Julien Bisaro and Claire Paoletti, the French director-writer team behind the award-winning short Shooom’s Odyssey (2020) are setting their feature debut. The duo pitched the animated feature La Petite Cavale (On The Run) to co-production partners, as well as producers and broadcasters, at an industry session at this year’s Annecy animation festival on Wednesday. Bisaro and Paoletti screened a two-minute pilot for the project, which France’s Picolo Pictures are producing.
The kids-friendly feature focuses on Cookie, a male penguin who cannot lay an egg. When a volcanic eruption disrupts his New Zealand refuge and rolls an echidna egg in his path, Cookie takes it as a sign that this is the opportunity for fatherhood he has been longing for, and decides to raise the echidna chick as his own.
The bird theme and focus on parenthood recall Bisaro and Paoletti’s Shooom’s Odyssey, which told the story of little owl chick Shooom who hatches just as a storm is tuning up in the bayou around her nest, separating her from her mother. The hatchling sets out on a journey to find her mum or a suitable replacement — auditioning an alligator and a raccoon along the way — before finding two children who look after her. Shooom won the Cristal award for best TV project at Annecy in 2020 and won an Annie for outstanding achievement for production design in an animated TV/media production. The 2D animated preschool film also sold worldwide.
Bisaro and Paoletti collaborated on Bisaro’s 2015 black and white César-nominated short Bang Bang!. Bisaro also worked as a storyboard artist work on Oscar-nominee (and Cannes and Annecy winner) I Lost My Body (2019) and 2009 Oscar-nominee (and Annecy Audience Award) The Secret of Kells.
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