'The Witch Boy': Netflix's Newest Animated Feature is a Musical With Music by Haim
Netflix has got some grade-A talent for its next animated film. Musical trio Haim will be providing the music for The Witch Boy, an animated musical based on the bestselling graphic novel of the same title by Molly Knox Ostertag. The film will be directed by Oscar-nominated filmmaker Minkyu Lee in his feature directorial debut.
An animated musical with music by Haim? Sign us up. Netflix’s latest animated feature The Witch Boy, sounds like it’s most exciting original animated film yet, with the Grammy-nominated band set to write the music for the film based on the graphic novel series of the same title by Molly Knox Ostertag. The Witch Boy is a fantasy musical which is set in a secret magical community where girls are born to be witches and boys shapeshifters, until one boy, Aster, discovers his emerging witch powers. The film is set to be directed by Minkyu Lee from a script by Maria Melnik.
Here is the synopsis:
In a secret, magical community where girls are born to be witches and boys grow into shapeshifters, Aster is surprised to discover his emerging and extraordinary witch powers. When a mysterious danger threatens his world, Aster must embark on a journey to uncover the truth behind himself, his powers, and everything that is magical.
Lee has worked as an animator on Disney’s The Princess and the Frog and in visual development for Wreck-It Ralph and Frozen, but he made a big splash with his 2011 short film Adam and Dog, which was nominated for the Oscar for Best Animated Short. He’s set to make his feature debut with The Witch Boy, which is cause enough for excitement. You can watch the trailer for his short film below.
“It has been a life-long dream of mine to create an animated film that pushes the medium forward, both in content and form,” Lee said in a statement. “The connection between this dream, my experiences, and Aster and Juniper’s story is what draws me to this film every day. I am grateful to be creating this with the wonderful team at Netflix. My hope is that this film, by celebrating queerness and ‘otherness,’ will come to audiences around the world as something truly special.”
Meanwhile, Haim has been getting into the movie business in a big way, collaborating with top directors like Paul Thomas Anderson and member Alana Haim getting cast in Anderson’s film Soggy Bottom. But this will be the first full-length feature musical soundtrack for the indie rock band, which makes it clear this will be very different than your typical splashy animated musical. The out-of-the-box, alternative talent for The Witch Boy, along with the lovely concept art by Lee and Shiyoon Kim you can see above, suggests that this will be one of the more unique animated features that Netflix will produce.
But Netflix has had a pretty great track record so far with its growing slate of animated features. The streamer came running right out the gate with the fantastic Oscar-nominated Klaus, and continued to impress with colorful The Willoughbys and Glen Keane’s Over the Moon. It’s got a few more intriguing projects down the line from Richard Linklater, Henry Selick, Guillermo del Toro, and more.
Roy Lee, Miri Yoon, and Ryan Harris are set to produce The Witch Boy, which does not yet have a cast or release date.
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