Jackie Chan’s Fantasia: Will the forgotten anime series from China be running in Germany soon?
Every fan knows “Jackie Chan Adventures”, Jackie Chan’s first cartoon television series from the USA. From 2000 to 2005 it ran on US television and drew its circles around the world successfully, including to Germany. Just a few years later, Jackie Chan made his own Chinese anime series that hardly anyone in the West knows to this day.
That’s a shame, because Jackie Chan’s second children’s TV series called “Jackie Chan’s Fantasia” (奇幻 龙宝) is at least as entertaining. The Chinese team’s significantly worse computer animations are criticized, but when it comes to jokes, action, adventure and story, “Jackie Chan’s Fantasia” contains everything the fans want to see.
What is “Jackie Chan’s Fantasia” (奇幻 龙宝)?
In ancient times, seven elements from space led to the first advanced civilizations of mankind. Whoever has all seven elements in the modern age can rule the universe. The adventurer Jackie must travel through space and time with his companions to find these Seven Elements of Antiquity before the evil forces of the world do. Jackie’s adventures take him to ancient China, Egypt and India, where he uses high-tech weapons, acrobatic skills and friends to try to fight evil.
Characters of the series
成龙: Jackie Chan
At the age of 28, Jackie Chan is a young adventurer who does not refuse any challenge and fights courageously, although sometimes clumsily, against evil.
幻儿: Huan Er / Nicole
Jackie’s 10-year-old sister is afraid of mice, but always helps her big brother out with her cleverness when it comes to computer technology.
黄博士: Dr. Huang
Dr. Huang Ai-Yin is affectionately known as Einstein because of his intelligence. He is a nationally recognized scientist. His invention, the “Xun Ji Neng Tuidong Qi” energy, also known as the Xunjiu amplifier, surpasses atomic energy by a million times. Dr. Huang equips the adventurer Jackie with state-of-the-art tools, and when he doesn’t know what to do, he likes to fool around.
小奇: Xiao Qi / Bonzi
The youngest in the group is Dr. Huang’s grandson, who is 8 years old and helps solve the puzzles.
变变龙: Bian Bian Long / JD
The mechanical dragon developed by Dr. Huang can transform into anything if necessary. Even if he is a machine, he feels for his companions and always helps them out.
小宝: Xiao Bao / Little Earl
A cheeky parrot who speaks every language that has ever existed and will ever exist. Extremely useful when travelling to ancient Egypt.
黑博士: Dr. Black
The former colleague of Dr. Huang worked at the institute with his friend until he decided to pursue a career for the money. He joined the villain Orbar.
岳霸: Yue Ba / Orbar
The villain Yue Ba travels through time and space to take possession of the Seven Elements. With the help of Dr. Huang’s Xunjiu amplifier he wants to gain power over the entire universe.
Further characters of the series (selection)
子 乐: Zi Yue / Princess Muyue
The 9-year-old is the daughter of the noble Yu Wang and princess of the Shang Dynasty (3000 BC). Zi Yue helps Jackie fight the nasty king of her time.
姬发: Ji Fa / Jifa
The 15-year-old prince of the Shang dynasty was able to defend his empire with the help of Jackie Chan and his companions and was thus made king of the Ming dynasty.
姬昌: Ji Chang
The father of Ji Fa, the reigning king, is loved by his people. He is very wise.
小 麒麟: Kobayashi
Ji Fa’s pets can adapt their appearance to the circumstances of their fellow human beings. When someone is happy, angry, or sad, the lizard changes its colour. Kobayashi eventually helps Ji Fa become the true Son of Heaven.
纣王: Yu Wang
Yu Wang may be a nobleman, but he is also a tyrant. As the father of 9-year-old Zi Yue, he is made king even though his people go hungry.
妲 己: Da Ji
Da Ji was an ugly duckling who joined the mighty Yue Ba. This transformed the girl into a beautiful young woman; ice cold and ambitious.
异 能 兵团: power corps
Various villains and characters operate under the name “Yi Neng Bingtuan” who keep getting in Jackie’s way on his adventures. They are all either subordinate to Yue Ba or act in their own nasty interest.
Original voice actors (selection)
Jackie Chan: 王凯 (Wan Kai)
Bian Bian Long: 阎萌萌 (Yan Meng Meng)
Xiao Qi: 杨莹 (Yang Ying)
Dr. Huang: 李云鹏 (Li Yun-Peng)
Yue Ba: 张遥涵 (Zhang Yao-Han)
Dr. Black: 状元 (Zhuang Yuan)
The voice actors for the English language version, which is said to have been made for all episodes, are currently unknown. Further language versions are not yet available.
Jackie Chan as himself in “Jackie Chan’s Fantasia” (奇幻 龙宝)
Two other highlights of this series are hidden within each episode. Oh yes, in the intro of the series Jackie Chan can already be seen as himself. From time to time he also appears within the episodes in different situations as a real person within the cartoon world. A wink and you miss these appearances, which are nice easter eggs from the producer and developer of the series. Even after each episode, Jackie appears as himself and addresses his young audience with wise words in front of a green screen.
Production notes and special bonus
Jackie Chan, the anime artist Huang Yu-Lang, also known as Tony Wong, and the people in charge of Nanjing Hongying Animation Entertainment sat down early to plan Jackie’s first Chinese TV anime series. At that time, a total of 104 episodes were in talks. 52 episodes were ultimately produced, all of which are twelve minutes long.
The premiere took place during the 5th China International Cartoon and Animation Festival on April 29th, 2009, at 10:30 am local time during a press conference at the Hangzhou First World Hotel. Invited media representatives were extremely interested in the series’ concept. Among the invited guests were Chen De-Jun, Deputy General Director of Nanjing Hongying Animation Entertainment Co., Huang Yu-Lang, General Art Counselor of Jackie Chan’s Fantasia, Sun Li-Jun, Dean of the Animation School of Beijing Film Academy, Cai Zhi-Zhong, Chinese anime artist, and Jin Cheng, chairman of the Manyou cultural communication agency.
The aim of the anime series is to bring the cultural heritage of China closer to a young audience with the help of Jackie Chan’s fame. Virtue comes first. The aim is to convey values to the Chinese children. For example, each of the seven elements (also known as dragons) has a mysterious power. Jackie Chan announced via video message at the press conference: “I hope my animated series will give children a happy and meaningful experience.”
The TV series ran from April 2009 to April 2010 on the Chinese television channel CCTV weekly with an episode at the set airtime. An English language version was produced in Hong Kong by Red Angel Media for All Rights Entertainment. The English language version reportedly premiered on Disney Channel Asia in 2011 and on Indian Sonic Nickelodeon that same year. The rights for the North American market are held by Synkronized Films, which put 26 individual episodes together into 13 new and thus twice as long episodes and published them as Season 1 on Amazon Prime USA in November 2018.
Episode guide for “Jackie Chan’s Fantasia” (奇幻 龙宝)
Allegedly there is an English language version of all episodes, but this has not yet been fully traced. Therefore, the original titles are supplemented by the Pinyin notation at this point. I have translated the German and English titles accordingly. Since I am not a native speaker of Chinese, I would be grateful for tips on a better translation here and there (see especially episode 21).
|#||original title||German title||English titel|
(Lóng bǎo shèng jiǎ)
|Des Drachens heilige Rüstung||The armour of the dragon|
(Dà mó tóu yuè bà)
|Orbar, der Schurke||Big devil Orbar|
(Shénqí shèng jiǎ)
|Die magische Rüstung||Magic Armour|
(Qī jiàn lóng bǎo)
|Die sieben Elemente des Drachenschatzes||Seven elements of the dragon’s treasure|
(Lóng bǎo shīqiè zhī mí)
|Der Drachendieb||To catch a dragon thief|
(Huáng bóshì dì mìmì)
|Dr. Huangs Geheimnis||Dr. Huang’s secret|
|Durch Raum und Zeit||Through time and space|
|Die unterirdische Stadt||Underground city|
(Shénqì yǔ shèng jiǎ)
|Das Artefakt der heiligen Rüstung||The holy armour’s artifact|
(Chū yù zǐ yuè wángzǐ)
|Treffen mit dem jungen Prinzen||Meet with the young prince|
|Sohn des Himmels||Son of the heavens|
(Hūnjūn zhòu wáng)
|Alternder König||The aging king|
(Wǒmen shì jiānghú màiyì zhě)
|Gemeinsam über Flüsse und Seen||Together we travel the seas|
(Jī fā shì zhōu tiānzǐ?!)
|Ji Fa ist Zhou Tianzi?!||Ji Fa is Zhou Tianzi?!|
(Xī qí de dà wéijī)
|Die große Krise von Xiqi||The great crisis of Xiqi|
(Shāng jūn túxí)
|Militärischer Überfall||Military raid|
|Meister des Militärs||Master of the military service|
(Xīrì de ǒuxiàng)
|Altes Idol||Old idol|
(Huà dí wéi yǒu)
|Aus Feinden werden Freunde||Enemies become friends|
(Sēn luó wàn biàn zhèn)
(Jī fā de xìnniàn)
|Der Glaube des Ji Fa||Ji Fa’s faith|
(Shénqí xiǎozi nǎ zhā)
|Magisches Kind||A magical child|
(Xī qí de tóngyáo)
|Xiqis Kinderreime||Xiqi’s childish rhymes|
(Zǐ yuè de juéwù)
|Zi Yue versteht …||Zi Yue knows …|
(Wàn jiàn shān de mìmì)
|Das Geheimnis von Wan Jianshan||The secret of Wan Jianshan|
(Yuè bà de guǐjì)
|Orbars Trick||Orbar’s trick|
(Huáng bóshì pànbiàn)
|Dr. Huangs Meuterei||Mutiny of Dr. Huang|
(Nán’ér dāng zìqiáng)
|Ein Mann muss tun, was ein Mann tun muss||A man’s man|
(Yǒng chuǎng dàláo)
|Im Gefängnis||Into the prison|
(Zhì dòu shí’èr shēngxiào)
|Die 12 Tierkreiszeichen||The 12 zodiac signs|
(Miè shāng zhòu)
|Tödliche Geschäfte||Deadly business|
(Jī fā tōudù)
|Ji Fa schmuggelt||Ji Fa smuggles|
(Xiàndài shēnghuó zhēn yǒuqù)
|Das spannende, moderne Leben||Drama of living a modern life|
(Túxí lóng chē)
|Jackies Drachenauto||Jackie’s dragon car|
(Xiǎo qí de fèn dǒu shì)
|Xiaoqis Kampfraum||Xiaoqi’s chamber of combat|
(Jī fā bèi qín)
|Ji Fa wird gekidnappt||Ji Fa’s getting kidnapped|
|Mit den eigenen Waffen geschlagen||A case of the biter bit|
(Chōng chū chóngwéi)
|Keine Panik!||Don’t panic!|
(Wēi zhèn gǔ xīlà)
|Im antiken Griechenland||Oh, ancient Geece!|
(Jìngjì dàitì zhànzhēng)
|Sport ist Mord||Make sports not war!|
|Die Friedensfackel||The peace torch|
(Jiě dì qíng shēn)
|Es lebe der Frieden!||Long live the peace!|
(Huàn er de èmèng)
|Ein Albtraum||A nightmare|
(Shénmì de fù néngliàng)
|Geheimnisvolle dunkle Energie||Mytersious darf energy|
(Huángjīn zhàn jiāng)
|Goldener Krieg||Golden war|
(Mùfá shàng de yīngxióng)
|Helden auf dem Floß||Heroes on a raft|
(Fǎlǎo wáng zǔzhòu de zhēnxiàng)
|Die Wahrheit über den Fluch des Pharaos||The truth about the pharaoh’s curse|
(Shéi shì huángjīn zhàn jiāng)
|Wer ist der Goldkrieger?||Who is the golden warrior?|
|Hinter der Zukunft||Beyond the future|
Some sources claim that another 52 episodes are planned to make up the original 104 episodes. This has not yet been confirmed and is more likely to be questioned. Each episode lasts about twelve minutes with intro and outro and was produced in full frame 4:3 format (1.33:1) in Mandarin.
For the US market, two episodes of each of the first 26 episodes were merged into a single episode and thus published as an independent episode of a dubious first season on Amazon Prime USA and iTunes.
There is no official soundtrack on CD. For the TV series, it was decided to use an existing song by the singer Lena Yang, who was then allowed to appear as a real person in the intro of the TV series.
乐天派 (Letian Pai)
Album: 武法舞天 (Wufa Wu Tian)
Lyrics: 简妙颖 (Jian Miaoying)
Composer: 陈冠甫 (Chen Guanxi)
Singer: 杨青倩 (Yang Qingqian) Lena Yang
End credits song:
长大 (Zhang Da)
Lyrics: 厉曼婷、马崇惟 (Li Manting, Ma Chongwei)
Composer: 李珩 (Li Wei)
Singer: 杨青倩 (Yang Qingqian) Lena Yang
The title song is included on Lena Yang’s album, which can be ordered here from YesAsia.
Releases of “Jackie Chan’s Fantasia” (奇幻 龙宝)
Where the West is still waiting for the TV series to be released on free and pay TV, and associated with it for home theater releases and merchandising articles, things look very different in China. There was a real Fantasia hype there between 2009 and 2011. On March 31, 2011, the wave of home theater releases started in China.
For the first time, 13 double VCDs with 4 episodes per box of “Jackie Chan’s Fantasia” were released on Video-CD. All 52 episodes have since been available on VCD in anime-like artwork. The box set is easy to recognize by the red bar on the left.
On the same day, the large collection boxes typical in China, each with five Video-CDs, were published. A total of five VCD boxes with ten episodes each, the last box twelve episodes of the TV series were released. This series can be recognized by the plain background, which varies from box to box.
A second VCD box series was released on the same day. The artwork differs from the other Video-CD boxes in terms of the motifs and the non-monochrome background. In this series there were two VCD boxes with 13 VCDs each and all 52 episodes.
Last but not least, a complete box with 26 VCDs containing all 52 episodes was also released.
A DVD version was also released to match the VCD box with 5 Video-CDs each. A total of nine large DVD boxes contain six episodes of the television series and a slightly modified artwork on one DVD. Again, the plain background is an easily recognizable feature of the DVD box range.
A second series of DVD boxes was released in the same format, also with a plain background with a slight structure. A total of three DVD boxes made it to the public in this series. All episodes are spread over a total of nine DVDs, three per box set.
A third row of DVD boxes contains four DVDs per box and all 52 episodes of the TV series. This range of DVD boxes is quite rare to find, but luckily there are many other alternatives.
There is also a complete DVD box. This is designed very exclusively and stands out from all other publications by its silver foil. All 52 episodes of the series are available on a total of nine DVDs.
The series’ comic books
The official comic book series for the TV series was published on December 1, 2010, when the series was still being released on home cinema media but long after the TV broadcast ended in April of the same year. In a total of 13 coloured comic books in the classic small manga format, the main character Jackie Chan and his companions relive the adventures of the series. Unfortunately, the drawings are nothing more than still shots from the actual television series, supplemented by Chinese dialogues in speech bubbles.
The special thing about the comics: Each issue contained its own character from the series. All 13 figures could be put together to form a circle and thus made a beautiful collector’s item for children and adult fans who remained children.
Merchandising for the anime series
There were other fan articles from third parties such as candy manufacturers, similar to the PEZ dispensers. Jackie’s dragon car from the TV series was launched as a remote-controlled model. In addition, there were medallion-like collector’s caps with different motifs, as known from Chupa Chups from the 90s. These could be placed on a poster-sized trading card.
As previously written, there is allegedly a complete English language version, which was produced by Red Angel Media for All Rights Entertainment. This language version reportedly premiered on Disney Channel Asia in 2011 and on Sonic Nickelodeon in India that same year. Unfortunately, this data has not yet been confirmed, so if you have more information, please send me an email.
The rights for the North American market are held by Synkronized Films, which put the first 26 individual episodes together into 13 new and thus twice as long episodes and published them as season 1 on Amazon Prime USA in November 2018. A dead link on iTunes claims that these episodes were uploaded to the platform back in August, 2018. No further international licenses have been issued so far, so a German language version is still pending. It is highly doubtful that this will ever appear.
The first (US) season on iTunes: click here
The first (US) season on Amazon Prime USA: click here
Buy recommendation YOYcart: click here
Buy recommendation Amazon China: click here
Promo trailer for US version:
Trailer for Sonic Nickelodeon:
Sonic Nickelodeon Commercial: