Well, it’s that time again! As the year comes to a close, it’s time to take a look at the theatrical animated films that are due for release next year. Once again, these are the animated films that have release dates (USA release dates) only! Enjoy!
1) NORM OF THE NORTH [January 15, 2016]
We start out the year with our usual sub-par animated film (or at least, it appears sub-par) about a polar bear who becomes the mascot of a corporation. But, he soon finds out that said corporation might have evil intentions towards his Arctic homeland. W/the voices of Rob Schneider, Heather Graham, Ken Jeong, Bill Nighy, Loretta Devine, Gabriel Iglesias, etc.
2) KUNG FU PANDA 3 [January 29, 2016]
Originally planned for a 2015 release, we finally get the third installment of Dreamwork Animation’s Kung Fu Panda franchise. In this one, Po finds his true panda family and must train them to defeat a new villain named Kai. W/the voices of Jack Black, Bryan Cranston, J.K. Simmons, Kate Hudson, Angelina Jolie, Dustin Hoffman, Lucy Liu, Jackie Chan, etc.
3) ZOOTOPIA [March 4, 2016]
In March, we get Disney Animation’s first film of the year that takes place in a metropolis inhabited by anthropomorphic animals. In said metropolis, a recently enlisted bunny cop has to team up with a con artist fox to solve a case. W/the voices of Ginnifer Goodwin, Jason Bateman, Shakira, Idris Elba, J.K. Simmons, Jenny Slate, Tommy Chong, Bonnie Hunt, Alan Tudyk, etc.
4) RATCHET & CLANK [April 29, 2016]
Based on the video game series of the same name, this Rainmaker Entertainment film will tell the origin story of the two characters, how they met, and how they attempted to save their galaxy from being destroyed. W/the voices of James Arnold Taylor, David Kaye, Paul Giamatti, John Goodman, Bella Thorne, Rosario Dawson, Sylvester Stallone, etc.
5) THE ANGRY BIRDS MOVIE [May 20, 2016]
In this film based on the popular app (which many may say is a couple of years too late), a group of Angry birds must work together to find out what evil plans a newcomer group of pigs has in store. W/the voices of Jason Sudeikis, Josh Gad, Danny McBride, Maya Rudolph, Bill Hader, Peter Dinklage, etc.
6) FINDING DORY [June 17, 2016]
In the long-awaited Pixar sequel, Dory recalls some childhood memories and sets out to find her family. W/the voices of Ellen DeGeneres, Albert Brooks, Willem Dafoe, Idris Elba, Ty Burrell, Diane Keaton, Eugene Levy, etc.
7) THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS [July 8, 2016]
In Illumination Entertainment’s first animated film of the year, two quarreling dogs (one an old favorite pet and the other a recently rescued pound dog) must put aside their arguments when a group of abandoned pets plans revenge on all happily-owned pets and their owners. W/the voices of Eric Stonestreet, Louis C.K., Kevin Hart, Steve Coogan, Ellie Kemper, Lake Bell, Albert Brooks, etc.
8) ICE AGE: COLLISION COURSE [July 22, 2016]
Yep, this franchise is still going! In this 5th installment, Scrat’s actions in space (don’t ask) forces our Ice Age friends to leave their home. They later come upon an exotic place led by Shangri Llama. W/the voices of Ray Romano, Queen Latifah, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Denis Leary, John Leguizamo, Simon Pegg, Keke Palmer, Jennifer Lopez, Neil deGrasse Tyson (don’t ask), etc.
9) SAUSAGE PARTY [August 12, 2016]
In this R-rated animated film, a sausage and his friends must find back the supermarket aisles from whence they came before the July 4th sale. Did I mention that Alan Menken is doing the music? W/the voices of Seth Rogen, Jonah Hill, Michael Cera, Salma Hayek, Kristen Wiig, Edward Norton, Nick Kroll, etc.
10) KUBO AND THE TWO STRINGS [August 19, 2016]
In this LAIKA film, a young Japanese boy must seek a magical suit of armor to survive havoc created by monsters chasing him. W/the voices of Art Parkinson, Matthew McConaughey, Charlize Theron, Rooney Mara, Ralph Fiennes, George Takei, etc.
11) STORKS [September 23, 2016]
In this Warner Animation Group film, storks now deliver packages instead of babies. But, when one stork accidentally produces an unauthorized baby, he must deliver it before his boss finds out. W/the voices of Kelsey Grammer, Andy Samberg, Keegan-Michael Key, Jordan Peele, etc.
12) TROLLS [November 4, 2016]
In Dreamworks Animation’s second film of the year, the Trolls franchise comes to life in which two trolls (one of them being a princess) must go on some quest. Yeah, we don’t really know much more about this. W/the voices of Anna Kendrick, Justin Timberlake, etc.
13) MOANA [November 23, 2016]
In Disney Animation’s second film of the year, Disney directors, Ron Clements and John Musker, give us one more princess film. This one features a Polynesian princess setting sail for a fabled island. W/the voices of Auli’i Cravalho, Dwayne Johnson, Alan Tudyk, etc.
14) SING [December 21, 2016]
In Illumination Entertainment’s second film of the year, a koala hires his best friend black sheep to help him run his theater business. The film is said to be somewhat of a jukebox musical composed of 85 songs! W/the voices of Matthew McConaughey, Seth MacFarlane, Reese Witherspoon, John C. Reilly, Scarlett Johansson, etc.
That’s all the animated films that I know of that have American release dates so far! My top 3 most awaited of these are Finding Dory, Zootopia, and Sing. Let me know what yours are in the comments below!