“Angry Birds,” the video game that conquered small screens to become the top-selling mobile-phone application of all time, is coming to the big screen.
The animated 3-D film is being developed, produced and financed by the game’s publisher, Espoo, Finland-based Rovio Entertainment Oy, and will be distributed by Sony Pictures Entertainment on July 1, 2016, the companies said in an e-mailed statement today.
Sony Pictures was among several major Hollywood studios to seek distribution rights for a film version of the game, in which players use a virtual slingshot to hurl birds at targets, the companies said. Versions of the game have been downloaded more than 1.7 billion times and a cartoon series, available on some video-on-demand channels, has attracted more than 150 million views.
Closely held Rovio, founded in 2003, also produces the mobile games “The Croods,” based on the DreamWorks Animation SKG movie, “Tiny Thief,” and “Icebreaker.”
Sony Pictures is based in Culver City, California and is owned by Tokyo-based Sony Corp. The parent’s American depositary receipts fell 1.5 percent to $20.45 at the close in New York. They have gained 83 percent this year.