‘Chico’ merges style with music

Eye on the Oscars: Animation - 'Chico and Rita'

With its ambitious sweep and epic story of love, passion, and heartbreak set in the jazz worlds of Cuba, New York, Paris and Las Vegas across several decades, “the big challenge was finding the right technique to tell the story, as well as nailing the film’s style and all the details,” says co-producer Michael Rose. “Spanish designer Javier Mariscal, who directed with Oscar-winning director Fernando Trueba (“Belle Epoque”) and Tono Errando, has a very distinct style, so we worked hard at translating (his style) into animation. We had a very complex script, with all of these dance sequences and club scenes, and we spent time testing different animation techniques.”

Ultimately, they decided to go “the expensive route,” using classic hand-drawn 2D animation. “There are cheaper ways of making animated films, but you simply don’t get the quality of look and character acting we all wanted, and CG wasn’t appropriate for the subject matter,” Rose says.

It then took the team more than six months to find the right animators who could “find the poetry” in individual cels. “All the design and development and original artwork was done at Mariscal Estudio in Barcelona,” he says, “and then some of the animation was farmed out to various studios around the world — but it was all controlled out of Barcelona.”

The film, with a budget of $13 million, took seven years from start to finish to complete, with physical production taking more than 2 1/2 years. “We’ve already discussed other ideas, using the same techniques,” Rose says.

EYE ON THE OSCARS: ANIMATION
Animated pics boost property values
Whether working on a shoestring hand-drawn project or pushing the limits of computer-generated technology, this year’s offerings overcame major challenges in bringing their animated visions to screen. Here’s how:
‘Arthur Christmas’ | ‘Chico and Rita’ | ‘Gnomeo and Juliet’ | ‘Rango’ | ‘Wrinkles’ | ‘Rio’

More Film

  • Les Arcs Film Festival

    Les Arcs European Film Festival's Industry Village Kicks Off with Strong Roster

    With its ambitious sweep and epic story of love, passion, and heartbreak set in the jazz worlds of Cuba, New York, Paris and Las Vegas across several decades, “the big challenge was finding the right technique to tell the story, as well as nailing the film’s style and all the details,” says co-producer Michael Rose. […]

  • Star Wars: The Last Jedi

    Box Office: 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' Rockets to $215 Million Opening Weekend

    With its ambitious sweep and epic story of love, passion, and heartbreak set in the jazz worlds of Cuba, New York, Paris and Las Vegas across several decades, “the big challenge was finding the right technique to tell the story, as well as nailing the film’s style and all the details,” says co-producer Michael Rose. […]

  • Disney-Fox Deal Sets Up Scramble for

    Disney-Fox Deal Unleashes Flood of Free-Agent Executives, Talent

    With its ambitious sweep and epic story of love, passion, and heartbreak set in the jazz worlds of Cuba, New York, Paris and Las Vegas across several decades, “the big challenge was finding the right technique to tell the story, as well as nailing the film’s style and all the details,” says co-producer Michael Rose. […]

  • Anita Hill

    Anita Hill Chairs Hollywood Anti-Sexual Harassment Commission Formed by Top Execs

    With its ambitious sweep and epic story of love, passion, and heartbreak set in the jazz worlds of Cuba, New York, Paris and Las Vegas across several decades, “the big challenge was finding the right technique to tell the story, as well as nailing the film’s style and all the details,” says co-producer Michael Rose. […]

  • Warren Beatty

    Arnon Milchan Sues Warren Beatty Over 'Rules Don't Apply' Flop

    With its ambitious sweep and epic story of love, passion, and heartbreak set in the jazz worlds of Cuba, New York, Paris and Las Vegas across several decades, “the big challenge was finding the right technique to tell the story, as well as nailing the film’s style and all the details,” says co-producer Michael Rose. […]

  • Oscar Isaac Addams Family

    Oscar Isaac in Talks to Voice Gomez Addams in Animated 'Addams Family' Movie

    With its ambitious sweep and epic story of love, passion, and heartbreak set in the jazz worlds of Cuba, New York, Paris and Las Vegas across several decades, “the big challenge was finding the right technique to tell the story, as well as nailing the film’s style and all the details,” says co-producer Michael Rose. […]

  • Jennifer Lawrence

    Publicists for Jennifer Lawrence, Daisy Ridley, Amy Adams Form New Firm

    With its ambitious sweep and epic story of love, passion, and heartbreak set in the jazz worlds of Cuba, New York, Paris and Las Vegas across several decades, “the big challenge was finding the right technique to tell the story, as well as nailing the film’s style and all the details,” says co-producer Michael Rose. […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content