Among the majors, only Time-Warner has no subsidiary doing long-form, theatrical animation. (Warner Bros. Animation focuses on television and direct-to-video product; Cartoon Network lives inside its cable channel. Warner Bros. Feature Animation and Turner Animation closed in the 1990s) But T-W is still in the feature animation game. In the recent past it's partnered with Animal Logic in Australia, and now this:
... Indie animation The Nut Job [is] the first feature from Canadian-based ToonBox and Korea-based Redrover, in association with Warner Bros-based Gulfstream Pictures.
Disney and Pixar veteran Peter Lepeniotis is directing the feature based on his own 1995 short Surly Squirrel from a script by Lorne Cameron (Brother Bear, Over The Hedge), about a mischievous squirrel who plots to rob a nut store with his rat friend Buddy. ...
The pic is currently in production aiming for a 2013 release.
Paramount has done well with Tad, the Lost Explorer, so why wouldn't Warners travel a similar route? The big, live-action epics they've rolled out this year have been misfiring, so maybe it's a good idea to try making some money with a lower budget indie.
At leas they won't be blowing through $300 million.