After nearly three decades in business, Ice Age makers Blue Sky Studios becomes the latest casualty of Disney’s Fox takeover.

Well, this sucks.

The continuing impact of Disney’s takeover of Fox and its film assets is being felt. Already, the studio has cut the output of Fox films significantly, and shut down the Fox 2000 label (that had enjoyed success with several book adaptations, such as The Fault In Our Stars). Now we learn that Blue Sky Studios, the company behind the Ice Age movies, is shutting its doors.

Fox started working with Blue Sky on the effects for films such as Alien Resurrection and Fight Club in the late 90s, and bought the studio outright in 1999. It tasked it with what became Ice Age, and further Blue Sky productions since have included Epic, the excellent Horton Hears A Who! and its last movie, the underrated Spies In Disguise.

In fairness to Disney, it’s the impact of Covid on the film business that had reportedly led to this decision. But still, it’s decreasingly hard to see the benefits to the wider film world of the Fox/Disney deal (outside of Wolverine joining the Avengers, and that sort of thing – although I’d argue that’s not worth the thousands of job losses myself).

Disney will retain the rights to Blue Sky films, and is likely to pursue further Ice Age movies using its existing animation studios. But Blue Sky is going to shut its doors for the last time in April, with 450 jobs now under threat. The final film that the studio was working on, Nimona, has also reportedly been cancelled.

What a miserable story to write. Hopefully the staff of Blue Sky are back on their feet soon. Sending our very best to them.

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