Production underway at twofour54 on first homegrown animated film

First animated movie for UAE director Fadel Saeed AlMuhairi and twofour54-based Tent Pictures, tells story of stray cats making a home in the UAE capital.
Making of ‘Catsaway’ - an animated feature-length film by Emirati director Fadel Saeed AlMuhairi
Making of ‘Catsaway’ - an animated feature-length film by Emirati director Fadel Saeed AlMuhairi

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Production has started at Abu Dhabi media hub twofour54 on ‘Catsaway’, an animated feature-length film by Emirati director Fadel Saeed AlMuhairi.

‘Catsaway’ is being produced by Tent Pictures Productions, in cooperation with Juice Studios in Poland. After more than a year of pre-production work, the frames of the hand-drawn movie are now being put together under the creative eye of AlMuhairi, who also helmed ‘Abood Kandaishan’, which was nominated for 2014’s Muhr Emirati Award at Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF).

‘Catsaway’, which is the director’s first animated film, is about a group of cats trying to make a home in Abu Dhabi as the city evolves around them. It features traditional hand-drawn animation rather than computer generated images.

Tent Pictures was founded by Fadel Saeed AlMuhairi, and partners Mohamad M. Numan, and Mohamad Jawad at twofour54 in 2013. It has already made several productions, with ‘Catsaway’ being its latest project.

H.E. Maryam Eid AlMheiri, CEO of Media Zone Authority – Abu Dhabi and twofour54, said: “Tent Pictures is yet another success story for twofour54. Quality content is our driving force. It is one of the reasons why so many local, regional, and international companies are choosing Abu Dhabi for their productions. And we are particularly delighted to see a homegrown firm such as Tent Pictures producing this feature-length animated film. It showcases the incredible talent, creativity, and facilities of our thriving media industry in Abu Dhabi. As a champion of quality Emirati produced content, it is rewarding for twofour54 to see that consumers have appetite for content that reflects this region’s heritage and character and it reinforces our commitment to supporting its production.”

Fadel Saeed AlMuhairi said: “Film and animation talent has flourished in recent years, as many companies have started to explore it. We are starting to see exceptional, visually stunning and engaging productions."

“As an Emirati filmmaker, I am proud that the UAE is supporting this growth industry. Hopefully, we can entertain audiences not only at home, but also on a global scale and show the world that the UAE has strong creativity and talent in animation.”

He added: “Featuring traditional hand-drawn animation, ‘Catsaway’ is going to be the perfect nostalgia-trip for adults, as well as being entertaining and educational for youngsters.”

Tent Pictures expects to have the first teaser trailer of the movie ready by April and will be seeking theatrical distribution when the full film is finished.

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