BREAKING: Skydance has launched an animation division, forming a multi-year partnership with Madrid-based Ilion Animation Studios. They will develop and produce a slate of animated films and TV series projects. The first is eyeing a 2019 release and is being written by Linda Woolverton, whose fairy tale scripts include Alice in Wonderland, Maleficent, Beauty and the Beast and The Lion King. The untitled pic tells the story of Elian, a teenager who comes of age using her magical powers to defend her family when the opposing forces of light and darkness threaten to divide her kingdom. Woolverton will be a producer with Skydance’s David Ellison and Dana Goldberg, and Ilion’s Ignacio Pérez Dolset and Jose F San Román.

Skydance Media

Following on the heels of that first effort is Luck, the working title of a film which pulls back the curtain on organizations behind the good and bad luck that secretly affect our lives. Jonathan Aibel & Glenn Berger — the guys behind the Kung Fu Panda trilogy and Trolls — are writing the script. The will produce with Ellison, Goldberg, Dolset and San Román.

Skydance, coming to a close in its long co-financing and producing relationship with Paramount, previously launched divisions in television and interactive/virtual reality, and recapitalized with $700 million in funding. Skydance releases its latest film, the Daniel Espinosa-directed Mars mission thriller Life with Sony on March 24.

“It is incredibly gratifying to see one of my deepest passions come to life as we enter the animation business with Ilion,” said Skydance CEO Ellison. “Together we aim to bring together the most creative visionaries, the best-in-class production skills, and the highest degree of technological innovation in the service of great stories.”

Skydance Chief Creative Officer Goldberg will oversee the animation slate and said the company looked forward to “the possibilities to create imaginative new worlds are limitless and we are thrilled to expand the Skydance family to include Ilion and some of the most talented artists working in animated film today.”