Warner Bros. announced today that directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (21 Jump Street, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs) are in production on an untitled, 3-D computer animated LEGO movie, set for release on Feb. 28, 2014. Based on the LEGO Construction Toys, Lord and Miller also penned the script, with Dan and Kevin Hageman, writers on the Cartoon Network’s LEGO series Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu, getting “story by” credit.
When Miller and Lord took over Cloudy at Sony Pictures Animation, they grabbed the reins from a long procession of directors who had preceded them.
I remember at the time, a lot of the veteran story artists at SPA, conditioned to revolving managers and less than optimum executive decisions, were a wee bit skeptical whether two comedy writers who'd never directed animation would make a credible feature when so many others had failed.
At the time, the expectation was that the two would perform a matched set of face plants ... and still other directors would replace them. The directors' own assessment?
Lord: ... On Cloudy, there was a cut that was like-
Miller: It was like Airplane.
Lord: Every 20 minutes was like the funniest 20 minutes you’d ever seen, and the entire movie was incredibly boring. People fell asleep.
Miller: That was in the animatic stage. And so then we were like, oh, all right, we’ll have to make you care, I guess. ...
And whattayaknow? They did.
Phil Lord and Chris Miller created Sony's first animated hit, and the team then moved on to direct a live-action moneymaker. And now they're back with a feature that will be produced by Animal Logic in Australia.