chris_sanders_director_2.jpgVariety reports that jilted Disney director Chris Sanders, who received a rude awakening when he was kicked off his own American Dog project, has been selected by DreamWorks Animation to direct Crood Awakenings, a cartoon caveman culture clash comedy due for release after Shrek IV in 2010. UPDATE: The following official press release has been made available:


Veteran Animation Writer/Director Sanders to Helm Stone Age Comedy

Glendale, CA – March 28, 2007 – DreamWorks Animation today announced that talented filmmaker Chris Sanders is set to helm the upcoming project Crood Awakening, a comedy set in the Stone Age. Sanders will be joining the DreamWorks Animation family for the first time as the film’s director, having amassed an impressive list of animation film credits on some of the genre’s most successful and groundbreaking films, including the worldwide hits Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, Mulan and Lilo & Stitch. The screenplay was written by British comedy icon John Cleese (Academy Award®-nominated for the screenplay of A Fish Called Wanda) and Kirk De Micco (Racing Stripes).

Crood Awakening is described as a comedy set in the Stone Age, but further details of the plot are being kept under wraps. A release date for film has not yet been set.

Regarding the announcement, Chris Sanders states, “I look forward to working with Jeffrey and the other filmmakers at DreamWorks Animation. They have dedicated themselves to a complex and classic craft, but have also proven that they are driven to take it to new places. It is their willingness to break boundaries that makes them unique. I’ve seen firsthand where they are headed, and I’m excited to be part of it.”

DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg commented, “Chris is one of the most inventive and imaginative filmmakers I’ve ever worked with. His unique storytelling style and sensibility are perfectly suited for Crood Awakening. It is such a pleasure to collaborate with him once again on another exciting project. We are so happy to have him on board at DreamWorks.”

Sanders joins the studio with a long list of family film and television credits, most recently as a writer/director of the immensely successful film Lilo & Stitch. He served as a story writer on the multiple Oscar® winners Beauty and the Beast and The Lion King, and as a writer on the award-winning Mulan. He is represented by William Morris and Peter Nichols of LGNA.

DreamWorks Animation SKG (NYSE: DWA) is devoted to producing high-quality family entertainment through the use of computer-generated (CG) animation. Utilizing world-class creative talent and state-of-the-art technological capabilities, the company is committed to making two computer-animated feature films a year that appeal to a broad movie-going audience.

Caution Concerning Forward-Looking Statements

This document includes certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The Company’s plans, prospects, strategies, proposals and our beliefs and expectations concerning performance of our current and future releases and anticipated talent, directors and storyline for our upcoming films and other projects, constitute forward-looking statements. These statements are based on current expectations, estimates, forecasts and projections about the industry in which we operate and management’s beliefs and assumptions. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions which are difficult to predict. Actual results may vary materially from those expressed or implied by the statements herein due to changes in economic, business, competitive, technological and/or regulatory factors, and other risks and uncertainties affecting the operation of the business of DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc. These risks and uncertainties include: audience acceptance of our films, our dependence on the success of a limited number of releases each year, the increasing cost of producing and marketing feature films, piracy of motion pictures, the effect of rapid technological change or alternative forms of entertainment and our need to protect our proprietary technology and enhance or develop new technology. In addition, due to the uncertainties and risks involved in the development and production of animated feature projects, the release dates for the projects described in this document may be delayed. For a further list and description of such risks and uncertainties, see the reports filed by us with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our most recent annual report on Form 10-K and our most recent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q. DreamWorks Animation is under no obligation to, and expressly disclaims any obligation to, update or alter its forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, changes in assumptions or otherwise.

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