Herold lines up ‘Baba Yaga’

Dan Creteur to helm 3D animated fairytale

PARIS — Pascal Herold’s Delacave Studio is on board to produce “Baba Yaga,” a 3D animated fairytale based on a recurring character from Slavic folklore.

First-time director Dan Creteur has been tapped to pen, helm, as well as design the characters and settings for the film.

Toon follows a 13-year-old prince who embarks on a perilous journey to save his parents, who have been captured by Baba Yaga, a mean-spirited witch who eats children. While the boy travels through a magical forest, he meets a mysterious little girl who helps him find his parents.

Fascinated by Slavic culture, Creteur, who came up with “Baba Yaga’s” original story, has written a novel based on it, and is in talks with various French publishers.

A graduate of Supinfocom, one of France’s top animation schools, Creteur worked on Delacave’s last two features, “Cinderella 3D,” now in post, and “The True Story of Puss ‘n Boots,” released in France in 2009.

“Baba Yaga” will be presented at concept stage during the 13th Cartoon Movie event in Lyon, France, which runs March 2-4.

Budgeted at Euros 9 million ($12.4 million), toon mainly targets 8 to 12 year olds.

Herold is negotiating with Nexus Factory, the Belgian outfit that co-produced “Cinderella 3D,” to board “Baba Yaga,” and is seeking other co-producers, probably East European, given the toon’s source material.

“We raised an important part of the (‘Cinderella’) budget through foreign sales, so we’re now increasingly focusing on developing features for the international marketplace,” Herold said.

“Baba Yaga’s” artistic team includes 3D animation director Fabrice Delapierre (“Cinderella 3D,” “Igor”) and CG supervisor Ali Hamdan (“The Lorax”).