Khumba, the second animated feature film from Cape Town-based Triggerfish Animation Studios, will compete with some of the world's best children's films at the prestigious Toronto International Film Festival in September.
This will also be the film's North American premiere following its world premiere at the Annecy International Animation Festival in France in June, and its African launch at 2013 Durban International Film Festival.
Khumba was selected for the Toronto kids' programme along with French-Brazilian production Amazonia, Denmark's Antboy, Indian movie The World of Goopi and Bagha, and Spanish film Zip and Zap and The Marble Gang.
According to South Africa's National Film and Video Foundation, Khumba has already been sold to over 40 territories by LA-based sales agent Cinema Management Group, with a few deals on major territories yet to be finalised at Toronto.
The film releases in South Africa in both English and Afrikaans on 25 October, and will then roll out through the rest of the world.
Penned by Triggerfish writers Raffaella Delle Donne and Anthony Silverston in consultation with Jonathan Roberts, co-writer of The Lion King, Khumba is voiced by Jake T Austin, Laurence Fishburne, Annasophia Robb, Liam Neeson and Steve Buscemi.
It tells the story of a half-striped zebra who is blamed for the drought by his superstitious herd. He leaves his home in search of the magic waterhole where, legend has it, the first zebras got their stripes.
Teaming up with an overprotective, sassy wildebeest and a self-obsessed ostrich, the plucky young zebra meets an array of wacky characters in an unforgettable adventure through the Great Karoo desert to earn his stripes.
Triggerfish's first animated film Adventures in Zambezia has released successfully across the world and opened widely in France this week as Droles d'Oseaux. Earlier this month, Adventures in Zambezia was named Best Children's Feature at the 21st Anima Mundi international animation festival in Rio, Brazil.
- SAinfo reporter and National Film and Video Foundation