Richard Branson's Virgin Comics has teamed up with Toronto-basedanimation company Kahani World on the full-length animated adaptation of SecretOf The Seven Sounds.
Full production is set to begin in late November and the animatedfeature will be brought to market in the summer of 2007.
Based on the epic Indian poem Ramayana, Secret Of The Seven Sounds tells the story of the lovelorn PrinceRam who sets out to rescue Princess Sita and save the world from the villainousLord Ravan.
However the real hero of the piece is Prince Ram's 11-year-oldlittle brother Lux, the family's insightful and often-overlooked intrepidfighter.
The feature is in collaboration with Virgin Comics co-foundersDeepak Chopra and Shekhar Kapur, and is based on an original story by GothamChopra, Sharad Devarajan and Jeevan Kang.
"The Ramayan continues to be the bedrock of India's culturalidentity in ways that no other myth can claim," Virgin Comics chairmanDeepak Chopra said. "The Seven Sounds animated film is a is a marvellous way to share this storyand inspire children around the world."
"Our comics and film stories are infused withcharacters and mythic sensibilities that resonate with audiences around theglobe," Virgin Comics chief executive officer Sharad Devarajan said.
"Kahani World shares our vision and understands theimportance of epic storytelling. Together we are uniquely positioned to producean exceptional animated feature, and adapt the film for global merchandising,graphic novels and promotional campaigns.
"Kahani is focused on creating and producing world-classanimation brands that become icons in India, resonate throughout Asia, and alsoappeal to audiences around the world," Kahani World president and chiefexecutive officer Biren Ghose, who will serve as the project's executiveproducer, said.
"We aim to put a new spin on storytelling, blendingstories that may have an Indian DNA, but which thrive in the contemporarycontext and culture of the global kidizen!"
Virgin Comics was founded in November 2005 by Branson's VirginGroup, author Deepak Chopra, filmmaker Shekhar Kapur, Gotham Chopra and SouthAsian comic book publisher Gotham Entertainment Group.
The company hasoffices in New York City and Bangalore, India. Virgin Comics titles include: Devi,The Sadhu, John Woo's Seven Brothers, Snakewoman, and Ramayan 3392 A.D.