Edinburgh based animation production company Red Kite haslaunched a film arm, Red Kite Films, and is working on a new feature-lengthfilm Nocturna.

The film, a collaboration with Spain's Filmax Animation andFrance's Animakids, sees Red Kite making its first foray intotheatrical-release animation features.

Nocturna tells thestory of Tim, an orphan who sees a star fall from the sky and is instantlytransported into a world of dreams, darkness, and the mysteries of thenight. Featuring 2D and 3D CGI techniques,and with an initial budget of around Euros 10m, Nocturna is aimed at audiences of all ages.

Production on Nocturnabegins later this year, and the film is set for theatrical release at Christmas2006.

The team behind Nocturna includes story and script editor,Philip LaZebnik (Pocahontas and Mulan). Adrian Garcia and VictorMaldonado, the directors of Nocturna,also hold writing credits along with Teresa Vilardell and Philip LaZebnik. Nocturna is produced by Ken Anderson,Philippe Garell and Paco Rodriguez.

Red Kite will base production for Nocturna at its brand new facility in Edinburgh, Scotland. Fifty percent of Nocturna's 2Danimation will be done in the UK. In all, about 40% of the film's animationwill be produced out of the UK.

Ken Anderson, managing director of Red Kite Productions,said: "Nocturna is just the beginningof our work with our European partners, as Red Kite Films will go on to producea range of animations currently in development."

Scottish Screen Chief Executive, Steve McIntyre, said: "RedKite is at the cutting edge of screen animation, and its involvement in Nocturna is proof of the quality of workthat is coming out of Scotland."

Red Kite has produced a range of short films, TV series andcommercials, including the BAFTA-nominated 64Zoo Lane and BAFTA Award-winning Pablothe Little Red Fox.