Ensemble & PETRONAS celebrate lion dancers in its CNY animated film

Following a recently established tradition with PETRONAS’s festive films, together with Ensemble Worldwide, the company released a fully animated festive film once again, this time to usher in the auspicious Chinese New Year festive season.

The film titled ‘Yi Qi’ is set in the mythical Malaysian village of “Kampung Baru Dancing Lion”, a land inhabited by lions who flourish and dance to a constant beat of drums. Though the drumbeats cease, the lions eventually find new purpose to lift their spirits and the courage to keep dancing again.

“Malaysia has a rich and historied culture of lion dancing,” said Executive Creative Director of Ensemble Worldwide, Didi Pirinyuang.  “Although the art itself dates back to the Tang dynasty legend, Malaysia’s lion dancing has evolved with its own distinct identity and flavour – from the invention of stilt acrobatics to being World Championship winners.”

The film starts with fanfare, showing the vibrant daily rhythms of the lions, moving to the tempo of a familiar beat. But then, an unexpected turn of events silences the drums. The film shows the lions mourn the loss of their rhythm, as they struggle to accept the silence. Eventually, inspired by the beat of their daily lives, they embrace their new normal, to rise together and dance once again.

“The narrative of villagers warding off Nian the Lion is a well-told classic, but we wanted to celebrate instead, the spirit and heritage of our Malaysian lion dancers,” Didi added. “Recognising their strength, resilience, and ability to bring joy and ward off bad luck, Chinese New Year after Chinese New Year.”

The film ends with a joyful bang and a small reminder that we still have much to celebrate, wisdom to pass down to the next generation and experiences to share, even in the face of adversity.

“With this simple story, we hope that its message of courage and resilience brings strength and joy for all Malaysians, in the Year of the Ox,” Didi said. “It is a celebration of our indomitable spirit to rise and prosper together as a community, as a nation, despite the changes and restrictions in our lives.”

Watch the film here:


Film & VFX Director: Felicia Yong 

Audio house: Real Time Studios

Music Director: Danny Lim 

Engineer: Dennis See/ Julian Lim

Producer: Jennifer Yiew

Vo Talents: Lee Chin Nam & Keito

3D Animation Team: Lorrypop Studio

Executive Producer: Frankie Lee 

Production Coordinator: YJ

Art Director: Calvin Mok

CG Director: Teoh Wei Liat

Art Team: Kraven Chew, Andrew Lee, Joyce 

3D Team: Frankie Lee, Wayne Yap, Nevin Ng, Ying Cher, Andrew Lee, Kraven Chew, Ezzad, Glen

Animator: Raymond Wong, Alexander, Lee Yan, Choong Kah Zhun, Teoh WeI Liat

Rigger: Choong Kah Zhun, Teoh Wei Liat 

Motion Team: Calvin Mok, Kraven Chew,Hong Yao, Andrew Lee

Post-production house: Post 2 Post 

Producer: Cheryl

Online Artist: Sandy, Steven

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