Paramount Pictures has entered a multi-picture deal with Elisabeth Murdoch‘s Locksmith Animation, the companies jointly announced Wednesday.
Under the agreement, Paramount and Locksmith will co-develop and co-produce a series of animated projects for the studio and are progressing three current properties which Locksmith has been developing since 2014. These projects plan to head into production within the next twelve months, and they plan to have their first theatrical film in theaters in 2020.
Locksmith Animation is the United Kingdom’s first high-end CG feature animation studio, founded by writer/director Sarah Smith (“Arthur Christmas”) and producer Julie Lockhart (“Shaun the Sheep Movie”). It launched in 2014 with backing from media executive Murdoch.
“We are delighted to be partnering with Elisabeth Murdoch and Locksmith Animation to develop an exciting series of new films,” said Brad Grey, chairman and CEO or Paramount Pictures. “The unparalleled experience and talents of Elisabeth, Sarah and Julie will enrich our animation studio and further our commitment to creating world-class entertainment for audiences of all ages around the world.”
Smith added, “Added Smith: “We are delighted Paramount has responded with enthusiasm to our ambitious and original slate of films, and will go forward to take them to a global audience.”