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George Lucas returns with… an animated musical? Strange Magic set for January 2015

George Lucas may have stepped aside from the Star Wars franchise he created, but that doesn’t mean he’s staying out of the movie-making business altogether. The Disney-owned Lucasfilm has announced that the animated movie Strange Magic, based on a story by Lucas, arrives in theaters in 2015.

Described as a “madcap fairy tale musical,” the film is inspired by William Shakespeare’s play A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and promises to feature songs from the past six decades of popular music. Gary Rydstrom (Toy Story Toons: Hawaiian Vacation) directs, with a story that follows various goblins, elves, and other magical creatures who get caught up in a battle for a powerful potion.

Strange Magic features an impressive voice cast that includes Alan Cumming, Evan Rachel Wood, Kristin Chenoweth, Maya Rudolph, and Alfred Molina, among others. Just as notable, however, is the involvement of the animation studio at Industrial Light & Magic. ILM was responsible for the Oscar-winning 2011 animated film Rango, and will partner with Lucasfilm Animation Singapore on the film.

Moulin Rouge music producer Marius de Vries serves as both musical director and composer for the film.

Strange Magic hits theaters January 23, 2015.