, although they will be released under the studio's label.[29][30]

Unlike other animation studios, Paramount Animation doesn't have an in-house animation style. According to Mireille Soria, each film will have their own unique style created by the filmmakers, which would be helped by outsourcing animation to different vendors.[31]


Feature films

All films are produced and distributed by Paramount Pictures.

Released films

# Title Release date Co-production with Animation service(s) Directors Composers Budget Gross Rotten Tomatoes Metacritic
1The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water[S][SS]February 6, 2015Nickelodeon Movies
United Plankton Pictures
Rough Draft Studios
Paul Tibbitt
Mike Mitchell (live-action sequence)
John Debney$74 million$323.4 million[32]80%62
2Monster Trucks[S]January 13, 2017Disruption Entertainment
Nickelodeon Movies
Mr. X
Moving Picture Company
Chris WedgeDave Sardy$125 million$64.5 million[33]31%41
3Sherlock GnomesMarch 23, 2018Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Rocket Pictures
Mikros Image
(London and Paris)
Reel FX Creative Studios
John StevensonChris Bacon$59 million$90.3 million[34]27%36
4Wonder ParkMarch 15, 2019Nickelodeon Movies
Midnight Radio Productions (Uncredited)
Ilion Animation Studios
Dylan Brown (uncredited)[35]Steven Price$80–100 million$119.6 million[36]33%45

Upcoming films

# Title Release date Ref(s) Co-production with Animation service(s) Directors Composers
5The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run[S][SS]May 22, 2020[37][29][30][38]Nickelodeon Movies
United Plankton Pictures
Mikros Image (Montreal) Tim Hill Hans Zimmer
6Rumble[R]January 29, 2021[38][39][29][30][40][41]Walden Media
WWE Studios
Reel FX Animation Studios
Reel FX Creative StudiosHamish GrieveTBA
7Luck[R]March 19, 2021[42]Skydance MediaIlion Animation StudiosAlessandro Carloni
8 Untitled My Little Pony film[R] September 21, 2021 [43][44] Allspark Animation TBA
9The Tiger's ApprenticeFebruary 11, 2022[45][40]TBATBACarlos Baena
10Jersey CrabsSummer 2022[40]TBA

Films in development

Monument Valley[S][R][46]
Untitled Hanazuki: Full of Treasures film[R] [47]
Mighty Mouse[S] [48]
Untitled Spice Girls film [40]
The Shrinking of Treehorn [40][49]
S Combines live-action with animation.
R Not produced, but released by Paramount Animation under its label.
SS Paramount Animation was not involved with the first SpongeBob SquarePants Movie.

Television series

Title Premiere date Network Co-production with
Adventures in Wonder Park[50]January 2020NickelodeonIlion Animation Studios and Nickelodeon Animation Studio


Annie Awards

2015 The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water Animated Effects in an Animated Production Brice Mallier, Paul Buckley, Brent Droog, Alex Whyte and Jonothan Freisler Nominated
Voice Acting in an Animated Feature Tom Kenny

See also


  1. Busch, Anita (April 12, 2018). "The Boss Baby's Ramsey Naito, Others Join Paramount Animation Executive Ranks". Deadline. Retrieved April 12, 2018.
  2. McNary, Dave (April 12, 2018). "'Boss Baby' Producer Ramsey Naito Hired for Paramount Animation Post". Variety. Retrieved May 3, 2018.
  3. Faughnder, Ryan (January 13, 2017). "2017's first big flop? How Paramount's 'Monster Trucks' went awry". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 29, 2017.
  4. Finke, Nikki (July 6, 2011). "Paramount Expects DreamWorks Toon Exit; Studio Starts Paramount Animation Unit; Jeff Katzenberg Zeroing In Time Warner". Deadline. Retrieved May 5, 2012.
  5. Szalai, Georg; Miller, Daniel (February 28, 2012). "Paramount to Release 'SpongeBob' Movie in Late 2014". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 5, 2012.
  6. L. Weinstein, Joshua (October 10, 2011). "Paramount Names David Stainton Animation President". The Wrap. Retrieved October 10, 2011.
  7. Fleming, Mike (February 22, 2012). "Paramount President Of Animation David Stainton Resigns". Deadline. Retrieved February 22, 2012.
  8. Graser, Marc; Kroll, Justin (17 August 2012). "Paramount ramping up animation slate". Variety. Retrieved 17 August 2012.
  9. Finke, Nikki (31 July 2013). "Paramount Animation Plans 'Monster Trucks' Live Action-Toon Franchise: In Final Talks With Blue Sky's Chris Wedge To Direct". Retrieved 1 May 2019.
  10. "The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water (2015)". February 6, 2015. Retrieved 1 April 2019.
  11. "The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water (2015)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved May 26, 2015.
  12. Faughnder, Ryan (January 13, 2017). "2017's first big flop? How Paramount's 'Monster Trucks' went awry". Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  13. @Viacom (April 30, 2015). "@ParamountPics is in development on sequels to existing franchises: @WorldWarZMovie, @JackReacher & @SpongeBobMovie - TD" (Tweet) via Twitter.
  14. Fleming Jr, Mike (July 21, 2015). "Emoji At Center Of Bidding Battle Won By Sony Animation; Anthony Leondis To Direct". Deadline. Archived from the original on December 10, 2015. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  15. Hopewell, John (June 15, 2015). "Annecy: Paramount Animation, Spain's Ilion Ally on 3D Tentpole (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Archived from the original on February 1, 2017. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  16. McNary, Dave (November 10, 2015). "Paramount Sets 'SpongeBob 3' for 2019, Delays 'Monster Trucks' to 2017". Variety. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  17. Milligan, Mercedes (May 4, 2016). "Paramount and Locksmith Animation Enter Exclusive Multi-Pic Deal". Animation Magazine. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  18. "Monster Trucks (2017)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved February 22, 2017.
  19. "Box Office: Ben Affleck, Martin Scorsese, And 'Monster Trucks' Flop Over MLK Weekend". Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  20. Lang, Brent (January 12, 2017). "Box Office: 'Hidden Figures,' 'Patriot's Day' in Tight Race, 'Monster Trucks,' 'Live by Night' Brace to Flop". Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  21. McNary, Dave (October 10, 2017). "Skydance Hires Bill Damaschke for Animation-Family Entertainment Post". Variety. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  22. Lang, Brent (September 20, 2018). "Fox, Locksmith Animation Ink Multi-Year Production, Development Deal (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  23. Amidi, Amid (September 20, 2017). "UK's Locksmith Animation Announces Production Agreement with 20th Century Fox". Cartoon Brew. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  24. "Sherlock Gnomes (2018)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  25. "Sherlock Gnomes (2018)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
  26. "Wonder Park (2019)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango. Retrieved May 6, 2019.
  27. "Wonder Park (2019)". Box Office Mojo. IMDb. Retrieved May 6, 2019.
  28. Donnelly, Matt (19 September 2019). "Meet Star Skipper, Paramount Animation's Magical New Trademark Logo Character". Variety. Retrieved 20 September 2019.
  29. Giardina, Carolyn (April 25, 2018). "Paramount Grows Its Animation Slate With 'Monster on the Hill,' 'Luck'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 3, 2018.
  30. Amidi, Amid (April 26, 2018). "Paramount Announces 3 New Animated Features". Cartoon Brew. Retrieved May 3, 2018.
  31. Hopewell, John; Lang, Jamie (June 13, 2018). "Paramount Animation's 'Wonder Park' Rocks Annecy". Variety. Retrieved October 23, 2018.
  32. "The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved June 5, 2015.
  33. "Monster Trucks (2017)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved January 16, 2017.
  34. "Sherlock Gnomes (2018)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved March 25, 2018.
  35. Miller, Dylan (March 15, 2019). "Paramount's new animated movie Wonder Park doesn't have a credited director, and here's why". The A.V. Club. Retrieved March 15, 2019.
  36. "Wonder Park (2019)". Box Office Mojo. IMDb. Retrieved March 16, 2019.
  37. Viacom (April 30, 2015). ""@ParamountPics is in development on sequels to existing franchises: @WorldWarZMovie, @JackReacher & @SpongeBobMovie" - TD". Twitter. Retrieved June 5, 2015.
  38. D'Alessandro, Anthony (July 24, 2018). "Paramount's 'The SpongeBob Movie' To Soak Up Mid-July 2020". Deadline. Retrieved July 24, 2018.
  39. D'Alessandro, Anthony (May 8, 2019). "Antoine Fuqua Secret Society Pic 'Infinite' Lands 2020 Release Date At Paramount; 'Coming To America 2' Shifts". Deadline. Retrieved May 8, 2019.
  40. Giardina, Carolyn (June 12, 2019). "'Spice Girls' Movie in the Works as Paramount Unveils Animation Slate (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved June 12, 2019.
  41. Pedersen, Erik (November 12, 2019). "Paramount Grounds 'Rugrats' Movie, Moves WWE's 'Rumble' Back Six Months & Titles Next 'SpongeBob' Pic". Deadline.
  42. "Untitled Paramount Animation (2021) (2021) - Box Office Mojo". Retrieved 31 January 2019.
  43. "My Little Pony joins Hasbro's Allspark Pictures slate along with G.I. Joe, Micronauts and Dungeons & Dragons". Flickering Myth. 2019-02-06. Retrieved 2019-05-07.
  44. "Paramount Sets 2021 Dates for 'Paranormal Activity' and 'My Little Pony' Films". TheWrap. 2019-11-07. Retrieved 2019-11-07.
  45. Pedersen, Erik (15 March 2019). "Paramount Moves 'Limited Partners' To 2020 & Dates 'The Tiger's Apprentice' Toon". Deadline. Retrieved 17 March 2019.
  46. Wolfe, Jennifer (August 22, 2018). "Paramount Taps Patrick Osborne for 'Monument Valley' Feature". Animation World Network. Retrieved August 22, 2018.
  47. "Hasbro Readies New Licensing for Power Rangers". Retrieved 2018-10-19.
  48. Here They Come, To Save The Day: Jon & Erich Hoeber To Script ‘Mighty Mouse’ For Paramount Animation
  49. Anderson, Jenna (June 20, 2019). "Ron Howard to Direct First Animated Film as Imagine Sets Ambitious Feature Slate With Animal Logic (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety.
  50. Donnelly, Matt (March 28, 2017). "Paramount's 'Amusement Park' Movie to Become Nickelodeon TV Show After Theatrical Release". The Wrap. Archived from the original on April 1, 2017. Retrieved April 1, 2017.
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