Asterix heads to Netflix for 3D animated series
James R | On 04, Mar 2021
Asterix is getting ready to conquer Netflix with a new 3D animated series on the way.
The streamer is partnering Hachette’s Les Editions Albert René to create the first-ever animated limited series based on the timeless classic comics, introducing the iconic figure of French popular culture to a new generation of worldwide viewers.
Renowned French auteur and playwright Alain Chabat will direct and Alain Goldman (Legende Films) will produce. Chabat is no stranger to Asterix, having written and directed 2002’s Mission Cléopâtre, the most successful of the character’s numerous appearances on screen and the third highest-grossing feature film in French history.
Indeed, there have been 15 feature films based on the comics dating back to 1967. Since the first Asterix graphic novel was introduced in 1961, Asterix, his sidekick Obelix and loyal companion Dogmatic have been featured in 38 printed volumes, released in 111 languages and dialects, with the 39th due later this year. The stories tell the saga of the pugnacious warrior and his irreverent village companions who keep a tiny corner of ancient Gaul free from bumbling Roman invaders.
“I have been talking with Celeste Surugue at Albert Rene for years about how to bring Asterix to Netflix,” said Dominique Bazay, Director of Original Animation at Netflix. “I’m French Canadian, and like most francophones around the world, I grew up with Asterix, his sidekick Obelix and loyal companion Dogmatix. I watched the animated specials and read the books religiously. If you’d told the 8-year-old me that one day I’d help bring these characters to life… I wouldn’t have believed you!”
“I’ve always felt the unique tone of Goscinny and Uderzo’s humor is timeless. It’s why Asterix is so special – it appeals to all ages and crosses all borders,” he added.
Netflix’s series will be adapted from one of the classic volumes, Asterix and the Big Fight, where the Romans, after being constantly embarrassed by Asterix and his village cohorts, organise a brawl between rival Gaulish chiefs and try to fix the result by kidnapping a druid along with his much-needed magic potion. Needless to say, it doesn’t go as planned.
The series will debut in 2023.