Cartoon Saloon Creative Director Opens Up About Debut Feature Julián

Irish filmmaker and Cartoon Saloon creative director, Louise Bagnall, shares the first details about her debut animated feature, Julián.

Irish filmmaker and Cartoon Saloon creative director Louise Bagnall has stepped forward to reveal the first details of her debut animated feature, Julián. The feature is based on Julián is a Mermaid, a short story focused on a boy who spends the summer with his Abuela in New York. The summer is one of discovery for the youngster as he explores his hidden heritage, gender expression, and who is.

According to an interview conducted by Cartoon Brew, Bagnall reached out to author and illustrator Jessica Love to discuss bringing the short story to the screen. 

“It’s a great jumping-off point, the book, in terms of the visuals. There’s so much vibrancy… and it’s been really exciting as well to explore the world. We’re able to expand it.”

Of course, there's more than just the standard adaptation. As Bagnall explains, there will be more fantastical elements, including Julián meeting a mermaid goddess, and will stick with Cartoon Saloon's strong suit -- traditional animation.

Julián is a big step for Bagnall in a few ways, chief among them being the first feature film for her to direct. She has directed multiple short films for Cartoon Saloon, including the award-winning Netflix short, My Father’s Dragon, released earlier this year to a generally positive reception.

Julián aims for a young audience, though, much like a lot of these movies about heritage and self-discovery, adults have a chance at relating to this pre-adolescent's journey.

Before you get too excited, though, according to Bagnall, this movie appears to be quite a ways out as the film may just be exiting development and entering pre-production. However, they aim to pitch the film during the Cartoon Movie event in March.

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Cartoon Saloon Creative Director Opens Up About Debut Feature Julián
Irish filmmaker and Cartoon Saloon creative director, Louise Bagnall, shares the first details about her debut animated feature, Julián.

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