Gracie Films is an American independent film and television production company created by James L. Brooks in 1986. The company is primarily responsible for producing the long-running animated series The Simpsons, as well as the films Big, Broadcast News, and Jerry Maguire.
Gracie Films logo
|Industry||Film and television animation production|
|Founder||James L. Brooks|
|Richard Sakai (President)|
James L. Brooks founded Gracie Films at 20th Century Fox in 1986, with Polly Platt as executive vice president. Named for comedian Gracie Allen, the company was established to "provide real writers with a vehicle to get their movies made". Its primary distributor is currently Sony Pictures Entertainment, though it continues to produce The Simpsons at Fox's studio in Century City, Los Angeles.
According to Simpsons Confidential, Brooks gave The Simpsons' writing staff free rein, as he firmly believed they were the most important part of the process, and "in the legal battles over The Simpsons, it was Fox that was being sued, not Gracie Films". The company also coordinates international distribution and dubbing for The Simpsons, "in Italy, in particular... [finding] voices for dubbing that would match those of the original American actors as closely as possible."
Gracie Films' production logo depicts noisy patrons in a movie theater (which were the voices of then-CEO of Fox Garth Ancier and music composer Jeffrey Townsend double-tracked to sound like there were more people) being shushed by a woman in the back row (with the shush sound being done by Tracey Ullman) before the company's name appears on the screen. Audio variations exist on The Simpsons, often with dialogue from the episode or characters such as Homer responding to the shush. The most common audio variation is on the Treehouse of Horror episodes, where Tracey Ullman's shush sound is replaced with a stock sound of a woman screaming cowardly and the logo's music is played in a minor key on a synth-emulated pipe organ. Originally, the Roland D-50 PN-D50-00 Pipe Organ preset was used for that variant. The music was composed by Jeffrey Townsend on a tiny KORG synth rack using a custom programmed preset. Gracie Films’s main production office is at the Sidney Poitier building on the Sony Pictures Studios lot in Culver City, California.
|Title||Creator(s)||Years active||Co-Produced by|
|The Tracey Ullman Show||James L. Brooks
|The Simpsons||Matt Groening||1989–present||20th Television|
|Sibs||Heide Perlman||1991–1992||Columbia Pictures Television|
|1993–1994||Columbia Pictures Television|
|The Critic||Al Jean
|1994–1995, 2000–2001||Columbia TriStar Television/Adelaide Productions|
|What About Joan?||Ed. Weinberger||2001–2002||Columbia TriStar Television|
|Broadcast News||James L. Brooks||December 16, 1987||20th Century Fox|
|Big||Penny Marshall||Gary Ross and Anne Spielberg||James L. Brooks and Robert Greenhut||June 3, 1988|
|Say Anything...||Cameron Crowe||Polly Platt||April 14, 1989|
|The War of the Roses||Danny DeVito||Michael J. Leeson||James L. Brooks and Arnon Milchan||December 8, 1989||Jersey Films/Regency International Pictures (Uncredited)|
|I'll Do Anything||James L. Brooks||James L. Brooks and Polly Platt||February 4, 1994||Columbia Pictures|
|Bottle Rocket||Wes Anderson||Owen C. Wilson and Wes Anderson||Polly Platt and Cynthia Hargrave||February 21, 1996||Indian Paintbrush/Boyle-Taylor Productions|
|Jerry Maguire||Cameron Crowe||Cameron Crowe, James L. Brooks, Laurence Mark, and Richard Sakai||December 16, 1996||TriStar Pictures||Vinyl Films|
|As Good as It Gets||James L. Brooks||Story by: Mark Andrus
Screenplay by: Mark Andrus and James L. Brooks
|James L. Brooks, Bridget Johnson, and Kristi Zea||December 25, 1997|
|Riding in Cars with Boys||Penny Marshall||Morgan Upton Ward||James L. Brooks, Laurence Mark, Sara Colleton, Richard Sakai, and Julie Ansell||October 19, 2001||Columbia Pictures|
|Spanglish||James L. Brooks||Julie Ansell, James L. Brooks, and Richard Sakai||December 17, 2004|
|The Simpsons Movie||David Silverman||James L. Brooks, Matt Groening, Al Jean, Ian Maxtone-Graham, George Meyer, David Mirkin, Mike Reiss, Mike Scully, Matt Selman, John Swartzwelder, and Jon Vitti||James L. Brooks, Matt Groening, Al Jean, Mike Scully, and Richard Sakai||July 27, 2007||20th Century Fox||The Curiosity Company/Rough Draft Feature Animation/Film Roman/AKOM/20th Century Fox Animation|
|How Do You Know||James L. Brooks||Julie Ansell, James L. Brooks, Lawrence Mark, and Paula Weinstein||December 17, 2010||Columbia Pictures|
|The Edge of Seventeen||Kelly Fremon Craig||James L. Brooks, Richard Sakai, and Julie Ansell||November 18, 2016||STX Entertainment||Huayi Brothers Pictures/Tang Media Productions|
|Icebox||Daniel Sawka||Julie Ansell, James L. Brooks, David S. Greathouse, and Richard Sakai||December 7, 2018||HBO||HBO Films/Endeavor Content|
|Maggie Simpson in "The Longest Daycare"||July 13, 2012||20th Century Fox||20th Century Fox Animation/The Curiosity Company/Film Roman||Short film, shown with Ice Age: Continental Drift|
|Maggie Simpson in "Playdate with Destiny"||March 6, 2020||20th Century Studios||20th Century Fox Animation/The Curiosity Company||Short film, shown with Onward|
- "Richard Sakai / Variety". Variety. Retrieved September 26, 2016.
- Alisa Perren, Indie, Inc.: Miramax and the Transformation of Hollywood in the 1990s, p. 159, at Google Books
- John Ortved, Simpsons Confidential, p. 30, at Google Books
- John Ortved, Simpsons Confidential: The uncensored, totally unauthorised history of the world's greatest TV show by the people that made it, p. 126, at Google Books
- Michela Ardizzoni, Chiara Ferrari (eds.), Beyond Monopoly: Globalization and Contemporary Italian Media, p. 101, at Google Books
- Chiara Francesca Ferrari, Since When Is Fran Drescher Jewish?: Dubbing Stereotypes in The Nanny, The Simpsons, and The Sopranos, p. 73, at Google Books
- "HBO Films Acquires Immigration Drama Icebox". Retrieved December 21, 2019.