Three amigos team up on third ‘Mortadelo’

Zeta, WB Spain and Ilion partner on comicbook adaptation

Spanish shingles Zeta Cinema, Warner Bros. Pictures Spain and Ilion Animation are teaming for Javier Fesser’s 3D toon “Mortadelo y Filemon contra Jimmy el Cachondo.”

Warner Bros. has picked up Spanish theatrical and home-entertainment distribution rights for the animated 3D pic.

Tooner marks Zeta Cinema’s latest attempt to exploit the film potential of print properties at its parent company, the publishing conglom Zeta Group. Madrid-based studio Ilion, the producer of CGI-animated comedy “Planet 51,” a 2009 Sony release Stateside, has boarded the project as a tech partner.

Fesser directed live-action adaptation “Mortadelo & Filemon: The Big Adventure,” which topped Spain B.O. in 2003 with $29.8 million.

Comicbook’s most recent film version, Miguel Bardem’s 2008 “Mortadelo & Filemon: Mission Save the Planet,” nabbed a standout $10 million B.O. in Spain.

Now in pre-production, and budgeted at around $19.5 million, including P&A, the new pic is produced by Luis Manso at Peliculas Pendelton. Fesser co-wrote the script with Cristobal Ruiz and Claro Garcia.

Pubcasters TVE and TV3 plus paybox Canal Plus acquired the film.

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