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Richard Linklater’s Animated ‘Apollo 10 ½: A Space Age Adventure’ Taking Off at Netflix

New film from famed director will feature live-action-based hybrid CGI/hand-drawn style; ‘Undone’ animation houses Minnow Mountain and Submarine to produce.

Netflix and famed director Richard Linklater (Dazed and Confused, A Scanner Darkly) are teaming up for a new animated feature, Apollo 10 ½, that luckily wrapped it’s live-action shoot this past March in Austin before heading off to animation production.

Set against the backdrop of the 1969 Apollo moon mission, which celebrates its 51st anniversary today, the new film is inspired by Linklater’s childhood in Houston, Texas; it will feature an innovative live-action-based hybrid of hand-drawn animation and CGI produced by Austin’s Minnow Mountain and Amsterdam’s Submarine, the studios behind the highly stylized hit animated Amazon Prime series, Undone.

Read about Minnow Mountain's unique animation technique:
The Groundbreaking Performance Capture Rotoscoping of ‘Undone’

Apollo 10 ½: A Space Age Adventure tells the story of the first moon landing in the summer of 1969 from two interwoven perspectives. It both captures the astronaut and mission control view of the triumphant moment, and the lesser-seen bottom up perspective of what it was like from an excited kid’s perspective, living near NASA but mostly watching it on TV like hundreds of millions of others. It’s ultimately both an exacting re-creation of this special moment in history and a kid’s fantasy about being plucked from his average life in suburbia to secretly train for a covert mission to the moon.

According to Linklater, “It struck me years ago that this was my film to make, from both a chronological and proximity level - I was there, going into 3rd grade. Our unique animation style allows both the conjuring of a world long gone, and the flowing, playful expression of memory and imagination. It’s been a fun, creative journey to incorporate things like 3D graphics into a live action shoot to help bring this story to life.”

Apollo 10 ½: A Space Age Adventure, written and directed by Linklater, is being produced through his Detour Filmproduction and Submarine, and released by Netflix. Tommy Pallotta, Mike Blizzard, Femke Wolting (Submarine), and Bruno Felix (Submarine) serve as producers. The film stars Jack Black, Zachary Levi, Glen Powell, Josh Wiggins, Milo Coy, Lee Eddy, Bill Wise, Natalie L'Amoreaux, Jessica Brynn Cohen, Sam Chipman, and Danielle Guilbot

Source: Netflix

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Dan Sarto is Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Animation World Network.