×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Venice: Al Pacino’s ‘The Humbling’ Producers Venture into Animation

Andrea Iervolino and Monika Bacardi’s Ambi Pictures, at Venice as co-producers of Barry Levinson’s Al Pacino-starrer “The Humbling,” are venturing into animation with “Arctic Justice Thunder Squad.”

The ecology-themed 3D English-language family film is helmed by Canada’s Matthew Lyon in his homeland.

“This movie will be Pixar or Disney quality,” said Iervolino who has set up an animation studio in Toronto. “The team behind this film are all top-notch animators.”

The budget for “Arctic Justice,” which will be ready in 18 months, is being kept under wraps. But Iervolino said it was bigger than any previous Italian toon. Ambi is producing with financing from private investors.

“It’s our first big-budget, CGI animation film that will come from our studio in Toronto, which is a factory of young creatives,” said Iervolino.

The tale turns on a sinister walrus who plots to accelerate global warming and melt the Arctic Circle. A rag-tag group of inexperienced heroes, led by a fox, must come together to foil his nefarious plan and save the Arctic.

Ambi, which has a sales office in Los Angeles, will kick off international sales of “Arctic Justice” at the Toronto Film Festival in September where it will also announce new live-action features on its expanding slate. Iervolino said he was confident he would soon close a deal for U.S. distribution on “Arctic Justice.” If he does, it will be quite an achievement.

In the past 10 years the only Italian company to crack the international animation market is Rainbow Studios with its “Winx” fairies.

Rainbow has also made two animated features, most recently “Gladiators of Rome,” but despite being part-owned by Viacom it failed to get a U.S. release.

Elsewhere in Europe, Spain’s “Planet 51” animated movie did get a U.S. release but failed to fly.

“Our goal is to gradually make bigger movies that get distribution all over the world,” Iervolino vowed.

More Film

  • 'The Cordillera of Dreams' Review: Poetic

    Cannes Film Review: 'The Cordillera of Dreams'

    Rounding out his sublimely meditative, deeply personal documentary-essay trilogy on time, memory and the relationship of Chile’s breathtaking landscapes to its troubled human history, Patricio Guzmán delivers “The Cordillera of Dreams,” a haunting and allusive exploration of the cultural impact of the country’s most spectacular geological feature: its snowcapped mountain spine. Coming after the exploration [...]

  • Ari Emanuel Endeavor

    Endeavor IPO Filing Offers Details of Company's Financials, Leadership Pay Packages

    Endeavor’s IPO filing Thursday offers a hard look at the company’s financial performance during the past three years during a period of rapid growth for the company that’s home to UFC, WME, Professional Bull Riders and a clutch of other assets. Endeavor is generating solid free cash flow from operations and healthy adjusted earnings for [...]

  • Inside amfAR's Cannes Gala

    Inside amfAR's Cannes Gala: Mariah Carey, Kendall Jenner and Tiffany Trump

    Kendall Jenner caused a commotion when she arrived. Tiffany Trump went unrecognized until a member of the press pointed her out as she made her way down the carpet. And Mariah Carey flew in to perform a couple of songs. Welcome to this year’s AmfAR Gala Cannes, the AIDS organization’s annual — and largest — [...]

  • 'Mektoub, My Love: Intermezzo' Review: Abdellatif

    Cannes Film Review: 'Mektoub, My Love: Intermezzo'

    A simple but somehow atypical shot opens Abdellatif Kechiche’s new film: a serene closeup of a young woman’s face, as seen through the camera lens of Amir, a budding photographer still finding his perspective. Her expression is ambiguously tranquil, her long hair lightly rustled by a humid breeze, all softly lit by a sinking afternoon [...]

  • Crown Vic

    Thomas Jane's Police Thriller 'Crown Vic' Sells to Screen Media (EXCLUSIVE)

    Screen Media has bought North American rights to writer-director Joel Souza’s police crime-thriller “Crown Vic,” starring Thomas Jane and Luke Kleintank. The distributor closed terms during the Cannes Film Festival amid a competitive bidding situation between seven other suitors. Screen Media plans to release the pic this fall. “Crown Vic” premiered in April at the [...]

  • Colleen Bell

    Colleen Bell Replaces Amy Lemisch as California Film Commission Director

    Veteran entertainment executive and ambassador Colleen Bell will replace Amy Lemisch as director of the California Film Commission. Bell, who was appointed by Gov. Gavin Newsom on Thursday, has worked as a consultant since 2017. She was the U.S. ambassador to Hungary from 2014 to 2017. She held several positions at Bell-Phillip Television Productions, including [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content