EXCLUSIVE: Star Wars star Daisy Ridley and Brit national treasure Stephen Fry have boarded the voice cast of The Inventor, a feature stop-motion animation about Leonardo da Vinci written and directed by Jim Capobianco, the Oscar-nominated scribe of Ratatouille.
Fry will voice da Vinci and Ridley will be the French Princess Marguerite. Pic will follow the life of the insatiably curious and headstrong inventor as he leaves Italy to join the French court, where he can experiment freely, inventing flying contraptions, incredible machines, and studying the human body. There, joined by the princess, he looks to answer the ultimate question – what is the meaning of it all?
Deadline can also reveal a first look at the movie below.
French major mk2 films is handling international rights with The Exchange overseeing the U.S. sale; the film will take part in next week’s Cannes Marche.
The $10M project is being produced by Robert Rippberger and Capobianco with executive producer Don Hahn, whose credits include The Lion King and Beauty And The Beast. Shooting is scheduled for August 2021 with delivery in Spring 2023.
The crew is packed with talent from the animation world. DoP is Peter Sorg, who previously worked on Frankenweenie and Coraline. The Oscar-nominated Tomm Moore (The Secret of Kells, Song of The Sea) is handling hand-drawn sequences. Music is being composed by Alex Mandel, who composed Pixar’s Brave. Director Capobianco has a litany of credits including as a story artist on Inside Out, Monsters, Inc, and Toy Story 2.
Executive producers also include Ilan Urroz, Kat Alioshin, Stephan Roelants, Carmella Casinelli, Dave Lugo, Wes Hull, and Eleanor Coleman. The film is a European and U.S. co-production from Foliascope (France), Melusine Productions (Luxembourg), Curiosity Studio (Ireland), and Leo & King (USA).
Further voice cast is now being set.
“We are making this film for children and the child in many adults. It has action, adventure, beauty and humor. We hope it will spark curiosity in its young audience and inspire girls and boys to become the Leonardo’s of the 21st century. We are ecstatic to join mk2 and The Exchange as we bring The Inventor to the big screen,” said Jim Capobianco and Robert Rippberger.
“To this day Leonardo Da Vinci’ brilliance is a global inspiration for young and old alike. Having his story told through Jim’s brilliant eyes for a family audience, gives this project unique North-American breakout value,” added Brian O’Shea of The Exchange.
“Jim Capobianco’s boundless imagination shines a new light on Leonardo da Vinci’s epic life, making it an adventurous escapade, that is full of surprises for the whole family, and adds a splash of existentialism to boot. We are truly thrilled to be accompanying the work of such creative and experienced artists,” added Fionnuala Jamison and Olivier Barbier of mk2 Films.