An industry trade paper observes:
Two animation veterans, Jay Ahn and Chris Henderson, have launched the full-service animation production company Astro-Nomical Entertainment.
The Burbank-based company will focus on producing mid-budget family animated features, parlaying the properties into continued media, including TV shows, video games and mobile content. It will focus on both domestic and international markets, with a special emphasis on China.
Astro-Nomical is already developing their first project, an animated feature film, Mean Margaret, with Mulan co-director Barry Cook in talks to helm. ...
It looks as though pre-production will be in beautiful Burbank, with production shipped off to Montreal where Free Money is abundant. Mean Margaret will showcase a young human and some furry animals.
Furry animals, if you have been hibernating in the North Woods under a rock and hadn't gotten the word, is all the rage.
Mr. Ahn and Mr. Henderson both know their way around animated productions. Mr. Ahn's last effort, a CG feature entitled The Nut Job, grossed $120.9 million and cost $42 million to produce. Unless production books were barbequed at 400 degrees, it was a profitable picture.
As recent market trends have demonstrated, there is no ceiling on the number of animated features that can frolic in the marketplace. It helps, of course, to have an animated feature that audiences actually want to see, but even if the picture is only "not icky", and costs have been kept to a $30-$50 million budget, the odds are good that profits can be made.
At least, that's the current thinking ... which ALSO decrees that there must be some adorable furry, animals inhabiting the movie. Mean Market appears to fulfill that market requirement, so good luck to Astro-Nomical Entertainment!