Sony Animation heads direct-to-DVD

Studio greenlights 'Open Season' sequel

Over the past decade, Disney made billions off of direct-to-DVD animated sequels like “The Lion King 1½” and “Bambi 2.”

Earlier this year, however, Disney officially got out of the business after new animation toppers Ed Catmull and John Lasseter decreed that the films, most of which were decried by purists, were hurting the value of Mouse House franchises.

But Sony’s young toon unit doesn’t yet have such concerns. After one so-so performer and one flop, Sony Pictures Animation is eagerly getting into direct-to-DVD to help boost its biz, greenlighting “Open Season 2.”

“Disney has got a very deep bench with a lot of product in the marketplace,” Sony Pictures Digital topper Yair Landau says of the difference between the studios. “We’re not in the same situation yet.”

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