As the Adult Animation revolution picks up speed there’s an exciting possibility for the rise of PG-13 theatrical films. For too long, Western animation has been shackled by the limitations of public perception. Even as we get new animated series and films that break the mold and push the envelope they are too often overlooked by film critics and consumers in favor of more inoffensive family friendly entertainment.
We are making improvements in Adult Animation and more animated series are pushing mature themes. However, even as a fan of of violent action shows I don’t want everything to be either a bloodbath or a nursery rhyme. That’s why we need a solid PG 13 space for animated films and TV.
Most families will take their kids to see Marvel and Star Wars films officially making PG-13 the new PG. It’s also worth noting that films like Jaws, Dr. No, and Raiders of the Lost Arc were all rated PG when they came out. It would be great to see animated films and TV explores subjects like horror, crime thriller, and high adventure. The success of these films undermines the notion that films and TV for young people have to focus exclusively on kids and families.
A concept like Atlantis: the Lost Empire would actually fair better in todays media landscape of high concepts, adventure, and complex adult characters. We will see animated films made at the same epic scope as blockbuster movies but maintaining the charming creative sensibilities of quirky indie films. I honestly don’t know what the future is going to look like but I can’t wait to find out.