"Cheburashka Goes to the Zoo,"
is a new stop-motion animation featuring Cheburashka, one of Russia's most beloved characters, and will be showing in 500 movie venues across Japan from this Fall 2015.
This first Cheburashka film in five years, Japanese director Makoto Nakamura marks the 50th anniversary next year of Cheburashka's birth in 2016.
Cheburashka was originally created by Russian children's book writer Eduard Uspensky in 1966. The mysterious creature with large, round ears was introduced in "Gena the Crocodile" as the reptile's friend. But Cheburashka became so popular that it became the protagonist.
The first stop-motion animation was produced in 1969, and the character became popular worldwide. Cheburashka also featured in an animated TV series in Japan in 2009. A stop-motion puppet short film directed by Nakamura was released in 2010.
Following in the footsteps of the original works from Russia, "Cheburashka Goes to the Zoo" was created with stop-motion techniques using puppets and sets. The latest piece, lasting 15 minutes, has been invited for screening at the International Animated Films Festival KROK in Russia, the Zlin Film Festival in the Czech Republic and the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen in Germany.
In Japan, the short was first showcased at a special screening event held March 8 in Ishinomaki, Miyagi Prefecture, to pay tribute to victims of the tsunami disaster four years ago. Cheburashka served as the mascot for the event.
More in Japanesehttp://www.cheb-project.com/index.php