Hollywood Gets Animated About Austin

Local cartoon to become big-budget Will Smith vehicle

Get ready for spy excitement: Austin-made animated short "Pigeon: Impossible" is being adapted as a feature starring Will Smith and Tom Holland. (Image courtesy of Martell)

From tiny acorns, mighty oaks grow. Sometimes, Hollywood animation springs from a Mighty Coconut. Fox Animation has announced that Will Smith and Tom Holland will voice the lead characters in Spies in Disguise, an upcoming feature based on a short by Lucas Martell, co-founder of Austin's Mighty Coconut animation studo.

In 2009, before he established the rising studio, Martell co-wrote, directed, and animated "Pigeon: Impossible," a hilarious silent tale of a very special suitcase, a very dumb bird, and a nervous spy called Walter. Now Walter returns to the screen, voiced by Holland (Spider-Man: Homecoming), opposite Smith as Lance Sterling, the world's smoothest and most capable spy.

This is more big news for Martell and his team, who are busy with their new YouTube Red series Kings of Atlantis, as well as their own original feature Koalaroo. While the Austin studio will not be directly involved with Spies in Disguise, Martell told the Chronicle, "The short was a labor of love and it’s exciting to have it make its way to the big screen!"

The feature version is part of Fox Animation's reinvigorated slate, and will be co-directed by studio veteran Nick Bruno (The Peanuts Movie, the Ice Age franchise) and storyboard expert Troy Quane (9, Total Drama).

For more on what Martell and his fellow animators are up to, read Cracking the Mighty Coconut. Now here's the original short that started it all: Expect the full feature on January 18, 2019.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Mighty Coconut
Austin Animation Studio Releases Interactive Storybook
Austin Animation Studio Releases Interactive Storybook
Mighty Coconut unveils augmented reality app 57° North

James Renovitch, Feb. 5, 2018

RTX: Austin Animation Update
RTX: Austin Animation Update
New Rooster Teeth show, Castlevania, and more

Richard Whittaker, July 17, 2017

More Austin film news
First Trailer for <i>The Orange Years</i> Gets Slimy
First Trailer for The Orange Years Gets Slimy
Austin-made documentary about Nickelodeon's TV revolution

Richard Whittaker, Oct. 11, 2017

Austin Horror for Halloween
Austin Horror for Halloween
The Honor Farm, Found Footage 3D coming home

Richard Whittaker, Oct. 8, 2017

More by Richard Whittaker
Now Streaming in Austin:
Now Streaming in Austin: "Terrale Tempo - Homecoming"
Close-up portrait of the Black Texas wrestler

June 5, 2020

ATX TV Fest Adds John Legend and <i>Sherman's Showcase</i>
ATX TV Fest Adds John Legend and Sherman's Showcase
Last-minute changes continue as the fest responds to events

June 5, 2020


Mighty Coconut, Austin film news, Austin filmmakers, Animation, Pigeon: Impossible, Spies in Disguise

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle