The Slovenia Times

Slipper Keeper Kitty comes alive in animated film

Slipper Keeper Kitty in animated film by Rok Predin based on the iconic story by Ela Peroci. Photo: Stara Gara

Slipper Keeper Kitty, the iconic Slovenian picture book hero, has made it into an animated film 67 years after first coming out in a book written by Ela Peroci and illustrated by Ančka Gošnik Godec.

The film, directed by visual artist Rok Predin, had its preview at Ljubljana's Kinodvor cinema on 5 June to coincide with the illustrator's 97th birthday.

"I've been honoured tremendously for my birthday," said Gošnik Godec, whose illustrations have accompanied generations of Slovenians through their childhoods.

She is very happy with the animated adaptation of the picture book, telling the Slovenian Press Agency that she finds the film funny and beautiful.

Living in a white house with a red roof inside a forest, Slipper Keeper Kitty (Muca Copatarica) takes away slippers that children have left lying around, then mends them and brings them back.

Since its first publication in 1957, the picture book has had more than 30 reprints. It has been translated into many languages, seeing a number of adaptations as a puppet show at home and abroad.

Slipper Keeper Kitty in animated film by Rok Predin based on the iconic story by Ela Peroci. Photo: Stara Gara

Predin said they were very careful when adapting this classic, using the original illustrations, and changing only what was necessary to make an animated film. There is only one Slipper Keeper Kitty and it is Ančka's, he said.

He wanted to evoke a feeling of warmth and magic in the young viewers, but above all give them a feeling that "underneath the world we live in there is a magical world where kittens sew slippers".

Both the illustrator and the writer Ela Peroci (1922-2001) are Slovenia's leading multi-award winning authors for children. Only recently Gošnik Godec won the 2024 Rihard Jakopič Prize, the highest national accolade for lifetime achievement in fine and visual arts.

Predin, a son of the popular singer-songwriter Zoran Predin, has made a name for himself as a visual artist. He made the animated video spot for the Beatles' song Here, There and Everywhere to accompany Revolver: Special Edition, an expanded reissue of their 1966 album Revolver in October 2022.

Lending her voice to Slipper Keeper Kitty for the film was actor Silva Čušin. The screenplay is by Andrej Predin, the music by Daniel Pemberton, and the sound design by Barnaby Templar - Fonic.

The film was produced by Stara Gara in co-production with the public broadcaster RTV Slovenija and financially supported by the Slovenian Film Centre and the Maribor Municipality.

The film will premiere at the Maribor Puppet Theatre on 7 June with a rerun the next day.


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