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ANDREA IERVOLINO, IERVOLINO STUDIOS: TWO SUCCESSFUL YEARS OF WORKING IN SERBIA WITH RESULTS EXCEEDING ALL EXPECTATIONS

Hollywood producer Andrea Iervolino, co-founder of the international production company Iervolino & Lady Bacardi Entertainment S.p.A. (ILBE) and Iervolino Studios (IES) in Serbia, the largest animation studio in the region, was one of the keynote speakers at the first Adria Summit in Savudrija, Istria – an event bringing together more than 400 company representatives and experts in e-business. During the two-day discussion, the summit participants initiated and examined many topics in the field of branding, logistics, marketing, technology, the future of work organization, as well as cooperation in the region.

According to Andrea Iervolino, the daily routines and habits of viewers have drastically changed – especially during the pandemic, which has greatly affected consumer lifestyle around the world. People’s attention is getting shorter. Thus, relevant and quality content, whether in the field of entertainment, art, education or for the needs of promotion and sales, delivered in a short and easily accessible form, is what the audience is attached to. On the other hand, the demand for content is growing, which is confirmed by the expansion of high-quality serial programs on streaming platforms in the “Up to 30 minutes” category, and the domestic creative studio Iervolino Studios has recognized this from the start.

“At Iervolino Studios, we strive to set new standards of innovation and not to compete, but to be an example to other studios. I firmly believe that education, evolution and innovation are unstoppable and that this symbolizes the present and future of the entertainment and film industry, in a constant interaction with the audience and the market. Our studio is focused on maintaining that approach, and we have confirmed that we have achieved far better results in Serbia so far than in any other country in which we operate”, said Andrea Jervolino and added that he is looking forward to new successes that follow, both locally and and at the international level.

The first and most important product created by Iervolino Studios from Serbia is the animated series “Puffins Impossible”, which has been available on the streaming platforms, Amazon Prime, Apple TV and Google Play since this April, and met with highly positive reviews in the first month of broadcasting, with a rating of 9.6 on the IMDB website. So far, three seasons and a total of 54 episodes of the series have been created, and work is underway on developing new seasons, new projects for global distribution, as well as creative projects in the field of IP development, 2D and 3D animation, visual effects, and CGI animation, for users and clients across Serbia.

Peter Nali, Head of Animation and VFX at ILBE, also spoke at the summit, emphasizing the use of artificial intelligence in the creation of content in the future of entertainment. The impressions of viewers would be monitored through their facial expressions, gestures and behavior, and then they would be offered content specifically tailored to them.

By founding Iervolino Studios, we set a goal to contribute to the development of animation in Serbia and give a unique opportunity to local creatives and artists to work in their country without having to look for “better” opportunities abroad. Until recently, many people exclusively worked remote, and today they find themselves in a studio of Hollywood calibre, side by side with top experts, creating animated series for global distribution, using the latest technology. It’s great to be part of someone’s dreams coming true,” said Andrea Iervolino.

Today, almost two years after its founding, Iervolino Studios has more than 100 people in its employment. Their recently launched Internal Training Center plays an important role in the development and training of current and future employees. It is a platform for professionals who are ready to learn and perfect their knowledge and skills, with the most modern equipment and experiences of the best lecturers from the country and the world at their disposal. Participants are trained for various roles in the field of animation, film and VFX, and as Iervolino Studios has a strong desire to support the development of the professional community and individuals in Serbia, there are also employment opportunities for the best trainees, after they have successfully completed their courses and training.

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IERVOLINO STUDIOS LAUNCHES A SPECIALIZED 3D CHARACTER ANIMATION COURSE WITHIN ITS INTERNAL TRAINING CENTER

Fasten your seatbelts, it’s time!

After an exciting promotional workshop, we’re now launching a specialized course through our Internal Training Center(ITC) on “3D Character Animation”, to be delivered by Dragana Mandić, the Lead Animator at the Steamroller Animation studio in the USA. Animators, ready yourselves for an exciting and highly rewarding journey with an experienced and skilled professional who will help you bring your animation ideas to the finish line. 

3D CHARACTER ANIMATION

For those of you interested, the course is designed to significantly improve your animation knowledge through thematic project(s) which you will be working on together for 11 weeks. As students in this course, you will learn how to create short character animations, you will be introduced to acting and performance in animation, as well as body mechanics in humans and animals, developing key technical and creative skills that will allow you to animate fast and efficient.

The course will be conducted in Serbian.

WHEN AND WHERE

The 11-week course kicks off on May 14 and will last until July 30, 2022. It will take place live every Saturday in the above specified period, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., alternating weekly between our studios in Belgrade and Novi Sad.

To find out more about the COURSE, click HERE!

ABOUT ITC

The Internal Training Center (ITC) of IES is a professional training program organized within Iervolino Studios, created for existing and future professionals who are ready to learn and improve their skills. In the ITC, students are trained for professional roles in the field of animation, film and VFX by directors, supervisors and leads, and by exchanging experiences and priceless knowledge, while working in a unique and innovative environment and on the latest equipment.

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THE FUTURE OF ENTERTAINMENT – IERVOLINO STUDIOS TO PARTICIPATE AS OFFICIAL PARTNER IN ADRIA SUMMIT 2022

Iervolino Studios participates in the first edition of the Adria Summit, which will be held from 5th to 8th May 2022, at the exclusive five-star Kempinski Hotel Adriatic in Istria, Croatia.

The Adria Summit event is the first of its kind in the region, with the Future of Digital Commerce as its main theme. A change in pace in our everyday lives is evident. Triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic and global uncertainty, we have witnessed rapid developments, not only in the advanced technology that is being used, but also in customer behavior and demands. The way we choose, buy and receive goods and services has changed, impacting the growth of eCommerce on a global scale and forcing companies in the regional markets to adapt.

Adria Summit focuses on all these things and navigates through the different variables and points which will effectively direct businesses to operate in a certain way. Some of the topics that will be discussed throughout the Summit are technology, customer experiences, finances, consumer behavior and spending patterns, and many other important elements. 

E-COMMERCE AND THE TRANSFORMATION OF THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY

We are living in an era where consumers want to be entertained anytime, anywhere. The entertainment industry has experienced a huge shift towards instant access to content in smaller and more concise delivery methods. The future is short content available here and now.

CONTENT ON THE GO

According to viewership consumption statistics, media consumption has shown a tremendous increase and seen a significant jump from traditional to new digital media. The Short-Form Video market has witnessed growth from millions to billions of US dollars, from 2017 to 2022, and video advertising has changed more in the past five years than in the 20 years before, according to the recent research about rising of on-demand content. The rise of digital media players such as Netflix, Amazon, Apple TV, Google Play which became the main entertainment hub, shows us that consumers crave small, digestible snippets that they can consume easily in their busy schedules. The result is consumers watch more content, and choose short over long ones, while more media channels prolong the life of the content. 

The film and animation industry no longer look at the digital market and environment as a future possibility but as the standard of production and distribution.

Andrea Iervolino, co-founder of our studio and our studio’s parent company Iervolino & Lady Bacardi Entertainment, has anticipated these drastic changes and incorporated his ideas into the way he does business. Instead of looking at them as obstacles, he turned them into a massive opportunity, which is one of the reasons he decided to open our studio.

From launching a viewer reward-based streaming platform, to the first outer-space event broadcasting, Andrea Iervolino has always been ahead of his time. Now, he is on the leading edge of new frontiers in entertainment. The internationally successful producer, entrepreneur, innovator and visionary produced his first digital movie already at the age of 17. Today, he is the founder of ILBE, the renowned film production company, TATATU, the first streaming platform that rewards its users with tokens and products, as well as SPACE 11, an innovative company that will broadcast entertaining video content from space. Led by progressive and forward-thinking, at the onset of the pandemic and forced closures of cinemas, Andrea opened the large-scale animation studio in Serbia, Iervolino Studios, with offices in Belgrade and Novi Sad.

As he said during his last visit, “We are building a huge creative team in Serbia, able to produce new concepts, stories and characters based on the existing intellectual property (IP), as well as develop our own innovative IP locally. The quality of the stories developed by the Serbian artists i simply amazing!”

Andrea will also address the audience at the event’s opening panel, “CEO eCommonomic outlook of the Adriatics”, and talk about the evolution of the entertainment industry, the importance of digital formats, short content as the future of the entertainment industry, the innovation and potential of local content for the international market, with focus on short content consumption among global audiences.

THE FUTURE OF ENTERTAINMENT

Trends indicate that audiences consume shorter content, but for longer periods or binges. Through the aforementioned companies, Andrea has become the best short-content producer in the world.

“My deep belief is that short content will become the number one product in the entertainment industry. User behavior around us, and through social media, confirm that today it is easier to commit people to 5-minute content. If they like it, they will keep on watching and may stay with it for up to 3 hours. We are led by this when producing video content. We do not compete. We take this innovative approach as a new normality, being an inspiration to other studios as well,” Andrea said.

Guests and participants at the Adria Summit 2022 will also see Andrea team up with Peter Nalli, Head of Animation & VFX at Iervolino & Lady Bacardi Entertainment, for another IES panel “The Future of Entertainment”.

During the panel, “The Future of Entertainment”, Andrea Iervolino will explain how production, distribution, and access to entertaining content have been transformed and how we are progressively moving to short digital content produced for releases around the world. Peter Nalli, Head of Animation and VFX at ILBE, will illustrate how the demands for animated series have shifted to short content consumption and how Iervolino Studios designs, produces, and distributes the best animated short content on a global scale. He will also showcase what the process of creating animated content for major streaming platforms looks like, as well as the process of creating animated content adjusted for different needs and requirements of the client and consumer.

WHO CAN JOIN?

Adria Summit 2022 is intended for founders and managers of eCommerce start-ups, executives and top managers of retail, technology and logistics market leaders, partners and managers in Venture Funds and Private Equity players interested in investing in this sector and region. Adriatic Summit is an ideal platform for exchange of ideas and initiatives and a great opportunity to network and enjoy the magnificent nature of the Istria peninsula.

 

Stay up to date with the upcoming Adria Summit and register if you too want to be part of the first event of its kind in the Adriatic region: https://adriasummit.com/.    

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3D CHARACTER ANIMATION – WORKSHOP AT IES BY DRAGANA MANDIĆ

 Dragana Mandić, the Lead Animator at the Steamroller Animation studio in the USA, was our guest lecturer last week. She delivered a two-day workshop on “3D Character Animation” on 16-17 April 2022, to animation enthusiasts, from students to senior professionals. The workshop was organized in the Internal Training Center at Iervolino Studios, in Novi Sad.

3D Character Animation Workshop

During this workshop, our colleagues, as well as external students and professionals, were introduced to 3D Character and creature animation. Dragana Mandić, the skilled and incredibly talented animator, taught the workshop participants about the animal skeletal system, its impact on animal movement, realistic and stylized face animation, tools and techniques in Autodesk Maya, and more. The workshop was intended for everyone interested in learning more about the topic at hand, regardless of their level of experience in animation.

Coming up…

This workshop served as an introduction to our next big thing inside the Internal Training Center: An 11-week “3D Character Animation” course, also delivered by the experienced lecturer, Dragana Mandić. The course will provide not only a great deal of knowledge and valuable insight, but also some fantastic opportunities for future professionals.

More updates about the course will soon follow!

Who is Dragana Mandić?  

Dragana Mandić is a 3D animator with more than 8 years of experience in the film, TV and gaming industry. She has worked for MPC, Crater studio, Fullscream and BunkerVFX. Currently, she is the Lead Animator at the Steamroller Animation studio in Florida.

Netflix, Disney and Huawei are some of Dragana`s previous clients, while the games Horizon Forbidden West, Destruction AllStar, the films Cats (2019) and Cruella (2021), as well as numerous TV commercials are all part of her portfolio.

Watching Disney’s Pocahontas is something that always reignites and strengthens her love and passion for animation. In her free time, she likes to animate in her personal projects, while listening to the financial, business and marketing adventures of other creative people.

Her works are available on the following Vimeo and Instagram pages.

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PUFFINS IMPOSSIBLE, THE ANIMATED SERIES PRODUCED IN SERBIA, AVAILABLE TO AUDIENCES AROUND THE WORLD STARTING TOMORROW

Animation World Network (AWN), one of the most popular animation portals, has exclusively published the official trailer for “Puffins Impossible”, the animated series starring Johnny Depp in the lead role and announced the series’ release on April 9 on the world’s leading streaming platforms – including Apple TV, Amazon Prime, and Google Play.

As of tomorrow, millions of people around the world will have the opportunity to watch 18 five-minute episodes of the first season of “Puffins Impossible”, created and produced in Serbia. The animated series “Puffins Impossible” is a spin-off of the popular “Puffins” series, in which Johnny Depp also lent his voice and character to the main character Johnny Puff. 

Good news for the Serbian audience is that the series will soon be available in Serbia as well, on RTS and Telekom Serbia channels.

This fun, cheerful, and educational family series follows the adventures of five arctic birds with superpowers, a unique team of superheroes, simultaneously dealing with universal topics such as equality, tolerance, and the preservation of the planet.

One of the series’ curiosities is that artists from Serbia have also integrated motifs of Serbian humor and culture into some elements of the script, giving the series an authentic stamp of the local creators. Besides scriptwriters, numerous other Serbian artists participated in the creation of the series, including well-known directors, composers, and others.

The series’ showrunner is Peter Nalli, Head of Animation and VFX at Iervolino and Lady Bacardi Entertainment, who was also one of the creators of the “Puffins” and “Arctic Friends” series, both based on the animated feature film “Arctic Dogs”, which audiences had the opportunity to watch in cinemas throughout Serbia in 2019.

The “Puffins Impossible” series originated in the international production company Iervolino & Lady Bacardi Entertainment S.p.A. (ILBE). It was created in Iervolino Studios (IES), produced by Archangel Digital Studios (ADS) and supported by the Ministry of Culture and Information of the Republic of Serbia.

For more information visit: https://iervolinostudios.com , https://ilbegroup.com , http://archangeldigital.com

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INTERNAL TRAINING CENTER AT IERVOLINO STUDIOS – WORKSHOP BY DRAGANA MANDIĆ, 3D ANIMATOR

3D Character Animation – Dragana Mandić

It is our great pleasure to announce that Iervolino Studios is about to run specialized courses through its Internal Training Center(ITC) In the upcoming period, a course on “3D Character Animation” will be delivered by Dragana Mandić, the Lead Animator at the Steamroller Animation studio in the USA.

Prior to the course, an in-depth two-day workshop on the same topic will be organized, aimed at providing you with invaluable knowledge and skills regarding 3D character and creature animation. The “3D Character Animation” workshop is intended for all animation enthusiasts, regardless of the level of experience in animation! From students to senior professionals, everyone with at least a beginner level of animation knowledge is welcome to apply!

You will get to learn about character and creature animation and find out more about the upcoming course. It is the opportunity for those willing to take a leap toward animation, with a possibility of kick-starting your future career at Iervolino Studios.

The workshop, as well as the upcoming course, will be conducted in Serbian.

WHEN AND WHERE?

The two-day workshop will be organized in the Internal Training Center at Iervolino Studios, in Novi Sad, on April 16 and 17, 2022. Location: Trg Marije Trandafil 7, 21000 Novi Sad (entrance from Jovana Subotića 18).

To find out more about the workshop, click HERE!

ABOUT ITC

 

The Internal Training Center (ITC) of IES is a professional training program organized within Iervolino Studios, created for existing and future professionals who are ready to learn and improve their skills. In the ITC, students are trained for professional roles in the field of animation, film and VFX by directors, supervisors and leads, and by exchanging experiences and priceless knowledge, while working in a unique and innovative environment and on the latest equipment.

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PERFORMANCE IN DRAWN ANIMATION – WORKSHOP AT IES BY MAURIZIANA GUALDRINI 

 Mauriziana Gualdrini, a brilliant and energetic artist from Paris was our guest lecturer! She came to deliver an interactive and memorable workshop on ’Performance in Drawn Animation’ at our studios in Novi Sad & Belgrade to our storyboard artists and illustrators! The workshop lasted for four days, from March 29 to April 1, 2022, and Mauriziana did an outstanding job as a lecturer, exceeding our colleagues’ expectations.  

Performance in Drawn Animation  

During these exciting four days, our colleagues from Belgrade and Novi Sad followed the workshop both live and online. Mauriziana’s workshop was filled with a variety of topics: tools and techniques in storyboard and animation, camera movement, storytelling, character performance and appeal, and much more.  

It was primarily intended for our storyboard artists and illustrators, but everyone at IES was welcome to join the workshop via zoom, as is always the case when we’re learning together.  

The topics and skills that Mauriziana went through in this workshop were highly useful and beneficial for our whole studio. As our colleagues emphasized when we asked them about their impressions and thoughts about the workshop, they got to learn about many incredibly important topics and details. Character acting and performance, visual storytelling, subtlety in storyboard and animatic creation are all integral elements of animation. By improving our knowledge in these aspects, we make sure that our content reaches the highest quality and that our audiences truly relate to our characters and stories.  

This workshop was not just a platform for us to upgrade our skills, but a chance to meet an incredible person and appreciate a fresh approach, a unique style and method in animation that unlocks new possibilities.  

Mauriziana’s engaging workshop proved just how much can be done and achieved if you love what you do. She encouraged our team members to always cherish and stimulate their imagination, inspiration and energy, because that’s how we keep animation alive.   

First impressions of Serbia and IES  

We asked Mauriziana about her impressions of Serbia during this short visit. She said, “After four days here in Serbia, my impressions of Belgrade and Novi Sad are that it`s a very vibrant reality. Everybody is super nice and very polite. I would like to come back actually, especially because of the people in Iervolino Studios.”  

Internal educations, workshops, seminars and classes – these are all key elements of our culture and represent some of our core values. We learn as a team; we help each other to reach new heights and meet wonderful people along the way.   

Finally, we asked our wonderful guest about our studio. She said, “the energy in the studio is amazing! I am having a great time and I am hoping to come back for more!” Sometimes, as Mauriziana taught us, the smallest details give life and new meaning to a scene or character in animation. Just like in real life.    

Who is Mauriziana Gualdrini?   

Mauriziana is an Italian storyboard artist, who graduated in 2016 from the Nemo Academy of Digital Arts in Florence in Animation and completed her Master studies in Arts – Character Animation and Animated Filmmaking at the Gobelins l’école de l’image in Paris. For over five years now she has been working and creating in Paris, as an experienced artist in storyboard, 3D animation, 2D animation, character animation, illustration, Props-FX design, for TV serials and other projects.   

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THE ANIMATED SERIES ‘PUFFINS IMPOSSIBLE’ COMES OUT THIS APRIL – STRAIGHT FROM OUR STUDIO TO THE WORLD’S GREATEST STREAMING PLATFORMS 

 For the first time ever, an animated series produced in Serbia will arrive on global streaming platforms, in early April – the ‘Puffins Impossible’ series with Johnny Depp in the leading role, created in Iervolino Studios, the Serbian creative studio and subsidiary of Iervolino & Lady Bacardi Entertainment, and produced by Archangel Digital Studios.

‘Puffins Impossible’ is an action-adventure sequel to the globally successful animated series ‘Puffins’. Numerous local artists, including well-known domestic screenwriters and directors, participated in the creation of this series in line with the world’s highest production and technological standards.

The first season of the series, which consists of 18 five-minute episodes, will be available to audiences in more than 90 countries via the following streaming platforms: Apple TV, Amazon Prime, Google Play, Chilli TV and Tatatu. Thus, a global audience numbering millions will have the opportunity to see the work of creative talents and artists from Serbia.

The series follows the adventure of unique superheroes, a team of five arctic birds with superpowers, as the legendary actor Johnny Depp continues to lend his voice and character to the main character Johnny Puff in this sequel.

‘Puffins Impossible’ is a fun and educational animated series, which deals with important topics of today’s society. Through a variety of absurd situations and hilarious gags, children get to learn about topics such as gender and racial equality, the importance of togetherness, diversity, and environmental protection in a fun way.

“Puffins Impossible is a great story for all ages; it is witty and instructive. I hope that it will repeat the success of the ‘Puffins’ series, which confirms the global need for innovative high-quality short animated content, adapted to all devices and suitable for the whole family. I am happy to know that this animated series from Serbia will bring joy to children and those young at heart around the world, and that its quality has been recognized by global streaming giants. I am extremely proud of the team in Serbia, their dedication and talent,” said Andrea Iervolino, CEO and co-founder of Iervolino & Lady Bacardi Entertainment and Iervolino Studios.

‘Puffins Impossible’ was created by Iervolino Studios (IES), the creative studio in Serbia, owned by Andrea Iervolino and Lady Monica Bacardi, founders of the global film and television production company Iervolino & Lady Bacardi Entertainment (ILBE) based in Italy, and produced by Archangel Digital Studios from Serbia.

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JOHNNY DEPP AND MINAMATA ON THE VERGE OF WINNING A SPECIAL AWARD BASED ON FAN VOTES AT THIS YEAR’S OSCARS

The film Minamata, starring Johnny Depp, is among the favorites to win a special award based on audience votes on Twitter, which the Academy is officially introducing with this year’s Oscars. The film was directed by Andrew Levitas and co-produced by Samuel Goldwyn Films and Iervolino & Lady Bacardi Entertainment, the parent company of Iervolino Studios, which runs the production of short animated series in Serbia. The segments of this film were shot in Belgrade during 2019, and Minamata was premiered in our country at FEST 2021.  

A special category called the “Fan Favorite Award” will allow fans around the world to vote for their favorite film until March 3, on Twitter by using the hashtag #OscarsFanFavorite, or on the web page OscarsFanFavorite.com. It is possible to vote up to 20 times a day.  

Minamata is a movie based on a true story and the book of the same name by Aileen Mioko Smith and Eugene Smith. The story takes place in 1971 when Eugene Smith, a celebrated photojournalist played by Johnny Depp, receives an assignment to travel to the Japanese city of Minamata, a place ravaged by mercury poisoning. Fighting to uncover the truth and expose the country’s chemical company responsible for the disaster, he uses powerful images to share the agony of Minamata’s inhabitants with the wider world.  

Johnny Depp was in Belgrade in October 2021 to promote Puffins Impossible, the first animated series produced entirely in Serbia, in which Depp lends the character and voice to the hero Johnny Puff. The series was realized and developed in Serbia and created by Iervolino Studios (IES), owned by Andrea Iervolino And Lady Monika Bacardi, founders of IES’s parent company  Iervolino & Lady Bacardi Entertainment, and produced by Archangel Digital Studios (ADS) of Miloš Biković’s with the support of the Ministry of Culture and Information of the Republic of Serbia. Based on his participation in local projects, as well as his continuous efforts in promotion of the Serbian artistic community in the world media, Depp was awarded with the Gold Medal of Merit of the Republic of Serbia, on February 15 this year.  

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INTERNAL EDUCATION AT IERVOLINO STUDIOS – LECTURE BY MILOŠ ŽIVKOV & TEODOR AJDUK, 2D STORYBOARD ARTISTS

Toon Boom Harmony Essentials – Miloš Živkov and Teodor Ajduk

Our dear colleagues, Miloš Živkov and Teodor Ajduk, 2D Storyboard Artists, gave a lecture to their IES colleagues on “Toon Boom Harmony Essentials in our studio! This was another successful and insightful #LearnWithIES lecture, part of our internal education program at IES.

Miloš and Teodor introduced us to the efficient management software and its many uses. We had the chance to learn about Toon Boom Harmony Essentials’ user interface, available tools and options, and all the different ways it can be used to rig and animate a character, such as the bone rigging system.

As always, everyone eager to learn something new and interesting, was welcome to the lecture. We can’t wait to see what our colleagues will come up with next!

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