Peter, a young orphan, lives in a fortified cottage on the edge of a deep Russian forest, guarded by his over-protective Grandfather. Isolated from those who live in the town and ignored by the local children, Peter’s only friends are his pet Duck and a mischievous Bird, who entice him to seek adventure outside the walls of the cottage. Despite his Grandfather forbidding Peter from going beyond the boundary walls, Peter’s curiosity gets the better of him. Stealing the keys, he bursts out into the wild forest to explore. An argument breaks out between Bird and Duck, attracting the attention of Grandfather’s fat Cat. The commotion outside the gates wakes Grandfather, who marches Peter back inside. It is only when Peter is safe within the cottage that the Wolf comes into view. Mortal peril allows the fat Cat to defy gravity and climb to the precarious safety of a thin branch, but Duck is not so lucky. As she runs for her life, Wolf sees its dinner. Duck is too slow, and Wolf eats her in one gulp. Angry Peter catches Wolf into a cage, and Grandfather helps him take the cage to the city market. What will Peter do? Will he forgive Wolf?
Peter & the Wolf
Suzie Templeton (BreakThru Films/Se-ma-for/Storm Studios/TV Unam/ArchAngel)
UK, Poland, Norway, Mexico, Switzerland, 2006, DCP, 32’
Peter & the Wolf is an animated film version of Prokofiev’s classic work directed by an extraordinary animation talent, Suzie Templeton set to a special new recording by the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Prokofiev’s story has resonated deeply with over five generations of children worldwide, enchanted by its power and sense of fun. This new film re-works Prokofiev’s popular tale, giving it some 21st century twists and an environmental theme, whilst staying true to the original story. Among the most prestigious awards at international film festivals, it got also the Oscar Ò for the Best Animated Short Film in 2008.
»Over the last five years, I have listened to Prokofiev’s Peter & the Wolf several thousand times, studying each note, each movement, wondering what they mean and trying to build a clear image of the piece. I was facing an unusual, big challenge – writing a script that would fit the existing, very precise form. I wanted to make a film that works on more than one level, for children and adults alike, one that explores our fear of a wild beast and at the same time our fascination by it, one that shows how a boy discovers his strength and integrity.
I wanted to stay true to Prokofiev’s music and story, but also allow the film to develop its own narrative. Of the entire story, the moment that fascinated and shook me the most as a little girl was when you hear Duck quacking from Wolf’s stomach. In my film I couldn’t show this visually without it coming across as grotesque or too graphic for this fairy realistic visual form. But the Duck’s spirit lives on and we remember it at the point of Peter’s most heroic, compassionate moment. I hope Peter is true to Prokofiev’s spirit and purpose from 70 years ago.«
- Suzie Templeton, Director
Pierre et le loup / Peter and the Wolf
Pierre-Emmanuel Lyet, Gordon & Corentin Leconte (Camera Lucida Productions/ Radio France)
France, 2013, DCP, 30’
Rediscover the most famous masterpiece of classical music: Peter and the Wolf by Sergei Prokofiev in a wonderful new and innovative adaptation, especially for children. This 30-minute film cleverly mixes live music and animation, with the involvement of the Orchestre National de France, conducted by Maestro Daniele Gatti.
Music tale Peter and the Wolf has been adapted to and performed by means of various culture media: films, animated shorts (one of the earliest and most famous being one by Walt Disney from 1946), books with CDs (with a recording by the National orchestra of the former Soviet Union and Philippe Gérard from 1956).
Studied in music schools and conservatoires worldwide, music by Sergei Prokofiev is considered fundamental knowledge in classical music. Even so, it has never been the subject of an interactive adaptation. The new Peter and the Wolf combines film and a transmedia experience of listening and discovering the music by Prokofiev.
To this end, Orchestre National de France and its Maestro Daniele Gatti were invited to contribute the music recording for the film and the transmedia project. Both the music and the tale come together to constitute our project.