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Chilean Oscar-Winning Punkrobot to Produce Animated Series ‘Guitar & Drum’ (EXCLUSIVE)

Latest company short, "I Am Little Red,” voiced by Jessica Chastain, while Punkrobot prepares animated feature film spin-off of ‘Bear Story’

Chile’s Oscar-Winning Punkrobot Animation Studio will present at the upcoming Mip Junior and Mipcom a pilot of “Guitar & Drum,” an short-format animated TV series of 40 episodes of five-minutes each.

Punkrobot leapt to international recognition with its 2015 “Bear Story,” which won best animated short at the 88th Academy Awards, becoming the first Chilean movie ever to take an Oscar.

“Guitar’s” main characters are a guitar and a drum who have other musical instruments as friends. Punkrobot partners María Elisa Soto-Aguilar y Antonia Herrera are attached to direct.

“It’s necessary nowadays to launch a message to children that all features making us different and special persons are able to make up a big team, an orchestra if we join together to create a great melody,” Punkrobot CEO Patricio (“Pato”) Escala told Variety. He added that financing for the first season is also secured. Escala is president of Chile’s national lobby Animachi.

Punkrobot Animation Studios has just finished a new short “I Am a Little Red,” to be launched this fall. Voiced by Jessica Chastain and produced by 50 Eggs, based in Wellesley, Massachusetts in co-production with Punkrobot, the eight-minute piece is directed by Mary Mazzio, Gabriel Osorio Vargas and Alec Sokolow, an Academy Award-nominee for “Toy Story.”

“I Am a Little Red” is a contemporary version of classic tale “Little Red Riding Hood” aimed at children at most-risk of falling victims to sex trafficking (such as those in foster-care, runaways and the homeless), with the goal of prevention and awareness.

“We like to face audiovisual challenges, we are absolutely internationally-driven and all four company partners want to make a positive contribution to our global society,” Escala said.

Founded in 2008, Punkrobot launched last year Trueno, its international distribution arm focused mainly on Latin America and aiming to selling content from the continent overseas and vice-versa.

Punkrobot is “mainly focused on TV animated series, especially in pre-school content, which has overlooked in general terms in Latin America and especially in Chile. New platforms such as Netflix and Amazon are offering now splendid production opportunities,” said Escala.

The company’s TV series productions to date include “Flipos” and “The Adventures of Muelin and Perlita.” Both were bought by Netflix for Latin America.

The Chilean animation studio is also preparing its most ambitious project, a “Bear Story” spin-off, a feature film also to be directed by “Bear” helmer, Osorio, who is penning the script. Project –still non-titled–  is in an early development stage and follows “a little girl and her efforts to rescue her lost mother,” said Escala. The story might be set in Southern Chile.

Chilean company is acting as exec producers on Germán Acuña’s animation feature “Nahuel And the Magic Book,” a co-production between Chile’s Carburadores and Brazil’s Red Studio.

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