Sherman Oaks, California-based Swordplay Entertainment Inc., has begun principal production on the animated feature film, CONAN: RED NAILS, based on the classic story by the best-selling fantasy author Robert E. Howard, a new 2D/3D animated feature film, targeting a fall 2006 release on video/DVD, with a theatrical release pending test screening. New Line Home Entertainment has acquired all North American distribution rights to the animated feature film.
Cinema Management Group (CMG), an international sales company based in West Hollywood, headed by sales veteran Edward Noeltner, will be taking CONAN: RED NAILS to the Cannes Film Festival where it will be looking to set-up international pre-sales on the feature.
CONAN has previously been adapted into feature films, and television, but this is the first full-length animated feature film based on Conan the Cimmerian, a character Howard created in 1932.
The feature film is being directed by animation veteran Victor Dal Chele, (SPIDER-MAN, GHOSTBUSTERS, THE REAL ADVENTURES OF JOHNNY QUEST, BUTT-UGLY MARTIANS and ROBOCOP: ALPHA COMMANDO). Comics, animation and superheroes expert Steve Gold is onboard as the films writer/producer while Larry Houston (THE X-MEN: THE ANIMATED SERIES, BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES, HBO'S SPAWN and DISNEY'S GARGOYLES) is animation director.
CONAN: RED NAILS, one of Howards most famous stories, is both a sprawling epic and an equally engaging love story. When Conan and the pirate queen, Valeria, are betrayed in battle, they flee across harsh desert and trackless jungle only to confront the mystery and horror of a fabulous lost city. Conan becomes embroiled in a feud between the citys factions, and must triumph over dragons, demons and a host of human and magical foes to end the war and win Valerias love.
Steve Gold is an incredible cinematic storyteller, and renown Conan expert, said producer Jonathan Bogner. Were all thrilled at this opportunity to bring his vision of Conan to life and work with some of the best artists in the world.
Gold and Dal Chele have assembled an impressive team of award-winning visual artists and tapped legendary illustrator Michael Kaluta as the key concept designer for the film.
Michael has been associated with CONAN and the works of Robert E. Howard for more than 30 years. He brings an amazing scope and pedigree to the film, said Dal Chele.
Mark Schultz (CADILLACS & DINOSAURS) who recently illustrated THE COMING OF CONAN THE CIMMERIAN: VOLUME 1 for publishing house Ballentine and Del Ray, will add additional concept designs, as will leading fantasy painter and book cover artist, Donato Giancola. Greg Horn, a longtime Conan fan, and a hot young artist for comics and videogames will also be contributing artwork for the project.
I couldnt be more pleased with the creative and business teams weve assembled for this film. We all feel a tremendous respect and responsibility to the Conan franchise and Conans legions of fans around the world, said Gold. This is going to be an incredible ride! he added.
Exec producers are David Schwarcz, a founder of Swordplay Ent. (www.conanrednails.com), the company overseeing the production; Peter Sederowsky, chairman of Paradox Entertainment, the owners of Conan Properties International Llc., which owns the underlying rights to the Conan franchise; Frederik Malmberg, exec director of Conan Properties Intl and Patricia Gillum (MIRACLE DOGS) while Nicholas Temple is onboard as co-executive producer.
Howards Conan is about to celebrate his 75th birthday and is still going strong as one of the most successful entertainment franchises. Conan has sold more than $1 billion dollars through film, television and merchandise. Conan Properties licenses include Ballentine/Del Rey Books, McFarlane Toys now releasing its CONAN: Series 2 action figures, Dark Horse Comics and Funcom, the online gaming house preparing to launch the MMOG AGE OF CONAN. Conan Properties Intl. is developing a live-action Conan feature film with Warner Bros., most likely as a major summer tentpole for 2007.