Aron Gauder joins forces with Iceland on Egill (update)


    Young Hungarian animation director Aron Gauder is in full throttle working on his full-length 3D feature Egill, a follow-up to his acclaimed The District!, with an Icelandic company cast as co-producers.

    Negotiations are in an advanced stage with Iceland's 3D animation studio CAOZ (www.caoz.com) (Hidebound, The Caterpillar), and the state channel RUV (www.ruv.is) has snapped up broadcasts rights for the territory.
    The Icelandic Film Centre (www.icelandicfilmcentre.com), the local film funding body, has expressed interest in supporting the film, money which would have to be spent locally.
    The animated film will be produced with a special 3D puppet technique that Gauder invented - a method being used as well in another animated film, Giantland.
    Its producers, Jim Goddal and Paul Lenart, used images from Egill to illustrate their presentation at the Telefilm Canada Pitch This! competition (www.telefilm.gc.ca) where they won a US $10,000 grant. By agreement, the money will be spent jointly with Egill's creators, implying the sum will go partly to Gauder's project.
    As FNE reported earlier, Gauder has also won a €80,000 production grant from the Motion Pictures Foundation (www.mmka.hu) in Hungary, the largest sum given out by its animation department.
    Egill is an ambitious rendition of an ancient Viking saga about a wandering poet, Egill Skallagrimson, something of an Icelandic Francois Villon, whose story has been portrayed mainly in second-rate animation films so far. Producers are Erik Novak and Tamas Liszka of Szimpla Film (www.cine.hu/t9/index_n.html).
    The Reykjavik Film Festival (www.filmfest.is) plans to open with Egill in 2009.