Paris-headquartered motion-capture animation company, Medialab and Canadian animation studio, Ciné-Groupe, a subsidiary of Lions Gate Entertainment, have agreed to a four-year co-production deal. The two companies plan to co-produce two computer-animated theatrical films and two TV series. The first project, starting production in December, will be Pinocchio 3001, a futuristic rendition of the classic tale. The second project, scheduled to start production in late spring 1999, is titled Sphinx@Com. Both properties were developed by Medialab, and will be produced simultaneously as feature films and TV series. Medialab president Girard Mital said, The trickle-down success of films like Antz, as well as the growing number of digital platforms and their respective thematic channels serves to bolster the demand for similar-looking properties. The TV series Medialab is jointly-owned by Canal + and Dutch company, NOB. In July, Fox Family Worldwide, parent company to Fox Kids, Fox Family Channel and Saban, acquired a 20 percent equity stake in Ciné-Groupe.
The February 1998 issue of Animation World Magazine contains a feature article on Medialab