The lucrative family home-video market is set to get even more crowded with 19 direct-to-DVD animated features coming from the Gotham Group, Lionsgate and IDT Ent. over the next three years. According to Daily Variety, management/production entity Gotham will make ten movies for Lionsgate and nine for IDT with an investment of $50 million raised from Korean firm Sovic Venture Capital. Each production will be budgeted at around $3 million.
Headed by founder/CEO Ellen Goldsmith-Vein, Gotham will cover half of the production costs for each film and will outsource most of the animation to Korea while throwing work to its management clients. The company will also be able to draw material from the literary properties it manages; including Dark Horse Comics, Simon & Schuster’s young adult and children’s library and the works of William Steig (Shrek) and Maurice Sendak (Where the Wild Things Are).
IDT, which is being acquired by Liberty Media, plans to release the animated features through its home video subsidiary, Anchor Bay, and Liberty’s Starz premium cable network.