Because of that, we’re willing to bet there are several 2000s animated movies you’ve forgotten existed. Here are 10 2000s animated movies you probably forgot about after all these years.
1. Titan A.E. (2000)
Directors: Don Bluth and Gary Goldman
Don Bluth deserved so much better. Titan A.E. follows Cale, a teenager in the future who has to find a hidden Earth ship before an enemy alien species does in order to protect humanity.
The thing about Bluth’s works was that they always boasted beautiful animation obviously done with passion but often greatly lacked in the screenplay department. Titan A.E. is another one of his works that’s stronger visually than narratively, but the film is still much stronger than All Dogs Go to Heaven and Anastasia, so it’s a wonder why those Bluth films are remembered but not this one.
Perhaps if the screenplay had spent more time in the oven and this film had been released in today’s era of Arcane and Nimona, Titan A.E. would’ve found a wider and more devoted audience.
2. Help! I’m A Fish (2000)
Directors: Stefan Fjeldmark, Michael Hegner, and Greg Manwaring
Also known as A Fish Tale, Help! I’m A Fish is a musical film about three kids who accidentally get turned into fish after drinking a potion and end up in the sea. This film starred Aaron Paul and Alan Rickman who would later co-star again in the 2015 film Eye In The Sky, and Paul has stated how saddened he is that he never got to meet Rickman.
Speaking of Rickman, he sings a terrific song in this one called Intelligence, which is only one of many great songs this movie’s soundtrack has to offer. Maybe it’s the nostalgia speaking, but for the people who do remember Help! I’m a Fish, the songs are the best part about it and the reason why it’s underrated.
3. The Trumpet of the Swan (2001)
Directors: Richard Rich and Terry L. Noss
The tale of a swan who learns how to play the trumpet, this film gets easily overshadowed by Charlotte’s Web and Stuart Little when it comes to film adaptations of E.B. White’s books. That’s probably because The Trumpet of the Swan is a dreadfully uninspired film, the kind you enjoy as a very young kid but find extremely boring when you’re an adult revisiting it.
It’s quite unfortunate, too, since the book it’s based on is one of White’s bests and deserved a much better adaptation than what it got.
Still, it’s interesting to look through the film’s voice cast, which includes Joe Mantegna, Carol Burnett, Seth Green, and even Reese Witherspoon. Of course, Green and Witherspoon weren’t the stars they are now when this film was released, but finding out that current big stars were in movies you loved when you were little is always a fun surprise.
4. Valiant (2005)
Director: Gary Chapman
Set in the year 1944, Valiant tells the story of a group of war pigeons during World War II. Even with a talented voice cast consisting of Ewan McGregor, Tim Curry, Hugh Laurie, John Cleese, and Olivia Williams, this film was the first of two animated Disney duds for 2005, as Chicken Little would release later that year to terrible reviews as well.
However, this does raise the question: Why is Chicken Little remembered and Valiant isn’t when they’re both awful films? This is probably because Chicken Little made more money at the box office, but it could also be because Chicken Little is more memorably awful. Valiant is just boring and lackluster, making it easier to be forgotten.
5. Happy N’ever After (2006)
Directors: Paul Bolger, Yvette Kaplan, and Greg Tiernan
Happily N’Ever After is about what happens when Cinderella doesn’t get her happy ending because of a mix-up that happens in the fairy tale world. If that premise sounds familiar, you’re not the only one who thinks so — this film is pretty much just a rip-off of the Shrek franchise, with none of the humor or street-smarts.
Another fairy tale parody film named Hoodwinked had just come out the year before, and the very next year Enchanted premiered, pretty much hammering the final nail to this film’s coffin.
Well, that’s not entirely true. This film did get a direct-to-video sequel three years later called Happily N’Ever After 2: Snow White — Another Bite @ the Apple, meaning while a box office bomb, it at least did decently enough on home release. Still, you wouldn’t be blamed at all if you can’t even remember if you’ve seen the film or not.
6. Everyone’s Hero (2006)
Directors: Christopher Reeve, Daniel St. Pierre, and Colin Brady
We all know Christopher Reeve — for a lot of folks, he’s the definitive Superman. Many don’t know, though, that he’s also been in the director’s seat for a number of films, including Everyone’s Hero, which was released two years after his death.
The story of a young boy who teams up with a talking baseball in order to retrieve the stolen famous bat of Babe Ruth, Everyone’s Hero is sweet and good-natured but is far too insubstantial and predictable to be memorable.
If you were a little kid when this came out, you probably liked it just fine, but anyone older than ten during its release probably found themselves trying not to doze off while trying to watch it. Still, at least it’s got a good amount of heart, as well as Robin Williams in its voice cast.
7. Space Chimps (2008)
Director: Kirk DeMicco
Partially inspired by Ham the Astrochimp (the first great ape to be launched into space), Space Chimp did well enough to receive a direct-to-video sequel two years later called Space Chimps 2: Zartog Strikes Back, but most people have forgotten its existence more than a decade after its release.
That’s probably because while the story of three chimps sent into space to explore the possibility of alien life seems interesting enough, Space Chimps disappoints with its tired humor and cheap animation.
Of course, director Kirk DeMicco would go on to direct more noteworthy animated films like The Croods, Vivo, and Ruby Gillman, Teenage Kraken. Space Chimps did allow him to direct better-animated films or at least more memorable ones, proving no matter how forgettable the project, it can still lead to great things.
8. Fly Me to the Moon (2008)
Director: Ben Stassen
Surprisingly, Space Chimps is not the only 2008 animated film about animals going into space that was inspired by real events. Fly Me to the Moon is a fictionalized retelling of the 1969 Apollo 11 mission, but you know, with flies. The marketing leaned heavily on this being in 3D, with the poster even saying, “First ever animated movie created for 3D.”
And yes, some of the sequences look downright astonishing, especially for its time. However, great 3D animation isn’t enough to make a great film, particularly not one that stands the test of time, being that animation and special effects have only gotten better since its release.
If only the filmmakers had focused just as much on characters and screenplay, Fly Me to the Moon might still be remembered to this day.
9. The Tale of Despereaux (2008)
Directors: Sam Fell and Rob Stevenhagen
The tale of a young mouse tasked with saving a princess, people unaware this film was based on a book might wonder why it has such a star-studded voice cast, including the likes of Sigourney Weaver, Stanley Tucci, Dustin Hoffman, Matthew Broderick, and Emma Watson.
However, the book by Kate DiCamillo is a beloved children’s title, and DiCamillo herself is a treasured children’s books author. While the book is vastly superior, The Tale of Despereaux is pretty successful at what it tries to accomplish.
It’s an offbeat story, one that works better on paper than on the big screen, but there’s still a considerable amount of charm and warmth to be had with this film. It’s wonderfully animated, too, boasting quaint and charming fairy-tale visuals. While its box office results were disappointing and the film received mixed reviews, The Tale of Desperaux is the entry most worth remembering on this list.
10. Planet 51 (2009)
Director: Jorge Blanco
When you’re a kid, nearly every film you watch is good (especially when you watch it on the big screen), which is why Planet 51 was probably the first time many kids felt disappointed by a film they were excited for.
The idea of an astronaut invading a planet full of aliens and the aliens being scared of the astronaut seemed inventive enough, but that’s about where the inventiveness ends when it comes to this film.
What an unfunny, boring, and unintelligent movie — talk about wasted potential. What should’ve been an animated offering with a fair amount of creativity in its screenplay ends up being a largely predictable story with unlikable characters and annoying humor. Is it any wonder why it’s been largely forgotten by the masses?
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