Kirikou and the Sorceress
Kirikou and the Sorceress (French: Kirikou et la Sorcière) is a 1998 traditional animation feature film written and directed by Michel Ocelot. Drawn from elements of West African folk tales, it depicts how a newborn boy, Kirikou, saves his village from the evil witch Karaba. The film was originally released on 9 December 1998. It is a co-production between companies in France (Exposure, France 3 Cinema, Les Armateurs, Monipoly, Odec Kid Cartoons), Belgium (Radio-Télévision belge) and Luxembourg (Studio O, Trans Europe Film) and animated at Rija Films' studio in Latvia and Studio Exist in Hungary.
|Kirikou and the Sorceress|
Original French film poster
|Directed by||Michel Ocelot|
|Produced by||Didier Brunner|
|Written by||Michel Ocelot|
|Starring||Doudou Gueye Thiaw|
Awa Sène Sarr
|Music by||Youssou N'Dour|
|Edited by||Dominique Lefevre|
|Distributed by||Gébéka Films|
It was so successful that it was followed by Kirikou et les bêtes sauvages, released in 2005, and adapted into a stage musical, Kirikou et Karaba, first performed in 2007. Another followup, Kirikou et les hommes et les femmes, was released in late 2012.
In a little West African village, a boy named Kirikou is born in an unusual way. Since he can speak and walk immediately after being born, it's also pretty obvious that he's not a normal baby. After Kirikou's mother tells him that an evil sorceress has dried up their spring and devoured all the males of the village except for one, he decides to accompany the last warrior, his uncle, to visit her. Kirikou manages to trick the sorceress and save his uncle by waiting inside his uncle's hat and pretending that it's magic. Additionally, he saves the village's children from being kidnapped both by the sorceress' boat and tree, and bursts the monster who was drinking all the village's water. He then travels to ask his wise old grandfather about the sorceress, who tells him that she is evil because she suffers from a poisoned thorn in her back. After learning this, Kirikou manages to trick the sorceress and remove the thorn, as well as taking all of her stolen gold and returning it to the rightful owners. The sorceress is cured as a result, and she kisses Kirikou; who then becomes an adult. When they arrive back at the village, no one believes that the sorceress is cured until a procession of drummers arrive. Afterwards, the sorceress's watchmen (as well as her other obedient objects) are turned back into the missing men; revealing that she didn't eat them after all.
French voice castEdit
- Doudou Gueye Thiaw: Child Kirikou
- Awa Sene Sarr: Karaba
- Maimouna N'Diaye: Kirikou's mother
- Robert Liensol: Kirikou's grandfather
- William Nadylam: Adult Kirikou
- Sébastien Hébrant: Adult Kirikou
- Rémi Bichet: Adult Kirikou
- Thilombo Lubambu: Kirikou's uncle
- Marie Augustine Diatta: the force woman
- Moustafa Diop: the fetish on the roof
- Isseu Niang: the small woman
- Selly Raby Kane: Zoé, the big girl
- Erick Patrick Correa: Boris, the big boy
- Adjoua Barry: Boulette, a girl
- Charles Edouard Gomis Correa: a boy
- Marie-Louise Shedeye Diiddi: the little girl
- Abdoulayé Diop Yama: the old person
- Josephine Theodora M'Boup: a woman
- Tabata N'Diaye: the old woman
- Samba Wane: fetish talked
- Aminatha N'Diaye: a mother
- François Chicaïa: man of the village
- N'Deyé Aïta N'Diaye: woman of the village
- Abdou El Aziz Gueye: man of the village
- Boury Kandé: woman of the village
- Assy Dieng Bâ: Karaba's scream
- Michel Elias: animal sounds
English voice castEdit
- Theodore Sibusiso Sibeko: Kirikou
- Antoinette Kellermann: Karaba
- Fezile Mpela: Uncle
- Kombisile Sangweni: The Mother
- Mabutho Kid Sithole: The Old Man
Swahili voice castEdit
- Samson Komeka: Kirikou
Japanese voice castEdit
The film is a co-production of Les Armateurs, Trans Europe Film, Studio O, France 3 cinéma, RTBF and Exposure in France, Odec Kid Cartoons in Belgium and Monipoly in Luxembourg. It was animated at Rija Films' animation studio in Latvia and Studio Exist in Hungary, with backgrounds painted at Les Armateurs and Paul Thiltges' animation studio, Tiramisu, in Luxembourg, digital ink and paint and compositing by Les Armateurs and Odec Kid Cartoons in Belgium and voices and music recorded in Senegal.
The original French voice acting was performed by a cast of West African actors and schoolchildren and recorded in Dakar. The English dubbing, also directed by Ocelot, was made in South Africa. A dub of the film in the Swahili language was produced in Tanzania in 2009 through the help of the Danish Film Institute (DFI) and John Riber of Media for Development in Dar es Salaam.
The film contains several instances of graphic female (and, to a lesser extent, male) nudity to reflect the area's less sexualized view of the human body. This was controversial enough in the U.S. and the U.K. to prevent its release. Eventually, the British Film Institute gave the film a few screenings in the U.K., and in the U.S. specialist distributor Artmattan released it to a small but appreciative African-American audience, but it was reviled by native African audiences.
The film has been licensed by distributors in numerous countries, including:
- Argentina – Prodifilms
- Brazil – Cult Filmes (VHS), Paulinas Multimídia (DVD)
- Canada – Remstar Distribution
- Denmark – Angel Films A/S
- France – Gébéka Films
- Germany – MFA Filmdistribution
- Italy – Mikado Film
- Japan – Albatros Film (2003, theatrical), Ghibli Cinema Library/Buena Vista Home Entertainment (DVD/VHS)
- Russia – RUSCICO (2004, video)
- Spain – Alta Classics S.L. Unipersonal
- United Kingdom – British Film Institute
- United States – ArtMattan Productions (2000, dubbed)
|1999||Annecy International Animation Film Festival||Grand Prix||Best Animation Film||Won|
|1999||Castellinaria International Festival of Young Cinema||Environment and Health Award||Won|
|1999||Castellinaria International Festival of Young Cinema||Silver Castle||Won|
|1999||Chicago International Children's Film Festival||Adult's Jury Award||Feature Film and Video – Animation||Won|
|1999||Chicago International Children's Film Festival||Children's Jury Award||Feature Film and Video – Animation||Won|
|1999||Cinekid Festival||Cinekid Film Award||Won|
|1999||Kecskemét Animation Film Festival||Kecskemét City Prize||KAFF Award||Won|
|1999||Oulu International Children's Film Festival||C.I.F.E.J. Award||Won|
|1999||Oulu International Children's Film Festival||Starboy Award||Nominated|
|2000||18th Ale Kino! International Young Audience Film Festival||Silver Poznan Goats||Best Animation Film||Won|
|2000||18th Ale Kino! International Young Audience Film Festival||Poznan Goats||Best Original Script in Foreign Movie||Won|
|2000||18th Ale Kino! International Young Audience Film Festival||Marcinek - Children's Jury Special Mention||Animation for Older Children||Won|
|2000||Cartagena Film Festival||Prize of the Children's Cinema Competition Jury||Best Feature Film for Children||Won|
|2000||Montréal International Children's Film Festival||Special Jury Prize||Feature Film||Won|
|2002||British Animation Awards||British Animation Award||Best European Feature Film||Won (tied with Chicken Run)|
|2009||Lola Kenya Children's Screen||Audience's Choice Award||Won|
- Ocelot, Michel (5 December 2003). "Des noms". Tout sur Kirikou (in French). Paris: Seuil. pp. 172–173. ISBN 2-02-062827-9.
- "Kirikou et la sorcière". Les Armateurs. Archived from the original on 28 September 2011. Retrieved 9 December 2011.
- Ocelot, Michel (5 December 2003). Tout sur Kirikou (in French). Paris: Seuil. pp. 40, 13. ISBN 2-02-062827-9.
- Lugt, Peter van der (25 August 2008). "This is animation". GhibliWorld.com. Archived from the original on 29 August 2008. Retrieved 25 August 2008.
- "Kirikou Et La Sorciere (Kirikou And The Sorceress)". www.bcdb.com, 13 October 2012
- Hetrick, Adam (21 June 2007). "Animated film Kirikou and the Sorceress to become stage musical". Playbill.com. Archived from the original on 4 December 2008. Retrieved 8 October 2008.
- "En cours". Les Armateurs. Archived from the original on 28 September 2011. Retrieved 9 December 2011.
- Closing credits of the film.
- Alexander Macbeth (21 September 2009). "The cast of the English version of the film.Film: Zanzibar's Festival shows the way forward". The Africa Report.
- James, Alison; James, Alison (25 December 2005). "Some nix 'Kirikou' pix due to nudity". Variety. Retrieved 27 July 2019.
- "Animated 'Kirikou and the Sorceress' Transitions to Stage Musical". Animation World Network. Retrieved 27 July 2019.
- "The Film Canon: Kirikou and the Sorceress (1998)". The Young Folks. 8 February 2015. Retrieved 27 July 2019.
- 5. Kecskeméti Animációs Filmfesztivál 2. Nemzetközi Animációs Játékfilm Fesztivál. Kecskeméti Animáció Film Fesztivál. 1999.
- Official website of Michel Ocelot
- Kirikou and the Sorceress official USA Web site
- Kirikou and the Sorceress official USA Web site to purchase DVD
- Kirikou et la sorcière at Le Palais des dessins animés
- Kirikou and the Sorceress at AllMovie
- Kirikou and the Sorceress at The Big Cartoon DataBase
- Kirikou and the Sorceress on IMDb
- Kirikou and the Sorceress at Rotten Tomatoes
- BBCi review
- The Guardian review