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Mark Osborne’s Next Feature Is ‘Escape From Hat’: Netflix Will Produce the Film

Netflix made a major animation slate announcement last week, but it didn’t represent everything that the streaming giant has in the works.

Today, Netflix announced a new feature project, Escape From Hat, from director Mark Osborne (Kung Fu Panda, The Little Prince) and writer Adam Kline (Artemis Fowl, The Clockwork War).

The film, which had earlier been in development with 20th Century Fox Animation, is based on Kline’s middle-grade novel of the same name, set to be republished by Harper Collins in 2020. Here’s Netflix’s description of the film:

Escape From Hat brings light to the ancient mysteries of magic. In a fairy tale where black cats are bad and magic rabbits are good, balance is threatened when one such rabbit is cast into a mysterious realm of danger and shadow. There, our desperate hero rallies an unexpected band of allies and undertakes an impossible quest to escape from inside a magician’s hat – and return to the human boy he dearly loves.

Escape From Hat tells a story about friendship and magic, which perfectly mirrors how I feel about getting to reunite with my friend Mark at Netflix after ten years,” said Melissa Cobb, vice president of kids & family at Netflix. “I cannot wait for audiences around the world to immerse themselves in our fantastical magic trick gone awry, where they will find an epic and imaginative world of good versus evil.”

Adds Osborne: “Netflix is shaking up the animated feature world in highly inventive ways, including offering filmmakers the rare opportunity to turn their dream project into a reality. I’m thrilled that Escape From Hat is now one of them.”

In addition to directing the film, Osborne will produce with Jinko Gotoh (The Little Prince) and co-write the screenplay with Kline.

Production on the film will begin this month in New York. No production studio has been announced. Netflix expects the film to be released in 2022.

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