China’s Benlai Pictures and France’s Ankama have recently partnered in order to co-produce a new animated movie based on Nie Jun’s Chinese comic book, titled Old Street. The development itself was done through Ankama’s production/distribution arm, Planet Nemo, with a budget estimated to be roughly $5 million and will rely on traditional 2D animation as its medium, while still retaining Nie Jun’s trade mark watercolor aesthetics. For the uninitiated, Old Street’s story focuses on the cross-generation relationship between a man and his grand-daughter, with the setting being restricted to an old part of Beijing.
“We were looking for a project that speaks to a Chinese and French audience. What’s interesting about this film in China is there is a young generation today that is very much looking to revisit their roots. There is a nostalgia of old Beijing and this also speaks to a French audience,” Ankama producer and Planet Nemo president Frédéric Puech, told Variety.“Ankama’s ambition is to produce a film ourselves every couple of years,” said Puech. He added: “We still want to focus on 2D so, being realistic, we are targeting lower-budgets of maybe $5m million, which is a good niche for us to be in.”