WB, Animal in logical deal

Companies will share development costs

Warner Bros. has taken its first steps to remain in business with “Happy Feet” animation house Animal Logic, setting up a co-development fund with the Aussie company.

Deal, which is separate from talks for a “Happy Feet” sequel, will see the two companies sharing costs to develop original projects that Warner Bros. will finance and distribute if greenlit.

Three stories have already been identified and put into development under the deal.

“We will develop a series of titles over the next year, and we hope to put one into production shortly,” said WB exec VP of digital production Chris DeFaria. “This represents a creative and technology commitment we are making down there.”

“The wide slate of project opportunities assures Animal Logic’s ability to continue to produce engaging and innovative digital features,” said the toon house’s CEO, Zareh Nalbandian.

“Happy Feet,” which grossed $384 million worldwide and won the Oscar for animated feature, is the first CG toon made by Animal Logic, which previously did special f/x work.

Warner Bros. is in talks with Animal Logic and “Happy Feet” writer-director George Miller about a sequel.

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