The new Moominvalley series is Finland’s most expensive TV show -- with the English-language version featuring top British actors including Jennifer Saunders, Matt Lucas and Rosamund Pike -- and a 20-million-euro budget for the first production season.
”This is the most expensive Finnish TV series ever, which has added pressure on the production team and the creatives,” says Marika Makaroff, the creative director and executive producer of the series.
The series is an adaptation of writer-illustrator Tove Jansson’s stories about the much-loved Moomins. Her niece Sophia Jansson, who leads Moomin Characters Ltd, has been involved in the creative process.
”They (Moomin Characters) have naturally been part of the process. As the Moomins have been created using new 3D modelling, Moomin Characters Ltd has been approving each one. The same goes for the music, story and visuals,” says Makaroff.
Love, loneliness and tolerance
Background research for the series included going through all of the Moomin books and comics. In addition, all the characters and themes were analysed.
”We haven’t left any stone unturned: our themes include the difficulties of relationships, universal questions about love, loneliness, tolerance and different values. These topics are timely and I believe that this is why the Moomins are continue to be so popular, especially in these times,” says Makaroff.
The English-language version features voice by top British names, including Saunders (best known for Absolutely Fabulous) , Lucas (best known for Little Britain) and Pike (best known for the movie Gone Girl).
The Finnish-British co-production that has been drawn and animated in Bristol, with a production team includes top names such as Wallace & Gromit series director Steve Box and Shaun the Sheep producer John Woolley.
Season 1 premieres in spring 2019 on Yle in Finland and Sky in the UK.