2017animationpreview 2017animationpreview
Feature Film

Preview: 60+ Animated Feature Films to Look for in 2017

When we published our 2016 animated feature preview, the most common reaction was, “Wow, that’s a lot of animated features!” One industry veteran even went so far as to question whether our list of 47 animated features constituted an “animated feature bubble.”

In truth, if you tally up all the animated features released globally in 2016, the total would be closer to a hundred films. It’s hard to know an exact number because few places are tracking this accurately. Our own list missed quality projects like Turkey’s Bad Cat and South Korea’s Seoul Station, as well as the latest entries in popular franchises like Japan’s Pokémon, Detective Conan, and Crayon Shin-Chan, and China’s Boonie Bears and Yugo & Lala.

This year’s list of 60-plus animated features confirms one thing at least: lots of theatrical animated features is the new normal in animation. Technology has leveled out the playing field, making feature-scale animation production accessible to producers everywhere. This is a remarkably different situation from even the early 2000s when animated features were the privileged domain of a few well-heeled producers.

So, is this some kind of a glut? Absolutely not. There are literally thousands of live-action films released around the world every year (Bollywood alone turns out on average 1,500 films annually). Most of those films are never seen in the United States; for example, in Los Angeles, around 335 films opened in theaters throughout 2016, a fraction of worldwide global film output.

While animation will never be live-action production, and we’re not going to have 6,000 animated features per year, the industry is finally starting to increase production in a meaningful way. It would not be unreasonable to expect hundreds of animated films per annum sometime within the next decade.

No, they won’t all be good, and that’s fine, too. Because even when there were just a dozen or two animated films being produced annually, most of them weren’t very good. But more films means more opportunities for more filmmakers, and only good can come out of that. Amidst all the regular fare in 2016, we witnessed an exceptional amount of bold and utterly unique filmmaking including Makoto Shinkai’s Your Name, Claude Barras’ My Life as a Zucchini, Ann Marie Fleming’s Window Horses, Sébastien Laudenbach’s The Girl Without Hands, and Michael Dudok de Wit’s The Red Turtle, to name but a few. That’s what happens when an industry has high output.

So, enjoy our preview of 60+ animated features coming up next year. Here’s a few notes about our selections:

  • Some films on the list were released internationally last year—The Red Turtle, My Life as a Zucchini, Rock Dog, and Your Name among them—but they are included on the list because they are receiving U.S. releases in 2017. (We have listed U.S. release dates and distributors whenever possible. If a film is not being released in the U.S., we have listed the home country’s release date/distributor.)
  • Some films mentioned on the 2016 list are identified here again because they weren’t finished in time for release last year. One thing remains constant about animation: it takes a long time to produce films.
  • Though this list is not complete and doesn’t make any claims to be, it is the most comprehensive and accurate list you will find anywhere on the internet of theatrical animated releases in 2017.

Happy animation viewing in 2017!

The Three Heroes and the Sea King

(1/1/2017, Russia)

This Russian production from Melnitsa Animation Studio follows the adventures of Russian folk heroes Alyosha Popovich, Dobrynia Nikitich, and Ilya Muromets.

Director: Konstantin Feoktistov
Production Company: CTB Film Company, Melnitsa Animation Studio
Distributor: Nashe Kino
Technique: Hand-drawn

Bunyan & Babe

(1/12/2017, U.S.)

The long-in-development film tells the story about a boy’s discovery of a magical portal, where Paul Bunyan and his pet ox, Babe, live. It will be released initially for free on Google Play.

Production Company: Exodus Film Group
Distributor: Cinedigm
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: John Goodman, Jeff Foxworthy, Kelsey Grammer, Bridger Zadina and Dorien Davies

The Red Turtle

(1/20/2017, U.S.)

Already released to much acclaim in Japan and France, and shown at Cannes and other festivals, The Red Turtle looks set to pick up a series of awards this season. It tracks the life stages of a castaway on a deserted tropical island populated by turtles, crabs, and birds.

Director: Michaël Dudok de Wit
Production Company: Why Not Productions, Wild Bunch, Studio Ghibli
Distributor: Sony Pictures Classics
Technique: Hand-drawn with CG elements

bookofatlantic
Kuroshitsuji: Book of the Atlantic

(1/21/2017, Japan)

An adaptation of the “luxury liner” arc in volumes 11-14 of Yana Toboso’s manga, this Victorian-era dark fantasy/supernatural involves dead people who are being resurrected aboard a ship and Ciel Phantomhive’s investigation into the matter.

Director: Noriyuki Abe
Production Company: A-1 Pictures
Distributor: Aniplex (Aniplex)
Technique: Hand-drawn

My-Life-as-a-Zuchinni
My Life as a Zucchini

(2/2017, U.S.)

Based on Gilles Paris’s novel Autobiographie d’une courgette. After his mother’s sudden death, a boy named Zucchini struggles and learns to find his place in a foster home. The film has already had success in its European release, having been named best European animated film by the European Film Awards, taking the top feature film prize at Annecy, and currently nominated for a Golden Globe.

Director: Claude Barras
Production Company: Rita Productions, Blue Spirit Animation, Gébéka Films, KNM
Distributor: GKIDS
Technique: Stop motion
English voice cast: Will Forte, Nick Offerman, Ellen Page, Amy Sedaris

Sahara

(2/1/2017, France)

Tired of bringing pain and misery to their community, Ajar the snake and his buddy Pitt the scorpion move to a neighboring oasis where the haute bourgeoisie of the Saharan desert reside, and find Eva, a beautiful serpent that Ajar falls in love with. It is the beginning of a crazy adventure that leads them across the desert in the pursuit of love and the discovery of who they truly are…

Director: Pierre Coré
Production Company: La Station Animation, Mandarin Production, Mikros Image
Distributor: Studiocanal
Technique: CG

LegoBatman
The Lego Batman Movie

(2/10/2017, U.S.)

While fighting crime and his many adversaries, including The Joker, Batman realizes he can’t do everything himself and must learn the importance of teamwork, in this next installment of the Lego movies franchise out of Animal Logic.

Director: Chris McKay
Production Company: Warner Animation Group, Animal Logic
Distributor: Warner Bros.
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Will Arnett, Zach Galifianakis, Michael Cera, Rosario Dawson, Ralph Fiennes

Rock Dog

(2/24/2017, U.S.)

Rock Dog has already been released in China, where it was made and where it was the most expensive 100% Chinese-financed animated production to date. It was animated entirely in the United States. The movie tells the story of Bodi, a Tibetan Mastiff who becomes obsessed with an old-school rocker (and cat) named Angus, and must prove to his father that becoming a musician is a worthy career path for a dog.

Director: Ash Brannon
Production Company: Reel FX, Mandoo Pictures, Huayi Brothers
Distributor: Lionsgate Summit Premiere
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Luke Wilson, J.K. Simmons, Eddie Izzard, Lewis Black, Sam Elliott, Kenan Thompson, Matt Dillon

Psiconautas, The Forgotten Children

(2/24/2017, Spain)

Based on the graphic novel by Alberto Vázquez, Psiconautas, The Forgotten Children follows teenagers Birdboy and Dinki, who decide to escape from an island devastated by ecological catastrophe. The feature made a big splash on the festival circuit last year, screening at over 30 events and winning more than 10 awards.

Director: Alberto Vázquez, Pedro Rivero
Production Company: Zircozine Animation, Basque Films
Distributor: La luna de Tantán (Spain), Eurozoom (France)
Technique: Hand-drawn

Hirune Hime: Shiranai Watashi no Monogatari

(3/18/2017, Japan)

Kenji Kamiyama (Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, Moribito: Guardian of the Spirit) directs this story about the relationship between a girl, who keeps having a recurring dream, and her father. It is set in 2020, just days before the beginning of the Tokyo Olympics.

Director: Kenji Kamiyama
Production Company: Signal MD
Distributor: Warner Bros.
Technique: Hand-drawn

The Boss Baby

(3/31/2017, U.S.)

A fast-talking, briefcase-carrying baby and his jealous seven-year-old brother must come together to save their parents, and the world after they discover a secret plot that threatens to destroy the balance of love in the world.

Director: Tom McGrath
Production Company: Dreamworks Animation
Distributor: Twentieth Century Fox
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Alec Baldwin, Steve Buscemi, Jimmy Kimmel, Lisa Kudrow, Tobey Maguire

Smurfs: The Lost Village

(4/7/2017, U.S.)

This re-imagining of Smurfs, unlike the previous live-action/animated films from Sony, will tell more of an origin story of the famous Peyo characters as they try to find the Lost Village before their nemesis, the evil wizard Gargamel, does.

Director: Kelly Asbury
Production Company: Sony Pictures Animation
Distributor: Columbia Pictures
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Demi Lovato, Mandy Patinkin, Jack McBrayer, Danny Pudi, Joe Manganiello, Rainn Wilson

nightisshort_yuasa
Night is Short, Walk On Girl (Yoru wa Mijikashi Arukeyo Otome)

(4/7/2017, Japan)

Yuasa’s first full-length feature since his Mind Game (2004) is a romance-fantasy film, set in Kyoto, and based on a bestselling 2006 novel by Tomihiko Morimi.

Director: Masaaki Yuasa
Production Company: Science Saru
Distributor: Toho (Japan)
Technique: Hand drawn
Voice Cast: Gen Hoshino

spark
Spark

(4/14/2017, U.S.)

Spark and his friends, Chunk and Vix, are on a mission to retake Bana, a planet ruled by the evil overlord, Zhong.

Director: Aaron Woodley
Production Company: Toonbox Entertainment, Redrover, Gulfstream Pictures
Distributor: Open Road Films
Technique: CG
Voice cast: Hilary Swank, Susan Sarandon, Jessica Biel, Patrick Stewart

Crayon Shin-chan: Invasion!! Alien Shiriri

(4/15/2017, Japan)

Only in Japan can you have two dozen animated features centered around the same universe. Crayon Shin-chan: Invasion!! Alien Shiriri is the 25th overall installment in the Crayon Shin-chan theatrical series, and the fourth time that a plotline in the features has involved aliens.

Director: Masakazu Hashimoto
Production Company: Shin-Ei Animation
Distributor: Toho (Japan)
Technique: Hand-drawn

Urfin-Jus
Urfin Jus and His Wooden Soldiers

(4/20/2017, Russia)

Urfin Jus looks to become ruler of the Wonderful Land of Oz and take over the Emerald City with his Wooden Soldiers, until ordinary girl Elly intervenes.

Director: Vladimir Toropchin, Fedor Dmitriev, Darina Schmidt
Production Company: CTB Film Company, Melnitsa Animation Studio, Rossiya
Distributor: Nashe Kino
Technique: CG

animalcrackers
Animal Crackers

(4/21/2017, U.S.)

A family’s life is turned upside down when they inherit a rundown circus and a magical box of animal crackers, which change those who eat them into the animal they’ve eaten.

Director: Tony Bancroft, Scott Christian Sava
Production Company: Blue Dream Studios, Beijing Wen Hua Dong Run Investment Co., China Film Co., Exit Strategy Productions, Landmark International, Storyoscopic Films
Distributor: Entertainment One
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Sylvester Stallone, Emily Blunt, John Krasinski, Ian McKellen, Danny DeVito, Patrick Warburton, Wallace Shawn, Gilbert Gottfried, Raven-Symoné, Tara Strong, Harvey Fierstein

punyakoti
Punyakoti

(4/26/2017, India)

In this Sanskrit language film with strong ecological themes, a truth-speaking cow is about to meet its end at the claws of a hungry tiger in a drought-hit village. There are quite a unique elements about Punyakoti, including that much of the film is crowd-funded and even crowdsourced creatively. The visual elements will not be copyrighted. Famed Indian film composer Ilaiyaraaja is providing the soundtrack.

Director: Ravi Shankar V
Production Company: Puppetica Media
Technique: Hand-drawn

NutJob2
The Nut Job 2

(5/19/2017, U.S.)

A group of park animals, led by Surly the squirrel, take on Oakton City’s evil mayor who threatens to bulldoze the area and replace it with an amusement park in this follow-up to the first Korean/Canadian production.

Director: Cal Brunker
Production Company: Redrover Co. Ltd, ToonBox Entertainment, Gulfstream Pictures
Distributor: Open Road Films
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Will Arnett, Gabriel Iglesias, Jeff Dunham, Katherine Heigl, Maya Rudolph, Jackie Chan, Bobby Moynihan, Bobby Cannavale, Peter Stormare

Resident Evil: Vendetta

(5/27/2017, Japan)

The third entry in the Resident Evil film series, based on the video game franchise, this Japanese horror feature continues the story of Leon S. Kennedy.

Director: Takanori Tsujimoto
Production Company: Capcom, Marza Animation Planet
Distributor: Kadokawa (Japan)
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Matthew Mercer

captainunderpants
Captain Underpants

(6/2/2017, U.S.)

Rallying against their mean school principal, two kids hypnotize him and turn him into a comic book creation – the kind-hearted Captain Underpants. Based on the popular series of children’s books.

Director: David Soren
Production Company: Dreamworks Animation, Mikros Image
Distributor: Twentieth Century Fox
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Ed Helms, Kevin Hart, Kristen Schaal, Nick Kroll, Thomas Middleditch, Jordan Peele

Cars 3

(6/16/2017, U.S.)

Racing legend Lightning McQueen is involved in a dramatic crash and must leave his beloved sport. But he is suddenly pushed out of the sport he loves. He must work with others to get back in and take on a new adversary in Jackson Storm.

Director: Brian Fee
Production Company: Pixar
Distributor: Walt Disney Studios
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Owen Wilson, Larry the Cable Guy, Bonnie Hunt, Cheech Marin

despicableme3
Despicable Me 3

(6/30/2017, U.S.)

Gru and his wife Lucy Wilde are back and have a new foe in former child star Balthazar Bratt, who is obsessed with a character he played in the 1980s. Gru also meets his long lost twin brother, Dru.

Director: Pierre Coffin, Kyle Balda
Production Company: Illumination Entertainment
Distributor: Universal Pictures
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Steve Carell, Kristen Wiig, Trey Parker, Miranda Cosgrove

Mary and the Witch’s Flower

(July 2017, Japan)

This feature film comes from Studio Ponoc, the anime studio founded by former Studio Ghibli producer Yoshiaki Nishimura and is based on the Mary Stewart book The Little Broomstick.

Director: Hiromasa Yonebayashi
Production Company: Studio Ponoc
Technique: Hand-drawn

Pokémon the Movie: I Choose You! (Gekijōban Pocket Monster: Kimi ni Kimeta!)

(7/15/2017, Japan)

The 20th installment in the Pokémon theatrical franchise appears to have many nostalgic elements, taking Ash Ketchum back to his earliest days.

Production Company: OLM
Distributor: Toho
Technique: Hand-drawn

The Emoji Movie

(8/4/2017, U.S.)

Several emoji are featured in this film, which follows multi-expressional emoji Gene and his quest to become a normal one of his kind.

Director: Tony Leondis
Production Company: Sony Pictures Animation
Distributor: Columbia Pictures
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: T. J. Miller, Ilana Glazer, James Corden, Steven Wright

blazingsamurai
Blazing Samurai

(8/4/2017, U.S.)

Hank the dog dreams of becoming a samurai and ultimately battles the feline warlord Ika Chu in the town of Kakamucho.

Director: Chris Bailey, Mark Koetsier
Production Company: Cinemation, Huayi Brothers Media, Mass Animation, Brooksfilms
Distributor: Open Road Films
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Michael Cera, Samuel L. Jackson, Michelle Yeoh, Ricky Gervais, Mel Brooks, and George Takei.

the-lego-ninjago-movie
The Lego Ninjago Movie

(9/22/2017, U.S.)

In this spin-off to the original Lego Movie from 2014, six ninjas must defend their home of Ninjago from a wave of villains and monsters, while still only being in high school.

Director: Charlie Bean
Production Company: Warner Animation Group, Animal Logic
Distributor: Warner Bros.
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Jackie Chan, Dave Franco, Michael Peña, Kumail Nanjiani, Zach Woods, Fred Armisen, Abbi Jacobson, Olivia Munn, Justin Theroux

mylittlepony_movie
My Little Pony: The Movie

(10/6/2017, U.S.)

The well-known ‘Mane Six’ characters from the My Little Pony universe – Twilight Sparkle, Applejack, Rainbow Dash, Pinkie Pie, Fluttershy, and Rarity – must save Ponyville but leave their home town and meet a new group of friends.

Director: Jayson Thiessen
Production Company: Hasbro Studios, Allspark Pictures, DHX Media
Distributor: Lionsgate
Technique: Hand-drawn
Voice Cast: Tara Strong, Ashleigh Ball, Andrea Libman, Tabitha St. Germain, Cathy Weseluck, Kristin Chenoweth, Emily Blunt, Michael Peña, Uzo Aduba, Liev Schreiber, Taye Diggs, Sia Furler

Sadko
Sadko

(10/12/2017, Russia)

This Russian production focuses on that country’s classic hero, Sadko, the principal character in Russian medieval epic Bylina.

Director: Vitaly Mukhametzianov
Production Company: CTB Film Company, Mukha Studio
Distributor: Nashe Kino
Technique: CG

littlevampire
The Little Vampire

(10/31/17, Germany)

Based on bestselling novels by Angela Sommer-Bodenburg, Little Vampire tells the story of Rudolph, a thirteen-year-old vampire, whose clan is threatened by a vampire hunter.

Director: Richard Claus, Karsten Killerich
Production Company: A. Film, Studio Rakete
Distributor: Universum Film
Technique: CG

thestar
The Star

(11/10/2017)

A small but brave donkey named Bo looks for more adventure rather than being stuck at the village mill. He soon meets some camels and other stable animals, and they follow the Star to be part of the birth of Jesus.

Director: Timothy Reckart
Production Company: Sony Pictures Animation, The Jim Henson Company
Distributor: Sony Pictures
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Not yet announced.

pixar_coco
Coco

(11/22/2017)

Looking to emulate his favorite singer of all time, 12-year-old Miguel stumbles into the Land of the Dead and encounters the souls of his own family. The story was inspired by the Mexican holiday Día de los Muertos (the Day of the Dead).

Director: Lee Unkrich
Production Company: Pixar
Distributor: Walt Disney Studios
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Anthony Gonzalez, Gael García Bernal, Benjamin Bratt, Renée Victor

ferdinand
Ferdinand

(12/22/2017)

Ferdinand is a little bull who prefers smelling the flowers than acting like other bulls, but one day he is mistakenly picked for the major bullfights in Madrid.

Director: Carlos Saldanha
Production Company: Blue Sky Studios
Distributor: Twentieth Century Fox
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Russell Peters, Donald Sutherland, Paul Feig, Chris O’Dowd, Samantha Morton, Diego Luna

SCHEDULED FOR 2017, BUT NO ANNOUNCED RELEASE DATE (LISTED IN ALPHABETICAL ORDER)

anotherdayoflife
Another Day of Life

(2017, Poland)

Another Day of Life is based on the work of Polish journalist/war reporter Ryszard Kapuściński, who spent three months in 1975 in Angola at the beginning of the country’s decades-long civil war.

Director: Raul de la Fuente, Damian Nenow
Production Company: Platige Image, Kanaki Films, Walking the Dog, Wüste Film, Animations Fabrik, Puppetworks
Technique: CG/Live-action
Voice Cast: Ryszard Kapuściński

Ballerina

(2017)

In 1879, an orphan girl named Felice dreams of becoming a ballerina and flees rural Brittany with the orphan boy, Corentin, setting out for Paris, where she assumes another identity and becomes a pupil at the Grand Opera house.

Director: Eric Summer, Éric Warin
Production Company: Caramel Film, Quad Productions
Distributor: Gaumont International
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Elle Fanning, Dane DeHaane

beastofburden-a
Beast of Burden

(2017, China/New Zealand)

An endangered creature called a thoriphant discovers a life-altering secret about his species: thoriphants weren’t always four-footed beasts, but once walked upright and had hands. What caused this devolution?

Director: Kirby Atkins
Production Company: Huhu Studios New Zealand, China Film Animation
Technique: CG

Blame
Blame!

(2017)

In a future world, civilization is now in a net-based form. But an ‘infection’ from the past causes the automated systems to get out of control. The film is based on the cyberpunk manga by Tsutomu Nihei.

Director: Hiroyuki Seshita
Production Company: Polygon Pictures
Distributor: Netflix
Technique: CG

breadwinner
The Breadwinner

(2017)

Set in Taliban-controlled Afghanistan, the film follows the story of a girl whose father is wrongly arrested and must dress as a boy to support her family.

Director: Nora Twomey
Production Company: Cartoon Saloon, Aircraft Pictures
Distributor: GKIDS (U.S.), Elevation Pictures (Canada), StudioCanal (Ireland/UK)
Technique: Hand-drawn
Voice Cast: Saara Chaudry, Soma Bhatia, Noorin Gulamgaus, Laara Sadiq, Ali Badshah, Shaista Latif, Kawa Ada, Ali Kazmi

ChuckSteel
Chuck Steel Night of the Trampires

(2017)

Chuck Steel deals with a plague of deadly Trampires – a mix of mutant hybrids of vampires and bums – in Los Angeles.

Director: Mike Mort
Technique: Stop motion
Voice Cast: Mike Mort

cinderellathecat
Cinderella the Cat (Gatta Cenerentola)

(2017)

This adult iteration of Cinderella is set in Naples and based on Roberto de Simone’s 1976 opera, La Gatta Cenerentola, a futuristic adaptation of the classic fairy tale celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2016.

Director: Alessandro Rak, Ivan Cappiello, Marino Guarnieri, Dario Sansone
Production Company: Mad Entertainment
Technique: CG

clara
Clara

(2017)

Young girl Clara lives in a cottage in the forest with three mischievous monkeys in this Ukrainian production from Image Pictures.

Production Company: Image Pictures
Technique: CG

foodiverse
Foodiverse

(2017, China)

In a planet made entirely of food, Miss Penny, a little dumpling, and her bestie Mr. Podge, a tubby pork bun, must face off against the evil beast Mr. Devour-All.

Director: Liaoyu Chen
Production Company: Phenom Films, The Gate Studio, United Entertainment Partners, Exchange, Joyspoon
Distributor: Odin’s Eye Entertainment (sales agent for all territories outside of China)
Technique: CG

godzilla_polygon
Godzilla

(2017, Japan)

The first animated theatrical entry in the classic Japanese franchise.

Director: Kobun Shizuno, Hiroyuki Seshita
Production Company: Polygon Pictures
Distributor: Toho (Japan)
Technique: CG

HereComestheGrump
Here Comes the Grump

(2017)

A reboot of the DePatie-Freleng TV series about a teenage boy transported to a magical land where he and some new friends must defeat an evil wizard called The Grump.

Director: Andres Couturier
Production Company: Ánima Estudios, Prime Focus World
Distributor: GFM Films
Technique: CG

Kikoriki: Deja Vu

(2017, Russia)

Kikoriki, a popular Flash-animated Russian tv series has transitioned successfully to the bigscreen using cg animation. In this third installment, Krash throws his best buddy Barry an unforgettable birthday party, but a rupture in the space-time continuum sends the gang on a time-travelling adventure.

Director: Denis Chernov
Production Company: Art Pictures
Technique: CG

Kung Food

(2017, China)

A fresh steam bun and a piece of cold sushi, who are arch enemies, come together to prevent the flavors of the world from getting out of control..

Director: Haipeng Sun
Production Company: Yi Animation
Technique: CG

Lino

(2017, Brazil)

Lino, an entertainer who has to dress up in a cat costume everyday, can’t take it anymore and seeks the help of the not-very-talented wizard, Don Leon, who accidentally turns him into a real cat.

Director: Rafael Ribas
Production Company: StartAnima
Distributor: Fox Brazil
Technique: CG
Voice cast: Selton Mello, Paolla Oliveira, Dira Paes

lovingvincent
Loving Vincent

(2017)

An ambitious animated feature in which every frame is painted about the challenging life and mysterious death of the timeless artist, Vincent van Gogh.

Director: Dorota Kobiela, Hugh Welchman
Production Company: BreakThru Productions, Trademark Films
Technique: Hand-drawn/CG
Voice Cast: Saoirse Ronan, Aidan Turner, Douglas Booth, Helen McCrory, Chris O’Dowd

Manou
Manou the Swift

(2017, Germany)

Manou the swift grows up thinking he is a seagull but soon finds out his real calling after learning to fly and meeting up with a new group of friends.

Director: Andrea Block, Christian Haas
Production Company: Luxx Studios
Distributor: Kinostar (Germany)
Technique: CG

Morten on the Ship of Fools

(2017, Estonia)

Two award-winning Estonian short film directors, Kaspar Jancis (Piano) and Riho Unt (The Master), team up for this story of an 8-year-old boy who dreams of becoming a sea captain like his father, based on Jancis’ own book and play.

Director: Kaspar Jancis, Riho Unt
Production Company: Nukufilm Studios, Telegael Studios, Grid VFX
Technique: Stop motion
Voice Cast: Cian O’Dowd, Brendan Gleeson, Ciaran Hinds, Pauline McLynn, Jason Byrne, Tommy Tiernan, Neil Delamere

Mune
Mune: Guardian of the Moon

(2017, U.S.)

This French animated production tells the story of a young faun named Mune is entrusted with the title of Guardian of the Moon and faces off against Necross, the ruler of the Underworld.

Directors: Alexandre Heboyan, Benoît Philippon
Production Company: On Animation Studios, Onyx Films, Kinology, Orange Studio
Distributor: GKIDS
Technique: CG
English voice cast: Unannounced

mutafakaz
Mutafukaz

(2017, France)

The profane Mutafukaz follows the supernaturally empowered pizza delivery man Angelino through the apocalyptic Dark Meat City as he dodges hallucinations, hitmen, and conspiracies, based on director Guillaume “Run” Renard’s original comic.

Director: Guillaume “Run” Renard
Production Company: Studio 4°C, Ankama
Distributor: Titan Comics (U.S.A., Canada, U.K.)
Technique: Hand-drawn

mycooldad
My Cool Dad

(2017, Cyprus)

In this musical comedy produced by Timur Bekmambetov, a 45-year-old scientist dad, facing a mid-life crisis, discovers that his mutagen works, turning him into a creature.

Director: Viktor Glukhushin
Production Company: Mirsand Ltd.
Technique: CG

Ping Pong Rabbit

(2017, China)

The director of The Corpse Bride heads up this Chinese production about a country rabbit named Robb who aims to become the greatest ping pong player in the land. He must overcome challenges, including a monkey who refuses to give up his ping pong crown.

Director: Mike Johnson, Soong Yuefeng
Production Company: Mili Pictures
Technique: CG

Red Shoes and The 7 Dwarfs

(2017, South Korea)

This South Korean fairytale parody deals with that the director describes as “the inconvenient truth about Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.” Here the dwarfs are actually handsome knights who have been placed under a spell. To lift the curse, they must recover a pair of magical red shoes that are being worn by a woman who has put on a few extra pounds.

Director: Sung-ho Hong
Production Company: Locus Creative Studios
Technique: CG

richard-the-stork
Richard the Stork

(2017, Germany)

Richard the sparrow grows up with a story family and is convinced he is also a stork. Things change when it comes time to migrate to Africa.

Director: Toby Genkel, Reza Memari
Production Company: Den Siste Skilling, Knudsen & Streuber Medienmanufaktur, Mélusine Productions, Ulysses Filmproduktion, Walking The Dog
Technique: CG

Tadeo-Jones2
Tadeo Jones 2

(2017)

The next film in the Tadeo Jones series about a Chicagoan construction worker who gets into many mis-adventures in his quest to become an archaeologist.

Director: Gabriel Higuerey
Production Company: Ikiru Films, Telecinco Cinema, El Toro Pictures, Lightbox Entertainment, Telefónica Studios
Distributor: Paramount (Spain), StudioCanal (Worldwide)
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Oscar Barberán, Michelle Jenner, Jose Mota

girlwithouthands
The Girl Without Hands

(2017)

French filmmaker Sébastien Laudenbach relies on line drawings overlaid onto rendered characters and artful brushstrokes in this adaptation of the Brothers Grimm fairytale about a girl sold to the devil by her father, who ends up having her hands cut off.

Production Company: Les Films Sauvages, Les Films Pelléas
Distributor: GKIDS
Technique: Hand-drawn
Voice Cast: Anaïs Demoustier, Jérémie Elkaïm, Philippe Laudenbach

The Last Fiction

(2017, Iran)

This independent Iranian animated feature project from Hoorakhsh Studios is based on The Book of Kings (Shahnameh), the thousand-year-old, 60,000 verse poem written by poet Ferdowsi that is considered the foundational literary work of Persian culture. The action-packed drama might be the most technically polished animated feature out of Iran so far.

Director: Ashkan Rahgozar
Production Company: Hoorakhsh Studios
Technique: Hand-drawn with cg/vfx elements

underdog
Underdog

(2017)

In this Korean production, a pet dog, Moong-chi, is unexpectedly abandoned at the foot of Bukhan Mountain and then meets other abandoned dogs and wild dogs. Together they search for a new place to live.

Director: Oh Seongyun, Lee ChunBaek
Production Company: Odoltogi, Dream Search C&C
Distributor: Paramount (Spain), StudioCanal (Worldwide)
Technique: CG
Voice Cast: Do Kyung Soo, Park So Dam, Park Chul Min

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Wish

(2017, U.S./India)
Hoodwinked! co-director Cory Edwards reteams with the Indian studio that animated that film, Prana, for the film Wish, a fantasy family film that uncovers the secret of how wishes get granted.

Director: Cory Edwards
Production Company: Prana Studios
Technique: CG

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Your Name (Kimi no Na wa)

(2017)

Your Name has been huge in Japan and several other markets already in 2016 and may well make an impact this awards season. The story revolves around two Japanese teenagers who lead very different lives yet manage to find each other through their dreams.

Director: Makoto Shinkai
Production Company: CoMix Wave Inc.
Distributor: Funimation (U.S.)
Technique: Hand-drawn
English voice cast: Unannounced

(Film information compiled by Ian Failes and Amid Amidi.)