Film Roman, LLC
Company typeSubsidiary
PredecessorMendelson/Melendez Productions
FoundedOctober 26, 1984; 39 years ago (1984-10-26)
FounderPhil Roman
HeadquartersWoodland Hills, Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Key people
  • Steve Waterman (CEO)
  • Phil Roman (chairman emeritus)
  • Dana Booton (president of production)[1]
DivisionsFilm Roman Baja J.V.
Film Roman's former headquarters in Burbank.

Film Roman, LLC, is an American animation studio currently based in Woodland Hills, California and formerly in Burbank. It was previously owned by Starz Inc., which is now a division of Lionsgate, and currently by Waterman Entertainment, the production company of producer Steve Waterman.[1]

Founded by veteran animator and director Phil Roman[2][3] on October 26, 1984, it is best known for providing animation for the Garfield primetime specials, based on Jim Davis' comic strip of the same name. The studio also produced the animated series The Simpsons, The Critic, King of the Hill, Family Guy, Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!, The Goode Family, and Dan Vs..[3]



Phil Roman, veteran alumnus of MGM Animation/Visual Arts and Bill Melendez Productions, founded Film Roman on October 26, 1984 as a means to continue the production of the Garfield television specials, since Melendez's own studio was unable to work on both the Peanuts and Garfield specials. Peanuts executive producers Lee Mendelson and Bill Melendez and their aforementioned studio had produced the first two Garfield specials, but due to both Peanuts creator Charles M. Schulz' and Garfield creator Jim Davis' concerns about conflicting interests in allocating production priority at Melendez's boutique studio, the production had to be moved. While he was leaving him and Melendez for his already-established studio, Roman was offered the opportunity to produce the next Garfield prime time special, Garfield in the Rough (1984), for CBS by Mendelson, which he accepted and went on to produce and direct all by himself, winning an Emmy in the process.


In 1985, CBS' head of children's programming Judy Price had commissioned an animated television series based on the Garfield prime time special series, later ultimately titled Garfield and Friends, which took three years for Roman to decide developing and producing the program before it eventually aired on the network's Saturday morning time slot, premiering on September 17, 1988. The aforementioned show was Film Roman's first regular series. In 1986, in an effort to expand and diversify the studio, Roman hired Marvel Productions VP of Business Affairs and his own personal attorney, Michael Wahl, as President and Bill Schultz, Marvel's Director of Development, to join in the company as the fledgling studio's VP of Production and Development. Garfield and Friends was expanded to an hour on CBS' number one rated Saturday Morning block and the studio grew to increase its capacity.

In 1988, the new management team developed, sold and produced a new series, Bobby's World, to the brand new Fox Kids Network, headed up by former Marvel Productions president Margaret Loesch. In 1992 to 2016, Film Roman took over the source production of 20th Century Fox's The Simpsons from Klasky-Csupo who had produced the one-minute teaser cartoon shorts on The Tracey Ullman Show as well as the animation for the first three seasons and the first two episodes of the fourth season (in total 61 episodes).[4][5] The studio went on to grow and produce many popular animated series now seen all around the world.

In 1999, Film Roman attempted to get into the syndication market with the launch of Max Degree TV, which would have consisted of three shows, Mission Extreme from Steve Tisch, Skins from the Deep from SFX artist Steve Wang, and a new Wes Archer cartoon Victor,[6][7] but it never got off the ground.[8]

Waterman Entertainment ownership

In 2015, Film Roman was acquired from its parent company Starz Distribution by Waterman Entertainment, the production company of executive producer Steve Waterman. As such, it now does business with Starz, which owns the company's catalogue.[1]

On November 22, 2016, the company formed a joint venture based in Tijuana, called Film Roman Baja J.V. (also known as Film Roman Baja Productions), with Boxel Studios, a Baja California-based animation facility.[9]


The original studio was located on Riverside Drive in Toluca Lake, California, where Roman was also joined by Melendez producer Lee Mendelson. Years later, the studio moved to a new location on Chandler Blvd. in Studio City, before settling into another location at Starz Plaza on Hollywood Way in Burbank, which it shared with the former Hub Network and Hasbro Studios, and finally settling into its present location in Woodland Hills.

Television series

Show Creator(s) Year(s) Co-production(s) Notes
Garfield and Friends Jim Davis 1988–1994 United Media (seasons 1–6)
Lee Mendelson Productions (seasons 2–7)
Paws, Inc.
Currently distributed by 9 Story Media Group
Bobby's World Howie Mandel 1990–1998 Alevy Productions
Fox Children's Productions
Currently distributed by Splash Entertainment
Zazoo U Shane DeRolf 1990–1991 Fox Children's Productions Currently distributed by Disney–ABC Home Entertainment and Television Distribution
Mother Goose and Grimm Mike Peters 1991–1993 Tribune Media Services
Grimmy, Inc.
Lee Mendelson Productions
MGM Television
The Simpsons Matt Groening 1992–2016 Gracie Films
20th Television
Production seasons 427 only
Animated Classic Showcase 1993–1994 Soyuzmultfilm
Cro Mark Zaslove Children's Television Workshop
Mighty Max Mark Zaslove
Rob Hudnut
Bluebird Toys
Canal+ D.A.
Bohbot Entertainment
The Critic Al Jean
Mike Reiss
1994–1995 Gracie Films
Columbia Pictures Television
The Baby Huey Show Bob Jaques 1995 Carbunkle Cartoons (season 1)
Claster Television
Season 2 only
Currently distributed by NBCUniversal Television Distribution
The Mask: Animated Series Duane Capizzi 1995–1997 Dark Horse Entertainment
Sunbow Entertainment
New Line Television
Currently distributed by Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution
Klutter! David Silverman
Savage Steve Holland
1995–1996 Savage Studios
Fox Children's Productions
As part of Eek! Stravaganza
Currently distributed by Disney–ABC Home Entertainment and Television Distribution
The Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat Pat Sullivan
Otto Messmer
Joseph Oriolo
1995–1997 Felix the Cat Productions Currently distributed by NBCUniversal Television Distribution
C Bear and Jamal Earl Richey Jones
Todd R. Jones
1996–1997 TaurusFilm
Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm Sean Catherine Derek 1996 Threshold Entertainment
New Line Television
USA Studios
Currently distributed by Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution
Richie Rich Timothy Williams Harveytoons
Claster Television
Currently distributed by NBCUniversal Television Distribution
Bruno the Kid Joel Madison 1996–1997 Camelot Entertainment Sales
Active Entertainment
King of the Hill Mike Judge
Greg Daniels
1997–present Deedle-Dee Productions
Judgemental Films
3 Arts Entertainment
20th Television (1997-2010)
Originally cancelled in 2010, a revival is currently in production on Hulu
The Mr. Potato Head Show Dan Clark
Doug Langdale
1998–1999 Hasbro
Family Guy Seth MacFarlane 1999–2000 Fuzzy Door Productions
20th Television
Production season 1 only
Mission Hill Bill Oakley
Josh Weinstein
1999–2002 Bill Oakley/Josh Weinstein Productions
Castle Rock Entertainment
Currently distributed by Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution
The Man Show Adam Carolla
Jimmy Kimmel
Daniel Kellison
Jackhole Industries (seasons 1-5)
Stone Stanley Entertainment
Comedy Partners
Currently distributed by Eagle Rock Entertainment
X-Men: Evolution Marty Isenberg
Robert N. Skir
David Wise
2000–2003 Marvel Studios Currently distributed by Disney–ABC Home Entertainment and Television Distribution
The Oblongs Angus Oblong
Jace Richdale
2001–2002 Jobsite Productions
Mohawk Productions
Warner Bros. Television
Free For All Brett Merhar 2003 Showtime Networks
Charlie's Angels: Animated Adventures Ivan Goff
Ben Roberts
Sony Pictures Digital
Hilltop New Media, Inc.
Web series[11]
Based on Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle
Tripping the Rift Chris Moeller
Chuck Austen
2004–2007 Space
Teletoon (season 3)
Eloise: The Animated Series Kay Thompson
Hilary Knight
2006 HandMade Films
Law & Order Dick Wolf Wolf Films
NBC Universal Television Studio
Visual effects[12]
Eon Kid Designstorm 2006–2007 Manga Entertainment
BRB Internacional
Screen 21
English dub
Wow! Wow! Wubbzy! Bob Boyle 2006–2010 Bolder Media
Slacker Cats Andy Riley
Kevin Cecil
2007–2009 Laika
ABC Family
The Goode Family Mike Judge
John Altschuler
Dave Krinsky
2009 Ternion Pictures
3 Arts Entertainment
Judgemental Films
Media Rights Capital
Currently distributed by Shout! Factory
The Super Hero Squad Show Stan Lee 2009–2011 Ingenious Media (season 1)
Marvel Animation
Currently distributed by Disney–ABC Home Entertainment and Television Distribution
The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes Ciro Nieli
Joshua Fine
Christopher Yost
2010–2012 Currently distributed by Disney–ABC Home Entertainment and Television Distribution
Dan Vs. Dan Mendel
Chris Pearson
2011–2013 The Hatchery
Beavis and Butt-Head Mike Judge 2011 Ternion Pictures
3 Arts Entertainment
Judgemental Films
MTV Production Development
Season 8 only
Ultimate Spider-Man Marvel Animation 2012–2017 Marvel Animation Currently distributed by Disney–ABC Home Entertainment and Television Distribution
Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. Paul Dini
Henry Gilroy
Marvel Animation
Camp WWE Seth Green 2016–2018 Stoopid Buddy Stoodios
WWE Studios
Heathcliff George Gately TBA Creators Syndicate
This Modern World Tom Tomorrow
The Untamed


Title Year Co-production(s) Notes
Garfield in the Rough 1984 United Media The studio's inaugural production
Garfield's Halloween Adventure 1985
Garfield in Paradise 1986
Garfield Goes Hollywood 1987
A Garfield Christmas United Media
Paws, Inc.
Happy Birthday, Garfield 1988 Paws, Inc.
Garfield: His 9 Lives United Media
Paws, Inc.
Garfield's Babes and Bullets 1989
The Pink Panther MGM Television Unreleased live-action/animated pilot
Garfield's Thanksgiving United Media
Paws, Inc.
Garfield's Feline Fantasies 1990 United Media
Lee Mendelson Productions
Paws, Inc.
Garfield Gets a Life 1991
Tom and Jerry: The Movie 1992 Live Entertainment
Turner Entertainment Co.
WMG Film
Miramax Films
Currently distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures
Nick & Noel 1993 Bohbot Entertainment
A Cool Like That Christmas 1994
The Bears Who Saved Christmas Bohbot Entertainment
Izzy's Quest for Olympic Gold 1995 International Olympic Committee
The Story of Santa Claus 1996 Arnold Shapiro Productions
CBS Productions
The Magic Pearl 1997 Greengrass Productions
Puss in Boots
Super Bowl XXXIII (The Simpsons short) 1999 Gracie Films
20th Television
Johnny Tsunami Disney Channel Live-action
Hairballs 2000 Unsold TV series pilot created by Mr. Lawrence
Motocrossed 2001 Stu Segall Productions
Disney Channel
My First Mister Total Film Group
ApolloMedia Film Management GmbH
Paramount Classics
The Santa Claus Brothers Sitting Ducks Productions
Disney Channel
Second Time Around 2002 Mei Ah Entertainment Visual effects
Hellraiser: Hellseeker Dimension Home Video
Daredevil 2003 20th Century Studios
Regency Enterprises
Marvel Enterprises
Horseshoe Bay Productions
The Fallen Ones The Fallen Ones Inc.
Sci Fi Channel
I, Robot 2004 20th Century Studios
Davis Entertainment
Laurence Mark Productions
Overbrook Films
Mediastream IV
Demon Hunter 2005 New Arc Entertainment
All Souls Day Anchor Bay Entertainment
Weebles: Welcome to Weebleville! Playskool
Weebles: Sharing in the Fun!
The Happy Elf HC Productions
DKP Studios
Voodoo Moon 2006 IDT Entertainment
Sci Fi Channel
Visual effects
Slayer Anchor Bay Entertainment
Sci Fi Channel
Jackass Number Two Paramount Pictures
MTV Films
Dickhouse Productions
Lynch Siderow Productions
Hellboy: Sword of Storms Revolution Studios
Mosaic 2007 POW! Entertainment
Manga Entertainment
Hellboy: Blood and Iron Revolution Studios
The Thirst Anchor Bay Entertainment Visual effects
The Simpsons Movie 20th Century Studios
20th Century Animation
Gracie Films
Rough Draft Studios
Pre-production split between Film Roman and Rough Draft Studios
Sands of Oblivion Starz Productions
Sci Fi Channel
Visual effects
Rush Hour 3 New Line Cinema
Roger Birnbaum Productions
Arthur Sarkissian Productions
Unlike Film Productions
Visual effects
Trailer only
Illegal Tender Universal Pictures Visual effects
Hairspray New Line Cinema
Ingenious Media
Zadan/Meron Productions
Storyline Entertainment
Offspring Entertainment
Visual effects
Trailer only
The Great Buck Howard 2008 Magnolia Pictures
Walden Media
Bristol Bay Productions
Visual effects
Turok: Son of Stone Classic Media
Speed Racer Warner Bros. Pictures
Village Roadshow Pictures
Silver Pictures
Anarchos Productions
Visual effects
Sex and the City Warner Bros. Pictures
New Line Cinema
HBO Films
Visual effects
Trailer only
Tripping The Rift: The Movie CinéGroupe
Wubbzy's Big Movie! Bolder Media
Dead Space: Downfall Electronic Arts
Secrets of the Furious Five DreamWorks Animation
Reel FX Creative Studios
2-D sequences
Cranberry Christmas Ocean Spray Productions
Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!: Wubb Idol 2009 Bolder Media
The Haunted World of El Superbeasto Carbunkle Cartoons Planned for theatrical release
Dante's Inferno: An Animated Epic 2010 Electronic Arts "Prologue", "The Arrival", "Entry to Hell" only
Dead Space: Aftermath 2011 Electronic Arts
Visceral Games
Max Steel: Turbo-Charged 2017 Mattel Creations
Max Steel: Turbo-Warriors



Unreleased projects

See also


  1. ^ a b c McNary, Dave (November 12, 2015). "'Simpsons' Animator Film Roman Bought by Waterman Entertainment". Variety. Retrieved May 17, 2017.
  2. ^ DataBase, The Big Cartoon. "Film Roman Productions Studio Directory". Big Cartoon DataBase (BCDB). Archived from the original on June 24, 2014. Retrieved 2023-04-25.
  3. ^ a b Hofmeister, Sallie (April 2, 1998). "COMPANY TOWN; Drawing on Creativity; A Struggling Film Roman Tries to Reanimate Itself". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-12-23.
  4. ^ Kirkland, Mark (2004). The Simpsons The Complete Fourth Season DVD commentary for the episode "Kamp Krusty" (DVD). 20th Century Fox.
  5. ^ Bernstein, Sharon (1992-01-21). "'The Simpsons' Producer Changes Animation Firms". The Los Angeles Times. p. 18. Retrieved 2011-08-24.
  6. ^ Schlosser, Joe (July 19, 1999). "Film Roman on syndie march" (PDF). Broadcasting & Cable. p. 48. Retrieved August 24, 2023.
  7. ^ Pursell, Chris (1999-07-19). "Film Roman to ride teen wave". Variety. Retrieved 2023-08-24.
  8. ^ a b "No Max deal" (PDF). Broadcasting & Cable. December 13, 1999. p. 118. Retrieved August 24, 2023.
  9. ^ N'Duka, Amanda (21 November 2016). "Film Roman Teams With Boxel Studios To Form Film Roman Baja J.V."
  10. ^ "Film Roman To Produce Animation For The Man Show". June 5, 2001.
  11. ^ Head, Steve (May 6, 2003). "Angels Ready for Animated Debut". IGN. Retrieved September 22, 2020.
  12. ^ "AdamKlein_resume.qxd" (PDF).
  13. ^ "Credits".
  14. ^ Archived at Ghostarchive and the Wayback Machine: "Honey Nut Cheerios with Garfield (1993)". YouTube.
  15. ^ "Film Roman Gets Shagged For Sho Too". May 29, 2002.
  16. ^ "Blues Brothers - The Animates Series". Blues Brothers Central. Archived from the original on April 29, 2009.