"Smurfs" Animated Reboot Gets 2017 Release Date

Originally expected for the summer of 2016, Sony Pictures Animation's in-development animated reboot of "The Smurfs" has a scheduled release date: March 31, 2017.

Director Kelly Asbury has been keeping a blog updating fans on the production of the film, and wrote, "So when my partners and I here at Sony Pictures Animation realized that rushing towards a summer 2016 release date meant having to launch production on a story that was not fully in the place we wanted it to be yet, we have decided to give ourselves a little more time to not compromise quality and deliver the truly smurftastic movie we all want to see on the big screen."

The new "Smurfs" film will be entirely animated, with no connection the CGI/live-action hybrid films that preceded it in 2011 and 2013. Asbury, whose past credits include "Shrek 2" and "Gnomeo & Juliet," wrote that he hopes for his film to be "the very best ever depiction of the Smurfs since the original Peyo comic books," which introduced the characters in 1958. In January, Mandy Patinkin was reported to be cast as the voice of Papa Smurf.

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