Tuesday, February 07, 2012

DreamWorks Animation's Animated Video Games

The company is doing bit of licensing:

D3Publisher has secured the ... rights to develop and publish the video games based on the upcoming DreamWorks Animation feature films Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted and Rise of the Guardians in 2012 and The Croods in 2013. ...

I'm so old that I can remember when DreamWorks, youthful and full of ambition (and residing on the Universal lot), had its own video game division.

The year was 1996. And the developers were up on the top floor of an office building on Lankershim Boulevard (with feature animation trainees directly below) -- just up the street from the Black Tower. Back then, DreamWorks was many things: live-action movies; live action television shows; animated television shows; animated features.

On top of which, they were making video games.

What a difference sixteen years make. Here we are in 2012 and DreamWorks as originally conceived is no more. The live-action feature division is now housed at Disney (after earlier residing at Paramount. The movie studio once envisioned to rise near the coast at Playa Vista was never built.)

Live-action television shows are no more, while animated shows -- mostly spin-offs of the features -- are farmed out to sub-contractors.

The video games? The development group on Lankershim Boulevard is long gone, and the division long since shuttered. Licensees get all the action now.

On the brighter side, the feature animation part of the business became its own corporate entity, with two separate studios in California and a satellite facility in India. And all the founders are rich.


Anonymous said...

I bet the films look as good.

Floyd Norman said...

Very comforting to know all the founders of DreamWorks are rich. I will sleep well tonight.

Anonymous said...

When I read the title I thought "sure didn't take long for Dreamworks to steal the Wreck-it Ralph idea"

Anonymous said...

Hmmm...you're own prejudice led you astray again...?

Anonymous said...

No. Its not a big stretch at all.

Anonymous said...

>>> When I read the title I thought "sure didn't take long for Dreamworks to steal the Wreck-it Ralph idea"

Exactly! Disney is absolutely the only company that has ever thought of video games or cross-over marketing, at all, in the entire history of entertainment!

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