Dargaud buys Ellipse
by Fabien Lemercier
At a time when Vivendi Universal (VUE) is leading a bidding frenzy for its American operations, its subsidiary Canal+, is likewise selling off its film production interests. The latest to go is Ellipse Animation, set up 16 years ago (and also known as Ellipseanime), purchased by cartoon publisher Dargaud Marina.
Ellipse Animation was owned by Studio Expand, a Canal+ production slate and was of particular interest to buyers because it owns one of France's best catalogue of animated films, ranging from TV series to feature films like Pascal Morelli’s Corto Maltese, released domestically by Gebeka on 25 September 2002 and seen by 290,000 French filmgoers.
The Dargaud group is one of Europe’e leading cartoon publishers and their titles include Blueberry and Lucky Luke. Its purchase of Ellipse will faciliate the company's entry into the animated fim production arena, a sector that is experiencing a steady increase in the number of screen adaptations of famous cartoon heroes.
Canal+ has also put the rest of Studio Expand on the market.
(Translated from French)
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