Welcome to our big preview of the upcoming list of animated feature films set to debut on Netflix in the coming years. This will including all the animated movies that are set to come to Netflix in 2021, 2022 and beyond.
Editor’s Note: this list was compiled by independent media consultant Emily Horgan who has contributed numerous times for What’s on Netflix. You can read more on why Netflix’s investment in kids content and why it’s so important via her series “Netflix and the Battle for Kids” part 1 & part 2
If you’d like to see what Netflix Animation has in store for you on the TV side, head over to our separate preview for those.
Full List of Upcoming Netflix Original Animated Films
Note: titles are listed in alphabetical order. We’ll keep this updated over time so keep it bookmarked.
Apollo 10 ½: A Space Age Adventure
Format/Timing: Mixed media (live-action/hand-drawn and computer-animated imagery)
Who’s Involved: Written and directed by Academy Award nominee Richard Linklater. Starring Jack Black, Zachary Levi, Glen Powell and Josh Wiggins
Tells the story of the first moon landing in the summer of 1969 from two interwoven perspectives. It both captures the astronaut and mission control view of the triumphant moment, and the lesser-seen bottom-up perspective of what it was like from an excited kid’s perspective, living near NASA but mostly watching it on TV like hundreds of millions of others.
It’s ultimately both an exacting re-creation of this special moment in history and a kid’s fantasy about being plucked from his average life in suburbia to secretly train for a covert mission to the moon.
Back to the Outback
Format/Timing: CG animated film. December 2021 release.
Who’s Involved: Voice talent includes Isla Fisher, Tim Minchin, Eric Bana, Guy Pearce and Keith Urban.
Tired of being locked in a reptile house where humans gawk at them like they’re monsters, a ragtag group of Australia’s deadliest creatures plot a daring escape from their zoo to the Outback, a place where they’ll fit in without being judged for their scales and fangs. Leading the group is Maddie (Isla Fisher), a poisonous snake with a heart of gold, who bands together with a self-assured Thorny Devil lizard Zoe (Miranda Tapsell), a lovelorn hairy spider Frank (Guy Pearce), and a sensitive scorpion Nigel (Angus Imrie). But when their nemesis — Pretty Boy (Tim Minchin), a cute but obnoxious koala — unexpectedly joins their escape, Maddie and the gang have no choice but to take him with them.
So begins a hair-raising and hilarious road trip across Australia, as they are pursued by a zookeeper Chaz (Eric Bana) and his adventure-seeking mini-me (Diesel Cash La Torraca).
Beyond Good & Evil
Format/Timing: Hybrid live-action
Who’s involved: Directed by Rob Letterman and produced by Ubisoft Film & Television
The plot is being kept under wraps for this highly anticipated hybrid animated movie based on the video game of the same name.
How far along the project is in development is unclear, the video game sequel has faced consistent setbacks.
Escape from Hat
Who’s Involved: Academy Award-nominated director Mark Osborne (Kung Fu Panda, The Little Prince). Based on the book by Adama Kline and Brian Taylor.
Escape From Hat brings light to the ancient mysteries of magic. In a fairy tale where black cats are bad and magic rabbits are good, balance is threatened when one such rabbit is cast into a mysterious realm of danger and shadow. There, our desperate hero rallies an unexpected band of allies and undertakes an impossible quest to escape from inside a magician’s hat – and return to the human boy he dearly loves.
Format/Timing: CG animated film. Expected to be an hour and 10 minutes long
Who’s involved: Silvergate Media and Sony Pictures Television
Two seasons of Hilda have hit Netflix and while it’s not known whether it’ll return for a third, we do know that it is returning for a feature film.
The movie was announced back in December 2019 it’s unclear whether it’s exclusive to Netflix or aiming for a theatrical release but worth including here.
High in the Clouds
Format/Timing: CG animated feature film. Slated for 2022.
Who’s involved: Timothy Reckart to direct, Gaumont and Netflix Animation producing.
Based on the adventure novel which was published in 2005, this feature comedy film will see a squirrel embarking on a journey to find an animal sanctuary.
Paul McCartney who was behind the book the movie is based on is rumored to be involved further in the project specifically in creating original songs. In addition, Lady Gaga is also rumored to be involved.
Jacob and the Sea Beast
Format/Timing: CG animated feature. Slated for 2022 when announced in 2018.
Who’s Involved: From director Chris Williams (Moana, Big Hero 6, Bolt)
Jacob and the Sea Beast tells the epic story of a charming seafarer who sails into uncharted waters and discovers an unlikely ally in a sea monster.
L.O.L. Surprise!: The Movie
Format/Timing: 45’ live-action/CG adventure, coming in English-speaking territories on October 15th before rolling out internationally.
Who’s Involved: Owner of L.O.L. Surprise, MGA Entertainment
A young girl finds herself in the popular dolls’ CG-animated world, where she must help them create a movie.
My Father’s Dragon
Format/Timing: 2D hand-drawn animation due 2022
Who’s Involved: Based on the Newberry Award-winning 1948 book by Ruth Stiles Gannett. Academy Award-nominated Nora Twomeny from Cartoon Saloon directs.
My Father’s Dragon tells the story of young run-away Elmer Elevator, who searches for a captive dragon on Wild Island and finds much more than he could ever have anticipated.
My Little Pony: A New Generation
Format/Timing: CG Animated Film coming September 24th, previously planned for theatrical release.
Who’s Involved: Produced by Boulder Media, a part of Hasbro’s entertainment studio eOne. Starring Vanessa Hudgens, Sofia Carson, Kimiko Glenn, James Marsden, Liza Koshy, Ken Jeong, Michael McKean and Jane Krakowski.
The unimaginable has happened…Equestria has lost its magic! Earth Ponies, Unicorns, and Pegasi are no longer friends and now live separated by species. But idealistic Earth Pony Sunny (Vanessa Hudgens) is determined to find a way to bring enchantment and unity back to their world.
Teaming up with open-hearted Unicorn Izzy (Kimiko Glenn), the pair travel to faraway lands where they encounter the likes of charismatic and brave Pegasi Pipp (Sofia Carson) and Zipp (Liza Koshy) and the ever-responsible fellow Earth Pony Hitch (James Marsden). Their mission is full of misadventures, but these new best friends each possess their own unique and special gifts that may be just what this ponyverse needs to restore magic and prove that even little ponies can make a big difference.
Format/Timing: CG-animated musical
Who’s involved: Bend It Films, Hyde Park Entertainment. Gurinder Chadha to direct.
This animated musical movie tells the tale of an Indian-American girl who rediscovers her heritage via a magical pashmina.
The movie was announced back in early 2019. Alongside the announcement, Ashok Amritraj said: “Pashmina is a wonderful coming-of-age story that will resonate with anyone who has ever felt like an outsider, and one that I believe Netflix families around the world will enjoy experiencing together.”
Format/Timing: Stop-motion animation – Coming in 2022
Who’s Involved: First animated feature film from Academy Award-winning filmmaker Guillermo del Toro. Co-produced by The Jim Henson Company (The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance), and ShadowMachine (Bojack Horseman)
Based on the classic tale, set in the 1930’s. In this retelling Pinocchio is an innocent soul with an uncaring father who gets lost in a world he cannot comprehend. He embarks on an extraordinary journey that leaves him with a deep understanding of his father and the real world.
Puffin Rock: The Movie
Format/Timing: Based on the 2D pre-school series, both seasons were picked up globally by Netflix
Who’s Involved: Another production from Cartoon Saloon, this time alongside Penguin Books and Dog Ears. Chris O’Dowd narrates the series.
The movie sees our hero Oona work with her friends to save their island, and a precious little egg, in an action-packed story which celebrates our magnificent natural environment and features themes of belonging, courage and friendship
Format/Timing: Animated film. Timing TBC
Who’s Involved: Adapted from Brian Jacques’ 22-strong best-selling Redwall book. Patrick McHale (Adventure Time, Over the Garden Wall, Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio) is on board to write.
The fantasy novels tell stories of heroes and villains played out by talking, anthropomorphic woodland animals who live at Redwall Abbey. The film is based on the first book in the series which follows badger warrior, Lord Brocktree.
Rise of TMNT
Format/Timing: Movie adaptation of the successful Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series. Originally planned for 2021, now pushed to 2022.
Who’s Involved: Produced by Nickelodeon. Hayley Joel Osment features in the voice talent.
When a mysterious stranger arrives from the future with a dire warning, Leo is forced to rise & lead his brothers, Raph, Donnie, & Mikey in a fight to save the world from a terrifying alien species…the Krang!
Format/Timing: Animated musical. Timing TBC.
Who’s Involved: Based on the bestselling book from Academy Award-winning actress, Lupita Nyong’o, who will also produce. A reading by the actress, illustrated by Vashti Harrison, was a part of Netflix’s Bookmarks series.
Sulwe tells the story of a young dark-skinned girl who sets off on a magical journey following an encounter with a shooting star. She learns the story of the sisters Night and Day. The story has strong themes of colorism and self-esteem.
The Magician’s Elephant
Format/Timing: CG Animated Film. Timing TBC.
Who’s Involved: Based on a novel by Newberry Medal winning author, Kate DiCamillo (The Tale of Despereaux/Flora and Ulysses). The cast includes Noah Jupe, Benedict Wong, Pixie Davies, Sian Clifford, Brian Tyree Henry, Natasia Demetriou, Mandy Patinkin and Dawn French.
When Peter (voiced by Noah Jupe), who is searching for his long-lost sister named Adel (voiced by Pixie Davies), crosses paths with a fortune teller in the market square, there is only one question on his mind: is his sister still alive? The answer, that he must find a mysterious elephant and the magician (voiced by Benedict Wong) who will conjure it, sets Peter off on a harrowing journey to complete three seemingly impossible tasks that will change the face of his town forever.
The Monkey King
Format/Timing: CG Animated Film planned for 2023, targeting kids 6 – 11
Who’s Involved: Produced by Academy Award-nominated Peilin Chou (Over the Moon) and Kendra Haaland (co-producer of How to Train Your Dragon 2), and directed by Academy Award-nominated Anthony Stacchi (The Boxtrolls). Features all-Asian voice talent: Jimmy O. Yang, Bowen Yang, Jolie Hoang-Rappaport, Jo Koy, Ron Yuan, Hoon Lee, Stephanie Hsu, Andrew Pang, Andrew Kishino, Jodi Long, James Sie and BD Wong. Part of Netflix’s expanded lineup from Asian American creators.
Inspired by China’s famous legend Journey to the West, the film tells the story of a very special Monkey, and his magical fighting Stick, who team up to fight against gods, demons, dragons, and the greatest enemy of all, Monkey’s own hubris!
The Witch Boy
Format/Timing: Animated musical
Who’s Involved: Based on the graphic novels by Molly Know Ostertag. Produced by Vertigo Entertainment (The Lego Movie) with HAIM involved in the soundtrack.
In a secret, magical community where girls are born to be witches and boys grow into shapeshifters, Aster is surprised to discover his emerging and extraordinary witch powers. When a mysterious danger threatens his world, Aster must embark on a journey to uncover the truth behind himself, his powers, and everything that is magical.
Thelma and the Unicorn
Who’s Involved: Based on the novel by award winning, Australian, children’s author Aaron Blabey
When a rare pink and glitter-filled moment of fate makes Thelma the Pony’s wish of being a unicorn come true, she rises to instant international pop-superstar stardom, but at an unexpected cost. Thelma the Unicorn is a joyful story about learning to love who you are… even if you don’t have sparkles.
Who’s Involved: Rosendo Ruíz to direct, Germina Films and El Carro producing. Developed as part of the Impact program.
Netflix won a well-fought battle for the rights to Tunga back in February 2019.
Here’s how the movie is pitched:
“Tunga, a young African girl and her animal totem Zuze must venture to a mythical city to learn the magic of summoning rain to save her village from drought.”
Format/Timing: CG-animated feature
Who’s Involved: Based on the Japanese brand owned by Tsuburaya Productions. Shannon Tindle (Academy Award-nominated Kubo and the Two Strings) is on board to write and co-direct.
Baseball superstar Ken Sato returns to his home country of Japan to pick up the mantle of Earth-defending superhero Ultraman, but quickly finds more than he bargained for when he’s forced to raise the offspring of his greatest foe, a newborn Kaiju. Struggling to balance the roles of teammate and new father, Ken must confront his own ego, his estranged father, and the conniving Kaiju Defense Force to rise up and discover what it truly means to be Ultraman.
Wendell & Wild
Format/Timing: Stop motion animation – announced in 2018 for 2021
Who’s Involved: From writer/director Henry Selick (Nightmare Before Christmas, Coraline). Keegan Michael Key and Jordan Peele are also involved.
Two demon brothers (voiced by Keegan Michael Key and Jordan Peele) escape the Underworld and find themselves in a town where they must evade a demon-duster teenager, Kat, who is trying to destroy them.
What animated films are you looking forward to watching on Netflix? Let us know in the comments down below.