Danny McBride Making ‘Trouble’: Rough House Pictures Partners With Spire Animation Studios To Develop Animated Feature

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Matt Grobar
·3 min read
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 Danny McBride; Spire Animation Studios' Brad Lewis and P.J. Gunsagar (Courtesy of Dan Winters/Spire Animation Studios)
Danny McBride; Spire Animation Studios' Brad Lewis and P.J. Gunsagar (Courtesy of Dan Winters/Spire Animation Studios)

EXCLUSIVE: Danny McBride’s Rough House Pictures is partnering with Spire Animation Studios to develop the animated feature, Trouble.

Pic centers on Jax, a 13-year-old who gets in trouble with his family, and is swept into a parallel reality known as the World of Trouble. Embarking on a whimsical adventure, within this bizarre and fantastic world of chaotic adolescence, he makes new friends, reflects on his character and learns the value of self-forgiveness, all while trying to figure out how to get out of trouble, and get back home.

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McBride and Spire Animation Studios CCO Brad Lewis (Ratatouille, How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, The Lego Batman Movie) created the original story for Trouble, with Kevin Barnett and Chris Pappas (The Wrong Missy, The Do-Over) writing the script. The film will be executive produced by Spire’s P.J. Gunsagar, along with Rough House Pictures’ Brandon James. Casting announcements have yet to be made.

“The idea of being in trouble is a universal fear we’ve all experienced growing up,” said McBride. “Being able to build out what that world could look like and exploring how we can make this an animated adventure with Brad and the team at Spire has been awesome.”

“Danny has such a unique sensibility and grasp of wonderfully irreverent characters, creating a story together is a dream come true,” added Lewis. “I’m definitely looking forward to getting into Trouble together, and bringing to life the three words kids all over the world fear… you’re in trouble.”

Known for creating and starring in such popular HBO series as Eastbound & Down, Vice Principals and The Righteous Gemstones, McBride’s feature credits include Pineapple Express, Tropic Thunder, Up in the Air, Your Highness, This Is the End and Alien: Covenant. On the animation side, he has lent his voice to films including Despicable Me, Kung Fu Panda 2, the Angry Bird movies and Netflix’s upcoming The Mitchells vs. The Machines.

Trouble is the second animated feature produced by Spire, following last year’s announcement of Century Goddess. That upcoming film centers on a young woman who learns that she is a once-in-a-century goddess, igniting a revolution through spoken word and song. It’s creatively led by Lewis, award-winning stage director Diane Paulus (Jagged Little Pill), elite songwriter Starrah, and writer-producer Bisha K. Ali (Ms. Marvel).

Co-founded by Academy Award nominee Lewis and serial entrepreneur Gunsagar, Spire Animation Studios aims to take a multidisciplinary approach to animated storytelling, bringing A-listers and up-and-comers together to tell original, culturally relevant stories with global impact. The feature animation studio is backed by Connect Ventures, an investment partnership between CAA and global venture capital firm, New Enterprise Associates.

McBride is represented by CAA and Range Media Partners, along with attorneys Dan Fox and Steve Warren at Hansen, Jacobson, Teller, Hoberman, Newman, Warren, Richman, Rush, Kaller & Gellman. Lewis is repped by CAA.

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