Lionsgate announced today that it will launch its multi-picture partnership with Crest Animation Productions with the CGI animated theatrical family film Alpha and Omega. Lionsgate and Crest are co-financing and co-producing Alpha and Omega, which is scheduled for theatrical release in 2010. The announcement was made by Lionsgate's Executive Vice President of Lionsgate Family Entertainment Ken Katsumoto and Crest Animation Production's CEO Noah Fogelson.
The story of two very different young wolves thrown together by circumstance, Alpha and Omega features Justin Long and Hayden Panettiere ("Heroes") in the primary roles. The eclectic cast includes Christina Ricci, Danny Glover, Dennis Hopper and Larry Miller. The film is directed by Anthony Bell (The Boondocks, Rugrats) and Ben Gluck (Brother Bear 2). Chris Denk wrote the screenplay based on an original story by Steve Moore (co-creator of Open Season). Ken Katsumoto is producing for Lionsgate, and Richard Rich is producing for Crest. The executive producers are Noah Fogelson, CEO of Crest Animation Productions, Seemha Ramanna, Managing Director and co-founder of Crest Animation Studios, and A.K. Madhavan, CEO of Crest Animation Studios.
"We are very excited to be working with Crest, one of the world's finest CG animation producers. Everyone at Crest is passionate about creating high-quality animated family entertainment, and that commitment is reflected in 'Alpha and Omega,'" said Katsumoto. "This is a classic journey film in the vein of 'Finding Nemo' and 'The Lion King,' filled with all manner of richly imagined particulars. And why not begin a partnership with a movie about wolves, one of Nature's most cohesive social units?"
Said Fogelson, "We are thrilled to be in business with Lionsgate, a company that is continually innovating in terms of both production and marketing. We are looking forward to a fruitful collaboration and feel we are off to a great start with 'Alpha and Omega.' We have a wonderfully talented cast and an outstanding team of filmmakers led by Anthony Bell and Ben Gluck, who truly understand the art and craft of animated storytelling."
Alpha and Omega is currently in production, with pre and post-production taking place in Los Angeles and key animation at Crest Animation Studios in India. Lionsgate will distribute the film in North America and the UK. Mandate International will be launching international sales at the upcoming Cannes film festival for the rest of the world, excluding India.
In the film, two bickering wolves -- one a disciplined, Alpha-bred wolf (Panettiere) and the other a fun-loving, comical Omega wolf (Long) -- are captured and taken thousands of miles from their home. Determined to rejoin their pack, the two mismatched wolves begin a dangerous trek across unfamiliar terrain, battling the odds, the elements, the bears and one another -- and finding love along the way.