The Weinstein Company announced a new animation division, titled Mizchief, to roll out this summer with their animated film, Leap! The Weinstein Company is famous for a more traditional dramatic fare. From films like The King's Speech to Silver Linings Playbook they've chosen to focus on more dramatic and adult content. The studio made a name for themselves with reality programming and they've had a number of hits with the films of Quentin Tarantino.
However, The Weinstein Company began to branch out with films like Paddington, and now they're looking to tap into the animated market as well by launching a new branch of the studio.
Related: Paddington 2 Teaser Trailer
According to IndieWire, The Weinstein Company is starting an animation division that will be titled Mizchief in conjunction with their their animated film Leap! The Weinstein Company also announced a second film that will carry the Mizchief label, the Gary Wang and Life Chaser Animation Studio's The Guardian Brothers. The film was released in January 2016 in China and does not currently have an American release date. Co-chairman Harvey Weinstein shared the story of the company's unique name in an official statement on the new animation division:
I named the label Mizchief because that’s how my son pronounces mischief. Animation is a playful new direction for us and I’m thrilled to expand the TWC repertoire into a whole new category of films for our kids to enjoy and for us to enjoy with them. All of these films will share incredible stories that most importantly both inspire and entertain our kids
Leap! stars Elle Fanning, Nat Wolff, Maddie Ziegler, Carly Rae Jepsen, Kate McKinnon, and Mel Brooks. It follows the journey of an orphan with dreams of dancing stardom who hopes to break into the world of ballet. It's the first film released under the Mizchief banner. The Mizchief division isn't the first time the studio has released animated films - The Weinstein Company bought a pair of Hoodwinked films to the screen along with Escape from Planet Earth and Doogal. Leap! and The Guardian Brothers, however, will be the first animated films to bear the Mizchief label and the beginning of an animation slate for the studio.
Mizchief and The Weinstein Company are also currently developing adaptations of The Firework-Maker's Daughter by critically acclaimed author Phillip Pullman, as well as an adaptation of The Cricket in Times Square by George Sheldon.
Of course, The Weinstein Company isn't the first studio to create animation division. With competition like Blue Sky Studios, Illumination Entertainment, Dreamworks Animation, and the Walt Disney Company it will be interesting to see what Mizchief brings to the table. The Weinsteins are known for more traditional adult fare but Paddington grossed 268 billion worldwide. Time will tell if they can bring that same magic to an animation studio.
Leap! hits theaters August 25th, 2017