Production house ZSpace has teamed up with Disney Junior as the creative and production partner for its pre-school storytelling series The Book of Once Upon A Time, starring The Umbilical Brothers.
Pre-production was a partnership with ZSpace and The Umbilical Brothers, selecting the stories from Disney’s vast library of titles, then shooting over eight days on green screen.
From there, ZSpace took the reins in post-production, with the challenging task of bringing the unlayered storybook artwork to life with animation and VFX.
Led by ZSpace creative director Glenn Christensen, a crack team of matte painters, animators and compositors chosen specifically for the project spent months carefully crafting each scene.
The world they created allowed the Umbilical Brothers the freedom to enter the book and interact with the characters and create new storylines using existing scenes, but ‘weirding’ them up.
Executive producer Angela Kargilis said approaching The Umbilical Brothers was a no-brainer.
“We knew that they would take these classic tales to a whole other level bringing their trademark physical comedy and amazing sound effects skills to the project and elevate the visual storytelling on-screen to delight young viewers,” she said.
“It was truly inspiring to observe the way they work. The Umbi’s humour is double-edged and will bring a smile to parents, but not lose the little ones, who’ll find it very easy to engage with these wonderfully inventive big kids.”
Christensen added: “The team at Disney gave us licence to be creative and take the storytelling to the limit, as long as we stayed true to the spirit of the narrative and the characters.
“It really was a great collaborative effort with a huge amount of trust shown by Disney. It was a privilege and a pleasure for the ZSpace creative team to play a key role in the production of these stories.”