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Tad, The Lost Explorer

Tad, the Lost Explorer (Spanish: Las aventuras de Tadeo Jones) is a 2012 Spanish 3D computer-animated adventure comedy film directed by Enrique Gato. The film is a spinoff of Gato's 2004 short film, Tadeo Jones and its sequel Tadeo Jones and the Basement of Doom.[6] It was written by Javier Barreira, Gorka Magallón, Ignacio del Moral, Jordi Gasull and Neil Landau. The film's music was composed by Zacarías M. de la Riva. The English cast features voices of Kerry Shale, Ariel Winter, Bruce Mackinnon, Mac McDonald, Liza Ross, Cheech Marin and Adam James. The film was produced by Telecinco Cinema, El Toro Picture, Lightbox Entertainment, Ikiru Films, Telefónica Producciones, and Media Networks, with the participation of AXN, Canal Plus and TVC.[7]

Tad, the Lost Explorer
Tad, The Lost Explorer poster.jpg
Spanish theatrical release poster
Directed byEnrique Gato
Produced byÁlvaro Augustín
Ghislain Barrois
Nicolás Matji
Ezequiel Nieto
Edmon Roch
César Vargas
Screenplay byJavier Barreira
Gorka Magallón
Ignacio del Moral
Jordi Gasull
Neil Landau
Story byEnrique Gato
Based onTadeo Jones
by Enrique Gato
StarringKerry Shale
Ariel Winter
Bruce Mackinnon
Mac McDonald
Liza Ross
Cheech Marin
Adam James
Music byZacarías M. de la Riva
Edited byAlexander Adams
Distributed byParamount Pictures[1]
Release date
  • 5 June 2012 (2012-06-05) (AIAFF)[2]
  • 31 August 2012 (2012-08-31) (Spain)[3]
Running time
92 minutes
Budget€8 million[4]
Box office€45 million ($60.8 million)[5]

The film premiered at the Annecy International Animated Film Festival on 5 June 2012 and was theatrically released on 31 August 2012 in Spain by Paramount Pictures. The film received negative reviews from American critics, but it was well received in Spain and it earned €45 million on a €8 million budget, making it a box-office hit.[8]

It was nominated for 5 Goya Awards, winning 3 for Best Animated Film, Best New Director and Best Adapted Screenplay at the 27th Goya Awards.[9][10]

A sequel, titled Tad the Lost Explorer and the Secret of King Midas, was released in 2017.[11][12]



Tadeo Jones (Tad Stones in the English version and voiced by Kerry Shale) is a bricklayer from Spain who lives in Chicago, working on the construction of the city's subway. Ever since he was five years old, he has dreamed of being a professional archaeologist. After being fired from his job as a bricklayer for daydreaming and for his dog urinating on the construction foreman, Tad visits his friend Professor Humbert (voiced by Mac McDonald), asking for the professor's help in investigating an apparently vintage bottle of Coca-Cola Tad found on the construction site. The professor receives a letter from his friend Professor Lavrof summoning him to Peru to re-unite his half of a stone "key" that will unlock the legendary Incan city of Paititi. Arriving at the airport, Professor Humbert suffers an accident after taking the wrong pills and is taken to the hospital. Meanwhile, a member of the nefarious firm Odysseus Inc. is spying on them and sends the photo to the other members who are in the Sechura Desert.

Tad takes the professor's place and, along with his dog Jeff, travels from Chicago to Cusco, Peru. in the Cusco airport Tad meets Freddy (voiced by Cheech Marin), a local hustler. Tad is kidnapped by men from Odysseus, who threaten him to give them the stone key, but Tad is saved by Freddy and Sara (voiced by Ariel Winter), Professor Lavrov's daughter. After joining the two halves of the key, the group travels to Machu Picchu to meet up with Lavrov (also voiced by McDonald). Odysseus Inc., led by the evil Kopponen, (also voiced by Kerry Shale) again tries to steal the key, but Sara and Tad escape their clutches.

Arriving in Machu Picchu, they discover that Professor Lavrof was kidnapped by Odysseus. After a series of adventures, they find Lavrov and Max Morden (voiced by Adam James), a famous archaeologist and Sara's fiancé. After cracking the code of a wall map. Kopponen searches the desert with Lavrov and Mordon to find the treasure of the Incas. But Tad and Sara have the real map, and they depart for the jungle. Kopponen discovers them and finds the underground temple.

After more adventures, it is revealed that Max is in league with Odysseus. After a booby-trap room that wipes out Kopponen and the rest of his henchmen in Odysseus Inc., Max sneaks into a room in the temple and tries to steal the Incan gold, thinking it will grant him eternal life. After deceiving a mummy and a golem, Max smashes the glass that protects the Indian gold and thus achieves eternal life — but as a mummy and the condition is irreversible. With Max disposed of upon being imprisoned in Paititi's darkest dungeon by the mummy inhabitants, the chief mummy releases Tad, Sara, and the Professor with the promise that they will not reveal what they know about the city. Upon returning to the surface, they convince Freddy believe that the treasure of the Incas does not exist. Tad confesses his feelings for Sara and kisses her.

The film ends with Tad, Sara, Lavrof, Jeff and escaping in one of the Odysseus vehicles.


Character Spanish voice actor English voice actor
Tadheus "Tad" Stone/Tadeo Jones Óscar Barberán Kerry Shale
Sara Lavrof Michelle Jenner Ariel Winter (US)
Fiona Glascott (UK)
Freddy José Mota Cheech Marin (US)
Lewis MacLeod (UK)
Max Morden Pep Anton Muñoz Adam James
Professor Humbert Carles Canut Mac McDonald
Professor Lavrof Félix Benito
The Mummy Luis Posada Bruce Mackinnon
Kopponen Miguel Ángel Jenner Kerry Shale
Grandma Marta Martorell Liza Ross


The film is produced between Lightbox Entertainment, Telecinco Cinema, El Toro Pictures, Telefónica Producciones and Ikiru Films co-produced by Media Networks. Also with the participation of AXN, Televisió de Catalunya, Grupo Intereconomía, Mediaset España and Canal +, the distribution was carried out by the subsidiary in Spain of Paramount Pictures. The film became the first animated feature characters, which started with the short animated Enrique Gato.

Enrique Gato decided to create a new character to give greater dynamism to their previous work, and wanted to make a parody of Indiana Jones. The character was created from the 3ds Max program. David García voiced the character in the first film, where not speak but did exclamations and murmurs, and the second for Jordi Brau where did speak. On the other hand, the first animated feature, the voice actors are José Mota, Michelle Jenner and Óscar Barberan as Freddy, Sara and Tadeo respectively. As for the dubbing of the film in Catalan, is José Corbacho who replaces the manchego comic. Character creation of Tadeo Jones came when, in 2001, Enrique Gato sought to give his work a touch of humor and action greater than their previous work, had already noticed that short-another Bicho hers very static movements, so I chose Indiana Jones parody. However, the project did not start until two years later when he started writing the script that would serve to bring it to the big screen. At first, the model was very simple and it became a test of facial animation, with 4 basic gestures, and a test used as a teaser animation, watching the director who had options to become the protagonist of a film. For the second short film, the director wanted to show something about the personal life of the character, something that was not shown in the anteriorcomo was the neighborhood where he lives and their food tastes, burger.

The filmmakers set up in April 2008 his own animation studio Lightbox Entertainment to produce 3D animated films for a global market. From that moment they began to make the film The Adventures of Tadeo Jones as the protagonist, it is a construction worker in his spare time is devoted to archeology. The two cartoons made by Jan to promote the film starring Tadeo, served as storyboards for this feature. Cat also tried to take the field of video games, but the result was not as expected and decided to abandon the idea. The elongated nose, big mouth and disproportionate tips Tadeo Jones character is inspired by the designs of comic artist Juan López Fernández (JAN).

The figure is mainly inspired by Indiana Jones, as you can see in his hat and outline its light colored shirt and dark pants. However, given an air of boy-scout to symbolize your child's mind, as is the use of a backpack. When animating the character, three forms based on the same geometric shape, one with all clothing, one without hat and shirt and last only boots and shorts were made. The animation was done in Character Studio, without adapting the volume of parts. The head is independent eye also had a separate geometry and eyelids specific controls. One problem was that they wanted the character lost his hat to the end of the short causing him to lose expressiveness, were encouraged to do everything except the hat and then adapted to Tadeo with this post. The animation team, composed of David Ordieres, among other hundred employees of the film, that worked for four years in development and animation of the characters.


The film premiered at the Annecy International Animated Film Festival on 5 June 2012 and was theatrically released on 31 August 2012 in Spain by Paramount Pictures.

The DVD was released in Spain on 19 December 2012 in normal version and Blu-ray, and within days became the best selling Christmas DVD, drying up the issue quickly. Includes audio quality Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish version in addition to blind and language in Catalan. It also concludes a section of extras from the movie with the making of the trailer, video clip, short films and the design and creation of characters.


Tad, the Lost Explorer
Soundtrack album by
Zacarías M. de la Riva
Released12 September 2012
GenreFilm score
LabelMovieScore Media
ProducerJames Peterson
Zacarías M. de la Riva film scores chronology
Childish Games
Tad, the Lost Explorer
La mano de Nefertiti
Singles from Tad, the Lost Explorer
  1. "Te Voy A Esperar"
    Released: August 7, 2012

The soundtrack of the film is composed by Zacarías M. de la Riva. However, the main theme is provided by Juan Magan and Belinda playing "Te Voy A Esperar" The song placed first on the charts in Spain on iTunes and Spotify. On the other hand, the soundtrack of the film also features songs from One Direction and The Monomes, beyond the hit song "The Final Countdown" by Europe. The soundtrack was released by MovieScore Media on 12 September 2012.[13][14]

Video gamesEdit

A video game based on the film, titled Tadeo Jones, was developed by Spanish studio U-Play Studios for the PlayStation Vita. It was released by Deep Silver on 4 December 2013.[15][16] A follow-up game, Tadeo Jones and the Lost Manuscript (Tadeo Jones y el Manuscrito Perdido), was released on 28 November 2014 for PlayStation Vita and PlayStation 4.[17]


Critical responseEdit

The film received positive reviews from Spanish critics. Fausto Fernandez, the Spanish film magazine Frames, put a score of three stars out of five, calling it the best film of Spanish animation history, where approved quality visuals, characters sharing, but mentioned that it sinned with the chosen songs. He added that he has nothing to envy titles with larger budget as a result of cartoons. Carmen L. Lobo, the newspaper La Razón, put a score of three stars out of five, calling it a candid history, strongly influenced by comics and exciting stripped of any double malicious and full sense also scenes that seem drawn from a video game, adding that the scenarios where they develop are impressive. Meanwhile, Jordi Batlle Caminal La Vanguardia wrote that "The animation is top notch. Side are designed with wit. In short, it's a decent product with blockbuster soul". He was also skilled with a score of three points on four.

Box office performanceEdit

Tad, the Lost Explorer was made on a budget of €8 million.[4] It earned €45 million ($60.8 million) worldwide.[5][18] In Spain, where it was released by Paramount Pictures in 500 theaters,[1] the film held number one spot at the box office for five weeks in a row,[19] and earned a total of €18.0 million ($24,4 million),[20] breaking domestic box office record for a Spanish-animated feature.[5] It became the highest-grossing film of the year in Spain,[6] outgrossing other animated features, including Ice Age: Continental Drift, Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted, and Brave.[19] In other countries, the film earned over $36 million, topping box office charts in multiple South American territories.[20]


Organization Award category Result
Premios Forqué Best Documentary and Animation Won
Premios CEC Best New Director Won
Best Adapted Screenplay Won
Best Music Nominated
Best Animated Film Won
Goya Awards Best New Director Won
Best Adapted Screenplay Won
Best Original Score Nominated
Best Original Song Nominated
Best Animated Film Won


A sequel, titled Tad the Lost Explorer and the Secret of King Midas, was released in 2017.[11][12] It was co-directed by Enrique Gato and David Alonso,[11] and written by Jordi Gasull, Javier Barreira and Neil Landau.[20] It was distributed worldwide by Paramount Pictures.[11]


  1. ^ a b Zahed, Ramin (3 September 2012). "Spain's 'Tad the Lost Explorer' Finds New Territories". Animation Magazine. Retrieved 21 July 2014.
  2. ^ "Annecy 2012 Press Kit". Annecy. p. 10. Retrieved 21 July 2014.
  3. ^ Ríos Pérez, Sergio (4 October 2012). "Tadeo Jones tops Spanish box office". Cineuropa. Retrieved 21 July 2014.
  4. ^ a b Brunet, Pau (14 November 2012). "Ranking Taquilla España: Lo Imposible suma otros 2,17 millones y James Bond 1,8". Retrieved 21 July 2014.
  5. ^ a b c Jones, Benjamin (21 July 2014). "Paramount to Distribute Two Spanish Animation Films". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 24 July 2014.
  6. ^ a b Zahed, Ramin (27 December 2012). "'Tad, the Lost Explorer' Becomes Spain's Top Animated Film". Animation Magazine. Retrieved 21 July 2014.
  7. ^ Milligan, Mercedes (8 October 2013). "Exclusive Clip: 'Tad: The Lost Explorer' Now on Disc". Animation Magazine. Retrieved 28 October 2015.
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^ "Finalistas Mejor película de animación". (in Spanish). Retrieved 15 January 2013.
  10. ^ "Las aventuras de Tadeo Jones". (in Spanish). Retrieved 15 January 2013.
  11. ^ a b c d Tartaglione, Nancy (21 July 2014). "Paramount Takes Worldwide Distribution On Spain's 'Capture The Flag', 'Tad' Sequel". Deadline. Retrieved 21 July 2014.
  12. ^ a b "Tadeo Jones 2". Lightbox Animation Studios. Retrieved 15 January 2017.
  13. ^ "Tad The Lost Explorer Soundtrack (2012)". Retrieved 4 April 2014.
  14. ^ "Tad The Lost Explorer (2012)". SoundtrackINFO. Retrieved 4 April 2014.
  15. ^
  16. ^!/es-es/cid=EP4062-PCSB00458_00-TADEOJONESGAMEUP
  17. ^ Martin, Sergio (18 December 2014). "Tadeo Jones se cuela de nuevo en PS4 y PS Vita" (in Spanish). 3D Juegos. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  18. ^ "New projects from Enrique Gato, director of 'THE ADVENTURES OF TADEO JONES', the highest grossing national animation strip in Spanish cinema" (PDF) (Press release). Mediaset. 21 July 2014. Retrieved 24 July 2014.
  19. ^ a b Amidi, Amid (1 January 2015). "Paramount Makes A Bet on Spanish Feature Animation". Cartoon Brew. Retrieved 7 March 2015.
  20. ^ a b c Hopewell, John (21 July 2014). "Paramount Pictures Takes Worldwide Distribution on 'Capture the Flag,' 'Tad' Sequel". Variety. Retrieved 24 July 2014.

External linksEdit