Laika (company)

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For other uses, see Laika (disambiguation).
Laika, LLC.
Type Private
Industry Advertising, film production
Genre Animation
Predecessor(s) Will Vinton Studios
Founded 2005
Headquarters Hillsboro, Oregon, Portland, Oregon, USA
Key people Chairman:
Phil Knight
President & CEO:
Travis Knight[1]
Products Commercials, films
Owner(s) Phil Knight
Employees 180 (2009)[2]
Subsidiaries Laika/house

Laika, LLC. is an American stop-motion animation studio specializing in feature films, commercial content for all mediums, music videos and short films. The studio is best known for its stop-motion feature films, Coraline in 2009, and ParaNorman in 2012.

Laika is owned by Nike co-founder and Chairman Phil Knight, and is located in Oregon's Portland metropolitan area; Knight's son Travis acts as its President and CEO. The company has two divisions, Laika Entertainment for feature films and Laika/house for commercial content, such as broadcast and web advertising, branded entertainment and short films. Their feature films are distributed by Focus Features.


The commercial content animation studio, Laika/house, is composed of filmmakers, designers and animators who produce animated content in all types of animation in most media. The division produces CG, 2D/3D, motion graphics, and stop-motion. Past projects include the Ben & Jerry’s stop-motion campaign; Coca-Cola Rivalries commercials which aired throughout South America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East during the 2006 World Cup; campaigns for Apple Inc, M&M's and Kellogg's; and spots for Honda, Starbucks, Planters, Shaw Cable and Frito Lay. The studio is located in Northwest Portland. Laika spun off the advertising portion of the company in May 2014.[3]


In the late 1990s, Will Vinton Studios, known for its stop-motion films and commercials, sought funds for more feature-length films, and brought in outside investors, which included Nike, Inc. owner Phil Knight. In 1998, Knight made his initial investment and son Travis started work at the studio as an animator.[4]

In 2002, Phil Knight acquired financially struggling Will Vinton Studios to pursue feature-length productions.[2] The following year, Henry Selick, director of The Nightmare Before Christmas, joined the studio as a supervising director. In July 2005, the successor to Will Vintion Studios, Laika, was founded and opened two divisions: Laika Entertainment for feature films and Laika/house for commercial work, such as advertisements and music videos. They also announced their first projects, a stop-motion film Coraline and CGI animated film Jack & Ben’s Animated Adventure.[4]

Studio in Hillsboro, Oregon

The studio laid off a significant portion of its staff in 2008, when the studio's second planned feature Jack & Ben's Animated Adventure was cancelled.[5] The following year, the studio released its first feature film, Coraline, which received a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature. After directing Moongirl and Coraline, and unsuccessfully renegotiating his contract, Henry Selick departed Laika in 2009.[1] At the end of the year the studio laid off more staff in its computer animation department to focus exclusively on stop-motion.[2] Their second stop-motion feature film, ParaNorman, opened August 17, 2012, which also received an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature nomination.[6]

Currently in production at the Hillsboro studio is The Boxtrolls, a 3D stop-motion animated feature, based on Alan Snow's fantasy-adventure novel Here Be Monsters!. Scheduled for September 26, 2014,[7] it is being directed by Anthony Stacchi and Graham Annable.[8] Laika has also optioned Colin Meloy's fantasy novel Wildwood,[9] and Philip Reeve's fantasy book Goblins to make feature film adaptations.[10]


Feature films[edit]

Released films

# Title Release date Budget Gross RT MC
1 Coraline February 6, 2009 $60,000,000 $124,596,398 90% 80
2 ParaNorman August 17, 2012 $60,000,000 $107,139,399 87% 72

Upcoming films

Title Release date Refs.
The Boxtrolls September 26, 2014 [11][8]

Films in development

Title Refs.
Wildwood [9]
Goblins [10]

Short films[edit]

# Title Release date
1 Moongirl September 24, 2005


Contract work[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Kapko, Matt (October 6, 2009). "Breaking News: Henry Selick Leaves Laika". Animation World Network. Retrieved 2009-11-12. 
  2. ^ a b c Rogoway, Mike (September 18, 2009). "Laika lays off 63, scrubs plans for computer-animated features". The Oregonian. Retrieved 2009-09-23. 
  3. ^ Siemers, Erik (May 20, 2014). "Laika spins off ad business to focus on feature films". Portland Business Journal. Retrieved 23 May 2014. 
  4. ^ a b Williams, Christina (July 2006). "Laika ramps up Oregon animation industry". Retrieved July 13, 2011. 
  5. ^ Rogoway, Mike (December 17, 2008). "Laika lays off 65, shelves CG film". The Oregonian. Retrieved 2009-09-23. 
  6. ^ Sarto, Dan (January 10, 2013). "'ParaNorman', 'Wreck-It Ralph' and 'Frankenweenie' lead Oscar Nominations". Animation World Network. Retrieved February 23, 2014. 
  7. ^ "The Boxtrolls". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved June 1, 2013. 
  8. ^ a b Amidi, Amid (February 7, 2013). "Laika’s Next Feature Will Be “Boxtrolls”". Cartoon Brew. Retrieved February 7, 2013. 
  9. ^ a b Debruge, Peter (September 7, 2011). "Laika to adapt The Decemberists singer's 'Wildwood'". Variety. Retrieved April 22, 2012. 
  10. ^ a b L. Dickey, Josh (April 18, 2012). "Laika puts Brit book 'Goblins' in pipeline". Variety. Retrieved April 22, 2012. 
  11. ^ Jardine, William (November 10, 2012). "Interview: Pete Oswald, Vis. Dev. Artist on Hotel Transylvania and ParaNorman". A113Animation. Retrieved December 21, 2012. 
  12. ^ Williams, Alex (November 7, 2011). "Q&A: 'Harold and Kumar' director shares challenges of 3D debut". The Daily Texan. Retrieved November 13, 2011. 

External links[edit]