Many of us might have grown up reading Cyprian Ekwensi’s ‘The Passport of Mallam Ilia’. Anyone remember the Sanchi battle between Usman and Ilia? The prize for that fight-to-the-death was the beautiful princess, Zarah.
Magic Carpet Studios, an animation, illustration and game development studio in Lagos, has set out to repackage this timeless tale for old faithfuls and a new generation. The studio acquired the rights to the book earlier this year, and is in the process of making a 2D animation movie based on the book, the first of its kind to come out of Africa.
Magic Carpet, described by industry experts and enthusiasts as the ‘Disney of Africa’, is no new entrant to crossing frontiers. Its short film projects titled, ‘The Day Morning Never Came’, ‘The Reclamation’ and ‘Corruption: The Musical’, done in partnership with the Creative Youth Initiative against Corruption (CYIAC), powered by the Economic Financial Crimes Commission, beat over 700 nominations from 125 countries to win the Innovative category at the first UN Sustainable Development Goals Action Awards in Germany.
A lineup of renowned actors in Nollywood have been assembled: leading the pack is Sadiq Dabba, who has been signed up to voice Ilia while Mr. Makinde Adeniran of BBC’s ‘Story Story’, is playing the role of Casting Director.
Faced with funding concerns owing to the magnanimity of this project, the studio has set up a Kickstarter to crowdfund this project. They are also willing to enter partnerships with corporates and individuals. As part of the kick starter campaign to raise the first milestone of USD30,000, Magic Carpet released the movie teaser, watch below.
You can support this project by donating via Kickstarter (international donors/PayPal) or the project’s website (optimized for local currency). The studio provides givebacks for every donation level. To participate in this project, or have the folks at Magic Carpet translate your gaming, illustration and animation needs to life, contact them at [email protected]
Magic Carpet is a subsidiary of Imaginarium Creative Global Limited, a content factory, which is listed in Business Day’s Top 100 Fastest Growing SMEs in Nigeria. You can learn more about the studio, its Magic Lab Project which aims to train one thousand animators in 5 years, and more, on the studio’s website.
More information on the projection is available on www.iliathemovie.com