A Columbus company called Fun Academy Motion Pictures is quietly laying the groundwork to become a major player in the animated motion-picture industry, with plans to launch an animation studio locally over the next couple of years.
Already, Fun Academy and its founder, executive producer Richard Lanni, are working on the company’s first animated film to be released in 2018, called “Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero,” with expectations that it will be the first of many such movies in the coming years.
“Our initial plan was just to have a distribution facility here for our projects. As time has gone on and I’ve spent more time here and we’ve looked at the place, we believe we have the answer to giving Columbus its share of the $7 billion film industry in Georgia,” said Lanni, who first visited the city about seven years ago to do media projects for the National Infantry Museum and Soldier Center.