On September 12, an Agreement between the Russian Export Center (the REC), a large Chinese distributor HY Media/CAYIE INTERNATIONAL MEDIA GROUP LIMITED and an animation company Wizart. The solemn ceremony of signing took place at the REC stand.
The document was signed by Andrey Slepnev (General Director for the REC), Lisha Ning (CEO for HY Media/CAYIE INTERNATIONAL MEDIA GROUP LIMITED) and Yuri Moskvin (General Producer of Wizart).
It’s the first time when the Chinese company co-funds Russian animation. Thanks to HY Media/CAYIE INTERNATIONAL MEDIA GROUP LIMITED, several Chinese companies will participate in the project of the animated movie “The Snow Queen: Mirrorlands” as partners – for example a cosmetics company and an e-ticket service. The product placement of these brands will be presented in the Chinese version of the feature.
“We are so happy to work with Wizart. The Snow Queen: Mirrorlands is a high quality animation. We do believe it would have a great box office in China. We hope that this investment of Snow Queen 4 can open a new chapter of China-Russia film and cultural industry,” comments Lisha Ning, CEO for HY Media/CAYIE INTERNATIONAL MEDIA GROUP LIMITED.
“The Chinese market is one of the most closed markets in the world and it’s the first time a Russian movie has achieved such a large interest from Chinese partners. We see the investments in The Snow Queen: Mirrorlands as the beginning of a fruitful partnership between Russia and China and believe in the success of our project – The Snow Queen franchise,” adds Wizart’s General Producer Yuri Moskvin.
The Russian Export Center will provide additional information-marketing support to both this Russian-Chinese project and other Wizart’s animation projects in China, within specialized exhibitions and presentations of the Russian creative industries as well as the project “Made in Russia.”
“Export of Russian animations provides the external markets with a large package of license production, from toys to common consumer goods, including clothes and accessories, as well as food products with images of the popular characters. This symbiosis between different production areas allows increasing the export economic effect. The Chinese market opens big opportunities for our national animation and live action film companies and we’re ready to provide our support in promotion of this content,” says Andrey Slepnev, General Director for the REC.
“This agreement is a proof that the Russian animation industry has a large export potential,” notes Yuliana Slashcheva, the Chairman of the Russian Animated Film Association Board. “We see a huge interest in joint projects and distribution from our Chinese partners.”
She is sure that the agreement with Wizart is “a new starting point for the animation industry in both Russia and China.”
“Due to the whole Chinese generation having grown up with the Russian animation, we have common cultural and value codes, which means great perspectives for the future joint,” added Yuliana Slashcheva.
The Chinese earnings of The Snow Queen franchise third movie amounted to almost $12 million. This is a remarkable success for the recent years and a unique result for independent animation. More than that, the animated movie The Snow Queen 3: Fire and Ice has become the top box office Russian movie in the international distribution for the whole history of the Russian cinema. For the current day, the earnings of the popular franchise amount to over $100 million. The animated franchise The Snow Queen is considered the most successful Russian project abroad.
“Wizart Animation is the leader in the production of the high-budget feature animation in Russia and Eastern Europe. Each of our projects is getting better than the previous ones in all aspects, including technologies, storytelling, the plot, the characters’ personalities. But the most important thing is we’re improving our quality every day,” says Vladimir Nikolaev, Executive Producer of Wizart.
Vadim Vereshchagin, General Director of Central Partnership: “China is one of the major foreign markets for the national movie distribution. We’re happy our Chinese partners have expressed interest and will co-fund our animated film The Snow Queen: Mirrorlands. Considering the box-office success the previous franchise instalments achieved in China, we’re expecting even better results.”
The producers of The Snow Queen: Mirrorlands are Yuri Moskvin, Vladimir Nikolaev, Boris Mashkovtsev and Pavel Stepanov. Film companies Central Partnership (which is a part of Gazprom Media) and Soyuzmultfilm took part in co-production. The directors of the movie are Aleksei Tsitsilin and Robert Lence (The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, Toy Story, Shrek, etc.). The Russian audience can see the movie in cinemas already from January 1, 2019.