Tim Johnson (film director)

Last updated

Tim Johnson
Born (1961-08-27) August 27, 1961 (age 62) [1]
Alma mater Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences [3]
Occupation(s)Animator, film director, film producer, television director
Years active1990 – Present
Employer DreamWorks Animation (1996-present)

Tim Johnson (born August 27, 1961) is an American animator, film director, film producer, and television director. Johnson is best known for directing the DreamWorks Animation films Antz , Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas , Over the Hedge , and Home .


Life and career

Johnson was born in Chicago. He studied at Northwestern University where he earned a BA in English Literature. He also produced two animated films; both of which earned Richter Grant Organization Awards. [4]

Upon graduating, he worked for two years as a freelance animator and director. His introduction to computer animation came in 1985 while he worked on the staff at Post Effects in Chicago. [4] He later joined Pacific Data Images in 1988 and two years later co-founded the studio's Character Animation Group. [4] He also directed the first CG Pillsbury Doughboy commercial.

Johnson won two Annie awards on Antz and Over the Hedge , an Audience Award on Over the Hedge, and a Grand Prize for The Simpsons' "Treehouse of Horror VI".

While at DreamWorks Animation, he also directed Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas , Home (an adaptation of The True Meaning of Smekday ), and the Christmas television special Kung Fu Panda Holiday , [5] [6] [7] and additionally served as executive producer for How to Train Your Dragon and Abominable .



1998 Antz Director
2000 Cyberworld Director: Antz segment, Animation Director: Homer3 segment
2003 Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas Director
2006 Over the Hedge Director
Hammy's Boomerang Adventure Creative Consultant
2010 How to Train Your Dragon Executive Producer
2015 Home [5] [6] Director
2019 Abominable Executive Producer [8]


1995 The Simpsons's Treehouse of Horror VI Computer Animation Director
2010 Kung Fu Panda Holiday Director
2019 How To Train Your Dragon: Homecoming Director [9]

Related Research Articles

<i>Antz</i> 1998 DreamWorks Animation film

Antz is a 1998 American animated adventure comedy film produced by DreamWorks Animation and Pacific Data Images, and distributed by DreamWorks Pictures. It was directed by Eric Darnell and Tim Johnson from a screenplay by Todd Alcott and the writing team of Chris and Paul Weitz. The film stars the voices of Woody Allen, Sharon Stone, Jennifer Lopez, Sylvester Stallone, Christopher Walken, Dan Aykroyd, Anne Bancroft, Danny Glover and Gene Hackman. Some of the main characters share facial similarities with the actors who voice them. The film involves an anxious worker ant, Z (Allen), who falls in love with Princess Bala (Stone). When the treacherous scheming of the arrogant officer General Mandible (Hackman) threatens to wipe out the entire worker population, Z must save the ant colony from the flooded tunnel and strives to make social inroads.

<i>Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas</i> 2003 DreamWorks Animation film

Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas is a 2003 American animated adventure film produced by DreamWorks Animation and distributed by DreamWorks Pictures. Featuring the character Sinbad the Sailor, it was directed by Tim Johnson and Patrick Gilmore and written by John Logan, and stars the voices of Brad Pitt, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Michelle Pfeiffer, and Joseph Fiennes. It covers the story of Sinbad, a pirate who travels the sea with his dog and his loyal crew, alongside Marina, the fiancée of his childhood friend Prince Proteus, to recover the stolen Book of Peace from Eris to save Proteus from approving Sinbad's death sentence.

Conrad Vernon is an American voice actor, director, writer, and storyboard artist best known for his work on the DreamWorks animated film series Shrek as well as other films such as Monsters vs. Aliens, Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted, and Penguins of Madagascar. He also co-directed non-DreamWorks animated films such as Sony Pictures' Sausage Party and MGM’s The Addams Family.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Karey Kirkpatrick</span> American screenwriter, director, and producer

Karey Kirkpatrick is an American screenwriter, film director, and producer. His films include Chicken Run, The Rescuers Down Under, James and the Giant Peach,Over the Hedge, The Spiderwick Chronicles, Charlotte's Web, and The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. He has also directed the films Over the Hedge,Imagine That starring Eddie Murphy as well as Smallfoot. Kirkpatrick wrote the English-language screenplays for the U.S. releases of the Studio Ghibli films The Secret World of Arrietty in 2012 and From Up on Poppy Hill in 2013.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">DreamWorks Animation</span> American animation studio

DreamWorks Animation LLC (DWA) (also known as DreamWorks Animation Studios or simply DreamWorks) is an American animation studio owned by Universal Pictures, a division of NBCUniversal, which is itself a subsidiary of Comcast. The studio has released a total of 48 feature films, including several of the highest-grossing animated films of all time, with Shrek 2 (2004) having been the highest at the time of its release. Its first film, Antz, was released on October 2, 1998, and its latest film was Kung Fu Panda 4 on March 8, 2024; their upcoming theatrical slate of films includes The Wild Robot on September 20, 2024, Dog Man on January 31, 2025, and The Bad Guys 2 on August 1, 2025. Additionally, DreamWorks has reserved a release date for an untitled animated film on September 26, 2025

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Pacific Data Images</span> American animation studio owned by DreamWorks Animation

Pacific Data Images (PDI) was an American visual effects and computer animation production company based in Redwood City, California, that was bought by DreamWorks SKG in 2000. It was renamed PDI/DreamWorks and was owned by DreamWorks Animation.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Simon Wells</span> English film director

Simon Finlay Wells is an English film director of animation and live-action films. He is the great-grandson of author H. G. Wells, and is best known for directing The Prince of Egypt with Brenda Chapman and Steve Hickner.

Eric Darnell is an American animator, storyboard artist, director, screenwriter, songwriter and occasional voice actor best known for co-directing Antz with Tim Johnson, as well as co-directing and co-writing Madagascar, Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa and Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted with Tom McGrath, as well as the spin off Penguins of Madagascar (2014) with Simon J. Smith.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Brad Lewis</span> American film producer

Bradford Clark Lewis is an American film producer, animation director, and politician. He produced Antz, the Oscar-winning Ratatouille, Storks, and How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World. He also co-directed Cars 2. He is a former mayor of the city of San Carlos, California.

Christopher Jenkins is a Welsh effects animator, storyboard artist, screenwriter, director and producer.

<i>The True Meaning of Smekday</i> 2007 childrens book by Adam Rex

The True Meaning of Smekday is a 2007 children's book by Adam Rex. It was adapted by DreamWorks Animation into the 2015 feature film Home.

<i>How to Train Your Dragon</i> (2010 film) DreamWorks Animation film

How to Train Your Dragon is a 2010 American animated fantasy film loosely based on the 2003 book of the same name by Cressida Cowell, produced by DreamWorks Animation and distributed by Paramount Pictures. It was directed by Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois and produced by Bonnie Arnold, from a screenplay that Sanders and DeBlois co-wrote with Will Davies, and stars the voices of Jay Baruchel, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson, America Ferrera, Jonah Hill, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, T.J. Miller, and Kristen Wiig. The story takes place in Berk, a mythical Viking village; Hiccup, an undersized teen wishing to become a dragon slayer like the other Vikings, injures a rare Night Fury dragon but is unable to bring himself to kill it. He instead helps and befriends the dragon, and quickly discovers that things are not exactly as they seem in the conflict between Vikings and dragons.

Simon James Smith is a British animator, film director, and voice actor. He is best known for his work at DreamWorks Animation. Smith came to PDI/DreamWorks in 1997 as head of layout for the company's feature film division. A CG animation veteran with nearly 35 years of experience, Smith supervised the layout department on PDI/DreamWorks' first animated feature Antz, serving as the Head of Layout in Shrek. He then directed the Universal Studios Theatre experience Shrek 4-D, followed by the short Far Far Away Idol. His first feature film as a director was in 2007, with Bee Movie. He then directed another DVD short, Megamind: The Button of Doom, before co-directing, with Eric Darnell, the comedy/spy action spin-off from the Madagascar series, Penguins of Madagascar, the mini series "Baymax Dreams" for Disney, and is executive producer "Batwheels" for Warner Bros.

<i>How to Train Your Dragon</i> DreamWorks Animation media franchise

How to Train Your Dragon is an American media franchise from DreamWorks Animation and loosely based on the eponymous series of children's books by British author Cressida Cowell. It consists of three animated feature films: How to Train Your Dragon (2010), How to Train Your Dragon 2 (2014), and The Hidden World (2019), five short films: Legend of the Boneknapper Dragon (2010), Book of Dragons (2010), Gift of the Night Fury (2011), Dawn of the Dragon Racers (2014), and Homecoming (2019), and a live-action reboot from Universal Pictures in development and scheduled for release on June 13, 2025.

<i>Home</i> (2015 film) DreamWorks Animation film

Home is a 2015 American animated science fiction comedy film produced by DreamWorks Animation and distributed by 20th Century Fox. Loosely based on Adam Rex's 2007 children's book The True Meaning of Smekday, the film was directed by Tim Johnson from a screenplay by Tom J. Astle and Matt Ember, and stars the voices of Jim Parsons, Rihanna, Steve Martin, Jennifer Lopez, and Matt Jones. The story follows the shared adventures of a friendly alien who is shunned by the rest of his kind, and a teenage girl searching for her mother after they are separated during an invasion of Earth.

Alessandro Carloni is an Italian film director, animator, and art director, best known for his work with DreamWorks Animation in general, particularly the Kung Fu Panda films. He co-directed Kung Fu Panda 3, alongside Jennifer Yuh Nelson.

<i>Abominable</i> (2019 film) Film by Jill Culton

Abominable is a 2019 animated adventure film produced by DreamWorks Animation, Pearl Studio, and Zhong Ming You Ying Film. Written and directed by Jill Culton and co-directed by Todd Wilderman, the film stars the voices of Chloe Bennet, Albert Tsai, Tenzing Norgay Trainor, Eddie Izzard, Sarah Paulson, and Tsai Chin. The film follows a teenage girl named Yi (Bennet) who encounters a young Yeti on the roof of her apartment building in Shanghai, names him Everest and embarks on an epic quest to reunite the magical creature with his family at the highest point on Earth along with her mischievous friends Jin (Trainor) and Peng (Tsai), but the trio of friends will have to stay one-step ahead of Burnish (Izzard), a wealthy man intent on capturing a Yeti, and zoologist Dr. Zara (Paulson) to help Everest get home.


  1. "Johnson, Tim, 1961 August 27-". Library of Congress. Archived from the original on October 2, 2016. Retrieved October 30, 2013.
  2. Mastrantonio, Rilio (May 13, 2006). "Tim Johnson / Wanda Sykes Interview: Over The Hedge". Hollywood Snitch. Archived from the original on March 3, 2016. Retrieved November 5, 2012.
  3. "World-changing Alumni". Weinberg College of Arts & Sciences. Archived from the original on September 1, 2016. Retrieved October 30, 2013.
  4. 1 2 3 "HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON (2010) – Crew info". Visual Hollywood. Archived from the original on November 5, 2013. Retrieved November 5, 2012.
  5. 1 2 "Jim Parsons and Rihanna to Voice DreamWorks Animation's Happy Smekday!". DreamWorks Animation. ComingSoon.net. June 20, 2012. Archived from the original on October 6, 2014. Retrieved June 20, 2012.
  6. 1 2 "Movie Title Changes". Box Office Mojo. Archived from the original on June 25, 2013. Retrieved June 16, 2013.
  7. "DreamWorks Animation Moves Up 'Penguins Of Madagascar' Bow, Bumps 'Home' To 2015". Deadline.com. May 20, 2014. Archived from the original on June 12, 2014. Retrieved May 20, 2014.
  8. "'Agents of SHIELD' Star Chloe Bennet to Lead Pearl Studios' Animated 'Everest' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter . March 20, 2018. Archived from the original on April 1, 2018. Retrieved March 24, 2018.
  9. "Tim Johnson". IMDb. Archived from the original on January 26, 2021. Retrieved April 11, 2021.