8. Epic (2013)
Worldwide Box Office: $268.5million
Starring: Beyoncé, Amanda Seyfried, Josh Hutcherson, Colin Farrell, Pitbull, Aziz Ansari, Jason Sudeikis, Steven Tyler, Christoph Waltz, Chris O’Dowd, Blake Anderson, Judah Friedlander
With a title like Epic and a $100million production budget (the 3rd highest in the studio’s history), Blue Sky had a lot to live up to with this 2013 release.
All of the pieces seemed to be in place, including some of the most dynamic and vibrant animation the studio has ever produced and a cast that was filled with stars likely to appeal to people of all ages, yet the movie didn’t quite hit in the way that other 2013 hits Monsters University, Despicable Me 3 and particularly Frozen did, and this was largely due to its less imaginative story.
Even so, the movie did carry a charm that hit well with the audiences that did see it, and while it may be one of the less memorable Blue Sky releases, it certainly holds up as a fairly good watch.
7. Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears A Who! (2008)
Worldwide Box Office: $297million
Starring: Jim Carrey, Steve Carell, Selena Gomez, Carol Burnett, Seth Rogen, Isla Fisher, Will Arnett, Amy Poehler, Jonah Hill, Dan Fogler, Jaime Pressley, Jesse McCartney, Joey King, Ariel Winter
The back catalogue of Dr. Seuss books from which to make enticing and interesting movies from is certainly large and filled to the brim with originality, so when Dr. Seuss’ widow Audrey Geizel said she would never allow another live-action adaptation to be made again following the release of the ill-fated Mike Myers-starrer The Cat in the Hat (2004), animated film producers could be heard salivating all across North America… probably.
Blue Sky got their hands on the rights to Horton Hears A Who! and released the movie in 2008 following much anticipation. The result was a fun and very different animated movie that may not have captured the experience children have reading the book for the first time, but certainly stood up as a solid animation entry for Blue Sky Studios.
In pairing two of the biggest comedy stars of the time, Jim Carrey and Steve Carell, and backing them up with a selection of rising stars including Amy Poehler, Seth Rogen, Jonah Hill and Will Arnett, Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears A Who! had a lot going for it behind the scenes, establishing it as a noteworthy release for the animation group.
6. Ferdinand (2017)
Worldwide Box Office: $296million
Starring: John Cena, Kate McKinnon, Gina Rodriguez, Carlos Saldanha, David Tennant, Bobby Cannavale, Anthony Anderson, Gabriel Iglesias, Jarod Carmichael, Daveed Diggs
This Blue Sky entry about a big ol’ bull from Spain was one that may have stumbled through its opening act, but it was a film that absolutely grabbed the hearts of everyone who saw it from there on out.
The John Cena-led voice cast leant an innocence to the voice of the picture, which itself was filled with a positivity in-keeping with the very mantra of being a film aimed at families. Its over-arching message of love, patience and family above all else was one true to the ideals of Blue Sky’s very first picture Ice Age and in many ways echoed that film as a modern, well-designed animated feature filled with laughs and, more importantly, reasons to care about the characters.
This was a lot of fun, and a deserving Best Animated Feature nominee at the Oscars in 2018; a truly memorable outing from a studio with a number of well-received releases.
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