Press Release from Vertigo Films and Novel Entertainment
London/Oxford, 23 June 2010. Vertigo Films and Novel Entertainment are proud to announce the production of a 3D live-action movie based on Novel’s hugely successful children’s property Horrid Henry. Vertigo, producers of Europe’s first 3D feature film and box office smash Street Dance 3D, will produce the live action feature with the same 3D team Paradise FX Europe. The film will be a co-production between Vertigo Films and Novel Entertainment.
Nick Moore, the highly respected British director and editor, has been signed as the film’s director. Casting has already begun, with filming scheduled to take place during October and November this year. The film, to be shot entirely on location in the UK, is slated for release in the UK in 2011.
Horrid Henry, created by author Francesca Simon, is the most successful children’s literary character in the UK after Harry Potter with book sales of more than 16 million. Novel’s animated TV show is the most successful series ever for CITV and it has also been adapted for stage, radio, online and computer games as well as being at the heart of a successful licensing and merchandising program.
The live-action adventure will be the first ever British kid’s movie to be filmed in 3D. The film stars Horrid Henry, Lord High Majesty of the Purple Hand Gang, as he wages his ever constant battle against the tyranny of adults. Only this time it seems the adults really are out to get him, forcing him into an unlikely alliance with his irritating little brother Perfect Peter and the infuriating girl next door, Moody Margaret.
The production team are currently seeking new and up and coming young British talent to cast in the lead roles of Henry, Peter, Ralph and Margaret, along with a number of supporting roles.
Lucinda Whiteley, co-producer for Novel Entertainment and screenplay writer for the movie, says: “We’re delighted to be bringing Henry to life, in the truest sense of the word – for so many kids Henry already exists, but seeing him up on the big screen gives them the chance to meet their hero face to face. It’s a testament to the popularity and strength of the character that he can succeed so well in so many different forms, and we’re especially pleased to be working with such a strong production team, especially Nick Moore whose work we have long admired.”
Nick Moore’s directorial debut came on the teenage film Wild Child (2008) and he has just finished working on the new Harrison Ford movie Morning Glory, to be released later this year. Nick received a Bafta nomination for Best Editing on The Full Monty, and has since edited a number of iconic British films including About A Boy, Notting Hill, Love Actually and Nanny McPhee. He says, “Bringing Henry to the big screen, and in 3D, is truly a fantastic opportunity. We are all very excited at the prospect of creating something wonderful that will delight Henry's existing fans as well as introducing him and his world to a whole new audience."
Producers for Vertigo, Allan Niblo and Rupert Preston state: “We are tremendously excited to be bringing one of the most loved kids’ characters to 3D life on the big screens for a worldwide audience.”
Vertigo Films will also distribute in the UK with Protagonist Pictures taking international sales.
Horrid Henry is based on the characters created by Francesca Simon and illustrated by Tony Ross; the books are published by Orion Children's Books. He has become a worldwide publishing phenomenon, available in 27 countries including the US, with sales exceeding 16 million books in the UK alone. Translated into 22 languages, Henry has assumed many different national identities including the gloriously named Pablo Diablo in Spain and Rico Le Peste in Italy.
Horrid Henry is a major multi-media brand. The 104 episodes of the hit TV show rapidly became CITV’s most popular series and they are now broadcast in 15 countries outside the UK. The live stage show, Horrid Henry - Live and Horrid, ran for 285 performances in London’s West End and across the UK and the new website www.horridhenry.me  has attracted more than 3 million hits since its launch in October. Horrid Henry’s Nintendo computer game, Missions of Mischief, has sold more than 100,000 units in the UK alone.
Novel Entertainment specialises in the creation and development of successful children’s character brands across a wide array of media. Novel’s core programmes include Fimbles, The Roly Mo Show, Horrid Henry, Rockit’s Pocket and Ping & Pong. Founded in 2001 by Lucinda Whiteley and Mike Watts, the company has produced over 600 programmes for television and radio, as well as a number of stage shows based on the company’s leading characters. The company’s brand experience extends into licensing and merchandising, computer games, interactive online content, music and film.
Vertigo Films, the UK Media company producing the Horrid Henry movie with Novel Entertainment, has a significant track record for creating and distributing commercially driven independent cinema. Europe’s first 3D feature film Street Dance went to number one at the box office in its opening weekend in the UK, beating Hollywood production The Prince of Persia and jumping over ratings for Robin Hood. The opening figures are a record for a UK Film Council financed film, beating Bend It Like Beckham and St.Trinian's. The company was founded in 2002 to create and distribute commercially driven independent cinema. From their first film - Nick Love's The Football Factory (the biggest selling independent UK DVD with 1.3M units to date) through such genre films as The Business, Shrooms and The Children to multi award winning films such as Its All Gone Pete Tong, London to Brighton, In Search of A Midnight Kiss and Bronson, Vertigo has used innovative new technology, meticulous attention to budget and great care of its audience to produce and distribute thirty films to date with an unprecedented string of commercial success. In 2009 Vertigo have released the critically acclaimed The Firm (Nick Love) and Bronson (Nicholas Widing Refn), One Day (the UK's first hip hop musical), The Cove (2009 Sundance Audience Award Winner) and Humpday (2009 Sundance Special Jury Prize Winner). Releases for 2010 include Israeli Oscar winner Ajami and Europe’s first 3D feature film Street Dance. In addition to its production and distribution activity, Vertigo also owns The Post Republic a successful state of the art post production company based in Berlin and is a partner in Protagonist Pictures, the international sales company joint venture with Film Four and Ingenious Media.