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    Fans Of Disney Will Totally Adore These 13 Animation Studio Alternatives

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    1. Cartoon Saloon

    StudioCanal

    Notable works: The Breadwinner, Song of the Sea, The Secret of Kells.

    This Irish independent animation studio's breathtaking visual style and gift for old-fashioned storytelling has already earned them four Oscar nods and further nominations at the Golden Globes, BAFTAs and Emmys. Founded in 1999 by animators Paul Young, Tomm Moore, and Nora Twomey, the company has so far released three gorgeous feature films to critical and commercial acclaim.

    2. LAIKA

    Focus Features

    Notable works: Coraline, Kubo and the Two Strings, Paranorman.

    American stop-motion connoisseurs LAIKA have developed a distinctive style and meticulous approach to animation that has earned them several award nominations over the years. The Nightmare Before Christmas director Henry Selick joined the studio from 2003 to 2009, and LAIKA began specialising in spooky fantasy films, which has become their bread-and-butter aesthetic.

    3. Illumination Entertainment

    Universal Pictures

    Notable works: Despicable Me, The Secret Life of Pets, Sing.

    This powerhouse American studio have already had some huge hits since they began back in 2007. Founded by ex-Disney producer Chris Meledandri, in the last decade alone they have produced ten feature films to global success, banking multiple nominations at the Oscars, BAFTAs, and Golden Globes. Their lively style of animation has made them a firm favourite with kids and the young-at-heart!

    4. Studio Ponoc

    Toho

    Notable works: Mary and The Witch's Flower.

    A spin-off of legendary Japanese animation house Studio Ghibli, Studio Ponoc was founded a mere five years ago by former Ghibli lead film producer Yoshiaki Nishimura. So far they have only made one feature film, MATWF, which was released in 2017, as well as a collection of excellent shorts that already demonstrate Ponoc's perspicacious animators have the skills to continue Ghibli's incredible legacy.

    5. Blue Spirit Productions

    Gébéka Films

    Notable works: The Prince's Journey, My Life as a Courgette, The Painting.

    This weird and wonderful French studio are known for their popular TV series on French-speaking networks, but also for collaborating on international sensation Ma Vie de Courgette, which was nominated for Best Animated Feature at the 89th Academy Awards. Their style of animation varies considerably between simple yet striking stop motion, CGI, and traditional animation, but always remains consistently amazing!

    6. Aardman Animations

    Paramount Pictures

    Notable works: Chicken Run, Flushed Away, Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit.

    British studio Aardman are known all over the world for their famed stop-motion clay animations – indeed all of their movies are ranked among the highest-grossing stop motion films of all time, with Chicken Run topping them all! Aardman have created some of the most beloved animated characters of all time, and they have recieved a whopping ten Oscar nominations and four Oscar wins since they began in 1972!

    7. Les Armateurs

    Gébéka Films

    Notable works: The Swallows of Kabul, The Old Lady and the Pigeons, Kirikou and the Sorceress.

    French film studio Les Armateurs have produced twelve superb animated features since forming in 1994, and have received four Oscar nominations for Best Animated Feature, two César Award nominations, and one win for Best Animated Film. The company has proved it's able to take tackle a variegated range of subject matters in its work, and their delicate yet playful visual style has had an important influence on many younger studios including Cartoon Saloon!

    8. Magic Light Pictures

    Magic Light Pictures

    Notable works: The Gruffalo, Room on the Broom, The Snail and the Whale.

    Founded in 2003, this London-based production company is known for its charming adaptations of children's stories including many of those by English writer Julia Donaldson. The studio works mainly in a computer-animated medium, and has had three Oscar nominations for its stunning shorts. In the last few years, the studio has released new family-friendly animations around Christmas-time as part of the BBC's scheduled programming in the UK.

    9. Pierrot

    TV Tokyo

    Notable works: Naruto, Bleach, Yu Yu Hakusho.

    Perriot is a Tokyo-based studio founded in 1979 that has made some of the most recognised manga series in the world. Renowned for its popular "shōnen" style (meaning its work is primarily targeted at a young teen male and is stereotypically more about action, horror, and science-fiction), the veteran studio began by making cutting-edge anime films and series in '80s and by now have one of the prolific and distinguished catalogues in the anime game!

    10. Warner Bros. Animation

    Warner Bros.

    Notable works: Space Jam, The Iron Giant, The Lego Movie.

    Warner Bros. Animation is closely associated with and most well-known for its Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies franchises, which have been around since the 1930s! The classic Hollywood studio have been making cartoons almost as long as Disney have, and in recent times have incorporated other Warner Bros. characters like Batman and Superman, Scooby Doo, and The Flintstones in their animations. The company has won six Academy Awards, 35 Emmys, and 20 Annie Awards.

    11. DreamWorks Animation

    DreamWorks Pictures

    Notable works: Madagascar, Shrek, How to Train Your Dragon.

    DreamWorks is an American animation studio known for its high quality film features and franchises. To date, it has released 37 features which have moved from tradigital animation in the late '90s, to computer animated fare in the present day. Giving Disney a run for its money, the studio has been nominated for multiple Golden Globe and BAFTA awards, and has earned three Oscars and 41 Emmys.

    12. TMS Entertainment

    Toho

    Notable works: Sonic X, Akira, Lupin the Third.

    One of Japan's oldest anime studios, TMS – also known as Tokyo Movie or TMS-Kyokuichi – is a visionary outlet that began in 1964. Its eclectic mix of family, shōnen (teen boy), and shōjo (teen girl) content includes over 100 feature films that have paved the way for Japanese animation in terms of its super detailed style. TMS has also collaborated with Western studios to create features such as The New Batman Adventures and Superman: The Animated Series.

    13. Studio Ghibli

    Toho

    Notable works: Spirited Away, Howl's Moving Castle, My Neighbor Totoro.

    Of course, no list such as this would be complete without properly mentioning Japanese animation behemoth Studio Ghibli! Founded by Hayao Miyazaki and his partners Isao Takahata and Toshio Suzuki in 1985, the company has made 21 feature films and earned a cult following around the world. Its beautiful films blend supernatural characters with scenes of domesticity, and tackle hard-hitting real-life issues like no other studio can! Ghibli is truly a gift to the world.

    Have I missed any studios off this list? Comment below!

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