Sony nabs Spanish 3D toon ‘Justin’

Banderas, Kandor-produced pic to bow August 2013

MADRID — Sony Pictures Releasing de Espana has acquired Spanish theatrical and home entertainment rights to Manuel Sicilia’s 3D family toon pic “Justin and the Knights of Valor.”

It looks set to be one of Spanish cinema’s most ambitious theatrical releases for next year. Sony is skedding “Justin’s” bow for Aug. 23.

Costing Euros22 million ($28.6 million) — one of the biggest budgets ever for a Spanish animated feature — “Justin” is produced by Spanish studio Kandor Graphics, Kerry Fulton and Antonio Banderas.

U.K. sales and film prod company Timeless Films and Alicante’s Aliwood also take production credits.

Banderas’ shingle Green Moon, a partner in Kandor, finances alongside the Andalusia regional government and Mare Nostrum bank.

Broadcaster LaSexta has snagged “Justin’s” Spanish free-to-air TV rights.

Now in post, and sold by Timeless, pic has already been pre-sold to more than 120 countries.

“Justin’s” high-profile voice cast includes Freddie Highmore, Saoirse Ronan, Julie Walters, Alfred Molina, Mark Strong, Rupert Everett and Banderas.

Pic turns on Justin, an idealistic boy who dreams of becoming a knight in shining armor. But his magical kingdom is in a painful transition to a modern age dominated by bureaucracy.