Cannes: Russia's Wizart Animation, QED Int'l to Co-Produce Movies

Courtesy of Wizart Animation
'Hansel and Gretel'

The first joint project of the partners will be the animated feature 'Hansel and Gretel.'

Russia's Wizart Animation and U.S.-based film finance, production and distribution firm QED International have struck a deal to co-produce movies, the Russian animation studio unveiled at the Cannes film market Monday.

Financial terms weren't disclosed.

The first project under the deal will be the animated feature Hansel and Gretel, which is planned as the first installment of a franchise.

"We expect that QED’s participation in this project will help our studio achieve our creative, production and distribution goals much faster and with a higher quality," said Vladimir Nikolaev, Wizart Animation's producer in charge of the Hansel and Gretel project. "Our partners have great creative and commercial resources as well as extensive experience on engaging major talent in independent film projects."

"We have been looking into both investment possibilities and creative expansion within family/kids’ genre, and I believe that Wizart has all the necessary potentials we have been looking for," added Sasha Shapiro, CEO of QED. “In addition, we see a great match between Wizart and QED, where both companies could easily benefit from their unique skills and positioning in their respective markets and businesses. Hansel and Gretel is a great starting point, and I wish this film a great success.”

Wizart Animation is primarily known for its global animation franchise Snow Queen. QED International is best known for financing and producing District 9, Sabotage, Fury and Dirty Grandpa.

Based on the fairy tale by the Grimm brothers, Hansel and Gretel is slated for a global release in late 2020.