Cinesite Makes History with “IWÁJU” – Premiering Feb. 28, 2024 on Disney+

Cinesite proudly announces its historic collaboration with Walt Disney Animation Studios, marking the first studio to work on a Disney (animation) project outside of the studio. This partnership brings forth “Iwájú,” a six-part animated series exclusively premiering on Disney+ from Feb. 28, 2024.

Set in futuristic Lagos, Nigeria, “Iwájú” unfolds the captivating coming-of-age journey of Tola and Kole, promising a fusion of tradition and futurism. Visual elements and technological advancements inspired by Lagos’s spirit add a unique touch to the series.

Iwájú was directed by Ziki Nelson (director, Kugali founder) with the Disney Animation team being led by Christina Chen (producer) and Marlon West (vfx supervisor), under the supervision of Disney Animation’s chief creative officer Jennifer Lee. Cinesite’s production team was led by Joel MacDonald (producer) and Ellen Poon (vfx supervisor).

Commenting on the collaboration with Walt Disney Animation Studios, Cinesite Chief of Animation Eamonn Butler said, “There’s a lot to be excited about when it comes to Iwájú. For one, it’s an entirely new, original story inventively set in a futuristic Lagos, Nigeria. Secondly, to work with the best in animation with Walt Disney Animation Studios and fresh, new voices with the exciting storytellers of Kugali is truly a first-of-its-kind not just for Cinesite, but for all of us. The Cinesite teams have worked hard to continually raise the quality bar, and working with Disney Animation is a testament to everyone’s efforts. We’re looking forward to showcasing our crew’s innovation and creativity!”

“Iwájú” not only stands as an artistic achievement but also highlights the power of global collaboration. To provide a glimpse into the series’ creation, a documentary special, “Iwájú: A Day Ahead,” is set to also debut on Disney+ to accompany the series itself. Produced by ABC News Studios and Disney Animation, this documentary (some of which was filmed at Cinesite’s studios) shares the inspiring story of Kugali’s founders turning their dream into reality.

 

MEET OTIN — “Iwájú,” an original animated series set in a futuristic Lagos, Nigeria—a world bursting with unique visual elements and technological advancements inspired by the spirit of Lagos. Among them is Otin (voice of Weruche Opia), a high-tech robotic pet lizard with powerful capabilities. Kugali filmmakers—including director Olufikayo Ziki Adeola, production designer Hamid Ibrahim and cultural consultant Toluwalakin Olowofoyeku—take viewers on a unique journey in this six-episode event. Produced by Disney Animation’s Christina Chen, and written by Adeola and Halima Hudson, “Iwájú” streams exclusively on Disney+ Feb. 28, 2024. © 2024 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

BEST FRIENDS — In a first-of-its-kind collaboration, Walt Disney Animation Studios teams up with Pan-African entertainment company Kugali for “Iwájú”—an original animated series set in a futuristic Lagos, Nigeria. This exciting coming-of-age story follows Tola (voice of Simisola Gbadamosi) and her best friend Kole (voice of Siji Soetan). Kugali filmmakers Olufikayo Ziki Adeola, Hamid Ibrahim and Toluwalakin Olowofoyeku take viewers on a unique journey into the world of “Iwájú,” bursting with unique visual elements and technological advancements inspired by the spirit of Lagos. Produced by Disney Animation’s Christina Chen, and written by Adeola and Halima Hudson, “Iwájú” streams exclusively on Disney+ Feb. 28, 2024, in a six-episode event. © 2024 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

MEET TOLA – Set in futuristic Lagos, Nigeria, “Iwájú” is a coming-of-age story from Walt Disney Animation Studios and Pan-African entertainment company Kugali. Tola (voice of Simisola Gbadamosi) is a curious and opinionated girl who’s eager to learn more about the world around her. Kugali filmmakers Olufikayo Ziki Adeola, Hamid Ibrahim and Toluwalakin Olowofoyeku take viewers on a unique journey into the world of “Iwájú,” bursting with unique visual elements and technological advancements inspired by the spirit of Lagos. Produced by Disney Animation’s Christina Chen, and written by Adeola and Halima Hudson, “Iwájú” streams exclusively on Disney+ Feb. 28, 2024, in a six-episode event. © 2024 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

 

 

 

 

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