Taomee makes play for Seer sequel success
By Patrick Frater and Stephen Cremin
Thu, 28 June 2012, 09:15 AM (HKT)
Two animation sequels based on properties of online games giant Shanghai Taomee Network Technology Co Ltd 上海淘米網絡科技有限公司, a subsidiary of Taomee Holdings Ltd 上海淘米網絡科技有限公司, open in China in the next seven days.
Seer 2 賽爾號２：雷伊與邁爾斯 (2012), a sequel to last year's hit animation, will be distributed in cinemas today, 28 June, by Mr. Cartoon Pictures 卡通先生影業有限公司 on a planned 1,000 cinema release. Legend of the Moles: The Treasure of Scylla 摩爾莊園２：海妖寶藏 (2012), based on its Moles World online game, opens in seven days.
Seer II, in which three unlikely heroes fight space pirates in a bid to maintain inter-planetary peace, is directed by WANG Zhangjun 王章俊 and FU Jie 付傑 with a voice cast that includes Hong Kong's Philip LAU 武藝 and Taiwan's Angel CHANG 張安琪.
The animation was produced by 37 Entertainment 上海明器多媒體科技有限公司. Its investors are Mr. Cartoon Pictures, ee-media 上海天娛傳媒有限責任公司, Hunan Golden Eagle Cartoon Co Ltd 湖南金鹰卡通有限公司 and Taomee, whose popular online game it is based on.
The original Seer 賽爾號之尋找鳳凰神獸 (2011), which was released in China in July 2011, grossed approximately RMB44.1 million ($6.9 million) at the Mainland box office. In Taipei, it took approximately NT$1 million ($33,000) on release in February this year.
Seer II will be released in Taiwan by Sky Digi Entertainment Co 天馬行空數位娛樂有限公司 on 27 July. It is one of just ten imported films permitted this year under Taiwan's strict quota on Mainland productions.
Legend of the Moles: The Treasure of Scylla will be released in China in one week, 5 July, by Stellar Mega Films Co Ltd 星美（北京）影業有限公司 and TaikongWorks Culture Development Co Ltd 北京華映星球國際文化發展有限公司, who are both also investors in partnership with Kaku Media Co Ltd 北京卡酷傳媒有限公司 and Taomee.
The original Legend of the Moles: The Frozen Horror 摩爾莊園冰世紀 (2011) was released by China Film Co Ltd 中國電影股份有限公司 in August 2011. Both films are directed by LIU Kexin 劉可欣, who also wrote the original stories. It grossed approximately RMB18 million ($2.8 million) on its theatrical release.
Founded in 2007, Taomee is one the first companies in Greater China to develop animated franchises for children through online virtual worlds. It is backed by Saban Capital Group, whose other Asian media investments include Celestial Tiger Entertainment and Indonesia's Media Nusantara Citra.