Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir

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Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir
Miraculous- Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir logo.png
Also known as
  • Miraculous
  • Miraculous Ladybug
  • Ladybug
Genre
Created byThomas Astruc
Developed byJeremy Zag
Written byThomas Astruc
Sébastien Thibaudeau
Directed by
  • Thomas Astruc
  • Christelle Abgrall (season two)[4]
  • Benoît Boucher (seasons 2-3)
  • Wilifried Pain (seasons 2-3)[4]
  • Jeremy Paoletti (season two)
  • Jun Violet (seasons 2-3)[4]
Voices of
Theme music composerJeremy Zag & Noam Kaniel
Lyrics: Alain Garcia
Opening themeEnglish: "It's Ladybug!" performed by Wendy Child and Cash Callaway
French: "Miraculous", Marily and Noam
Ending theme"It's Ladybug!"/"Miraculous" (instrumental)
Composer(s)
  • Jeremy Zag
  • Noam Kaniel
  • Alain Garcia
Country of origin
  • France
  • South Korea
  • Japan
  • Italy (seasons 2-3)
  • Brazil (seasons 3-5)[5]
Original language(s)
  • French
  • Korean
  • Japanese
  • Italian
  • Brazilian Portuguese
No. of seasons3
No. of episodes67 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)
  • Jared Wolfson (season one)
  • Pascal Boutboul
  • Sébastien Thibaudeau
  • Alexandre Lippens (season one)
  • Jean-Yves Patay
  • Cédric Pilot (season one)
  • Kevin Marciano (seasons 2-3)
  • Magali Bion (seasons 2-3)
  • Camille Oesch (seasons 2-3)
  • Toei Animation:
  • Hiroyuki Kinoshita
  • Ryuji Kochi
  • Pierre Belletante
  • SAMG:
  • Suhoon Kim
  • SK Broadband:
  • Stella Noh
Producer(s)
  • Jeremy Zag
  • Aton Soumache
  • Jacqueline Tordjman (associate)
  • Maurice Marciano (associate)
Running time22 minutes
Production company(s)
Distributor
Release
Original network
First shown inSouth Korea
Original release1 September 2015 (2015-09-01) –
present (present)
External links
Website
Production website

Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir[6][7] (French: Miraculous, les aventures de Ladybug et Chat Noir; also known as Miraculous Ladybug[2][8][9] or Miraculous[10][11]) is a CGI superhero animated series produced by French studios Zagtoon and Method Animation in collaboration with De Agostini Editor S.p.A. in Italy, Toei Animation in Japan, and SAMG Animation in South Korea.[2][12] The series features two Parisian teenagers, Marinette Dupain-Cheng and Adrien Agreste, who transform into the superheroes Ladybug and Cat Noir, respectively, to protect the city from supervillains. They also have a crush on both their heroic and civilian forms.

Prior to its debut in France on 19 October 2015 on TF1,[13] the series was first shown in South Korea on 1 September 2015 on EBS1.[14] In the United States, the series originally debuted on Nickelodeon on 6 December 2015 before the series was removed from the network's schedule in 2016. On 8 April 2019 the series was officially picked up by the Disney Channel and started airing since then. It also aired on the KidsClick programming block until it shutdown on 31 March 2019. In the United Kingdom and Ireland, the show premiered on 30 January 2016 on Disney Channel.[15] A Christmas special was released in 2016 and the second season premiered in French on TF1 and in English on Disney Channel UK and Netflix in 2017. Netflix acquired the U.S. video-on-demand streaming rights and further seasons are in production now.

Plot[edit]

Set in modern-day Paris, teenagers[16][17][a] Marinette Dupain-Cheng and Adrien Agreste[19] transform into superheroes when evil arises. Marinette transforms into her superhero persona Ladybug, while Adrien transforms into his superhero persona Cat Noir, using magical jeweled objects known as the Miraculous. Oblivious to each other's true identities, the two work together to protect Paris from the mysterious villain Hawk Moth, who covets and attempts to steal their powers by using his akuma, butterflies infused with negative energy, to transform Paris' everyday citizens into supervillains, due to a negative emotion that has occurred in their lives.[16][20]

Production[edit]

Conception and creation[edit]

The series is based on an original concept created by French animator Thomas Astruc,[21] who was inspired by a meeting with a certain lady, Japanese anime, and "decades of comics binge reading".[22] In an interview with Nolife, Astruc said he was working as an animator on the show W.I.T.C.H. when he met a woman wearing a T-shirt with a ladybug on it. They began to share drawings, some of which were ladybug-themed. Astruc also noted that Marinette's hair was styled after the woman. They also worked on the cartoon A.T.O.M. around 2004–05. Astruc first drew Ladybug on sticky notes and remarked about how strong the Ladybug character was, and had a couple memories of seeing ladybug-themed superheroes in comics.[23]

Astruc had intended to make Ladybug a comic book series until he met Jeremy Zag, who loved the project and wanted to produce it as a cartoon; Zag was 25 at the time and not originally from the cartoon industry.[23]

In developing Cat Noir, Astruc said that ladybugs represented good luck, so it was natural to partner her with a black cat character with bad luck powers. Cat Noir was a tribute to comics characters like Catwoman, so it was like having Catwoman and Spider-Man in the same show but reversed genders.[23]

A character named Félix was originally going to have the role of Cat Noir,[24] but he was later scrapped in favor of Adrien Agreste because the creative team felt that Félix was a cliché of a male anime protagonist, and that Adrien would allow them to tell more interesting stories.[25][26] In September 2015, Astruc indicated that he was open to revisiting the character of Félix,[27] but he abandoned it by February 2016, writing that the character was a poor idea.[28]

Hiring companies[edit]

In 2010, the show was announced at Cannes' MIPCOM with French production groups Univergroup Pictures and Onyx Films heading the project and working with Method Animation and Zagtoon. Aton Soumache of Onyx and Method[29] said that they want "to create a glamourous superhero character with a real European flair with Paris as [the] backdrop". The producers had also planned to animate it in stereoscopic 3D (which they did using CGI animation now).[21]

In the summer of June 2012, Toei Animation Co., Ltd., the famous animation studio branch owned & operated by Toei Company, Ltd. in Japan, was announced as a co-producer.[29] Two years before 2012, Toei Animation had released a PreCure film that was set in Paris, France and was very interested in expanding their international audience.[23] Even after the production was moved to CGI animation, Toei is still remained as co-producer, with the executive producers from the company being credited.[30]

On 21 November 2012, a memorandum of understanding between Zagtoon, Method Animation, SAMG Animation and SK Broadband was announced: together, the companies would invest $50 million USD through 2017 into five projects. The first of these projects was developed into Miraculous, which received an investment of $10 million. As a part of the deal, SK Broadband would have exclusive rights in South Korea for video on demand release, available to the subscribers of the company's IPTV platform B TV.[31][32]

Animation[edit]

When Toei Animation joined as a co-producer in the summer of June 2012, it was also announced that the show would be drawn in a colourful manga-like style.[29] Later in September, Zagtoon, Method, & Toei released a traditionally-animated promotional video for Miraculous Ladybug.[8][9] The video featured Marinette (in different clothes similar to the clothes in the current series) as Ladybug, and a (now-scrapped) different character named Félix as Cat Noir,[24] Marinette and Félix's Kwamis, Tikki and Plagg, Hawk Moth (without the mask and with a different outfit, look, and lair compared to the current series), The Mime, and Mr. Pigeon. The demo song from the promotional video was performed & composed by Noam.[33][34][35]

The anime concept was a complete success; but however, there were concerns about the marketability of traditional 2D animation, and the difficulty in animating Ladybug's costume of red with black spots, as it caused some strobing effects.[23] Executive producer Jared Wolfson said that Zag wanted the animation to be cinematic and epic, unique and different, and said that they are continuing to partner with Toei as it brings in the Asian inspiration and that a 2D version of the show might be a potential product.[36][37][38][39][40][41]

The aforementioned problem with 2D animation was resolved by moving to CGI animation; the switch also allowed for easier implementation of mobile camera angles.[23] SAMG Animation, a CGI animation studio located in South Korea which officially joined in the production in the fall of November 2012,[31][32] produced modeling and animation.[42] Zag latter recalled why SAMG was chosen for quality reason, in a video message he sent to a South Korean press conference held in 2015 by the Seoul-based company.[43] Astruc and assistant director Wilfried Pain instructed the animators not to improvise scenes so that they could keep things consistent and understandable.[23] Pain estimated about 350–400 shots are used in a typical 20-minute episode; with 10 panels per shot, that makes up to 4000 panels an episode.[23] Wolfson said that the show's animation brings dynamic camera angles and texturing.[36] A trailer with the new CGI-animated style was released in October 2013, a year later.[44]

Themes, writing and process[edit]

The concept for the show originally dealt with political themes, geared towards teens and young adults. However, after failing to gain traction with networks, it was retooled for a younger target audience.[45]:40 Astruc said that he is delighted that the show is able to reach younger and older people.[23]

Each episode takes around 3 months to write, from scratch to final validation of broadcasters.[46] Assistant director Wilfried Pain said that each episode is composed of two parts: a sitcom aspect where the characters have to speak for themselves, and an action element where the camera is always moving.[23]

The music was done by Noam Kaniel (Noam), who had also worked on superhero shows such as X-Men, Code Lyoko, W.I.T.C.H., Power Rangers, Digimon Fusion, and Glitter Force.[36][33] The theme song was written by Kaniel and Zag. The English lyrics were done by Alain Garcia and performed by Wendy Child and Cash Callaway.[47] The French version was performed by Marily and Noam.[48]

Episodes[edit]

SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
126October 19, 2015 (2015-10-19) (France)
December 6, 2015 (2015-12-06) (U.S.)
October 30, 2016 (2016-10-30) (France)
October 22, 2016 (2016-10-22) (U.S.)
226[49]December 11, 2016 (2016-12-11) (France)
December 20, 2016 (2016-12-20) (Netflix)
November 18, 2018 (2018-11-18) (France)[50]
December 14, 2018 (2018-12-14) (Netflix)[51]
326April 14, 2019 (2019-04-14) (France)[52][53]
August 1, 2019 (2019-08-01) (Netflix)
TBA (France)
TBA (Netflix)

Broadcast[edit]

Astruc has said that the show has reached over 120 countries.[23] Disney Channel has had broadcasting rights in United States, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Japan and Latín America having to do with participation from The Walt Disney Company France: specifically, it acquired cable and satellite television rights in Europe, Eastern Europe and Scandinavia, and free-to-air rights in Spain, Germany, Russia and Turkey.[2][54]

South Korea was the first country to premiere Ladybug, with girl group Fiestar to sing its translated theme song. It aired on 1 September 2015 on EBS1,[14] and ran for 13 episodes until November 2015, with repeats through February 2016, and its second half of the season airing from 1 March 2016. SK Broadband, having participated in the production, provided the episodes on video on demand exclusively to subscribers of their IPTV platform B TV, about a half-hour following the South Korean broadcast of each one on EBS1.[31][55] Disney Channel in South Korea has also aired the series as of 7 December 2015.[56]

In France, the series premiered on 19 October 2015 on the Tfou programming block on TF1.[13]

In the United States, the series originally debuted on Nickelodeon on 6 December 2015.[57][58][59] The show aired on KidsClick from 3 July 2017, marking the show's debut on American terrestrial television.[60][61] On April 8, 2019, Disney Channel acquired the rights to broadcast the first two seasons with the third season set to premiere in the United States.[62] In Canada, the show premiered in French on 9 January 2016 on Télé-Québec, a provincial public service television network in Quebec.[63] The series was broadcast in English on Family Channel starting on 1 November 2016.[64]

In the United Kingdom and Ireland, the show premiered on 30 January 2016 on Disney Channel[15][65] and premiered in February 2017 on Pop.[66]

In Australia, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation released the show on its ABC iview streaming service on 1 January 2016,[54][67] and premiered the show on its linear channel ABC Me on 22 March 2016. In New Zealand, the show premiered on 27 April 2016 on TVNZ's TV2.[68]

In Japan, Disney Channel streamed the episode "Stormy Weather" through its mobile application on 1 July 2018, before the official premiere on 23 July in the same year.[69][70][71][72][73]

Season 2 premiered with a Christmas Special on December 2016,[74] with further new episodes in France on TF1's TFOU block on 26 October 2017,[75][76] and other channels throughout Europe.[77] Netflix streamed the episodes starting with the Christmas special in 2016, and then seasons 1 and 2 in 2017 to 2018.[78]

The world premiere of Season 3 was in Spain on Disney Channel on 1 December 2018.[79][80] In France on TFOU it will premiere on 14 April 2019.[52][53] On January 22, 2018, Zag posted on Instagram, that the crew was working on Season 4 and Season 5.[81]

A spin-off series, Miraculous Chibi, premiered on 31 August 2018 on YouTube and on major broadcast channels.[82][83]

Reception[edit]

Kimberly Cooper, a blog writer who has contributed to news media such as The Huffington Post,[84] wrote that the show has inspired teens and adults to create and propagate Miraculous remixes, and liked that the show featured multiracial characters as with the film Big Hero 6 which had won an Oscar. She "quickly realized there was a far cooler and broader Miraculous movement underway".[85] Caitlin Donovan of entertainment website Epicstream listed it as one of her top 10 animated series of 2015. She wrote that "The characters are so charming that the tropey aspects of the show are merely a lot of fun, rather than irritating." with creative fights and good CGI animation. She wrote that "Marinette is an adorable lead who is genuinely awkward as a civilian, but confident as a superhero, which makes for an interesting contrast."[86] Ella Anders of BSCKids wrote that the show stands out because of "how it meshes both the magical girl and superhero genera together".[87] Robert Lloyd of the Los Angeles Times described the show as "clever, romantic, fun, the way some of us prefer our superhero stories". He found the characters to "have the look of extruded plastic common to CGI cartoons", but "within these limits the design is lovely and the animation elegant, and a lot of work has gone into the staging and execution of the action scenes".[1]

The North American Precis Syndicate called the show "authentic and aspirational – a story of today's modern everygirl superhero who comes to life. The series, about a young girl who taps into her superhero powers and innocent optimism to save Paris from the evil Hawk Moth, will no doubt inspire today's youth to try to save the day, each and every day in their own way".[88] Andrea Reiher of Zap2It wrote that the "storylines are rich with family, friends, adventure, intrigue, villains, creativity and more, delivering themes that are relatable and relevant to kids and preteens" and anticipated it would be a huge hit on Nickelodeon.[89]

Several media reviewers have anticipated Miraculous-brand toys to be among the hot superheroine properties for 2016.[90][91] Zag has partnered with Bandai to release Miraculous-based toys, as well as deals to make Miraculous-brand clothing and other merchandise.[2][36]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominee Result
2016 Brazilian Toy Magazine Awards[92] Best National Toy of 2016 Miraculous Won
Best Brand of 2016 Miraculous Won
Ri Happy Awards[92] Best Brand of 2016 Miraculous Won
Latam Expo Licencing Awards[92] Best Brand of 2016 Miraculous Won
2017 Brazilian Toy Magazine Awards[92] Best National Toy 2017 Miraculous Won
Licencias de Actualidad[92] Best License of the Year Miraculous Won
Best Entertainment License Miraculous Won
Best Promotion Tosta Rica Ladybug Won
2017 OVA-ies TV Animation Awards[93] Best Animated Main Character of 2017 Marinette Dupain-Cheng Nominated
Best Visuals for an Animated Show of 2017 Miraculous Ladybug Nominated
2018 Teen Choice Awards[92][94] Choice Animated TV Show Miraculous Won
The UK Licensing Awards 2018[92] Best Children's or Tween Licensed Property Miraculous Nominated
Best Licensed Children's Apparel Range Miraculous Nightwear for Character.com from Aykroyd and Sons Nominated
Brazilian Toy Magazine Awards[92] Best National Toy 2018 Miraculous Won
Bologna Licensing Trade Fair[92] Best Property Kids Miraculous Won
2018 OVA-ies TV Animation Awards[95] Best Animation Main Character of 2018 Marinette Dupain-Cheng Won
Best Animation Supporting Character of 2018 Hawk Moth Nominated
2019 Bologna Licensing Trade Fair[92] Special Award Fashion Kids with Miraculous by Guess Miraculous Won
The 2019 Tell-Tale TV Awards[96] Favorite Animated TV Series Miraculous Won

Other media[edit]

An endless runner video game was developed by TabTale and released in April 2018 as a mobile app.[97][98] In April 2019 was announced new mobile game[99] and in May 2019 it was presented by Jeremy Zag.[100]

An animated musical film, titled Ladybug & Cat Noir: Awakening, is in development and slated for release in 2021. A live-action television series is also in the works.[101][102]

Four main characters from the show have their own official Instagram accounts: @marinettedesigned, @alya.ladyblogger, @theofficialchloebourgeois & @adrienagrestebrand.[103][104]

Works cited[edit]

  1. ^ "Le Pharaon". Miraculous: Les Aventures de Ladybug et Chat Noir. Season 1. Episode 3 (in French). 8 March 2016. Event occurs at 00:48. TF1. (Alya, after picking up Ladybug's history book) Ladybug dropped a book! It's a (French: classe de troisième, equivalent of ninth grade) history book; I'm in a good position to know! I have the exact same one at home! Could our favorite masked vigilante be a (French: collégienne, equivalent of middle school) in real life? In the English version "The Pharaoh", Alya says that it's a tenth-grade history book, and suspects that Ladybug could be a high schooler, conflicting with the French version. As Astruc has stated that the show's canon language is French,[18] the article will use ninth grade.

References[edit]

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  4. ^ a b c Astruc, Thomas [@Thomas_Astruc] (3 May 2016). "Delighted to announce: @WinnyGZ @happyhappykuri & Jun Violet will now direct the show with me. Plz greet'em warmly!" (Tweet). Retrieved 26 June 2016 – via Twitter.
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