You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Special Touch Studios, Paul Thiltges Set ‘Allah Is Not Obliged’

Set to pitch at Cartoon Movie 'Allah' tackles child soldiers at Africa civil wars

BERLIN — France’s Special Touch Studios will team with Luxembourg’s Paul Thiltges Distributions to produce “Allah Is Not Obliged,” an animated feature based on a tale from Côte d’Ivoire’s writer Ahmadou Kourouma.

“Allah is Not Obliged” will pe pitched at the upcoming Cartoon Movie animation pitch hub, which runs March 7-9 in the French city of Bordeaux. The film is currently in the development stage.

One of the most noteworthy contemporary African writers, Kourouma, author of best-selling “Waiting for the Wild Beasts,” wrote this shocking tale about children soldiers set against the backdrop of cruel civil wars that devastated large areas of Western Africa in the 1990s. Kourama has received the Prix Goncourt des Lycéens and France’s Renaudot Prize for his work.

“Allah” follows 8-year-old Birahima, who leaves his Guinean native village after his mother’s death. Accompanied by a sorcerer, he sets out to find his aunt. Crossing the border into Liberia, Birahima is forced into military service in a merciless civil war by a group of rebels.

Budgeted at €4.5 million ($5.6 million), “Allah” is scheduled to begin production at the end of 2019.

Mainly targeting an adult demographic, it could easily attract middle school children, according to Sébastien Onomo, CEO at France’s Special Touch, who other production credits include co-producing, along with Les Films d’Ici, on Denis Do’s “Funan,” which is sold by Bac Films and currently in post.

“Allah is Not Obliged” will be directed by animator and illustrator Zaven Najjar, whose shorts include “Un obus partout” and “Faute de temps.” He has trained at both Paris’ Arts Déco and the Art Institute of Chicago.

The film is also “a part of the story of Zaven, because he has Lebanese and Syrian origins. It’s a part of my story too because I have African origins,” Onomo told Variety, adding “Our movie will show the absurdity of the war, with humor and cynicism, through the eyes of a 8-year- old child. That is one of the original key points of this project.”

More Legit

  • Ethan Hawke

    Listen: Ethan Hawke on 'True West' and the Ghost of Philip Seymour Hoffman

    Ethan Hawke had a long relationship with Sam Shepard and his work — but he never thought he’d end up on Broadway in “True West.” That’s because Philip Seymour Hoffman and John C. Reilly had already put their stamp on the show in the 2000 Broadway revival of the play. “I kind of felt that that [...]

  • Editorial use onlyMandatory Credit: Photo by

    Kaye Ballard, Star of 'The Mothers-in-Law,' Dies at 93

    Singer-comedienne Kaye Ballard, who starred alongside Eve Arden in the 1960s sitcom “The Mothers-in-Law” and was among the stars of the 1976 feature based on Terrence McNally’s farce “The Ritz,” died Monday in Rancho Mirage, Calif. She was 93. She had recently attended a screening of a documentary about her life, “Kaye Ballard: The Show [...]

  • CAROL CHANNING HERSCHFELD. Actress Carol Channing

    Remembering Carol Channing: A Master of Channeling the Power of Personality

    There was only one Carol Channing, and her outsize personality was a source of delight to many fans — and imitators. Gerard Alessandrini’s stage spoof “Forbidden Broadway” had many incarnations over the years, including the 1994 edition when an audience member was selected every evening to come onstage and impersonate Carol Channing with the cast. [...]

  • Editorial use only. No book cover

    Viola Davis, Lin-Manuel Miranda Among Celebrities Remembering Carol Channing

    Viola Davis, Lin-Manuel Miranda and Bernadette Peters are among the slew of celebrities taking to Twitter to pay tribute to late singer, comedienne and actress Carol Channing. Known for her starring roles in Broadway’s “Hello Dolly!” and “Gentleman Prefer Blondes,” the legend of the stage and screen died Tuesday at her home in Rancho Mirage, [...]

  • What the Constitution Means to Me

    Listen: How Things Got Scary in 'What the Constitution Means to Me'

    For a decade, writer-performer Heidi Schreck had wanted to write a play inspired by her experiences as a teen debater. But over the years the show started to develop into something both urgently political and deeply personal — and things got scary. In the Broadway-bound “What the Constitution Means to Me,” Schreck reimagines her speech-and-debate [...]

  • Carol Channing Dead

    Carol Channing, Star of Broadway's 'Hello, Dolly!' and 'Gentlemen Prefer Blondes,' Dies at 97

    Larger-than-life musical stage personality Carol Channing, who immortalized the characters of Lorelei Lee in “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” and Dolly Gallagher Levi in “Hello, Dolly!,” has died. She was 97. Channing died Tuesday of natural causes at her home in Rancho Mirage, Calif. Her publicist B. Harlan Boll confirmed the news. He wrote, “It is with [...]

  • 'What the Constitution Means to Me'

    'What the Constitution Means to Me' Transfers to Broadway

    “What the Constitution Means to Me,” a buzzy Off-Broadway production that counts Hillary Clinton and Gloria Steinem among its fans, is making the move uptown. The play will come to Broadway this spring for a 12-week limited run at the Helen Hayes Theater. “What the Constitution Means to Me” is one part civics lesson, one [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content