Best Animated Films of 2014

Introduction

Who doesn't love animated films? In fact, some of the greatest movies of all time are animated features. Therefore, what better way to usher in the upcoming new year of 2014, then to honor some of it's best upcoming animated movies.

During this preview, I'll be providing you information about some of the best upcoming films of next year; along with their inevitable release dates. Sadly, not all of them have posters or trailers yet, but I'll be adding them as soon as they become available.

Also, please keep in mind that release dates are subject to change, so be sure to check your local listings before heading out to the theater to see any of these. Anyways, without further delay lets start the show.

The Lego Movie

Directors:

Phil Lord, Chris Miller

Writers:

Phil Lord, Chris Miller, Kevin Hageman, Dan Hageman

Voice Cast:

Cobie Smulders, Channing Tatum, Elizabeth Banks, Jonah Hill, Chris Pratt, Morgan Freeman, Alison Brie, Will Ferrell, Liam Neeson, Nick Offerman, Charlie Day, Will Arnett, Jadon Sand

Synopsis:

An ordinary LEGO minifigure, mistakenly thought to be the extraordinary MasterBuilder, is recruited to join a quest to stop an evil LEGO tyrant from gluing the universe together.

Release Date: February 7, 2014

Rio 2

Director:

Carlos Saldanha

Writers:

Carlos Saldanha, Don Rhymer

Voice Cast:

Anne Hathaway, Jesse Eisenberg, Leslie Mann, Jamie Foxx, Kristin Chenoweth, Rodrigo Santoro, John Leguizamo, Jake T. Austin, Tracy Morgan, Amandla Stenberg, Jemaine Clement, Andy Garcia, Bruno Mars, Rita Moreno, Pierce Gagnon, George Lopez, Will i Am, Rachel Crow, Carlos Saldanha

Synopsis:

Blu, Jewel and their three kids living the perfect domesticated life in the magical city that is Rio de Janeiro. When Jewel decides the kids need to learn to live like real birds, she insists the family venture into the Amazon. As Blu tries to fit in with his new neighbors, he worries he may lose Jewel and the kids to the call of the wild.

Release Date: April 11, 2014

The Nut Job

Director:

Peter Lepeniotis

Writers:

Peter Lepeniotis, Lorne Cameron, Daniel Woo

Voice Cast:

Will Arnett, Brendan Fraser, Liam Neeson, Katherine Heigl, Stephen Lang, Maya Rudolph, Sarah Gadon, Jeff Dunham, Joe Pingue, Christian Potenza, Scott McCord, Stacey DePass, Scott Yaphe, Lyon Smith, Julie Lemieux

Synopsis:

Surly, a curmudgeon, independent squirrel is banished from his park and forced to survive in the city. Lucky for him, he stumbles on the one thing that may be able to save his life, and the rest of park community, as they gear up for winter - Maury's Nut Store.

Release Date: January 17, 2014

The Book of Life

Director:

Jorge R. Gutierrez

Writers:

Jorge R. Gutierrez, Douglas Langdale

Voice Cast:

Channing Tatum, Zoe Saldana, Ron Perlman, Danny Trejo, Christina Applegate, Ice Cube, Ana de la Reguera, Diego Luna, Hector Elizondo, Cheech Marin, Eugenio Derbez, Gabriel Iglesias, Kate del Castillo, Jorge R. Gutierrez, Plácido Domingo

Synopsis:

An animated movie described as a Romeo and Juliet-inspired love story set during a Day of the Dead celebration.

Release Date: October 17, 2014

Planes: Fire & Rescue

Producers:

Kristin Dornig, John Lasseter

Director(s):

N/A

Writer:

Jeffrey M. Howard

Animators:

Nikhil Attri, Rocky Curby, Arturo A. Hernandez, Andy Lawler, David Rohloff

Visual Effects:

David Brickley, Dale Mayeda, Steven Zaharakis

Voice Cast:

Julie Bowen, Dane Cook

Synopsis:

Dusty Crophopper returns in the sequel to Planes. Also judging by it's title, we can assume that Dusty somehow finds himself on some sort of fire and rescue team.

Release Date: July 18, 2014

Big Hero 6

Producers:

John Lasseter, Kristina Reed

Director:

Don Hall

Writers:

Don Hall, Steven T. Seagle, Duncan Rouleau

Animators:

Valentin Amador, Andrew Chesworth, Nathan Engelhardt, Edward Grad, Luis Labrador, Mike Navarro, Zack Parrish, Natt Mintrasak, Nicklas Puetz

Visual Effects:

Jan Berger, Chris Carignan, Edward Grad, Arthur Jeppe, Norman Moses Joseph, Robert Neuman, Chris Patrick O'Connell

Voice Cast:

N/A

Synopsis:

A group of six superheroes are recruited by the government to protect the nation.

Release Date: November 7, 2014

The Boxtrolls

Directors:

Graham Annable, Anthony Stacchi

Writers:

Irena Brignull, Adam Pava, Alan Snow

Voice Cast:

Toni Collette, Elle Fanning, Ben Kingsley, Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Richard Ayoade, Jared Harris, Tracy Morgan, Isaac Hempstead Wright, Laraine Newman, Sam Lavagnino

Synopsis:

A young orphaned boy raised by underground cave-dwelling trash collectors tries to save his friends from an evil exterminator. Based on the children's novel 'Here Be Monsters' by Alan Snow.

Release Date: September 26, 2014

The Wind Rises

Director:

Hayao Miyazaki

Writer:

Hayao Miyazaki

Voice Cast:

Hideaki Anno, Jun Kunimura, Mirai Shida, Miori Takimoto, Hidetoshi Nishijima, Masahiko Nishimura, Shinobu Ôtake, Mansai Nomura, Keiko Takeshita, Steve Alpert, Morio Kazama

Synopsis:

A look at the life of Jiro Horikoshi, the man who designed Japanese fighter planes during World War II.

Release Date: February 21, 2014

Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return

Directors:

Will Finn, Dan St. Pierre

Writers:

Adam Balsam, Randi Barnes, Roger S. Baum, Barry Glasser

Voice Cast:

Lea Michele, Patrick Stewart, Hugh Dancy, Dan Aykroyd, Kelsey Grammer, Megan Hilty, James Belushi, Bernadette Peters, Tom Kenny, Martin Short, Oliver Platt, Brian Blessed, Douglas Hodge, Filip Watermann, Randy Crenshaw, Breanna Lynn, Tacey Adams, Liz Bolton, Michael Krawic, Pete Sepenuk, Betsy Roth, Leonard Dozier, Ayana Haviv

Synopsis:

Back in Kansas, Dorothy Gale decides to return to Oz in order to help her friends.

Release Date: May 9, 2014

How to Train Your Dragon 2

Director:

Dean DeBlois

Writers:

Dean DeBlois, Cressida Cowell

Voice Cast:

Gerard Butler, Jonah Hill, Kristen Wiig, Cate Blanchett, Jay Baruchel, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Kit Harington, America Ferrera, T.J. Miller, Djimon Hounsou, Craig Ferguson

Synopsis:

It's been five years since Hiccup and Toothless successfully united dragons and vikings on the island of Berk. While Astrid, Snoutlout and the rest of the gang are challenging each other to dragon races (the island's new favorite contact sport), the now inseparable pair journey through the skies, charting unmapped territories and exploring new worlds. When one of their adventures leads to the discovery of a secret ice cave that is home to hundreds of new wild dragons and the mysterious Dragon Rider, the two friends find themselves at the center of a battle to protect the peace. Now, Hiccup and Toothless must unite to stand up for what they believe while recognizing that only together do they have the power to change the future of both men and dragons.

Release Date: June 13, 2014

Justice League: War

Producers: Sam Register, James Tucker

Director: Jay Oliva

Writers: Heath Corson, Geoff Johns, Jim Lee, Scott Williams

Voice Cast: Sean Astin, Michelle Monaghan, Alan Tudyk, Shemar Moore, Christopher Gorham, Justin Kirk, Jason O'Mara, Steve Blum, George Newbern, Bruce Thomas, Zach Callison, Lara Jill Miller, Rocky Carroll, Georgie Kidder

Synopsis: The world's finest heroes found the Justice League in order to stop an alien invasion of Earth.

Release Date: February 4, 2014

Mr. Peabody & Sherman

Director: Rob Minkoff

Writers: Ted Key, Craig Wright

Voice Cast: Ariel Winter, Leslie Mann, Allison Janney, Patrick Warburton, Ty Burrell, Stanley Tucci, Lake Bell, Max Charles, Mel Brooks, Dennis Haysbert, Stephen Colbert, Karan Brar, Stephen Tobolowsky, Joshua Rush, Zach Callison

Synopsis: Using his most ingenious invention, the WABAC machine, Mr. Peabody and his adopted boy Sherman hurtle back in time to experience world-changing events first-hand and interact with some of the greatest characters of all time. They find themselves in a race to repair history and save the future.

Release Date: March 7, 2014

© 2013 Steven Escareno

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