Kung Fu Panda 2 Close-up Hoodwinked Characters Big Puss in Boots Character Big The Goon Character Big Black Shadow

animations in 2011

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Hoodwinked Too

Hoodwinked was definitely not the best looking animation when it came out. But it was surprisingly funny, for young and old.

Judging by the first Hoodwinked Too trailer, it looks like the team hasn’t lost its special touch.

It won’t surpass Pixar in looks, but it might in laughs.

producer
Kanbar Entertainment

director
Mike Disa

voices
Bill Hader
Amy Poehler
Bill Murray
Joan Cusack

3D
Yes

release date
April 29th, 2011

Kung Fu Panda 2

The first Kung Fu Panda had great success, becoming the highest grossing non-Shrek film by Dreamworks Animation.

Was it the promotion at Cannes — pictures of Jack Black emulating Angelina Jolie’s pregnant belly were all over the news. I don’t know.

Can they do it again this year? Maybe, news about Jolie’s pregnancy is about to break any day now.

producer
Dreamworks Animation

director
John Stevenson
Mark Osborne

voices
Jack Black
Dustin Hoffman
Jackie Chan
Angelina Jolie

3D
Yes (IMAX)

release date
May 26th, 2011

Puss in Boots

The Booted Cat is back with his own story.

The bold, but brave Puss teams up with Humpty Dumpty (voiced by Zach Galifianakis) to steal the famous Goose that lays Golden Eggs.

Meanwhile he develops a love interest in the Tuxedo feline Kitty (voiced by Salma Hayek).

producer
Dreamworks Animation

director
Chris Miller

voices
Antonio Banderas
Salma Hayek
Zach Galifianakis
Billy Bob Thornton

3D
Yes (IMAX)

release date
November 4th, 2011

Rio

Blue Sky Studios has great success with the Ice Age franchise, but less so with other animated films. And Blu has to change that.

Blu is the last male bird of his kind. But he can’t fly. This is a major problem — he’s a bird after all. But how can he fix his problem?

Looks like it’s mainly targeted at kids, but there might be some fun parts for adults as well.

producer
Blue Sky Studios

director
Carlos Saldanha

voices
Jesse Eisenberg
Anne Hathaway
Leslie Mann

3D
Yes

release date
April 15th, 2011

Cars 2

In Cars 2 Lightning McQueen and Mater compete in the first-ever World Grand Prix, but soon end up in an espionage plot.

So far it looks like what you’d expect from a sequel — which wouldn’t be too much. But the first Cars film didn’t look that special at first either.

Never underestimate a Pixar.

producer
Pixar

director
John Lasseter
Brad Lewis

voices
Owen Wilson
Michael Caine
Emily Mortimer

3D
Yes (IMAX)

release date
June 24th, 2011

Arthur Christmas

Sony Pictures Animation is capitalizing on Christmas this year. The creators of Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs are back with Arthur Christmas. A British film with James McAvoy in the lead.

The animation follows Arhur, the son of Santa, on a secret mission on the night before Christmas.

The first trailer looks mildly amusing.

producer
Sony Pictures Animation

director
Sarah Smith
Barry Cook

voices
James McAvoy
Hugh Laurie
Jim Broadbent
Bill Nighy

3D
Yes

release date
November 23rd, 2011

Winnie the Pooh

Winnie the Pooh needs no introduction, as most of us grew up watching Pooh Bear — at least a couple of times.

It’s basically the group we all know — and possibly love. No 3D or fancy CGI. But don’t expect an ordinary film either. The film will be scored by Hans Zimmer and Zooey Deschanel will sing a new version of the theme song.

producer
Disney

director
Stephen Anderson
Don Hall

voices
Jim Cummings
Craig Ferguson
John Cleese

3D
No

release date
June 15th, 2011

Happy Feet 2

2006 was a great year for animations. We had Cars, the comeback of Ice Age and... Happy Feet.

The tapping penguin was a surprise hit amongst young and old and won an Oscar for Best Animated Feature.

Not much is known about the sequel, but it has the potential to be one of the best animations of the year.

producer
Warner Bros.

director
George Miller

voices
Elijah Wood
Robin Williams
Brad Pitt
Matt Damon

3D
Yes

release date
November 18th, 2011

The Goon

Between all these happy colorful animations, The Goon doesn’t really fit in — not that it would want to. But it’s still an animation.

The Goon has zombies, hobos and skunk apes — somekind of enormous sasquatch-like monster with a rotten odor.

Producer by David Fincher and voiced by Paul Giamatti, this is an animation unlike any other this year.

producer
Blur Studio

director
Jeff Fowler
Tim Miller

voices
Paul Giamatti
Clancy Brown

3D
No

release date
TBD

Rango

It’s not easy being Rango. Swept out of his habitat, having an identity crisis and ending up in a town in the middle of the desert.

But there’s hope when he meets Beans, a girl with a weird tick.

Check out our 3-page article on Rango over here.

producer
Nickelodeon

director
Gore Verbinski

voices
Johnny Depp
Isla Fisher
Abigail Breslin

3D
No

release date
March 12th, 2011

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