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Arcana Studio
IndustryComics and animation
FounderSean O'Reilly
HeadquartersBurnaby, BC Edit this on Wikidata

Arcana Studio is a Canadian animation studio in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada. Founded as a comic book publisher by former Coquitlam, British Columbia school teacher Sean O'Reilly in 2004, in 2012 Arcana opened its animation division.


Arcana is Canada's largest publisher of comics and graphic novels, with over 300 titles in its library covering all genres and age groups. Arcana's titles have been translated into different languages, including French, Italian, Greek, Spanish and Polish. Arcana formed in 2004 when Sean O'Reilly first published and wrote the comic book series Kade starting with Kade #1.[1][2] Sean wrote the issue, with artist Eduardo Garcia drawing and coloring the series. With Diamond Comics as the distributor, Arcana's first comic went on shelves December 31, 2003.

In 2004, Arcana Studio was the only comic book company in Canada to participate [3] in Free Comic Book Day, selling 100,000 copies and went on shelves: July 3, 2004.

The Joe Shuster Award was presented to Arcana for Outstanding Publisher of The Year [4] for sales during their first year, as voted by the retailers and readers. Kade: Identity followed to become Arcana's first trade paperback book on April 13, 2005. With artist Allan Otero penciling and inking the book.

In 2006, Arcana acquired[5] to build one of the biggest online site for comics, graphic novels and characters. Arcana has owned this site since 2004.

Clockwork Girl #0 published with over 150,000 copies on December 5, 2007. It was written by Sean O’Reilly and Kevin Hanna, with Grant Bond as the drawing and coloring artist. A few months later, The Clockwork Girl won silver medal for The Moonbeam Award for Top Comic/Graphic Novel in 2008 [6] as well as the Graphic Novel of the Year. It was recognized as Top Graphic Novel by Foreword Magazine at Book Expo America.

On July 17, 2008, 100 Girls was collected as a trade paperback through Simon & Schuster. It began as an online comic which the writers hoped to bring to print which finally became a reality thanks to Arcana.

Arcana bought The Devil's Due library of graphic novels, acquiring characters such as Banzai Girl, Kore, Blade of Kumori among others on October 1, 2009.[7]

Mighty Mighty Monsters (a series which Sean created) was published and 15 more books follow in the series on September 1, 2010.[8] It was later turned into three 44-minute animated specials.[9] Paradox live action movie debuted on SyFy channel on November 19, 2010. Pixies #1 comic book went on shelves, May 18, 2011.

In 2012, Arcana opened an animation division to develop and produce its content for all platforms including film, television, direct-to-home and digital media. With the opening of its animation division in 2012, Arcana Studio released their first animated feature The Clockwork Girl in 2014, based on the graphic novel with the same name. Arcana buys The Blue Water library of graphic novels with titles like 10th Muse, Legend of Isis, Leprechaun and Blackbeard Legacy on February 15th, 2012.[10]

Arcana went on to produce Kagagi: The Raven, a 13 episode TV mini-series about a First Nations superhero which aired on APTN (Aboriginal Peoples Television Network), and made its debut in 2014.[11] Arcana's continued success led to the development of its own intellectual properties like Pixies and the Howard Lovecraft trilogy. Pixies was Arcana's first independently created feature which featured well-known actors such as Academy Award winner Christopher Plummer, Alexa PenaVega and Bill Paxton. Pixies was written and directed by Sean Patrick O'Reilly, who was nominated for a 2016 Leo Awards for best Direction in an Animation Program for his work on the film.[12]

In 2016, Howard Lovecraft and the Frozen Kingdom was released, the first in the three part series. It is based on the works of H.P. Lovecraft and the graphic novel created by Bruce Brown. The film features the voices of Christopher Plummer, Jane Curtin, Ron Perlman and Doug Bradley. The film won the Official Selection and the Best in Category Sci-Fi title at the Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival 16'.[13]

Its sequel, Howard Lovecraft and the Undersea Kingdom was released the next year in 2017. Mark Hamill joined the cast as Dr. Henry Armitage. Howard Lovecraft and the Undersea Kingdom took home the Best of the Festival Sci-Fi title at Hot Springs International Horror Film Festival 17', as well as an Official Selection at FEARNYC and a Best Director win.[14]

The final film in the trilogy, Howard Lovecraft and the Kingdom of Madness was released in 2018, with both Mark Hamill and Christopher Plummer reprising their roles, and Finn Wolfhard joining the cast. The film was an Official Selection at the 2018 H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival and won the Grand Jury Prize (Feature) at 2018's Epic ACG Fest.

The Steam Engines of Oz, which started out as a Free Comic Book Day Issue, went on to be published as a complete graphic novel. With support of steampunk fans and backers on Kickstarter, The Steam Engines of Oz was successfully funded and was released in 2018, starring Julianne Hough, Matthew Kevin Anderson, Ashleigh Ball, Elijah Dhavvan and Geoff Gustafson.

The Legend of Hallowaiian had its "orange carpet" premiere in L.A. on September 22, 2018, and on DirecTV on the 18th.[15][16] The film stars Vanessa Williams, Mark Hamill and Noah Schnapp.

Arcana's most recent film, Go Fish was released by Lionsgate in late 2019, and stars Mark Hamill, Kathleen Barr and Asia Mattu. The film won Best Animated Feature at the Xin Guang awards in China.

Upcoming productions include Panda vs. Aliens and Heroes of the Golden Masks, which is set to star Christopher Plummer, Ron Perlman, Patton Oswalt and Osric Chau.

Films, television series, and shorts

Animated films

Title Release Date Notes
The Clockwork Girl January 2014 In joint production with Legacy Films and Luximation, based on the graphic novel of the same name by Sean O'Reilly and Kevin Hanna. Features Alexa Vega as Tesla, Jesse McCartney as Huxley, Carrie-Anne Moss as Admiral Wells, Jeffrey Tambor as Wilhelm the Tinkerer, and Brad Garrett as T-Bolt.
Pixies June 2015 Arcana's first independently created feature, based on the graphic novel of the same name by Sean O'Reilly. Features Bill Paxton as Eddie Beck, Christopher Plummer as The Pixie King, and Alexa Vega as Michelle.
Howard Lovecraft and the Frozen Kingdom October 2016 Based on the graphic novel of the same name by Bruce Brown. Features Christopher Plummer as Dr. Herbert West, and Ron Perlman as The Shoggoth.
Howard Lovecraft and the Undersea Kingdom October 2017 Based on the graphic novel of the same name by Bruce Brown. Features Mark Hamill as Dr. Henry Armitage, Jeffery Combs as King Abdul, Christopher Plummer as Dr. Herbert West, and Ron Perlman as The Shoggoth.
The Steam Engines of Oz Late 2017 Based on the graphic novel of the same name by Erik Hendrix.
The Legend of Hallowaiian September 2018 In a joint production with SC Films and Fresh Baked Films. Features Noah Schnapp as Kai, Teilor Grubbs as Leilani, Vanessa Williams as Fire Goddess, Tia Carrere as Nana, Mark Dacascos as Pono, and Mark Hamill as Officer Duke.
Howard Lovecraft and the Kingdom of Madness December 2018 Based on the graphic novel of the same name by Bruce Brown. Features Mark Hamill as Dr. Henry Armitage, Christopher Plummer as Dr. Jeffrey West, and Finn Wolfhard as Herbert West.
Go Fish November 2019 Go Fish is Arcana's is an animated undersea adventure, following the story of a parrotfish named 'Alex'.[17][18][19][20]
Panda vs. Aliens 2021 With original characters from Arcana and alien characters, The Unknowns licensed from Stan Lee's POW! Entertainment.[21] Features Dan Payne as Bruno, Sean O'Reilly as Pandy, Chevy Chase as King Karoth, Scott McNeil as Duke, and Ashleigh Ball as Penny,
Heroes of the Golden Masks 2021 Heroes of the Golden Masks is an upcoming action-adventure epic inspired by the ancient masks of Sanxingdui, and tells the story of a contemporary teenager who is magically transported back in time to a mysterious, lost city. The film will star Christopher Plummer as Rizzo, Ron Perlman as Kunyi, Patton Oswalt as Aesop, Byron Mann as Jiahao and Osric Chau as Zhu.

Live-action features

Title Release Date Notes
Paradox November 2010 Based on the graphic novel of the same name, Paradox is the story of homicide detective Sean Nault, set on a parallel Earth whose technology is powered exclusively by magic. Sean investigates a baffling series of murders committed by a means he's never seen before: science. Features Kevin Sorbo as Det. Sean Nault, Christopher Judge as Captain Papillo, and Steph Song as Lenore.

Animated television series

Title Years Notes
Kagagi: The Raven 2014 Aired on APTN, Kagagi is a First Nations superhero is based on the graphic novel of the same name. It was Arcana's first television series.

Short films


Since its founding in 2004, Arcana has produced and acquired over 250 titles. Books are distributed by Diamond Book Distributors.[23]

Select titles

All ages titles

The Arcanaverse is the world all the Arcana characters live in. Currently over 3000 individual indexed characters and creatures call the Arcanaverse home. From the Arcanaverse stem new stories and adventures, including the comic book series The Intrinsic.

The Intrinsic

The Intrinsic was debuted on Free Comic Book Day 2012, and was the first Arcanaverse title. The series features hit Arcana characters Kade, Philosopher Rex, Kore, and Candice Crow, as well as cameos by many others. The Intrinsic also made a guest appearance in the animated TV series Kagagi (2014). Volume 2 of The Intrinsic debuted at Free Comic Book Day 2014 and was written by Sean O'Reilly and Chris 'Doc' Wyatt.

Motion comics

Arcana has turned some of its comics and graphic novels into motion comics:


Kickstarter: The Steam Engines of Oz

In Arcana's first experience with a crowd-sourcing project, The Steam Engines of Oz was first introduced for Free Comic Book Day, 2013.[32] The idea was to release issues FCBD, 1, 2, and 3 of the collected trade, and then if the Kickstarter campaign proved to be a success, a second volume of the comic would be released.[33] The Steam Engines of Oz: The Geared Leviathan was successful and was produced, thanks to the supporters on Kickstarter.

Charitable work


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  2. ^ "Free Comics Boost the Luck of O'Reilly". Georgia Straight Vancouver's News & Entertainment Weekly. 2004-06-30. Retrieved 2018-09-14.
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  18. ^ Arcana (2019-02-26), Go Fish Trailer, retrieved 2019-05-10
  19. ^ "FCBD19 Interview: Adventure and Intrigue in the Big City Underscores Arcana Studios' Go Fish". Retrieved 2019-05-10.
  20. ^ "Sean O'Reilly". Retrieved 2019-05-10.
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