We’re excited to share with you A Whale’s Tale, a beautiful animation made with a lot of love for the wonderful Hope Works project.

The Hope Works project

Hope Works have been working in conjunction with Unicef and the world’s biggest broadcasters to produce a series of films designed to bolster hope amongst our children, who are exposed to increasingly challenging topics via media, from war to natural disaster. The films will launch simultaneously on networks around the world today - World Children’s Day.

Hope Works is the brainchild of Lucy Murphy, head of kids’ content at Sky, and Alison Stewart, former head of production at CBeebies. Twelve films were produced in total, directed by broadcasting giants including Cartoon Network UK, Disney EMEA, DreamWorks Animation and more, for maximum global reach. They vary in style, from live action to animation, from silly to serious, but all communicate a positive and uplifting message.

Small things make a big difference

We successfully pitched to Cartoon Network UK for A Whale’s Tale, tackling the subject of marine pollution. Luck was on our side as director’s Giovanna Utichi and Robin Celebi referenced the artwork style of Via, our latest in-house short directed by concept artist Izzy Burton.

So Izzy got to work lovingly designing the Whale and fellow characters, and fortunately, the 2.5D style of animation seen in Via enables efficient production time - 2.5 minutes of animation in 2 months is no mean feat!

The animation has a retro, low poly appeal which softens the scene and gives the rough-edged characters immediate personality and charm. The scenes are rich and luscious, true to Izzy’s trademark style.

So watch and enjoy A Whale's Tale, on Hope Work's YouTube channel and CBeebies at 17:55 today, where you can see how the efforts of the whale and his friends have such a positive and uplifting outcome. You can also watch all of the other fantastic films here that will undoubtedly brighten your day and give you a little hope.

A big thank you to all involved in making the film.


Written and directed by Robin Celebi & Giovanna Utichi
Original story by Giovanna Utichi
Executive Producer Richard Kinning
Producer Emma Healing

Animation studio: Blue Zoo

Artwork & Direction: Izzy Burton
Creative Producer: Lizzie Hicks
Producer: Damian Hook
Modelling: Emilie Browne, Pietro Licini & Jacopo Piccini
Lighting & rendering: Holly Bensley
Rigging: Leo Blackmur & Vasil Shotarov
Compositing: Izzy Burton, Nicholas Canticus & Joe Kinch
Animation: Mark Spokes, Dane Winn & Dagmara Ziemianska
Story Consultant: Ben Steer

Sound Design: James Clark & Clearcut Sound
Music Composition: Will Featherby, Kamal Kamruddin, Ben McAvoy, Sam McAvoy, Pete Yelland-Brown & WMP
Voice Over Artist: Tim Dann
Music Supervisor: Joseph Cullen & Cavendish Music