The Grand Night Animated Feature Movie
Behind the Scenes
Established in 2016 with over 500 minutes of animated productions, Giraffics proudly announces the selection of its first feature film, “The Grand Night”, in Annecy International Animation Film Festival for the MIFA Pitches.
Ahmed Hamouda, Film Producer and CEO of Giraffics, spent the last two years traveling to festivals and events like Annecy and Trojan Horse was a Unicorn, in which he is currently the ambassador for North Africa. He believes that feedback, exposure and experience were monumental to the process.
“In order to create a strong pipeline for an animation movie that meets global standards, we need to collaborate with professionals that have already been through successful experiences. Among the experts we have consulted so far are: Max Howard, Carlos Grangel, Paul Young, and Jorge Gutierrez. We were also lucky to have Ed Hooks and Maggie Malone as story consultants, who inspired and continue to inspire us, to keep the Egyptian essence within our story, and still make it relatable to every child in the world”.
In the early phases of the project, Ed Hooks was invited to Cairo for a week, in which he offered an intensive “Acting for Animators” workshop for the team and lead story development workshops with the writers.
"The Grand Night”, English for “El Leila El Kebira”, is originally the name of a famous Egyptian operetta that was created in the 60s. It portrays the atmosphere of “Al-Moulid”, a traditional folkloric festival in which Egyptian families get together to chant songs, watch shows, play games, enjoy street food and more. With modernized features, relatable struggles and an original plot, the movie revives the popular characters and songs of the operetta, along with other folkloric figures in the Egyptian culture.
The movie follows the story of 10-year old Laila, who takes pride in her “pretending” abilities and avoids her friends’ bullying by hiding her passion for storytelling with her grandfather’s puppets. One night, Laila curiously peeks into her grandfather’s old bioscope and ends up on a journey of self-discovery, in the world of her favorite puppets. Now, they count on her to confront and defeat Ghoula, a brainwashing villain.
“The moral behind ‘The Grand Night’ is to appreciate one’s identity, which goes in perfect harmony with our personal story behind the project; it all started when we realized that there is a gap in the animation industry when it comes to the representation of the Egyptian culture and that it is time we tell our own folkloric stories in a way that the world can relate to and understand but has never seen before. We are opening a door, entering an untapped world and inviting the world to join.“ adds Hamouda.
The movie production process is expected to take 2 years to be released by the end of 2022.