Sony Announces Genndy Tartakovsky’s ‘Can You Imagine?’ and ‘Hotel Transylvania 2′

Sony Pictures Animation announced today that Genndy Tartakovsky will direct Hotel Transylvania 2, scheduled for September 2015. Tartakovsky will co-write the pic with Robert Smigel (TV Funhouse, Saturday Night Live).

Sony also says that while Genndy is “busy working an all-new CG take on the comic strip hero, Popeye,” he is developing an original idea, which currently has the working title Genndy Tartakovsky’s Can You Imagine? (Click on artwork above for bigger version.) It is being described as “a fantastic journey through one boy’s imagination.”

Says Tartakovsky, “It’s good to be back at the Hotel Transylvania, and I’m very excited to work on Popeye, a character that I’ve loved since I was a kid. I’m also looking forward to developing an entirely new and original animated feature here at Sony Pictures Animation. This is an exciting time for me and for the studio.”


  • Gio32k

    Looks like a mix of Totoro, Dr. Seuss, and Alice in Wonderland.

  • tredlow

    Genndy Tartakovsky returning for Hotel Transylvania 2? Hell. Yes.

    Genndy Tartakovsky doing an original film? DOUBLE HELL YES.
    And the Popeye movie sounds interesting too, but that’s not really news.

    • cetrata

      A triple hell yes would be a samurai jack film.

  • Rufus Chickenplight

    For GOD’S SAKE, Suits, sit down, STFU and let Genndy do what he wants. Hotel Transylvania was such a watered-down version of Genndy it made me wanna cry. Just compare it to how impactful and dynamic Samurai Jack was.

    • IJK

      Because Hotel and Jack were totally trying to achieve the same thing. Just like how Ratatoullie and The Incredibles were trying to achieve the same tone and atmosphere because they were written and directed by the same guy.

      What if Genndy is having fun working on Hotel? What if he’s been in the business long enough and knows how to deal with executive meddling and has no wish to go all John K. at Sony because he’s very grateful for the vast amounts of opportunities they’re giving him?

      Well then my God that would just be a calamity, right?

      • Crystal

        The problem is that Samurai Jack was taking risks as a television show while Hotel Transylvania was another CGI comedy with celebrity voices, just like PRETTY MUCH EVERY ANIMATED MOVIE OUT THERE.

        If Genndy is doing an original movie in addition to HT2 and Popeye, I REALLY hope this isn’t a CGI/celebrity voice comedy. I mean, if he’s gonna do a THIRD project in a short amount of time, isn’t that to do something different from the majority?

        Makoto Shinkai, Satoshi Kon–THEY get to do 2D movies with voice actors, but Genndy doesn’t . . .

        And the reason why I mention VAs is that (along with Craig McCracken) I think Taratkovsky likes working with them. He worked with them in his 4 shows (D’s L, SJ, SWCW, SBT) and the Powerpuff Girls (which he co-voice directed for the first few years) and Corey Burton was in Goodnight Mr. Foot.

        • IJK

          But a TV production is way different from a movie production. For one thing, $150 million is not on the line.

        • ILDC

          All those projects you listed have much smaller budgets than HT. It’s entirely possible he could like working with household names if given the chance.

          Even if the movie looks totally cookie-cutter, I’ll still give Tartakovsky the benefit of doubt. There have been plenty of legitimately entertaining “CGI/celebrity voice comedies”. It would be nice to have more variety once in a while, but studios like safe bets.

          • Crystal

            Try eating the same thing for dinner every night and not getting sick . . .

            Plenty of anime films use actual voice actors and are in 2D . . . and yet people think I’m *weird* for liking anime . . .

    • Paul M

      Hey suits at Netflix, it’s not too late to resurrect Sym-Bionic Titan…

      • Funkybat

        With Genndy doing features, it probably is. Also, Dreamworks and Netflix have a big deal for mutiple “TV series” that will be exclusive to Netflix, I suspect for now that Netflix-exclusive shows from other animation studios may not be in the stars.

        We can always hope, now, can’t we?

    • James VanDam

      You can’t really say that Hotel T was all Genndy. That film was passed around like a hot potato for a few years and then Genndy got it and added his own flare to it. Honestly I’m excited what he will do for hotel T because it seems that he is the sole person directing it.

      • Satori Satya

        Exactly.

        Old Rufus should’ve read a bit more about Hotel T before crying himself to sleep over it.

        And it wasn’t like the film wasn’t a smashing success, dammit. It gave Genndy a bit more influence in Hollywood. Which is nothing to cry about.

  • http://mattdeanart.com Matt Dean

    Nice to see Tartakovsky getting some more love at SPA! I’m pretty thrilled to hear more about his original movie.

  • Anson J

    Genndy Tartakosky working with Robert Smigel? That’s great!

    (…for me to poop on! I keed.)

  • Mister Twister

    I will only watch that ORIGINAL ANIMATED FEATURE he’s working on.

    • IJK

      Sounds very ELITIST OF YOU.

      • Mister Twister

        Well, if choosing original works over reboots done for the sole purpose of the license being cheap makes me elitist, so be it.

      • mick

        Or discerning. You say potato, Twisty says patio, let’s call the whole thing a potatio

        I’d say they’ll both have a appeal but my mustard is bubbling for something from his own head

  • jhalpernkitcat

    Can You Imagine’s artwork has a Dr. Seuss vibe to it which is a good thing.

  • Crispy Walker

    All of this is good news. I’ll give anything he’s attached to a shot now. Even the new Samurai Jack comics have been pretty decent.

  • Ben

    I’m absolutley stoked that Tartavosky is getting these films. The man deserves it, but I just really wish they were a long way away from Adam Sandler.

  • George Comerci

    Hmm…sounds interesting.

  • Cyril
    • mick

      with scott wills foreground limbs and dan krall style train bugs… that picture makes me want to rip everything up and start again. So much inspiration

  • Mark Neeley

    I’m another person who really only has interest his original stuff (and that “Can You Imagine?” art looks great). Given that he created two of my favorite TV series of all time, the interest just isn’t really there for me for him to attempt to create blockbuster CGI features rebooting classic characters with celebrity voice actors. It’s just a personal thing, I have 0 interest.

    For everyone commenting on a SJ film, I saw him say in several press interviews for the first ‘Hotel’ that he had been approached by several studios with a lot of interest, but none of them wanted to go for the concepts he presented, i.e. the very basics of what makes SJ what it is.

  • Psdstudios

    Like the Eyvind Earle look to the backgrounds

  • Jonathan Lyons

    That image of silly creatures gives me the feeling the movie will be random nonsense. While I enjoy random nonsense, I like it when it’s the honest statement of the artist, with no pretense of being “childlike”
    Children have lots of fear, and I like stories that recognize that. For instance, “The 5000 Fingers of Dr. T” has a creepiness that makes it feel real.
    I believe Genndy is capable of doing that. I just hope Sony would support it.

  • LllSilvia

    I’m really happy about this news since, as an animation lover and illustrator, I loved very much the first “Hotel”: great desing and cast (minus the “pseudo” Miley popstar, but this is purely de gustibus…! )

    To say it well, first I was disappointed to know that SPA had in mind to make a sequel, with all the consequences that many know: over-merchandising about the film and a worse plot just for the sake of money!

    The fact that Tartarosky will be back working on it is reassuring: infact the plot will at least stay loyal to the facts that happens in the first chapter and there won’t be many changes in the storytelling line! Also, let’s not forget that usually sequels made by SPA aren’t that bad: “Cloudy 2″, for example, was a great surprise to me!

    Knowing that Genndy is working very hard following also other projects, I wish him all the best and may he have good fun while directing the second HT! I can’t wait to hear more about!

  • Henry Cohn

    They don’t sound like the best ideas to me, but he’ll probably pull them off, as he did with Hotel Transylvania.

  • ILDC

    They may be calling it “Genndy Tartakovsky’s Can You Imagine?”, but that concept art clearly has the SPA house style.

  • Casey Billadeau

    I like how Can You Imagine? has a very similar premise to that new Pixar flick, Inside Out, except gender swapped (boy’s imagination, girl’s imagination.) Not saying anything insulting, but I think it’ll be very interesting at the box office if they end up releasing together.