Gao Shan Pictures presents The Fire Keeper
- This adaptation of Pierre Rabhi’s novel, produced by the Reunion-based company, is one of the projects in development being pitched online at the 23rd edition of Cartoon Movie
Standing out among the 55 projects selected and pitched at the 23rd Cartoon Movie (from 9 to 11 March online – read the news), in the strand reserved to projects in development, is The Fire Keeper (Le gardien du feu ), an adaptation of the novel Le Gardien du feu: Message de sagesse des peuples traditionnels (1985) by Pierre Rabhi. The French farmer, writer and thinker of Algerian origins is considered to be one of the pioneers of agroecology in France. Having participated in the preparation of the Agreement on Action Against Desertification, he called for the “insurrection of consciences” in order to put an end to the destruction of the planet and to get out of the myth of indefinite growth.
Aimed at a family audience, The Fire Keeper will be the first feature film directed by Jeanne Irzenski, a graduate from film school Les Gobelins who has worked as lead animator on the making of Adama [+see also:
film profile], Zombillenium [+see also:
film profile], White Fang [+see also:
film profile], I Lost My Body [+see also:
interview: Jérémy Clapin
film profile] and Yakari, A Spectacular Journey [+see also:
Adapted by Magali Pouzol (winner of the 2018 Emile Award for best screenplay for Funan [+see also:
interview: Denis Do
film profile] and co-writer on the highly anticipated Le Sommet des dieux) together with the director, the script centres on 12-year-old Ahmed. In a village on the edge of the desert, he is destined to take over his father’s forge but dreams only of adventures, wilderness and freedom. With Slimane and Mançoura, two young nomads who become his friends, he will learn the secrets of the desert. Together they will discover a mine that has just opened. Despite the gold that it seems to promise, they will face its darkness. Exhausted bodies, polluted springs, destruction of the social structure of the village… Faced with the hopelessness of his own people, the hell of the mines and Mançoura’s forced marriage, Ahmed will work up the courage to assert himself. And by fighting back, he will give a future to his land and to his people.
Gao Shan Pictures, a French production company and animation studio funded in the Reunion in early 2014 by Arnauld Boulard (after he worked for about ten years as executive producer for Mac Guff) has also co-produced, among other titles, Funan, Zombillenium and Yakari, A Spectacular Journey. The studio has also created the keyframe animation keyframe for White Fang and the 3D animation for I Lost My Body.
(Translated from French)