Studiocanal sells rights to hit Spanish toonpic

PARIS — Gaiam Vivendi Ent. has inked an all-rights U.S. deal with Studiocanal on Spanish toonpic “Tad, the Lost Explorer.”

Harold van Lier, Studiocanal international distribution topper, said “Tad” sold for just-under seven figures after strong bidding.

Helmed by first-timer Enrique Gato, the Peru-set comedy-adventure yarn turns on a construction worker-turned-treasure-hunter.

Not only is “Tad” Spain’s biggest B.O. hit so far this year, the Paramount release is also Spain’s highest-grossing homegrown toon ever, cuming Euros13.9 million ($17.9 million) through Wednesday in Spain.

Deal extends Studiocanal’s successful relationship with Gaiam, an indie film, TV, DVD and digital distribution shingle.

Gaiam has sold more than 400,000 DVDs in the U.S. on Studiocanal’s “A Turtle’s Tale: Sammy’s Adventures,” Van Lier said, adding that Gaiam also acquired the sequel, “Sammy 2,” at Toronto.

“Tad’s” boffo Spain B.O. is laying the foundations for a mainstream toonpic production biz in Spain: “Tad” producers Telecinco Cinema, El Toro Pics, Lightbox Ent. and Ikiru Films are now in development on two new animated features, “Tad 2″ and family adventure pic ” Capture the Flag.”

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