klaus_test klaus_test
Feature FilmTech

Sergio Pablos Previews Exciting New ‘Klaus’ Animation Tests

It’s been a while since we’ve heard anything about Klaus, the innovative feature film project by animator Sergio Pablos that has caught the attention of 2D animation lovers everywhere.

The project is moving forward. The film is currently staffing up crew in both Madrid, Spain and Montreal, Canada, and yesterday, Pablos’ studio released these “early style tests” that show the different stages of how the animation is created: rough animation, clean-up, ink-and-paint, and multiple lighting passes. Things get interesting in the lighting stages where the characters begin to take on a more three-dimensional appearance.

Pablos’ previously-announced Canadian co-production partner is Cinesite, while the technology partner is Toon Boom.

The all-ages holiday comedy is currently slated for a 2019 release.

  • AP

    This is the future of 2D animation. This looks so good, and I expect this technique to catch on with other features.

    • Rocktave

      “2D 3D, the future of 2D… not to be confused with 3D.”

      • Phin68

        Klaus at it’s core is hand drawn. The only actual 3D in the teaser trailer were the doors.

        • Rocktave

          I know. I’m just kinda poking fun at the fact that it’s 2D trying really hard to look 3D. I really like the demo and I hope it can be implemented effectively without taking too much time, otherwise at what point does it become redundant to even bother with it actually being hand drawn? If this is a worthwhile middle ground, I’m all for it. I’d love to see more of the process behind this effect.

      • Taco

        @rocktave:disqus This made me laugh, because it has a level of truth to it. At the same time many artists have wanted their animation artwork to have a more illustrative, painted, detailed/finished quality to it. Everything has mostly been flat cels of colour with minimal shading or play of light & shadow. This is one of the reasons why Studio Ghibli stuff stood out visually in a big way when it came to the west. There they actually animate & paint the damn highlights & shadows. Most Miyazaki films can have upwards of 4 or 5 tones to illustrate the light & form across a character. Wester Cels often looked lazy in comparison. There’s nothing wrong with Flat graphic colour & cel animation art design, sometimes simple is best for clarity & keeping appealing design & movement. K.I.S.S. Once they get past the obvious “just make it look like 3D” the potential for this type of technique adding a greater level of diversity to the visuals of future 2D films is exciting!

        • Metlow Rovenstein

          Yeah. You have a point there. I mean, the way that Klaus looks, it’s like you’re watching a painting-like illustration come to life.

  • Tri

    Ahhh it looks so good and is really showing what modern technology can do for 2D animation. I hope more studios return to this style.

  • Metlow Rovenstein

    That’s good to hear. I’ve been wondering about this movie for a while.

  • AnimatedMadness

    So good to FINALLY see an update! I’m so excited for this project!

  • SnicksterFace


    I want to go to there.

  • Phin68

    I hope Hullabaloo and Dragon’s Lair will pick up this technique too.

  • schwarzgrau

    So much effort and then he is sliding over the snow background

  • UsaMiKo

    I said before and I’ll say it again, that I think Klaus is North America’s last chance to gain anymore interest in theatrical 2d animation again. Yes I know there’s beautiful things happening in Europe, but that’s still in Europe. Klaus isn’t even being animated in the states, its being animated in Spain and Canada. Even people who are working on 2d projects aren’t really innovating with their techniques. I love 2d animation and I think it’s said that its so dismissed by big companies. I can only hope Klaus and Sergio can change people’s opinion because if it can’t I’m not sure what will.