Illumination Founder And Despicable Me Producer Joining Nintendo Board

Illustration for article titled Illumination Founder And Despicable Me Producer Joining Nintendo Board
Screenshot: Illumination

Today, Nintendo announced that Chris Meledandri will join the Nintendo board as an Outside Director as of June 29.

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This, the company adds, will become effective dependent on approval at the upcoming shareholders meeting that same date.

Previously, Meledandri produced CG movies including Ice Age and Dr. Seuss Horton Hears a Who! before founding Illumination in 2007. There, he has produced Despicable Me, its sequel and Minions, as well as The Secret Life of Pets, among others. He is currently co-producing the untitled Super Mario movie with Shigeru Miyamoto.

In a recent Fast Company interview, Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa said, “Animation, in general, is something that we are looking into, and not just this franchise.” Bringing Meledandri onto the corporate board certainly underlines that desire. However, that doesn’t mean Nintendo is going to outsource all the possible animation decisions, especially with the upcoming flick.

“It’s not that we’ve asked Illumination to handle everything,” added Furukawa. “Mr. Miyamoto is very, very hands-on with the production of [the Mario] movie.”

Now that Meledandri is set to join the Nintendo board, it looks like the relationship between the two companies—and CG animation, in general—will be strengthened.

Originally from Texas, Ashcraft has called Osaka home since 2001. He has authored six books, including most recently, The Japanese Sake Bible.

DISCUSSION

vaguedreams
VagueDreams

This is interesting but I do have concerns. One thing I’ve always loved about Nintendo is there general lack of FMV in their games and them mostly keeping all game elements in engine.

I hope this isn’t the hallmark of a transition.