Cartoon Saloon’s The Secret of Kells was first released on February 11, 2009.
Development on the film began in 1999 when director Tomm Moore and some of his friends first saw Richard Williams’s The Princess and the Cobbler (1993) and Disney’s Mulan (1998). The stylings of those two films - Persia for The Princess and the Cobbler (1993) and China for Mulan (1998) - inspired Moore to make a similarly styled film based on Irish art. (x)
Much like Hayao Miyazaki’s work focuses on characters we can all relate to, who inhabit a world often inspired by Japanese animist traditions, we wanted to hint at the ancient stories that inspired our world without losing the focus on our central characters.
Tomm Moore, “Mythological and Folkloric References,” from the Song of the Sea Artbook