Macmillan has launched a publishing partnership with the Moomin Characters featuring the forthcoming Moominvalley titles.
Macmillan’s Children’s Books is expanding its joint working with Rights & Brands, the agent for the characters. The new publishing deal will see Macmillan Children’s Books be master publisher of the Moominvalley books, based on the new forthcoming animated TV series.
Macmillan will launch its Moominvalley books in 2019 and will publish globally across a range of formats, based on the new TV series of the same name, which will premiere in the UK on Sky in Spring 2019. The series will air on public broadcaster YLE in Finland, with more deals under negotiation worldwide.
The "ground-breaking" animation series will comprise 13 22-minute episodes, featuring new stories based on the world of Moomins creator Tove Jansson. The “pioneering animation” is produced by a team including c.e.o. and founder of Gutsy Animations and executive producer Marika Makaroff; Oscar-winning director Steve Box; BAFTA and Emmy-winning producer John Woolley and Emmy-winning writing duo Mark Huckerby and Nick Ostler with a cast including Kate Winslet and Rosamund Pike amongst others.
The series is produced by Gutsy Animations featuring "new innovative techniques in 3D CGI, it promises to be an exciting launch for family audiences," Macmillan said.
The deal was brokered by Stephanie Barton, publisher of Macmillan’s 0-6 division and Hanna Pajunen-Walsh, international sales director of children’s and YA books for Rights & Brands as well as Moomin Characters UK agent, Caroline Mickler.
In a separate but co-ordinated publishing initiative, Macmillan will also publish a range of newly illustrated picture books and storybooks, drawn from Jansson’s original classic stories. This launched with Christmas Comes to Moominvalley, published on 1st November, a re-telling of Tove Jansson's classic story "The Fir Tree". The text is written by Scandinavian writers, Alex Haridi and Cecilia Davidsson, with new illustrations based on Jansson’s original drawings and colour plates, created by Filippa Widlund.
Barton said: “We have been working with Moomin Characters for several years now and are proud and delighted to be part of the new animation plans and to be able to grow a new generation of Moomin fans, with the launch of these stunning picture books and storybooks, is an absolute joy.”
Sophia Jansson, creative director of Moomin Characters and niece of Tove, said: “We’ve loved working with Macmillan – their combination of creativity and a deep understanding of the rich world Tove created has already led to some beautiful and imaginative books, including the stunning Moomin Colouring Book and greatly anticipated Moomins Craft Book. We’re delighted that they will be continuing their excellent work and are joining us on this exciting new animation journey.”