×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

DreamWorks Animation Launches Shorts Program With ‘Bird Karma’ (EXCLUSIVE)

DreamWorks Animation has launched DreamWorks Shorts, with the goal to develop talent, storytelling skills, innovate new technologies and explore new characters and stories for possible feature film development.

The first short from the program is “Bird Karma,” directed by William Salazar. The short will debut theatrically before DWA’s Japanese release of “The Boss Baby” nextspring. It will also play select international and U.S. festivals.

DreamWorks Animation Film Group president Chris deFaria put the program in place when he joined DWA in March. DeFaria and his creative team heard more than25 pitches for films at a session open to all DWA employees, with the intention of producing two to three projects over the next three years. From those pitches, eight films were advanced to active development, with three scheduled for release over the next 18 months: “Bird Karma”; “Marooned,” directed by Andy Erekson; and an untitled short directed by Pierre Perifel, Liron Topaz and JP Sans.

The pitch session participants ranged from production assistants to lighting directors, with teams working across multiple disciplines.

“The pitch process was incredible,” said deFaria in a statement. “DreamWorks is truly an artists’ enclave and we were all blown away by the immense talent at the studio. There were personal stories, comic sketches, gorgeous concept art and simple pencil tests — some were 2D, most were 3D — and even one stop-motion pitch; but taken together the collection demonstrated a level of inventiveness, story-sense and innovation that surprised and delighted all of us. The criteria for selection was primarily artistry and entertainment, but we were also on the lookout for ideas that could challenge our technology and explore innovative methods of storytelling.”

DeFaria also noted that the teams took more risks with storytelling and design, which only plays up part of the program’s mandate to explore storytelling and the creative process.

“In many ways this format and length are liberating, and we see our teams taking more personal risks with their storytelling and design,” said deFaria. “Our first priority is our six feature-length projects currently in production, so the time allotted for these short film projects can sometimes be limited.  But the pace at which these films are progressing is a testament to how passionate these filmmakers are about this program. It’s a perfect opportunity to put total creative control in the artists’ hands.”

More Film

  • 76th ANNUAL GOLDEN GLOBE AWARDS --

    Film News Roundup: Glenn Close Selected for Oscar Wilde Award

    In today’s film news roundup, Glenn Close gets an honor, AFI names its Directing Workshop for Women participants and Teri Polo gets cast in a Christmas drama. CLOSE HONOR Glenn Close will be honored on Feb. 21 by the US-Ireland Alliance at the 14th Annual Oscar Wilde Awards, held at J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot in [...]

  • Jason Reitman Ghostbusters

    Jason Reitman to Direct Secret 'Ghostbusters' Movie

    Sony Pictures is getting the wheels in motion for the next installment in the “Ghostbusters” franchise, and it knows who it’s going to call to direct: Jason Reitman. Sources tell Variety that Reitman, whose father, Ivan, directed the first two “Ghostbusters” movies, will direct the latest pic in the famous franchise. Reitman has also co-written a [...]

  • L.A. Teachers' Strike: Hollywood Studios, Unions

    Hollywood Studios, Unions Support Parents and Educators as L.A. Teachers' Strike Rages

    Hollywood unions and entertainment companies have stepped up to support the 31,000 Los Angeles teachers in the second day of a massive strike that’s affected nearly half a million students. More than 50 SAG-AFTRA members picketed at a Tuesday afternoon rally in the driving rain next to the Hollywood & Highland Center with secretary-treasurer Jane [...]

  • SAMUEL L. JACKSON in Glass. M.

    ‘Glass’ Again Tops Studios’ TV Ad Spending

    In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by the TV advertising attention analytics company iSpot.tv, Universal Pictures claims the top spot in spending for the second week in a row with “Glass.” Ads placed for the superhero thriller had an estimated media value of $9.89 million through Sunday for 1,183 national [...]

  • Danny Glover

    Danny Glover Joins 'Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle' Sequel

    Danny Glover has joined the cast of Sony’s “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” sequel. His role is being kept under wraps, as is the storyline. Glover will star opposite Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart, and Karen Gillan, all of whom are set to return. Awkwafina is in final negotiations for a significant part in [...]

  • DJ Khaled Bad Boys

    DJ Khaled Joins 'Bad Boys' Sequel (EXCLUSIVE)

    DJ Khaled has rounded out the cast of Sony’s upcoming “Bad Boys” sequel “Bad Boys for Life,” joining returning stars Will Smith and Martin Lawrence. Khaled will also join series newcomers Vanessa Hudgens, Alexander Ludwig, Charles Melton, Jacob Scipio, and Paola Nuñez. Joe Pantoliano is on board to return as Captain Howard. Production is currently [...]

  • SAMUEL L. JACKSON in Glass. M.

    M. Night Shyamalan's 'Glass' to Break January's Slow Box Office Streak

    No plot twist here: M. Night Shyamalan’s thriller “Glass” will dominate the domestic box office. As this weekend’s lone wide release, “Glass” looks to be the de facto choice for moviegoers during the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. Now the only question is: how big of an opening can “Glass” pull off? Mediocre reviews don’t [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content