A House for Kuzya (Дом для Кузьки, 1984) by Aida Zyablikova

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A House for Kuzya
Дом для Кузьки
Dom dlya Kuzki (ru)
Kodu Kuzjale (et)

Year 1984
Director(s) Zyablikova Aida
Studio(s) Ekran
Language(s) Russian
Genre(s) Comedy
Domestic life
Folklore & myth (Rus./East Slavic)
Literature (Rus./East Slavic)
Animation Type(s)  Puppet
Length 00:17:52
Wordiness 13.06
Animator.ru profile Ru, En
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This film is part of the Kuzya the House Elf series.


A house elf moves into a modern apartment where a little girl takes a liking to him.

The first film that was made starring Kuzya the House Elf, but it happens chronologically after #2.

A domovoy, or house-elf (or "nis" or "downie") is a magical little being bound to a house that combines making mischief with taking care of a house. Although present in the folklore of several countries, the traditional belief in such a being is strongly present in East Slavic cultures.

Summary: An old house in a newly-built flat district is demolished and its house-elf flees to the apartment of Natasha, a child who becomes friend with the house-elf, but keeps her presence a secret from her parents.

The story has a somewhat peculiar history. The writer began writing the tale in the fall of 1972. She had been a guest at the estate of the artist Vasiliy Polenov where it was a tradition on October 8 to celebrate the birthday of the estate's house-elf Kuzya, which gave Aleksandrova the idea for the tale. It was published in 1977. After some time she wrote 2 more tales about Kuzya, making it a trilogy, but they were never published during her lifetime. She had made drawings to the tales which became concept art for the animation series, but they weren't allowed to be published in the book, because she had no diploma as an artist (she had only taken some animation courses). The author died young, in 1983. Her husband at the same time was asked to write a script on the basis of the first book called "Kuzia in a New Apartment". It was meant to be a one-time animation, but because of its success, it was decided to make a sequel. In the book, Kuzya tells Natasha memories from her past, but they were left out in the script for the animation. The 3th and 4th episode of the animation series roughly corresponds with the 2 unpublished books, but to link them with part one the second episode of the animation had to be written from scratch by co-scriptwiter Marina Vishnevetskaya, using the left out parts of the first book and bits and clues from the 2 later ones, which were published around 1985. The sequencing of the 4 animations is a bit strange because of it, as episode 2 is a prequel to 1, despite there not being a hint in episode 1 that there would be a prequel, while episodes 3 & 4 are sequels to 1. Yet it all corresponds with the intentions of the author.



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