Comic book property owner Platinum Studios and talent management firm Relativity Management have chosen The Shop Animation Studios of Vancouver to develop and co-produce a computer-animated feature film based on the Italian comic book series, Dylan Dog.
Scheduled to start production in March 2005, Dylan Dog: The Fourth Kingdom presents the latest case for Dylan Dog, an investigator of nightmares. Dylan must stop a supernatural serial killer intent on becoming a deity and ruling a new afterlife dubbed "The Fourth Kingdom". If Dylan fails, the love of his life will die and the forces of heaven and hell may unleash Armageddon upon the Earth.
The Shops president and co-founder, Aaron L. Gilbert, is producing alongside Platinum Studios chairman Scott Mitchell Rosenberg. Relativity CEO Ryan Kavanaugh serves as exec producer with Ervin Rustemagic. Relativity is concluding foreign sales components for the film, and discussions are underway with various domestic studios for distribution.
"The Shop knows how to push boundaries on both style and efficiencya very rare combination," says Rosenberg. "With The Shop as our theatrical animation partners, starting with Dylan, we have the resources to brand our characters worldwide by utilizing our digital assets for games, licensing and all other media."
Ian Pearson, co-founder of The Shop, will direct the pic from a script he co-wrote with long-time creative partner Gavin Blair. This is Pearsons first major creative endeavor since stepping down as the president and CEO of Mainframe Ent., where he was instrumental in the development and production of such award-winning projects as Reboot, Barbie in the Nutcracker, Action Man, War Planets and Weird-Ohs.
"For years Ive been trying to find the right character to tell a more mature story using animation and Dylan Dog is the perfect vehicle," notes Pearson "Although it has a lot of humor, Dylan is a much darker animated feature. It will surprise the animation audience."
Created by Tiziano Sclavi, Dylan Dog, has sold more than 80 million copies worldwide since its debut in 1985. The comic from the Platinum Studios library, is part of Italian publisher Bonelli Editores universe of characters, which combined have amassed sales of several hundred million dollars worldwide.
The Shop Animation Studios (www.shopinc.ca) has created and/or produced award-winning animated projects for such toy companies as Hasbro, Mattel, Bandai and Irwin, and produced animation for ABC, Fox Kids, Fox Family, YTV, Sony, MTV, 4 Kids Ent. and Artisan, among others.