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Kevin Lima

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Kevin Lima
Born (1962-06-12) June 12, 1962 (age 62)[1][2]
Alma materCalifornia Institute of the Arts
  • Film director
  • animator
  • character designer
  • producer
Years active1985–present
Known forA Goofy Movie
102 Dalmatians
(m. 1982)
Parent(s)Joaquin Lima
Caroline Lillian Bourdeau

Kevin Lima (born June 12, 1962) is an American film director who has directed A Goofy Movie (1995), Tarzan (1999), 102 Dalmatians (2000), and Enchanted (2007). He is married to Brenda Chapman, the head of story for The Lion King (1994) and the co-director of The Prince of Egypt (1998) and Brave (2012).

Life and career[edit]

Kevin was born in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. His grandparents were both Portuguese.[citation needed]

Lima studied film and animation at the California Institute of the Arts, during the mid-1980s. Lima's student film Let's Misbehave was later preserved by the Academy Film Archive in 2012.[4] After graduation, he went to Taiwan for half a year to work on The Brave Little Toaster (1987). Then, he worked on The Chipmunk Adventure (1987), where he met Glen Keane, one of many artists, who had left Disney after The Black Cauldron (1985) had failed at the box office. Keane persuaded Lima to apply at Disney, where he got a job, despite the fact that he was turned down three years earlier. At Disney, Lima worked as a character animator on The Great Mouse Detective (1986)[5] and Oliver & Company (1988), as a character designer on The Little Mermaid (1989), The Rescuers Down Under (1990), and Beauty and the Beast (1991), and as a storyboard artist for Aladdin (1992). Wanting to direct a feature film, he left Disney for Hyperion Pictures, where he worked on the television series Itsy Bitsy Spider and films such as Bébé's Kids (1992).[6]

He returned to Disney where he directed the animated film A Goofy Movie (1995). Before the film's release, Lima had been approached by Jeffrey Katzenberg to direct Tarzan (1999). He initially declined the offer as he was confounded by Katzenberg's decision to have the film animated in Canada under the Walt Disney Television Animation division. Months later, he was asked again by Michael Eisner to direct the film, but instead animated by the Feature Animation division.[7] He accepted, and months later, he was paired with Chris Buck. Following the release of Tarzan (1999), Lima wanted to direct live-action films, and subsequently left Disney once again.

Soon after, Lima was offered by Glenn Close, who had voiced Kala in Tarzan, to direct her on 102 Dalmatians (2000), which had just lost its director.[8] Afterwards, he went on to direct two television films starring Julie Andrews, Eloise at the Plaza (2003) and Eloise at Christmastime (2003). Lima was an executive producer on The Wild (2006). Since 2000, Lima had wanted to direct the film Enchanted (2007), but he was repeatedly turned it down because the script was too dark, and that he was not "funny enough to do this film". The revised script eventually was green-lit, and in 2007 Enchanted was released to a positive critical reception.[6]

After directing Enchanted (2007), Lima was set to direct several eventually shelved projects, including a live-action feature adaptation of the classic tale of Tom Thumb entitled Thumb,[9] a film based on the Candy Land board game,[10] a remake of the 1964 film The Incredible Mr. Limpet,[11] a comedy film starring Hugh Jackman titled Avon Man,[12] and an untitled live-action/CG film for Sony Pictures Animation.[13]

In July 2011, DreamWorks Animation announced that Lima was directing Monkeys of Mumbai,[14][15] a Bollywood-style animated musical adventure inspired by the Indian epic tale Ramayana, and told through the point of view of its monkeys. A. R. Rahman and Stephen Schwartz had been attached to compose the score and write the lyrics for the film, respectively.[16] In September 2012, it was announced that the film would be released on December 19, 2015,[17] but was half a year later rescheduled to March 18, 2016.[18] In June 2014, the release date was pushed back to March 10, 2017.[19] In January 2015, it was confirmed that the film was placed back into development with no release date attached.[20] The film was ultimately cancelled after DreamWorks Animation's acquisition by Universal Pictures.[21]

In July 2018, it was reported that Lima and Chapman had signed a first look deal with 20th Century Fox to produce live action, animated, or hybrid films through their production company.[22]

In January 2022, Lima was attached to direct No Flying in the House, a live-action/hybrid feature film adaptation of a children's book, with Sony Pictures.[23]


Year Title Credits Notes
1987 Sport Goofy in Soccermania Animator
The Brave Little Toaster Animator / Character Designer / Developmental Animator
1988 Oliver & Company Story / Character Animator
1989 The Little Mermaid Character Designer
1990 The Rescuers Down Under Character Designer / Visual Development Artist
1991 Beauty and the Beast Visual Development Artist
Rover Dangerfield Additional Character Designer
1992 Aladdin Story
1995 A Goofy Movie Director Voiced Lester, Roxanne's Father and the Security Guard
1999 Tarzan Co-director with Chris Buck
2000 102 Dalmatians
2003 Eloise at the Plaza
Eloise at Christmastime
2006 The Wild Executive Producer
2007 Enchanted Director Voiced Pip in New York
TBA No Flying in the House


  1. ^ Vigil, Delfin (November 18, 2007). "Fairy tale unfolds in the gritty city". SFGate. Retrieved January 9, 2014. But much like "Enchanted," the new animation-live-action hybrid film he just finished directing, the 45-year-old Rhode Island native doesn't exactly fit the Disney mold.
  2. ^ Roberts, Jerry (2009). Encyclopedia of Television Film Directors. Lanham, Md.: Scarecrow Press. pp. 338. ISBN 978-0-8108-6138-1.
  3. ^ "Annual Dinner - Disney Movie Director, Conway Tours & Journalists to be recognized by the Blackstone Valley Tourism Council on September 27". Blacksone Valley Tourism Council. 2007. Archived from the original on January 9, 2014. Retrieved January 9, 2014.
  4. ^ "Preserved Projects". Academy Film Archive.
  5. ^ "Kevin Lima News & Biography - Empire".
  6. ^ a b Vespe, Eric (December 14, 2007). "Quint dreams about Disney princesses with ENCHANTED director Kevin Lima!!!". Ain't It Cool. Retrieved September 21, 2011.
  7. ^ Noyer, Jérémie (March 21, 2008). "Get Enchanted! Chapter Six: Director Kevin Lima and exec producer Chris Chase". Animated Views (Interview). Retrieved August 31, 2022.
  8. ^ Mallory, Michael (December 30, 2000). "Drawn to Live-Action Directing". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 6, 2018.
  9. ^ McNary, Dave (October 7, 2008). "WB, Red Wagon developing 'Thumb'". Variety. Retrieved September 18, 2011.
  10. ^ Fleming, Michael (February 4, 2009). "'Candy Land' coming to bigscreen". Variety. Retrieved September 18, 2011.
  11. ^ Goldberg, Matt (June 11, 2009). "ENCHANTED Director Kevin Lima Swims With THE INCREDIBLE MR. LIMPET". Collider.com. Retrieved September 18, 2011.
  12. ^ Goldberg, Matt (February 17, 2010). "ENCHANTED Helmer Kevin Lima to Direct Hugh Jackman in AVON MAN". Collider.com. Retrieved September 18, 2011.
  13. ^ Kroll, Justin (January 18, 2011). "Sony Animation buys 'Enchanted' helmer's pitch". Variety. Retrieved September 18, 2011.
  14. ^ "Kevin Lima". LinkedIn. Retrieved December 12, 2013.
  15. ^ "Dave Weatherly". Animation Mentor. Retrieved December 12, 2013.
  16. ^ "Kevin Lima to Direct "Monkeys of Mumbai" (Working Title) at DreamWorks Animation" (Press release). DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc. July 20, 2011. Archived from the original on October 12, 2014. Retrieved July 20, 2011.
  17. ^ DreamWorks Animation (September 9, 2012). "New Distributor Twentieth Century Fox Unveils DreamWorks Animation's Release Slate Through 2016". DreamWorks Animation. Archived from the original on October 12, 2013. Retrieved September 10, 2012.
  18. ^ Eisenberg, Eric (April 9, 2013). "Kung Fu Panda 3 Moves Up To 2015, Bryan Cranston, Mads Mikkelsen And Rebel Wilson Sign On". CinemBlend.com. Retrieved April 10, 2013.
  19. ^ Ford, Rebecca (June 12, 2014). "'Puss in Boots 2,' 'Croods 2' 'Madagascar 4' Get Release Dates". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved June 13, 2014.
  20. ^ Graser, Marc (January 22, 2015). "Jeffrey Katzenberg on DWA's Cutbacks: '3 Films a Year Was Too Ambitious'". Variety. Retrieved January 22, 2015.
  21. ^ Lima, Kevin [@GoofyMovieDir] (April 19, 2020). "My films have been sabotaged twice by Jeffrey Katzenberg... First time was A GOOFY MOVIE, the second was MONKEYS OF MUMBAI which was shut down when JK sold DreamWorks to Universal. Maybe that's a segue to posting some unseen artwork from that unproduced film" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  22. ^ McNary, Dave (July 23, 2018). "'Brave' Director Brenda Chapman, Kevin Lima Sign First-Look Deal With Fox". Variety. Retrieved December 6, 2018.
  23. ^ Fleming, Jr., Michael (January 12, 2022). "Sony Lands Betty Brock Children's Book 'No Flying In The House' For Kevin Lima To Direct". Deadline. Retrieved August 31, 2022.

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