Arcana Studio

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Arcana Studio
Animation Srudio, Comic publisher
Industry Comics and Animation
Founded 2004
Founder Sean O'Reilly

Arcana Studio is a Canadian animation studio in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada. Founded as a comic book publisher by former Coquitlam, British Columbia school teacher Sean O'Reilly in 2004, in 2012 Arcana opened up its animation division.

Overview[edit]

Arcana is Canada’s largest publisher of comics and graphic novels in Canada, with over 300 titles in its current library, covering all genres and age groups. Arcana’s titles have been translated into many different languages, including French, Italian, Greek, Spanish and Polish. Arcana formed in 2004 when Sean O'Reilly first published the comic book series Kade.

With the opening of its animation division in 2012, Arcana Studio released their first animated feature The Clockwork Girl in 2014, based on the graphic novel with the same name. Arcana went on to produce Kagagi: The Raven, a 13 episode TV mini-series about a First Nations superhero which aired on APTN (Aboriginal Peoples Television Network), and made its debut in 2014. Arcana’s continued success led to the development of its own intellectual properties like Pixies and the Howard Lovecraft trilogy. Pixies was Arcana’s first independently created feature which featured well-known actors such as Academy Award winner Christopher Plummer, Alexa PenaVega and Bill Paxton. Pixies was written and directed by Sean Patrick O'Reilly, who was nominated for a 2016 Leo Awards for best Direction in an Animation Program for his work on the film.[17]

In 2016, Howard Lovecraft and the Frozen Kingdom was released, the first in the three part series. It is based on the works of H.P. Lovecraft and the graphic novel created by Bruce Brown. The film features the voices of Christopher Plummer, Jane Curtin, Ron Perlman and Doug Bradley. The film won the Official Selection and the Best in Category Sci-Fi title at the Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival 16’.

Its sequel, Howard Lovecraft & the Undersea Kingdom was released the next year in 2017. Adding to the all-star cast was Mark Hamill starring as Dr. Henry Armitage. Howard Lovecraft & the Undersea Kingdom took home the Best of the Festival Sci-Fi title at Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival 17’, as well as an Official Selection at FEARNYC and a Best Director win.

The Steam Engines of Oz, which started out as a Free Comic Book Day Issue, went on to be published as a complete graphic novel. Thanks to the incredible support of steampunk fans and backers on Kickstarter, The Steam Engines of Oz was successfully funded and is due for release in 2018.

Current and upcoming productions include Howard Lovecraft and the Kingdom of Madness, Panda vs. Aliens, and Hallowaiian: Adventure Hawaii.

Films, television series, and shorts[edit]

Animated films[edit]

Title Release Date Notes
The Clockwork Girl January 2014 In joint production with Legacy Films and Luximation, based on the graphic novel of the same name by Sean O’Reilly and Kevin Hanna. Features Alexa Vega as Tesla, Jesse McCartney as Huxley, Carrie-Anne Moss as Admiral Wells, Jeffrey Tambor as Wilhelm the Tinkerer, and Brad Garrett as T-Bolt.
Pixies June 2015 Arcana's first independently created feature, based on the graphic novel of the same name by Sean O’Reilly. Features Bill Paxton as Eddie Beck, Christopher Plummer as The Pixie King, and Alexa Vega as Michelle.
Howard Lovecraft and the Frozen Kingdom October 2016 Based on the graphic novel of the same name by Bruce Brown. Features Christopher Plummer as Dr. Herbert West, and Ron Perlman as The Shoggoth.
Howard Lovecraft and the Undersea Kingdom October 2017 Based on the graphic novel of the same name by Bruce Brown. Features Mark Hamill as Dr. Henry Armitage, Jeffery Combs as King Abdul, Christopher Plummer as Dr. Herbert West, and Ron Perlman as The Shoggoth.
The Steam Engines of Oz Late 2017 Based on the graphic novel of the same name by Erik Hendrix.

Live-action features[edit]

Title Release Date Notes
Paradox November 2010 Based on the graphic novel of the same name, Paradox is the story of homicide detective Sean Nault, set on a parallel Earth whose technology is powered exclusively by magic. Sean investigates a baffling series of murders committed by a means he's never seen before: science. Features Kevin Sorbo as Det. Sean Nault, Christopher Judge as Captain Papillo, and Steph Song as Lenore.

Animated television series[edit]

Title Years Notes
Kagagi: The Raven 2014-2015 Aired on APTN, Kagagi is a First Nations superhero is based on the graphic novel of the same name. It was Arcana’s first television series.

Short films[edit]

  • The Gwaii - Based on Haida Gwaii, and the graphic novel of the same story.
  • Memo – A series of 30-second segments aimed at children.[1]
  • Polkarella – A short about an umbrella/creature hybrid.
  • Pixies – A short film based on the comics and graphic novel of the same name.

Comics[edit]

Since its founding in 2004, Arcana has produced and acquired over 250 titles. Books are distributed by Diamond Book Distributors.[2]

Select titles[edit]

  • 100 Girls: The First Girl (2004–2006)
  • All Fall Down (2011)
  • American Wasteland (2007)
  • Amnesia (2011)
  • Amour - Volume 1 and 2 (2012)
  • Ant: Days Like These (2004–2005)
  • Arcana Studio Presents (2004-current, Free Comic Book Day annual)
  • Ark (2013)
  • The Art of ReBoot (2007)
  • Banzai Girl (2007)
  • Blank Slate (TBD)
  • Blood, Shells, & Roses (2011)
  • The Book (2012)
  • Burn (2008) [3]
  • Champions of the Wild Weird West
  • Chaotic Soldiers (2010)
  • Corrective Measures (2008)
  • Creepsville (2011)
  • Dark Horrors (2006)
  • Dead Men Tell No Tales (2005–2006)
  • Deadly Harvest (2012)
  • Dragon's Lair (2006–2007)
  • El Arsenal: Unknown Enemy (2005–2006)
  • Eve: Vampire Diva (2007)
  • The Evil Tree (2012)
  • Ezra:
    • Ezra: Egyptian Exchange (2004–2005)
    • Ezra: Evoked Emotions (2006–2007)
    • Ezra vs. 10th Muse (2006)
  • The Fix (2009)
  • Frozen Wasteland (2007)
  • Gearhead (2007)
  • Grunts (2006)
  • Helen Killer (2008)[4]
  • Howard and the Frozen Kingdom[5]
  • John Henry and The Steam Age (2012)
  • Jova's Harvest (2005–2006)
  • Kade:
    • Kade: Identity (2004–2005)
    • Kade: Sun of Perdition (2006–2007)
    • Kade: Shiva's Sun (2007–2008)
    • Kade: Rising Sun (2010)
    • Kade: Red Sun (2010)
    • Kade: Prodigal Sun (2011)
    • Kade: Mourning Sun (2012)
    • Kade: Tribal Sun (2014)
    • Kade: Children of the Black Sun (2014)
  • Koni Waves (2006)
    • Koni Waves (2006)
    • Koni Waves: The Headdress of the Undead (2007)
    • Koni Waves: First Wave (2007)
    • Koni Waves/Demonslayer (2007)
    • Koni Waves: Ghouls Gone Wild! (2008)
    • Avengelyne vs. Koni Waves (2009)
  • Lethal Instinct - Volume 1 (2012)
  • Marlow (2008)
  • The Network (2008)
  • Paradox (2005–2006)
  • Penance: Trial of the Century (2008)
  • Poe & Phillips (2011)
  • Shadowflame (2007)
  • SideShows (2011)
  • Space Ace (2009)
  • Starkweather: Legacy (2004–2005)
  • Stranger Danger (2009)
  • Sundown: Arizona (2005)
  • The Truman Virus (2012)
  • Velvet Rope (2008)

All ages titles[edit]

  • The Ancient Oak (2012)
  • A Cat Named Haiku (2010)
  • A Cat Named Haiku 2: The Dust Bunny (2013)
  • Clockwork Girl (2007)[6]
  • Gordon The Giraffe (2012)
  • The Gwai (2008)
  • Howard and the Frozen Kingdom (2009)
  • Howard Lovecraft and the Undersea Kingdom (2012)
  • Howard Lovecraft and the Kingdom of Madness (2014)
  • Mwumba (2008)
  • My Best Friend's a Booger (2011)
  • Pixies (2012)
  • Ralph Filmore, Paranormal Investigator (2011)
  • Scrooge and Santa (2011)
  • Summer and Monkey
  • Turning Tiger (2012)

The Arcanaverse is the world all the Arcana characters live in. Currently over 3000 individual indexed characters and creatures call the Arcanaverse home. From the Arcanaverse stem new stories and adventures, including the comic book series The Intrinsic.

The Intrinsic[edit]

The Intrinsic was debuted on Free Comic Book Day 2012, and was the first Arcanaverse title. The series features hit Arcana characters Kade, Philosopher Rex, Kore, and Candice Crow, as well as cameos by many others. The Intrinsic also made a guest appearance in the animated TV series Kagagi (2014). Volume 2 of The Intrinsic debuted at Free Comic Book Day 2014 and was written by Sean O'Reilly and Chris ‘Doc’ Wyatt.

Motion comics[edit]

Arcana has turned some of its comics and graphic novels into motion comics:

Awards[edit]

  • Arcana won the Shuster Awards for Publisher of the Year in 2005.
  • Arcana was a finalist for the CMEs two years in a row.
  • Arcana has been awarded a Mom's Choice award for three titles: The Clockwork Girl (2010)[7] The Gwaii (2010),[8] and Pixies (2013).[9]
  • Arcana was named Most Promising Company at the 2013 Digi Awards, Arcana’s CEO, Sean O’Reilly, was also named a finalist for Executive of the Year at the 2013 Digi Awards.[10][11]
  • CEO Sean O’Reilly received Playback’s Ten to Watch award in 2013.[12]
  • Arcana was named Best Visual Features 2013 by Arlene Dickinson's YouInc.[13]

Kickstarter: The Steam Engines of Oz[edit]

In Arcana’s first experience with a crowd-sourcing project, The Steam Engines of Oz was first introduced for Free Comic Book Day, 2013.[14] The idea was to release issues FCBD, 1, 2, and 3 of the collected trade, and then if the Kickstarter campaign proved to be a success, a second volume of the comic would be released.[15] The Steam Engines of Oz: The Geared Leviathan was successful and was produced, thanks to the supporters on Kickstarter.

Notable people/companies[edit]

Arcana has worked closely on projects with the following people and companies:

Charitable work[edit]

  • Arcana has donated thousands of Clockwork Girl comics to the Boys and Girls Club of America under the REACH Literary Program.[16]
  • Arcana participates in Free Comic Book Day's service of supplying libraries and military services with free comics.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Arcana (3 January 2012). "Memo Short 2". Archived from the original on 6 July 2015. Retrieved 25 April 2018 – via Vimeo. 
  2. ^ "diamondbookdistributors.com - Publishers". www.diamondbookdistributors.com. Archived from the original on 11 September 2017. Retrieved 25 April 2018. 
  3. ^ Camilla d’Errico Feels the "Burn" Archived 2011-05-17 at the Wayback Machine., Comic Book Resources, May 22, 2008
  4. ^ Review of Helen Killer Archived 2011-05-22 at the Wayback Machine., Comics Bulletin
  5. ^ Pitts, Lan (March 19, 2010). "Indie Writer Tells an H.P. LOVECRAFT Story... For Kids?". Newsarama. Archived from the original on March 23, 2010. Retrieved April 1, 2010. 
  6. ^ Clockwork Girl profile, samples and interview Archived 2015-09-24 at the Wayback Machine. with Sean O'Reilly, Comic Book Resources, May 30, 2007
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-02-01. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-02-01. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  9. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-02-01. Retrieved 2014-01-24. 
  10. ^ http://www.nextmediaevents.com/?news=1175[permanent dead link]
  11. ^ nextMEDIAEvents (3 December 2013). "Digi Awards 2013 - Most Promising Company of the Year: Arcana". Archived from the original on 30 June 2016. Retrieved 25 April 2018 – via YouTube. 
  12. ^ "The 2013 10 To Watch: Sean Patrick O'Reilly". playbackonline.ca. Archived from the original on 22 April 2016. Retrieved 25 April 2018. 
  13. ^ "Best Visual Features 2013". youinc.com. Retrieved 25 April 2018. 
  14. ^ "FCBD 2013 STEAM ENGINES OF OZ (JAN130018)". freecomicbookday.com. Archived from the original on 5 July 2015. Retrieved 25 April 2018. 
  15. ^ "The Steam Engines of Oz original graphic novel". Kickstarter. Archived from the original on 4 July 2015. Retrieved 25 April 2018. 
  16. ^ "Arcana Donates All Ages Books". arcanacomics.com. Archived from the original on 26 July 2011. Retrieved 25 April 2018. 

References[edit]

External links[edit]