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[Y Mabinogi]    
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   producers: Cartwn Cymru / Christmas
                     Films / MPC for S4C
   animation: 2D animation
with live-action

      run time: 90 mins


It's Lleu's 18th birthday and he and his friend Rhiannon and younger brother Dan
     put aside their teenage troubles to take a celebratory boat trip along the coast.
     That's when they discover the magical portal beneath the waves which leads them
     back to a legendary time, the time of Mabinogi...

     The Mabinogen are medieval Welsh legends about brotherhood, adolecsence,
     conflicts, resolutions, acts of brutal violence and magic. The original tales break
     down into four specifc "branches", or "strands" and the inter-woven narrative makes
     it ferociously difficult to translate them into one linear story. But that's what
     we have here with this intriguing film from Derek Hayes and Naomi Jones
     of Cartwn Cymru. A modern, live-action tale is threaded through the animated
     legends with Lleu, Rhiannon and Dan's troubles and conflicts reflected in the
     realm of the Mabinogi.

     "Otherworld" was a labour of love. The project was on the producers' slate for
     a very long time, but always considered too complex and demanding to push
     to the front of the queue. Cartwn Cymru's groundbreaking collaborations with
     Christmas Films in Moscow persuaded all that the time was right to attempt
     the adaptation. Derek Hayes' animation design is striking, with rich and at
     times electric hues off-set against the steel skies, moody landscapes and
     shadows - very 'celtic', then...

     Cartwn Cymru have come a long way from their Toucan Tecs days. With
     "Shakespeare: The Animated Tales", "Canterbury Tales", Miracle Maker and
     now "Otherworld", they have put together a run of dynamic, intelligent productions
     aimed at more mature audiences and each successive project has pushed
     at the creative envelope. They have risen to the challenge of adapting "difficult"
     subject matter into animated form, and what's more, they're not simply
     animating material for animation's sake. Rather, they're always looking to
     bring something deeper to their films, using the medium to reveal new facets
     in the material.

     "Otherworld" was produced in both English and Welsh, in keeping with Cartwn
     Cymru's S4C remit. The film toured around the country on a limited run
     between November 2002 and February 2003.


     Cartwn Cymru, Christmas Films and MPC for S4C

     director:           Derek Hayes
     producer:       Naomi Jones
     designer:        Derek Hayes
   Martin Lamb, Penelope Middleboe
     music:           John Cale
     voices:          Ioan Gruffudd
(King Bendigeidfran)
                          Matthew Rhys (Lleu)
                          Lisa Palfrey (Arianrhod)
                          Daniel Evans (Dan)
                          Jenny Livesey (Rhiannon)
                          Philip Madoc (Gwydion)
                          Paul McGann (King Matholwch)


      On the web

Derek Hayes

      The director's stylish web space...

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© Christmas Films / F2009