Apple TV Plus and Amazon Prime Video have both pre-bought “Puffins Impossible,” a spinoff of the animated short form series “Puffins” voiced by Johnny Depp, who is reprising his role as Johnny Puff.
The 18-episode show, which is currently in production in Serbia, is being made by Andrea Iervolino and Monica Bacardi’s ILBE outfit via their Iervolino Studios and Serbia-based company Archangel Digital Studios.
The “Puffins Impossible” showrunner is Peter Nalli, who also made “Puffins” and “Arctic Friends.” These five-minute short form series originated from feature film “Arctic Dogs,” which was released theatrically in 2019 and became popular on Netflix. Iervolino and Bacardi acquired all spin-off rights of the animated characters from the pic.
“Puffins Impossible” is being described as the action-adventure version of “Puffins,” which is about the adventures of a group of cute arctic birds with the protagonist, Johnny Puff, voiced by Depp. In the new spinoff, Johnny Puff becomes a ninja in the company of superheroes.
In “Puffins Impossible,” the lives of puffins Johnny Puff, Didi, Pie, Tic and Tac are disrupted when a meteor lands, which leads them to gain superpowers. Led by Johnny Puff, they morph into Tactik, Didi Damage, Megapie and Mystic — a unified superhero team. Just like in “Puffins,” positive themes of gender and race equality and environmental protection are weaved into the narrative.
“‘Puffins Impossible’ is a great story for all ages, witty and educational,” said Depp in a statement, noting that he hoped this spinoff will repeat the global success of “Puffins.”
“The work that has been done in just one year is simply amazing; I’m delighted with the creativity of people from Serbia,” added Depp. “Puffins Impossible” is the first animated series produced in the Republic of Serbia.
Italy-based Iervolino and Bacardi have previously worked with Depp on several projects, including the Ciro Guerra-directed film “Waiting for the Barbarians” starring Depp, Mark Rylance and Robert Pattinson, as well as Depp’s most recent film, “Minamata,” by Andrew Levitas about war photographer W. Eugene Smith.
The U.S. actor, who has been accused by his ex-wife Amber Heard of domestic violence, hasn’t made a feature film since “Minamata” and has fallen from Hollywood’s good graces. But Depp hasn’t faced much backlash in Europe. Last year, he received honorary awards at the Karlovy Vary Festival and San Sebastian, and he also attended the Rome Film Festival’s Alice in the City youth cinema sidebar where he promoted “Puffins.” Depp is also set to star as controversial French king Louis XV in the next film by French director Maiwenn (“Polisse,” “Mon Roi”).
“The tremendous response we’re seeing to the ‘Puffins’ franchise is incredibly encouraging and speaks to the global demand for innovative high quality short animated family content adapted to all screen types,” said Iervolino in a statement.
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‘Puffins Impossible’ Starring Johnny Depp to Stream on Apple TV Plus, Amazon (EXCLUSIVE)