Operation Blue is a 1993 American animated spy action film produced by TjsWorld2011 Entertainment and Film Roman for 20th Century Fox. The first feature film from TW2011 Entertainment, it was directed and co-written by TjsWorld2011 (in his directorial debut) and co-written and produced by Ntpockets and Pyro R. Its story follows a young girl (Tara Charendoff) who is recruited into a secret organization whose mission is to thwart a foreign adversary's assault on the United States.
Production on the film began not long after Tj's production company was founded in June 1992. Tj and Nt had both expressed that a spy film was the first film they wanted to produce for the company. Tj also expressed his desire to animate the film's characters in the style of his close friend Craig McCracken's 1992 short Whoopass Stew! A Sticky Situation, describing the style as having potential to become an "underground art movement". Nt was at first reluctant about this choice, fearing possible legal repercussions, but eventually agreed after McCracken "unemphatically" gave them permission. At the time of the film's production, TW2011 Entertainment was a small studio with few employees; veteran studio Film Roman signed a deal to assist the studio with animation and production, with Tj describing the partnership as "giving our studio a jumpstart".
Operation Blue was originally released in theaters on August 20, 1993. It received mixed to positive reviews from critics and was a moderate box office success, grossing over $88.4 million worldwide on its $21 million budget. It was later released on VHS and LaserDisc on September 13, 1994, on DVD on April 10, 2001, and on Blu-ray on February 8, 2011.
- Tara Charendoff as Isabella Waters
- Matthew Broderick as Mark Stuart
- E.G. Daily as Emily Jameson
- Rob Paulsen as Isaac Newtensen
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When he graduated from CalArts in May 1992, TjsWorld2011 was encouraged by his friend and colleague Ntpockets to start a production company. Thus, they founded TjsWorld2011 Entertainment the next month at an unoccupied building in Central Los Angeles. Unlike many of their peers, neither two had produced a student film during their time at CalArts, but still decided to start on a feature film as their first project. Tj later explained, "We were really eager to do something big now that we were free of any constraints of college." Tj and Nt had expressed that they desired to produce a spy film as the studio's first project, wanting to be "a bit more realistic" than other animated films.
During its early production stage, Tj wrote the film's original draft over a weekend in July 1992, and sketched the original storyboards from July to September. However, after this, he, Nt, and Pyro R. realized they had no way of further producing the project, as their studio had only been founded two months prior and still had no office space, computers, or studio supplies. As a result, Tj signed a co-production deal with veteran animation studio Film Roman, located in the Toluca Lake neighborhood, not too far from the TW2011 headquarters, to help the studio with producing and animating Operation Blue.
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- Further info: Operation Blue: Original Soundtrack Album
- The first theatrical trailer was released on April 11, 1993, and was shown before films such as The Sandlot, Sidekicks, and Dave.
- The second theatrical trailer was released on June 2, 1993, and was shown before films such as Jurassic Park, Last Action Hero, and Dennis the Menace.
Operation Blue received mixed to positive reviews from critics. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has a rating of 61%.
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