Tuesday, May 5, 2015

New (Beautiful!) Trailer for Gibran's "The Prophet" Released

If you haven't yet heard of the film, Gibran's "The Prophet" you really need to check it out. It's the passion project of Salma Hayek, who wanted to make a beautiful, poetic and family-accessible film, based on one of the most popular books of poetry around the world, ever published. Contrary to popular thought I grew up with, it's not a religious work at all, but a philosophical and poetic one.
Roger Allers, director of The Lion King is the (lead) director for the project but Hayek (who voices one of the characters as well) also brought together a number of award winning animators and directors from around the world to create special "chapters" or "mythic sequences" using different styles of art and animation, throughout the movie. On every level, this project has masters involved.

It's in the official selection for Cannes and is highly anticipated all round. It's more than a little unusual in that it doesn't fit neatly into a genre and although it's incredibly artistic, it's not an 'Arthouse' film, and though it has popular and mainstream filmmakers and talent involved, it's not mainstream either. Like poetry, it's been designed to speak differently to different people, to allow the audience to take away whatever they see in the film that resonates with them.
Here's a little more information:
(Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet is) the animated adaptation of the world-renowned volume of poetry, produced by Salma Hayek and directed by Roger Allers (The Lion King), with animated sequences by a panoply of animation luminaries including Tomm Moore (Song of the Sea), Nina Paley (Sita Sings the Blues), and Bill Plympton (Cheatin’). The movie will be released in theaters on August 7, 2015.

The Prophet, by celebrated Lebanese author Kahlil Gibran, is among the most popular volumes of poetry ever written, selling over 100 million copies in forty languages since its publication in 1923. Gibran’s timeless verses have been given enchanting new form in this painterly cinematic adventure about freedom and the power of human expression. 
This breathtaking animated feature, produced and spearheaded by Salma Hayek, was an official selection at Cannes and made its North American premiere at Toronto International Film Festival. Written and directed by Roger Allers (The Lion King), the film intersperses Gibran’s elegant poetry within stunning animated sequences by filmmakers Tomm Moore (The Secret of Kells, Song of the Sea), Nina Paley (Sita Sings the Blues), Bill Plympton (Guide Dog), and a host of award-winning animators from around the world.
Set in a Mediterranean sea-side village, Kamila (Salma Hayek) cleans house for exiled artist and poet Mustafa (Liam Neeson), but the more difficult job is keeping her free-spirited young daughter, Almitra, (Quvenzhané Wallis) out of trouble. The three embark on a journey meant to end with Mustafa’s return home – but first they must evade the authorities who fear that the truth in his words will incite rebellion. Featuring music from Damien Rice, Glen Hansard and Yo-Yo Ma.

And here is the beautiful trailer:
You may be wondering why this I'm highlighting it on a fairy tale blog. Well, firstly, it's mythic and anything considered mythic across various nations should be in the 'general knowledge backpack' of fairy tale folk. Being poetry, wisdom and philosophy as well as using mythic imagery, you'll find it overlaps a lot with the issues and themes you find in fairy tales and how people view and interpret tales in pop culture. 

There's a fascinating interview with Salma Hayek and why she chose this project and her approach to storytelling and film HERE (the first 15 minutes are the most relevant to the project, though she does get into production details around the 20 minute mark again - fascinating for all filmmakers and animation fans out there).
Here are the online links for The Prophet:


  1. It's sooooo gorgeous!!! I didn't know they were making a movie! I wonder what the American public is going to think about it (or if they will notice at all...). I am still pissed at the Academy for ignoring Song of the Sea...
    Thanks for the post! It's a lovely way to start the day :)

    1. It looks really amazing doesn't it? GKids is distributing in the US and should get wider theatrical distribution than Song of the Sea did. At least Song of the Sea got recognition via nomination so more people know about it than would have otherwise. (I still don't agree with where the Oscar went, but I'm definitely not alone in that). I'll be watching the US response to this as well.