Kikoriki. Team Invincible
|Kikoriki. Team Invincible|
|Directed by||Denis Chernov|
|Produced by||Ilya Popov
by Denis Chernov &
|Music by||Marina Landa
Kikoriki. Team Invincible (Russian: Смешарики. Начало, translit. Smeshariki. Nachalo) is a prequel animated feature film for the Kikoriki series. The film was released in Russia on December 22, 2011. In the United Kingdom, it was released on February 10, 2012. It became available in the United States on iTunes and Google Play in 2015.
Krash and Chiko wander into a cave, find an old television set, and bring it to the rest of the Kikoriki team. They don't know what it is, but Carlin believes that it shows everything that is happening in the world. Dokko fixes the set and they watch Lucien, a show in which the hero Lucien's archenemy, Dr. Caligari, comes up with a plan to destroy Lucien and take over the world. Unaware that it's only a TV program, the Kikoriki characters build a raft and sail to a distant big city where they believe Lucien lives.
In the city, the Kikoriki are arrested and sent to a hospital. Wally manages to escape, enter the TV studio, and find Berry, the actor who portrays Lucien in the TV series. As Berry intends to retire as a gardener, he gets replaced with a new superhero, Julien. After the rest of the Kikoriki leave the hospital, they announce that they are here to rescue 'Lucien', but Berry thinks they are crazy. Berry explains to them that it was just a TV program and he is only an actor.
Meanwhile, Chiko gets lost in the city, but finds shelter in a museum with Pin, a night watchman and inventor. Soon after, two bandits deceive naive Chiko and rob the museum, framing Pin and Chiko and sending them to prison.
Later, Wally works as a weather forecaster at the TV studio, but, during rehearsing, he accidentally turns on the camera and knocks it, aiming towards a corner where it would record the bandits.
The rest of the Kikoriki, as well as Berry, devise a plan with Gusen, the actor who portrays Dr. Caligari, to break Chiko out of prison. After the prison break, Pin joins the Kikoriki team on their flight home, as Chiko does not want to go anywhere without Pin.
During the premiere of the new Julien TV show, the wrong tape is played (the one that Wally accidentally recorded) and the real bandits behind the robbery are shown. The recording also reveals that the Boss of the television studio was also the ringleader; as it turns out, the TV series was used as a distraction whilst the bandits robbed the city. The bandits are arrested afterwards.
Meanwhile, in the home of the Kikoriki, Berry and Pin start their new lives with the rest of the main characters.
- Mikhail Chernyak as Dokko, Pin and Lucien a.k.a. Berry
- Anton Vinogradov as Krash, 1st Robber and 2nd TV announcer
- Vladimir Postnikov as Chiko
- Svetlana Pismechenko as Rosa
- Vadim Bochanov as Wally
- Sergey Mardar as Carlin and Olga
- Mikhail Khrustalyov as Dr. Caligari a.k.a. Gusen
- Stanislav Kontsevich as Boss
- Kseniya Brzhezovskaya as 1st TV announcer and Maria
- Vladimir Maslakov as 2nd Robber
- Yelena Shulman as Nurse
- Alena Polikovskaya as Camel's wife and granny
- Sergey Vasilyev as Radio DJ and Crocodile
- Igor Yacovel as Kikostankino's security and judge
- Jangeer Suleymanov as Camel
- Oleg Kulikovich as Flamingo
- Valeriy Solovyov as Inspector
- Andrey Lyovin as Voice of "Jump to the Abyss" and 3rd TV announcer
- Nastya Pashenkova as Translator
- Denis Chernov as Homeless and Julien
Production and release
An initial budget of $1 million was given to produce a "test film" to show to international partners. According to Marmelad-media's general director Ilya Popov, the final budget would depend on a number of factors, such as whether it will be sold internationally (in which case the budget would be up to $15 million) or limited to Russia (in which case it will cost around $3–4 million). Popov considered spending anything over $5 million to be unprofitable (the highest-grossing Russian animated film to date, Ilya Muromets and Nightingale the Robber, cost $2.5 million and made just under $10 million; since around half of the profits usually go to the distributors, if it had cost over $5 million it would not have been profitable).
The film was released domestically in December 2011, but received a limited release in the UK in early 2012. The film is considered a well thought-through prequel, its plot explaining events that brought the nine animal characters together in the first place.
- (in Russian)Ilya Muromets and Nightingale the Robber profile at Kinoafisha.ru. Accessed on: November 20, 2008.