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Toei Animation Unveils ‘Hypergalactic’ Co-Created By ‘Sonic The Hedgehog’ Designer Naoto Oshima; Charades To Launch Sales At The EFM

Leading Japanese animation studio Toei Animation has announced family feature Hypergalactic, describing the production as its biggest and most ambitious CGI film to date.

The story and characters are co-created by top Japanese artist Naoto Oshima, who designed the hit global franchise Sonic the Hedgehog for SEGA, and Joseph Chou, whose credits include Blade Runner 2022: Black Out, Ghost in the Shell and Lord of the Rings: The War of the Rohirrim.

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The English-language animated family feature is directed by David N. Weiss, whose credits include Shrek 2, The Smurfs and Smurfs 2.

The movie will feature the voice talents of Adam Devine (The Righteous GemstonesThe Out-Laws), Elsie Fisher (Eighth Grade, Despicable Me), J.K. Simmons (Whiplash, Sam Raimi’s Spiderman trilogy) and Sam Richardson (Veep, The Afterparty).

The family film follows an adventurous teenage girl (Fisher) and her baby brother in the not-so-distant future, after they liberate the forgotten protector of Earth, Ohkan (Devine), in the hopes that he can help reunite them with their missing parents. Together, the unlikely trio sets off on a surprise-filled journey, discovering the deeper meaning of family along the way.

Hypergalactic comes hot on the heels of Toei’s hit animated sports film The First Slam Dunk, which won the Japan Academy Film Prize for Best Animation of the Year in 2023 and grossed $279 million worldwide, and musical-fantasy action-adventure One Piece Film: Red which has grossed $246.5 million worldwide to date.

Charades is representing worldwide distribution rights and will launch sales at the European Film Market (EFM) in Berlin this month alongside Iwashina Corporation founder Kevin Iwashina, who is also an advisor to Toei Animation.

Currently in post-production, the main producer of Hypergalactic is Yoshi Ikezawa from Toei Animation and the executive producers are Kozo Morishita, Katsuhiro Takagi and Tim Kwok.

“With Hypergalactic, the hugely talented Game Designer Oshima has created a multicultural adventure tale of epic scale – combining memorable global characters with a Japanese Anime aesthetic and a Western approach to storytelling,” said Toei Animation producer Ikezawa.

“We look forward to delivering our brand of quality animation to broader global audiences beyond our existing loyal and committed fan base.”

Yohann Comte, Co-CEO of Charades, added: “Toei Animation has established itself as one of the most consistent global creators of quality animation. Hypergalactic is the result of their experience in creating recognizable global IP, the team’s ability to adapt manga into successful universal Anime – such as Dragon Ball Z and Sailor Moon – and their interest in supplying stories for an array of audiences. I believe Hypergalactic is a rare opportunity for the independent film marketplace to partner with one of the most significant companies in animation.”

Devine is best-known for his turn as Bumper in Pitch Perfect, Pitch Perfect 2, and most recently the Peacock television series Pitch Perfect: Bumper in Berlin. He also stars as Kelvin Gemstone in the HBO series The Righteous Gemstones, with additional credits including: Isn’t It Romantic?The Lego Batman MovieIce Age: Collision Course and The Intern.

Fisher rose to notoriety after starring in Bo Burnham’s indie feature Eighth Grade, for which they were nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Motion Picture Comedy or Musical.

Additional roles include Agnes in Despicable Me and Despicable Me 2, and Parker Needler in The Addams Family. Most recently, Fisher starred in the HBO series Barry, and as Skye in Season 2 of Amazon Prime’s The Summer I Turned Pretty.

Simmons is best-known for his Academy Award winning performance in Whiplash and his role in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man trilogy. He also received an Academy Award nomination for his performance in Being the Ricardos. Additional credits include Juno, La La Land and Palm Springs; and the Amazon Prime television adaptation of the Invincible comics.

Richardson is an Emmy Award-winning comedian and actor who broke out in HBO’s political comedy, Veep. He has frequently collaborated with fellow comedian Tim Robinson, including on the Comedy Central series Detroiters and Robinson’s I Think You Should Leave on Netflix.

Most recently, Richardson starred in Apple TV+’s The Afterparty; HBO’s adult animated series Velma; and Apple TV+’s Ted Lasso, for which he won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series.

Weiss is a screenwriter and director, who has written and co-written a number of animated screenplays including: Shrek 2; All Dogs Go to Heaven; The Smurfs and its sequel; The Rugrats Movie; and Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius.

Most recently, Weiss wrote the story for the 2022 Disney+ film Disenchanted starring Amy Adams, Patrick Dempsey, and Maya Rudolph.

Devine is represented by CAA, Avalon Management and Yorn, Levine, Barnes, Krintzman, Rubenstein, Kohner, Endlich, Goodell & Gellman. Fisher is represented by Innovative Artists. Simmons is represented by The Gersh Agency. Richardson is represented by UTA, Artists First, and Jackoway Austen Tyerman Wertheimer Mandelbaum Morris Bernstein Trattner & Klein. Weiss is represented by Kleinberg Lange Cuddy & Carlo.

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