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China and Czech Republic jointly produce cartoon

Updated: Jun 19,2015 9:14 AM     

You may remember this cute, fuzzy friend with big eyes - “the little mole”, or “Krtek” in its Czech mother language, has attracted a great number of Chinese fans since it was introduced by China Central Television in the 1980’s. Now, after a few years’ preparation, CCTV has helped launch a co-production of a new animated series with the Czech studio, kicking off a new journey for the little mole. A conference for the new show was held on June 17 in Prague.

Three years ago, the original “Little Mole” series made a comeback on China Central Television, almost 20 years since its first airing in China. The renowned cartoon masterpiece is still loved by parents and children till this day, as many stories are educational, and demonstrate an elegant painting style. Simple yet intimate aesthetics that distinguished the Little Mole from the mainstream, flashy US animation productions.

In the eyes of many, the Little Mole has become an ambassador for the Czech Republic to many countries including China. That’s why the idea of co-creating new stories for the cartoon figure between both countries was initiated - and this time the Little Mole has a new companion - a panda, a symbolic combination of a typical Czech animated figure and a Chinese national symbol. After discussing with Karolina Milerova, granddaughter of the famous animator and director Zdenek Miler last year, CCTV officially signed the co-production contract earlier this week , and previewed a pilot episode during the conference.

Since its first appearance on TV in 1956, the Little Mole has starred in more than 50 episodes, most of which are shorter than 10 minutes. Producers of the new series showed full respect for the originals, and announced that the new series consist of 52 episodes, with an average length of 12 minutes.

The full series is expected to finish post-production in early 2016, and set to be released in China first.