|Founded||July 6, 2011|
Animated television shows
Number of employees
Paramount Animation is an American animation studio that is the animation division and label of Paramount Pictures, a subsidiary of ViacomCBS. The division was founded on July 6, 2011 following the box office success of Paramount's own Rango and the end of their distribution deal with DreamWorks Animation in 2012.
The studio's first film The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water was released on February 6, 2015 and its latest release was The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run on August 14, 2020; with their next release being Rumble on February 18, 2022.
After the closure of Paramount Cartoon Studios (formerly named Famous Studios) in December 1967, Paramount distributed a few animated films from 1973 to 1992 that were produced by outside studios, including Charlotte's Web, Race for Your Life, Charlie Brown, Bon Voyage, Charlie Brown (and Don't Come Back!!), and Bébé's Kids.
Following Viacom’s 1994 acquisition of Paramount Pictures, the studio started releasing several animated films based on Nickelodeon's TV shows, including the Rugrats film trilogy, The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie, and Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius. The studio also released features based on MTV's Beavis and Butt-Head and Comedy Central's South Park.
In 2005, Paramount's new CEO Brad Grey considered building an in-house animation division, because he saw family films as the “sweet spot” of the movie business. The following year, Paramount signed a distribution deal with DreamWorks Animation, which filled the studio's schedule with hit family features such as Over the Hedge, Shrek the Third, Shrek Forever After, the first two Kung Fu Panda films, and How to Train Your Dragon. During this deal, the studio released Barnyard in 2006 and Beowulf in 2007.
On March 4, 2011, the studio released its first in-house animated film, Rango. The film was critically acclaimed and grossed over $245 million at the box office. The success of Rango helped Paramount discover its potential in making successful animated features on its own. In June, the studio acquired the rights to produce an animated film based on Penny Arcade's 2010 webcomic The New Kid.
In July 2011, in the wake of Rango's success, the high hopes for The Adventures of Tintin, 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 animation division. The studio would initially produce one animated film a year with a maximum budget of $100 million. A key portion of the films would be co-produced with Nickelodeon and they would be cross-promoted at Nickelodeon's theme parks and hotels.
In October 2011, Paramount named a former president of Walt Disney Feature Animation, David Stainton, president of Paramount Animation. In February 2012, Stainton resigned for personal reasons, with Paramount Film Group's president, Adam Goodman, stepping in to directly oversee the studio. 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.
In August 2012, Variety reported that Paramount Animation was in the process of starting development of several animated films in collaboration with Nickelodeon, Mary Parent, and J. J. Abrams. Besides the SpongeBob sequel, Paramount Animation considered adapting Dora the Explorer, The Legend of Korra, and Monkey Quest into films. The increase in animated film production was due to DreamWorks Animation being in talks with other studios to distribute their post-2012 animated films.
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.
The studio's first film, The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water on February 6, 2015 to positive reviews and was a box office success, grossing over $325 million worldwide and becoming the fifth highest grossing animated film of 2015. That same month, Paramount fired Adam Goodman due to the studio's thin film slate and Goodman greenlighting box office bombs at the studio. Paramount announced another SpongeBob film later that year.
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. The studio's head Bob Bacon also left Paramount Animation that summer.
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. 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.
On May 4, 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).
The studio's second film, Monster Trucks was released to mixed reviews and became a box office failure, grossing $64.5 million on a $125 million budget and losing the studio $120 million.
In March 2017, Skydance Media formed a multi-year partnership with Ilion Animation Studios and in July, Skydance announced its first two animated feature films — Luck and Spellbound — 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.
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.
In July 2017, Paramount Pictures named former DreamWorks Animation co-president Mireille Soria as the president of the studio. Soria restructured the studio, increasing its number of employees from 10 to over 110, and created a new goal of releasing two tentpole animated films a year with different animation styles and genres. She would also look over the completion of Sherlock Gnomes and Wonder Park, which were in production before her arrival.
The studio released its third film, Sherlock Gnomes on March 23, 2018 and became a critical and financial disappointment, grossing $90.3 million on a $59 million budget.
In April 2018, Paramount Pictures named former Blue Sky Studios and Nickelodeon Movies producer Ramsey Naito as the executive vice president of the studio. She later left the company in order to become the head of animation at Nickelodeon. In the same month, Soria greenlit the studio's first three animated features under her leadership to be released in 2020 and beyond: The SpongeBob Movie: It’s a Wonderful Sponge (later renamed Sponge On the Run), Reel FX's Monster on the Hill (later renamed Rumble), and Skydance Animation's Luck.
On January 14, 2019, Mireille Soria announced that the team at Paramount Animation will no longer work with Skydance Animation because of their hiring of John Lasseter as the head of animation. Luck and Spellbound were still going to be released by Paramount Pictures without the Paramount Animation brand until Apple TV+ acquired the distribution rights to both films in February 2021 as part of a larger pact with Skydance Animation.
The studio's fourth film, Wonder Park was released on March 15, 2019. It received mixed reviews and it became a box office flop, grossing only $119.6 million worldwide on a budget of less than $100 million.
In June 2019, Paramount Animation announced a new slate of animated features, including an animated Spice Girls film, a live-action/animated Mighty Mouse film, an animated film adaptation of The Tiger’s Apprentice, a musical film titled Jersey Crabs (later Under the Boardwalk), and the Imagine Entertainment co-production The Shrinking of Treehorn.
The studio's current film The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run theatrically released only in Canada on August 14, 2020 with a March 4, 2021 release in the United States on Paramount+ and a November 5, 2020 release internationally on Netflix due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The film received positive reviews from critics, and grossed $4.4 million worldwide with a $60 million budget.
In January 2021, Paramount Animation picked up two new films: an adaption of the upcoming Tom Wheeler book C.O.S.M.O.S. and an original animated film from the Comedy Central star Trevor Noah.
Initially, Paramount Animation never had an on-screen logo for their first four features. They just used the standard Paramount logo.
On September 19, 2019, Paramount Animation introduced a new animated logo featuring a character nicknamed "Star Skipper". When Mireille Soria came to Paramount Animation, one of the first goals set by Jim Gianopulos was to make a logo for the division. The crew wanted to put a female character in the logo because the studio's team is mostly female, and according to Soria, it captures "the magic" of the division. The logo and the character of Star Skipper were designed by Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie lead visual development artist and art director Christopher Zibach and animated by ATK PLN and Reel FX Creative Studios. This logo debuted in front of The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run in 2020. The logo's music is the same as the standard Paramount logo, which is composed by Michael Giacchino.
Similar to Warner Animation Group and Sony Pictures Animation, the studio outsources animation production to other animation studios. Rumble was developed outside of Paramount Animation by Reel FX, but the studio acquired the rights to the film and is co-producing it.
Paramount Animation will not 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.
|#||Title||Release date||Co-production with||Animation service(s)||Directors|
|1||The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water[a]||February 6, 2015||Nickelodeon Movies
United Plankton Pictures
|Rough Draft Studios
Mike Mitchell (live-action sequence)
|2||Monster Trucks[a]||January 13, 2017||Disruption Entertainment
Moving Picture Company
|3||Sherlock Gnomes||March 23, 2018||Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
(London and Paris)
Reel FX Creative Studios
|4||Wonder Park||March 15, 2019||Nickelodeon Movies
Midnight Radio Productions (uncredited)
|Ilion Animation Studios
||Dylan Brown (uncredited)|
|5||The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run[a]||August 14, 2020[b]||Nickelodeon Movies
United Plankton Pictures
|Mikros Image (Montreal)
|#||Title||Release date||Ref(s)||Co-production with||Animation service(s)||Directors|
|6||Rumble||February 18, 2022||||WWE Studios
Reel FX Animation Studios
|Reel FX Creative Studios||Hamish Grieve|
|7||Under the Boardwalk||July 22, 2022||||New Republic Pictures||DNEG||David Soren|
|8||The Tiger's Apprentice||February 10, 2023||||Mikros Image (Paris)||Carlos Baena|
|9||The Shrinking of Treehorn||November 10, 2023||||Imagine Entertainment||Animal Logic||Ron Howard|
|Untitled Hanazuki: Full of Treasures film||Co-production with Entertainment One|
|Untitled Mighty Mouse film[a]|||
|Untitled Spice Girls film|||
|Untitled Transformers animated film||Co-production with Entertainment One and Di Bonaventura Pictures|
|Untitled Trevor Noah project||Co-production with Day Zero Productions and Mainstay Entertainment|
|Title||Release date||Network||Co-production with|
|Adventures in Wonder Park||TBA||Nickelodeon||Ilion Animation Studios and Nickelodeon Animation Studio|
|The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water||81%||62/100||B|
|The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run||68%||66/100||--|
|Film||Budget||North America||International gross||Worldwide gross
|The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water||$74 million||$162.9 million||$162.1 million||$325.1 million|||
|Monster Trucks||$125 million||$33.3 million||$31.1 million||$64.4 million|||
|Sherlock Gnomes||$59 million||$43.2 million||$47.1 million||$90.3 million|||
|Wonder Park||$100 million||$45.2 million||$74.3 million||$119.5 million|||
|The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run||$60 million||$4.8 million||$4.8 million|||
|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|
|2018||Sherlock Gnomes||Worst Actor||Johnny Depp||Nominated|
|Worst Screen Combo|
|His fast-fading film career||Sherlock Gnomes|