(Status: in development)
Stinky Dog and his friend Flatcat are a couple of misfits who live in a trash can and that society regards as nobodies. Stinky Dog feels no hatred towards those who reject him. He likes living in his trash can, surrounded by his friends, and aspires to nothing else. But because he acts a little too fast and isn’t the world’s greatest thinker, his quests are always complicated and only accentuate his eccentricity. On the surface, Stinky Dog’s adventures are crazy and touching, but deep down, our hero is questioning society. During his wild and hairy pursuits, he sends hypocrites flying and knocks thieves for six… even if it’s usually only through clumsiness.
Directors: Davy Durand, Vincent Patar and Stéphane Aubier
Authors: Jean Regnaud, Vincent Patar and Stéphane Aubier, adaptation from Chien Pourri! by Colas Gutman (Story) and Marc Boutavant (Illustrations)
Producers: Emmanuèle Petry (dandelooo, France), Jean-Baptiste Wery (dandelooo), Damien Brunner (folivari, France), Didier Brunner (folivari), and Vincent Tavier (Panique!, Belgium)
Format: 52 x 13’
Target audience: Children (6-10 years)
Technique: 2D digital
Behind the story of the Stinky Dog project
Stinky Dog is the project which gathered the most interest from attendees in the Cartoon Forum 2017. It is co-produced by three European animation studios, dandelooo, folivari, and Panique!. It’s a TV series project based on the popular French children book series Chien Pourri!. Adorable and unique animals, including the main character Stinky Dog, explores the world free from the norms and rules of our society. The story aims to give its viewers a time to think and reflect on what’s important in our lives through the fun adventures with Stinky Dog. We could hear the story behind the attractive project from the producer.
Hideki Nagaishi (HN): How did this project start? Why did you decide to make an animation based on the original book?
Jean-Baptiste Wery (JW): When we discovered the original French book Chien Pourri! (Story: Colas Gutman, Illustrations: Marc Boutavant, more than 600,000 copies have been sold in France), we were working on a hybrid (live action / 2D animation) TV series called The Treehouse Stories. We met Marc Boutavant, an illustrator through the project and we animated his work. It was a fun challenge, and then we had the idea to make the animation based on the book series Chien Pourri! (English title: Stinky Dog)with folivari to try to adapt it for television.
We are trying to keep all the good stuff in the book series. It was very natural to work with the writer Jean Regnaud and did a good adaptation. We are working with directors Vincent Patar and Stéphane Aubier, who directed famous titles such as A Town Called Panic and Ernest & Celestine, and we are asking them to write as much as possible. We also want to focus on the quality of animation, so that we have a high 8 million Euro budget. We want to make high-quality animation with folivari, the same as their recent great works such as Ernest & Celestine and The Big Bad Fox and Other Tales….
HN: What did you like about the original title?
JW: There was something very attractive in the character of Stinky Dog, who never understands the mean and hurtful world around him. In the book, Stinky Dog is always the victim, but takes it on the bright side.
The other thing we liked about it is also the slightly non-political message, where the ones living in the garbage win over the rich ones. And they do like living this way. There is something very unique and irreverent that results from Colas Gutman’s tone, a touch acidic humour, and the colorful and indulgent drawings of Marc Boutavant, who transmits to us the love for his characters.
HN: How do you adapt the original title to animation? Do you add any original content to the animation?
JW: We wanted to make Stinky Dog a more positive (anti) hero. The surrounding characters (apart from Chaplapla) in the book act badly towards him, but with the series, in the end Stinky Dog unintentionally will always win! It is something so absurd that some of the antagonists strongly believe that he has a very special power.
Through Stinky Dog, we want to say that innocence and kindness can defeat all the hatred and evil around you, and can be rewarded in some way. It is a very universal and important thing to tell to a young audience all around the world.
Also, we have worked a lot on the absurd and inventive humour, thanks to Jean Regnaud, Vincent Patar and Stéphane Aubier, who did an amazing job. I have never laughed as much as reading Stinky Dog’s script. Reading that was my most likely and unexpected moment of the day!
HN: I would like to know how the good visuals of the trailer was made technically. It has the same tastes of the visuals of the original book, kind of a combination of watercolour and pastel.
JW: It is mostly based on Davy Durand’s talent, who is such a great animator. We challenged him, asking to keep the appearances of the original book in the animation, which was such a bargain! And we are very happy to see the result. The pilot was made with Flash and we will do the series in Toon Boom Harmony.
HN: Could you please let us know your favorite part of the story and characters, at the moment?
JW: The best parts of the story are the ones where we cannot anticipate the next step because the characters have a certain degree of complexity. Stinky Dog is one of them. It is full of surprises and our hero’s reactions are never expected by the audience.
I am sure kids will love this and the absurdity of this universe, where Stinky Dog can stop an action midway in order to start chatting with his fleas. I think we will end up being very proud of this series.