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Animated Movies Coming in 2019

It’s no secret that most family-friendly films tend to be animated. Luckily for parents, there is a bumper crop of animated family-friendly features coming out in 2019. We believe that too many of them are toy or video-game product placements, but we are looking forward to having a range of movies to choose from in the coming year.


Studios love sequels: it’s the next thing to a sure bet. And there is no shortage of film follow ups coming in 2019. First, the Disney blockbusters: the Mouse House gets in the game on June 21st with its highly anticipated Toy Story 4. Will this production, which is centered on the search for the lost Bo Peep, be able to capture the magic of the previous three films? And if this sequel isn’t a big enough hit, never fear, Frozen 2 opens on November 27th, just in time to grab a huge chunk of the Christmas movie-going audience. Prepare for more choruses of ”Let It Go” from the Frozen fans in your household.

Dragon lovers will be pleased that How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World opens on February 22nd. This is the third instalment of the franchise based on Cressida Cowell’s popular books.

Fans of Aardman’s quirky brand of British humor will be pleased to see Farmageddon: A Shaun the Sheep Movie open on May 15th. In yet another animal sequel, The Secret Life of Pets 2 releases on June 7th.

There are rumors about a Shrek 5 release in 2019 that “reinvents the franchise”. We will be sure to let you know when or if those rumors are confirmed.

Hybrid Films

Disney has been ramping up its live action remakes of animated movies. But some films are difficult to accurately describe as live action if a significant part of the film is composed of computer generated animation. Dumbo, which opens on 29 March 2019, features a computer animated elephant interacting with live actors. But The Lion King, which opens on 19 July 2019, is entirely made up of computer generated animal characters in a remake of the classic film.

Product Tie-Ins

We aren’t fans of this segment of the industry. While some of these movies turn out well (the first Lego movie was a pleasant surprise), we generally don’t approve of using movies to sell products. And there is an awful lot of that going on this year.

Toymakers are getting into the film business in a big way in 2019. The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part releases February 8th with a story based on alien invaders. If you can’t get enough of animated toys, keep your eyes out for Playmobil: The Movie with its tale of a girl searching for her lost brother. It opens on August 16th. Moving away from building toys, Uglydolls capitalizes on the popularity of the stuffed toys. Its opening date is May 10th. And HeMan returns on December 18th in Masters of the Universe.

Video game tie-ins are also a thing in 2019. Pokemon Detective Pikachu opens on May 10th, Angry Birds 2 opens on September 6th and Sonic the Hedgehog opens on November 8th. We’re not holding our breath for any of them.

Original Films

Viewers looking for something new can breathe a sigh of relief. Not everything coming out in 2019 is a sequel or a product tie in.

The year kicks off on January 4th with Animal Crackers, the story of a man who inherits a circus from his uncle. But all is not as it seems and he has to rely on a box of magical animal crackers to protect the circus from an evil adversary. At this time, it looks like Animal Crackers is opening in a very limited release. We will review it as soon as it opens in one of the cities where we have a contributing writer.

Another fantasy theme comes with Wonder Park, opening on March 15th. In this story, a young girl discovers an abandoned amusement park – only to find that it’s magic.

Missing Link, which brings together stop motion animation, computer generated visuals, and other visual effects, tells the story of a “missing link” between apes and humans and his discovery of the wider world. It opens on April 12th. This has an all-star list of vocal talent and we hope the film is as good as the casting.

Summer brings Wish Dragon, a film about a dragon in modern China. The movie will release in China in July but we do not yet have a confirmed North American date.

Another movie with an unconfirmed North American release is The Queen’s Corgi, about the adventures of a dog who gets lost and finds himself in a pack of dogs. We expect a summer release but will keep you informed.

September 13th sees the release of Spies in Disguise. This brings together two characters – a spy who has been turned into a pigeon and his nerdy inventor friend who is now needed to save the day. We are anticipating a comical spoof on the James Bond genre.

If you didn’t get enough of the yeti in 2018’s Smallfoot, mark your calendar for September 27th. Abominable features magical yeti on Mount Everest.

With a film aimed directly at the Halloween season, MGM will be releasing The Addams Family on October 18th. The story focuses around the gruesomely funny family’s involvement in a reality tv show.

Christmas animation is also on the horizon. Klaus, a non-traditional story about the origins of Santa Claus opens sometime in December. This film will combine hand-drawn and computer animation in a story about a man who creates Santa Claus in order to drum up a demand for mail service.

More details about the movies mentioned in this post…