Soyuzmultfilm film studio plans to return the rights to use the characters of popular Soviet cartoon ‘Gena the Crocodile’ transferred to Japan in 2003.

The rights to create and distribute a remake within Japan until 2023 belong to SP International. A series of 26 episodes about the adventures of Cheburashka and Gena the Crocodile was released on Japanese television in 2010, and in 2020 an episode was released in 3D.

The chairman of the board of the Russian film studio Yuliana Slashcheva said that she really did not like the implementation of the last episode, and Soyuzmultfilm will seek recognition of the agreement on the transfer of rights invalid.

However, under the agreement, legal proceedings must take place in Japan. And because of the potentially high legal costs, the studio intends to raise the issue of the return of rights to Cheburashka at the state and intergovernmental levels.

Slashcheva noted that since 2017, Soyuzmultfilm has returned more than 90% of the rights to use audiovisual images and cartoons of its Golden collection, and in 2019 the family of the writer Eduard Uspensky transferred the studio exclusive rights to the characters of his novellas.