Everyone loves animation. First we love it as kids, then we grow up but the love for animation stays. The story of how an independent animation studio Wizart Animation reached international success truly breaks all the common stereotypes about the industry – as it’s the way from a TV series to a feature movie that independent studios usually choose.
Wizart Animation, though, chose the path major companies usually take and started its career with features that have become the foundation of a large international franchise. “The main achievement for our company is the very fact that the Wizart brand is already present in over 150 countries. Currently you can find us almost all over the world. All this is a proof that we have been accepted into the global animation community. In my view, it’s a great achievement for the Russian animation,” Yuri Moskvin, General Producer for Wizart Company, shares his opinion. “From the very beginning, our goal has been to create commercial animation features that a viewer of any country will find interesting,” tells Vladimir Nikolaev, Executive Producer for Wizart Animation Studio.
Wizart Animation Studio is the only Russian studio to professionally produce 3D content for cinema industry and one of the fastest and most dynamically developing animation studios in Russia. Its rich history started in 2007 and the its initial foundation was a studio for development and localization of multimedia products and software.
The path to the global success of the Russian 3D animation started in January 2012 when the first big project was launched – it was the animated 3D feature “The Snow Queen”, In 2014 the second movie – “The Snow Queen 2: The Snow King” comes out, in 2016 there’s one more release – the animated feature “Sheep and Wolves”.
“The Snow Queen is our first project. Actually all our projects are pretty large, we don’t have any small ones. From the beginning we’ve positioned ourselves as a company that delivers content not only to Russia but also to the international market. That’s why our job was to make it interesting internationally, so that the story is appealing not only to the Russian audience, but also to American and Chinese ones. We are trying to be moving up there, and each our project gets more and more territory, more and more distributors,” comments Yuri Moskvin, General Producer for Wizart Company.
The release of the third instalment in the franchise – “The Snow Queen 3: Fire and Ice” – took place in 2016 and became a real breakthrough got the Russian independent animation. It’s become the top box office Russian movie in the international distribution for the whole history of the Russian cinema.
“The Snow Queen” franchise has earned over $100 million and is considered the most successful Russian project abroad. To the present day, the movies of the franchise are sold to over 150 countries and translated into 30 languages.
Today Wizart Animation Studio is preparing a release of its next unique project – animated feature “The Snow Queen: Mirrorlands” – which, according to the opinions of experts in cinema and animation, will set a new bar of the 3D animation quality. The movie release will take place already this winter – the Russian audience wil see it on January 1, 2019.
“Thanks to our animators’ efforts, “The Snow Queen: Mirrorlands” is a great leap forward in the industry of independent animation. The movie is certainly on the same level with the Disney standards,” comments Vladimir Nikolaev, Executive Producer for Wizart Animation Studio. “The growing global anticipation of the movie motivates us to make even better things, as good as we can,” he concludes.
The animated movie “The Snow Queen: Mirrorlands” will surprise its audience with its special effects and storyline. Progress and fairytale, science and magic, scientific development and sorcery will collide in the vortex of adventures. The Snow Queen will transform into a ghost lady, visible only to Gerda. The creators see the Wow-effect for the audience in the special effects: clouds, lava, water look like they were real; flecks of sunlight play on the sea waves; the landscapes take your breath away with their huge variety and beauty: the battle scenes won’t go unnoticed either – they impress with their super-technologies. The heroes will be traveling by zeppelin and steam cart – they will even visit the flying City of Pirates.
The music for “The Snow Queen: Mirrorlands” was written by known Italian composer Fabrizio Mancinelli, already familiar to the audience by his work for the third franchise movie – he also collaborated with Walt Disney Studios, Golden Globe and Warner Brothers animation.
The directors of the animated feature are Aleksei Tsitsilin and Hollywood’s legendary animator Robert Lence, known for his work on huge blockbusters like “The Lion King”, “Beauty and the Beast”, “Toy Story”, “Shrek” and other animation hits. This is the famous animator’s first experience as a feature movie director. “The Snow Queen: Mirrorlands” also has more prducers now: Yuri Moskvin, Vladimir Nikolaev, Boris Mashkovtsev, Pavel Stepanov and Vadim Vereschagin. Central Partnership (which is a part of Gazprom Media) and Soyuzmultfilm took part in co-production.
“The Snow Queen” is not only a promoted brand but also a long-awaited project, supported by a wide range of licensed production. Even before the global release of the animated movie, the brand will appear on the store shelves as food products branded with the characters of “The Snow Queen: Mirrorlands”. Wizart Company also has an agreement with AZ Company, which will issue GP Batteries sets with pictures of favorite heroes. For the little fans of the movie, there’ll be a line of cosmetics also branded with the movie characters, in collaboration with Russian cosmetic brand Marusya. Finally, the Troll-kids, beloved by many, will appear as soft toys. Wizart collaborates with Igramir company to issue the soft toys of Troll-kids from the franchise the audience loves so much.
In the AFM 2018 Wizart Animation Studio also presents another animated movie “Sheep and Wolves: Pig Deal”.