Whats next for IDT Ent., the Newark, New Jersey-based company thats been on quite an animation buying spree of late? Engage Christopher Reeve (star of four SUPERMAN films, THE BOSTONIANS, SOMEWHERE IN TIME AND THE REMAINS OF THE DAY) to direct an original feature length animated film. The untitled film is described as an urban fable set in the 1930s, and is expected to be completed in early 2005.
Digital Production Solutions (DPS), IDT Ent.s animation unit, will provide complete production services on the film with Reeve overseeing the entire production process, from character development, casting and set design through animation, lighting, texturing and post-production.
"This agreement writes a new chapter in IDTs ongoing success story," said Jim Courter, ceo of IDT Corp., a multinational carrier, telephone and technology company, which IDT Ent. is a subsidiary of. "IDT revolutionized Telecom; now were doing the same for high quality, 3D computer-generated animation. Were pleased that Christopher Reeve shares our vision and that hes put his stamp of approval on this film."
"Many projects cross my desk but only a few are truly captivating," said Reeve. "With the perfect blend of warmth and wit, this is a story with universal appeal that both children and their parents will love."
"This project required a director with a combination of experience and creativity," said Morris Berger, ceo of IDT Ent. "Christopher Reeve was our first choice. Were thrilled that he will shape and guide this film from concept to completion."
In addition to acting, Reeve is a writer, producer and director, gleaming an Emmy nomination in 1997 for directing the HBO film IN THE GLOAMING.
Wheelchair-bound Reeves joins an ample roster of animation professionals, working with disabilities, in a genre of entertainment often more open to the hearing-impaired and less mobile who may still exercise their creative talents at desks, off-camera.
In the past six months, IDT has purchased the Anchor Bay Ent. distribution house, signed a joint venture with Christian Broadcasting Network to create and distribute animated family entertainment, bought a controlling interest in CGI animation house, Mainframe Ent., Film Roman, a minority interest in Vanguard Animation, LLC and formed Digital Production Solutions, its computer animation unit.