Le Roman De Renard is a wonderful stop-motion animated feature made by Iréne and Ladislas Starevich [Władysław Starewicz] and scripted by her as well. The Reynard stories were exceedingly popular across Europe in the Middle Ages and continue to be so (you may see some Reynard references in a Fox Spirit release later this year!). When they ran out of funding for the film in France, Germany came through with funding, so the first version premiered in Berlin. It was only the third animated film to have sound.
The animation is amazing and inventive. Reynard is accused of all kinds of mischief (including eating chickens, of course!). Here’s the corpus delecti. But Reynard is too clever even in the face of such evidence — and with the help of the Badger Barrister.
The poor little chick! There are so many wonderful animated animals — from the troubadour cat to the terribly nervous rabbit who tries to get Reynard punished but quickly loses his nerve. The fox has no shame!
Eventually the king has had enough of the trickster and lays siege to Reynard’s Castle.
But the fox is ready for him and defends his home with the help of his family and a host of very Home Alone-like tricks for the would-be invaders, who end up with bumps on the head or face down in the moat.
Best of all it’s out of copyright and available online for your amusement.
It will leave you with a sunny feeling. Celebrate the Fox Spirit!
Well, I have never been much of a football fan, but I am Lestah born and aside from a brief education based sojourn to Newcastle I’ve lived in the ‘shire all my life. So it is that I can’t help but feel some pride in the Foxes achievement and enjoy the holiday mood in the City.
Congratulations Leicester City Football Club on a job well done, from one skulk to another.
Every Christmas in lieu of sending cards out to the skulk, here at the fox den we sponsor a fox.
With the re emergence of the hunting ban debate we wanted to take the opportunity to suggest that you consider supporting one of the very worthwhile wildlife charities near you.
All over the world wild things need a little help sometimes and these charities do great work with injured and orphaned animals, getting them healthy and back out into their habitats. We think that’s something everyone can get behind.
We take out our annual fox sponsorship with Wildlife Aid, but I am sure you will find a suitable charity wherever in the world you are if you want to participate.
Foxy thanks you for your support and kindness to wild things.
Growing up the book I read most often, more than my favourite Narnia books (The Magicians Nephew and The Horse and his Boy), more than the Jungle Books whose poems I could recite by heart (and some I still can), more even than the Just So Stories, was Fantastic Mr Fox. It was my quick fix read. Full of cunning and humour and people it was easy to dislike. I grew up on a small holding, we lost our chickens to foxes over a couple of weeks and the whole thing was so messy and upsetting we never replaced them. Yet this fictional fox was so full of charm and wit and cleverness I was very firmly on his side. I still have my original copy. The cover is missing. It fell off with over use.
As an adult (technically if not always in behaviour) of 35, there are many books I love. Many tales I’ve reread a dozen or more times and every time found something new to surprise and delight me. I still read Fantastic Mr Fox. He is still my favourite literary hero.
The stories in Fox & Fae celebrate the fox for all the wonderful attributes they share with Dahl’s creation. The book also explores the downsides of being beautiful and clever. It also visit the flip side of that, in ‘A Crackling Fart’ for example our foxy fellow’s superiority and cleverness are his downfall as much as his greed. It’s a wonderful collection of stories and I hope someone somewhere will take one of our foxes to their heart as much as I did Fantastic Mr Fox.
Tales of the Fox and Fae will be out this summer in the mean time there are plenty of other Fox Spirit titles out there.
If you check out the rest of the site you will find a small number of foxes caught on camera around the world. Fox photos are by Phil Knott.