“DC League of Super-Pets” (opening next Thursday July 28th) is the 10th release from Warner Animation Group. The studio kicked-off with a bang in February 2014 with blockbuster and critical and audience darling “The LEGO Movie”.
WAG’s second film “Storks” arrived two and a half years later, in September 2016. It was a double dose of LEGO in 2017 with “The LEGO Batman Movie” in February and “The LEGO Ninjago Movie” in September. The studio’s “Smallfoot” premiered in Sept. 2018, and “The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part” was released in Feb. 2019.
Warner Animation Group was forced to pivot with their next three movies. “SCOOB!” was supposed to open in theaters, but COVID forced a VOD debut in May 2020, quickly followed by an HBO Max launch in June. (It finally played in some indoor and drive-in theaters nationwide for a couple weeks in May 2021.) Last year, two new live-action and animated combo films from WAG, “Tom & Jerry” (Feb) and “Space Jam: A New Legacy” (July) premiered simultaneously in theaters and on HBO Max.
Now comes “Super-Pets”, starring the voices of pals Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart. It’s Warner Animation Group’s first pure theatrical release in nearly three and a half years. Warner Bros. has a lot riding on this. It’s the fourth of only seven films WB is opening in cinemas in 2022.
The popularity of Johnson & Hart, along with the DC superhero fanbase should be enough to bring-in the teens and up crowds. As for families, they’ll be looking for something to go to this summer post-“Minions”, so expect a strong opening weekend and possibly a fairly steady box office run all the way through Labor Day.
What’s next for WAG? A second “SCOOB!” feature called “SCOOB! Holiday Haunt” will be exclusively on HBO Max at the end of the year. Theatrical releases “Coyote vs. Acme” and “Toto” (new spins on beloved properties) are expected in 2023 and 2024, respectively.