Cinesite has been appointed as the cg animation studio handling production on Disney’s upcoming Nigeria-set series Iwájú.
Here are details from their announcement:
- Iwájú was first announced last December at Disney’s Investor Day presentation. The project is a co-production with the young pan-African entertainment company Kugali, which was founded by Ziki Nelson, Hamid Ibrahim, and Tolu Olowofoyeku.
- Cinesite has previously done vfx for Walt Disney Studios projects, including Mary Poppins Returns and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, however this marks the first time it has collaborated on a project with Walt Disney Animation Studios. Cinesite’s other upcoming animation projects include The Addams Family 2 and Blazing Samurai.
- Cinesite will produce the series with a crew of approximately 200 people out of its studios in London and Montreal. It is currently doing pre-production on the series, which is set premiere in 2023 on Disney+.
- Iwájú is directed by Ziki Nelson (director, Kugali founder) with the Disney Animation team being led by Christina Chen (producer) and Marlon West (vfx supervisor), under the supervision of Disney Animation’s chief creative officer Jennifer Lee. Cinesite’s production team is led by Joel MacDonald (producer) and Ellen Poon (vfx supervisor).
- Iwájú loosely translates to “the future” in the Yoruba language. The series is set in a futuristic Lagos, Nigeria, and will explore themes of inequality, innocence, and challenging the status quo.