Home on the Range Rides into Theaters

Cows turn bounty hunters to save the farm and bring down a nefarious criminal in Disney’s latest animated comedy to hit the big screen. Home on the Range opens today, going hoof to fist with Sony/Revolution Studios’ CG-laden comic book adaptation Hellboy and The Rock’s remake of Walking Tall from MGM.

Directed by Will Finn and John Sanford, Home on the Range stars the voices of Roseanne, Dame Judy Dench and Jennifer Tilly as a trio of dairy cows out to administer some bovine justice to Alameda Slim, a singing cattle rustler voiced by Randy Quaid. Cuba Gooding Jr. and Steve Buscemi also lend their distinctive voices to this comic Western featuring music written by Oscar-winning composer Alan Menken (The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, Pocahontas) and songs by Tim McGraw, Bonnie Raitt, k.d. lang and others.

Much of the publicity surrounding this film is focused on the belief that it is the last 2D-animated theatrical feature from the House of Mouse. Aside from direct-to-video sequels like the recent Lion King 1 1/2 and Disney Toon Studios theatrical releases like Teacher’s Pet, the studio is focusing its energies on creating 3D blockbusters in the tradition of Pixar’s Finding Nemo, Toy Story, and Monsters, Inc.

Despite opening against some heavy-hitting actioners, Home on the Range just may be poised for a big weekend. Fans of traditional Disney animation will no doubt line up to witness the possible end of an era, but the flick should also manage to rustle much of the family audience away from Warner Bros.’ Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleashed, now in its sophomore week.

Get the inside story on the making of Home of the Range in the April issue of Animation Magazine.