Animais’ First Series ‘7 Boxes’ Pitches Cyberpunk to Young Audiences

Already in production, the Portuguese company is looking to secure international sales and distribution for the seven-part series

As science fiction, and dystopian cyberpunk in particular, surge in mainstream popularity – see “Blade Runner 2049,” “Dredd” or the upcoming “Alita: Battle Angel” – a question often asked is: Can this genre be adapted for younger audiences?

A possible answer might be that yes, and animation is the perfect medium with which to do so.

Portugal’s Animais, a company best-known for its award-winning animated short films, has a possible answer of their own. The company behind “Between the Shadows,” which pitched at Annecy before winning the Arte France Prize in 2016 and making it to the final cut of 12 films short-listed for that year’s Cesar Awards, is working on their first series, the 3D animated “7 Boxes,” which takes place in a rainy, neon-lit city which will be familiar to cyberpunk fans.

Pitched at Spain’s 3D Wire, an increasingly important Iberian and European animation festival held in Segovia each year, “7 Boxes” is a seven-episode 3D animated series meant for and set in a world of kids.

“We had this idea to develop a series around the subject of technology. The idea was to put into perspective how technology changed or affected how children relate to each other and to their parents when they are almost, or at least a lot of the time, connected to their smart phones, laptops and smart TVs, connected to screens,” director Davide Freitas explained at 3D Wire.

The series takes place in a city of near-brainwashed screen-obsessed children, watched over by an army of drones and their authoritarian leader Whiteface, a control freak clown who dictates that the children must stay inside, watching a TV program he broadcasts daily in order to keep them safe.

Each of the series’ seven episodes will correspond with seven boxes belonging to specific characters. It’s discovered by Pandora, one of the children unsatisfied with a life sat in front of the TV, that through her painting she can open a box to another world, full of color and light and completely opposite to the dim, dark place she calls home.

Along with her friends, a reprogrammed robot companion and a mysterious stranger, the kids will learn the truth behind their depressing captivity and explore their own boxes while work together to enlighten the world.

“Together they discover things about themselves and the things they like to do,” Freitas said. “They discover things about each other, and in this process of awareness and discovery they get to a point where they realize the need to change the city of boxes.”

€600,000 ($695,000 USD) of the series €1million ($1.16million USD) budget is already is covered by pre-sales to Portuguese national TV, and Animais are looking for possible co-producers, sales agents and distributors to complete the budget and finish production.


Popular on Variety

More TV

  • Apple TV Plus

    Apple TV Plus Will Cost $9.99 per Month, to Launch in November (Report)

    Apple is reportedly looking to launch the Apple TV Plus subscription-video service in November — around when Disney Plus is set to debut — for $9.99 per month. Apple TV Plus will bow in November with a “small selection” of shows, Bloomberg reported, citing anonymous sources. At $9.99, which analysts have guessed would be the [...]

  • RuPaul Charles - Outstanding Reality -

    RuPaul Charles to Receive Variety's Vanguard Award at Mipcom

    “RuPaul’s Drag Race” leader RuPaul Charles has been tapped to receive the Variety Vanguard Award at the Mipcom international TV sales conference, set for Oct. 14-17 in Cannes. The award recognizes television industry leaders who have made a significant contribution to the global business of entertainment. Charles has hosted and executive produced the VH1 franchise “RuPaul’s Drag [...]

  • The Tempest review all female

    Harriet Walter Joins 'Killing Eve' as Third Season Begins Production

    British actress Harriet Walter has joined the cast of BBC America’s multi-award winning “Killing Eve” for its third season, which began production this week. Danny Sapani has also been announced to join the cast of the show, which stars Sandra Oh and Jodie Comer. The Olivier Award-winning and Tony-nominated Walter recently finished production on Julian [...]

  • TV News Roundup: Netflix Drops Trailer

    TV News Roundup: Netflix Drops Trailer for Ryan Murphy's 'The Politician' (Watch)

    In today’s TV news roundup, Netflix has drops the first trailer for “The Politician,” and “Killing Eve” adds two to its cast for season 3.  CASTING Harriet Walter and Danny Sapani, both alums of “The Crown,” are set to join the cast of “Killing Eve” for its third season. British writer Suzanne Heathcote, whose past credits include [...]

  • Lady Gaga

    Variety Earns 14 Folio: Eddie & Ozzie Award Nominations

    Variety has received 14 Folio: Eddie & Ozzie award nominations for its coverage of the entertainment industry over the past year. The awards gala, which will take place at The Hilton Midtown in New York City on Oct. 30, celebrates publications that have demonstrated impressive investigative journalism, in addition to thoughtful digital and print design. [...]

  • Disneyland

    Disney Shares Slip Amid Reported Whistleblower Allegations of Inflated Revenue

    Sandra Kuba, a former senior financial analyst for Disney’s revenue operations unit, says she has filed a series of whistleblower tips with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, alleging that the entertainment conglomerate repeatedly and systematically overstated its revenue for years, according to a MarketWatch report, by as much as $6 billion in a single [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content