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Momo (Italian: Momo alla conquista del tempo, known in the United States as Momo: The Conquest of Time) is a 2001 Italian-German animated fantasy film produced by Taurus Produktion. Directed by Enzo D'Alò, it is an adaptation of the fantasy novel Momo by Michael Ende. The English dub of the film features the voices of Hayden Panettiere, Kevin Costner, and Charlie Rose.

The film was released in Italy on 21 December 2001 and was later released in the United States and Canada on 25 December 2001 by Universal Pictures. It received positive reviews from critics and was a modest box office success, grossing $76 million. It spawned an animated series in 2003.

Plot[edit | edit source]

Momo is an orphan girl who finds herself in a town, where she makes friends with an old man, Beppo, who loves her as a granddaughter, and with Gigi, a child who immediately falls in love with her. Momo also knows other playmates: Enzo, Bruno, Livia and the little Chicco, who create a house in an ancient amphitheatre, and Cassiopea, a tortoise she finds on the street. But the city is invaded by the Gray Men who convince many people, including the ingenious barber Osvaldo Fusi, that they don't have much time left to live: the Grey Men's goal is to save all the people's time in their special "Bank of the time", which helps them to survive.

A Gray Man tries to bribe the little Momo with a very beautiful doll, but she manages to soften the heart of the Gray Man, humanizing him and turning him into a Grey-Pink Man, who admits that they always feel cold and they do not know what the warmth of love is. Momo then decides to immediately warn her friends, who in turn try to warn their parents to stay away from the Gray Men, but it's too late. After having eliminated the Grey-Pink Man, accused to be a traitor, the President of the Gray Men gives the order to capture Momo, who manages to escape from them thanks to Cassiopea, who leads her to a magical place. Momo is welcomed into the home of Master Hora, who controls time assisted by his faithful helpers, the time of day and the time of night, under the guise of a Rooster and an Owl.

Master Hora unveils to Momo the true nature of the Gray Men and the secret place where time lives. Momo listens to the Music of Light, a song that can break the spell of the Grey Men and free everyone, but the wise Master Hora tells her that it takes time for her to internalize the music, she has to sleep on it. Momo then goes to sleep, but meanwhile, the quiet town on Earth has turned into a huge metropolis. Poor Beppo, destroyed by the disappearance of Momo, is arrested and kept into an asylum after he tried to denounce the Grey Men to the authorities, and Gigi, who is hired by television, is threatened with dismissal if he keeps looking for Momo.

When Master Hora wakes up Momo, the town seems to be lost, but there is a way to save it: stop time. Master Hora can stop time by falling asleep, but only for an hour. The Grey Men steal the hours from the people and turn them into cigars that must smoke continuously, in order to avoid disappearing. If time stops, they can no longer steal hours and will eventually dissolve all. Unfortunately, the evil Grey Men have a reserve of cigars in their Bank and, as long as they can access them, they have enough cigars to survive until the awakening of Hora; Momo should, therefore, be able to keep them away from storage the necessary time. The girl faces the great challenge, helped by Cassiopeia, and manages with purity of soul and kindness to defeat all the Grey Men, freeing all her friends. The town is saved and the sweet Momo can finally re-embrace Beppo; Gigi returns to what it once was and Momo will live happily ever after with her friends. To celebrate, Gigi and Momo dance in the amphitheatre in front of the city's people.

Voice cast[edit | edit source]

Italian cast[edit | edit source]

  • Erica Necci as Momo
  • Diego Abatantuono as Master Hora
  • Giancarlo Giannini as President of the Grey Men
  • Sergio Rubini as Vice-President of the Grey Men
  • Neri Marcorè as The Grey-Pink Man (Agent 4587)
  • Michele Kalamera as Beppo
  • Giulio Renzi Ricci as Gigi
  • Gabriele Patriarca as Bruno
  • Riccardo Rossi as Osvaldo Fusi
  • Alina Moradei as The Owl
  • Renzo Stacchi as The Rooster
  • Claudio Sorrentino as The Commissioner
  • Patrick Donati as Enzo

English cast[edit | edit source]

Additional Voices[edit | edit source]

Loop Group[edit | edit source]

Production[edit | edit source]

According to Universal Feature Animation founder Michael Wildshill, he saw the test screening of the film and decided to do an American version. The work on the English dub under the title Momo: The Conquest of Time was in development at the same time as the original version of the film. Hayden Panettiere plays the titular character in the United States dub. Wildshill and Gary Hall served as writers of the English dialogue.

Changes in the US Version[edit | edit source]

Coming soon!

Release[edit | edit source]

Universal Pictures theatrically released the film in the United States on Christmas Day, December 25, 2001. Universal also distributed it in some other countries.

US marketing[edit | edit source]

Prior to and during its theatrical run in the United States, Momo: The Conquest of Time had promotional support from Burger King and Coca-Cola. Mattel also released a line-up of Momo figures and toys. Several TV promo spots for the film appeared on Gingo and USA Kids.

A video game based on the film was developed by Bizarre Creations and released by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation and PlayStation 2 in December 2001. A Game Boy Advance game based on the film was also released by Universal Interactive Studios.

Home media[edit | edit source]

In the United States and Canada, Momo: The Conquest of Time was released on VHS and DVD by Universal Studios Home Video on May 21, 2002. It was re-released on DVD on November 15, 2011, and re-released again on DVD on July 17, 2018. The film has yet to be released on Blu-ray.

Reception[edit | edit source]

Critical response[edit | edit source]

Coming soon!

Box office[edit | edit source]

Coming soon!

Television series[edit | edit source]

Coming soon!

v - e - d
Universal Animation Studios
Ama and the Mysterious Crystal (1997) · Paint World (1999) · Mistress Masham's Repose (2000) · Magina (2003) · Computeropolis (2004) · Onion Mastori: The Movie (2005) · Curious George (2006) · Me & Mobo (2006) · Computeropolis 2 (2007) · Swapped (2008) · Woo La La (2009) · Computeropolis 3 (2010) · Nepola's Odyssey (2011) · Quest (2012) · Luna & Zak (2013) · Nepola's Odyssey II (2014) · Paradoria (2015) · Imagimals (2017) · Lix (2017) · Computeropolis: The Deep Web (2018) · Sev: Indehindrance Day (2019) · Paradoria 2 (2019) · Imagimals 2 (2020)

Upcoming: Computeropolis: Webcation (2021) · Mechagirl (2022)

Despicable Me (2010) · Hop (2011) · The Lorax (2012) · Despicable Me 2 (2013) · Minions (2015) · The Secret Life of Pets (2016) · Sing (2016) · Despicable Me 3 (2017) · The Grinch (2018) · The Secret Life of Pets 2 (2019) · Esqua (2020)

Upcoming: Sing 2 (2021) · Minions: The Rise of Gru (2022) · Untitled animated Mario film (2022)

DreamWorks Animation
Dusk and Dawn: A Zodiacal Night (2018) · Greenuts (2018) · How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (2019) · Abominable (2019) · Trolls World Tour (2020) · The Croods: A New Age (2020)

Upcoming: Spirit Untamed (2021) · The Boss Baby: Family Business‎‎ (2021) · The Bad Guys (2022) · Puss in Boots: The Last Wish (2022)

Gingo Movies
Hatty in the Big City: The Movie (1999) · Cardcaptor Sakura: The Movie (1999) · Going Francisco (2001) · The Gabriel Garza Movie (2002) · The Whackems: One Big Movie (2003) · Zina and the Vivid Crew (2004) · The Pandemoniums Movie (2009) · The Ace of All Trades Movie: Too Hot For Theaters! (2010) · FusionMania: The Movie (2012) · Planetokio (2014)
Multimedia Animation
Liche's Wish (1990) · East of the Sun and West of the Moon (1992) · Romeo and Juliet (1994)
Amblin Entertainment
An American Tail (1986) · The Land Before Time (1988) · An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (1991) · We're Back! A Dinosaur's Story (1993) · Balto (1995) · The Imps of Nature (1996)
Big Idea Entertainment
Jonah: A VeggieTales Movie (2002) · The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: A VeggieTales Movie (2008) · LarryBoy: A VeggieTales Movie (2020)
Animated Films Distributed by Universal
The Snow Queen (1959) · Pinocchio in Outer Space (1969) · Flying Phantom Ship (1971) · Elements of Light (1989) · Jetsons: The Movie (1990) · Doraemon: The Movie‎‎ (1995) · Maze of the Castle (1998) · The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle (2000) · Princess Arete (2001) · Momo (2001) · The Magic Roundabout (2005) · The Princess and the Pied Piper (2006) · Cinnamon the Movie (2007) · The Tale of Despereaux (2008) · Saturn (2013)
Animated Films Distributed by Focus Features
Zoe Tarr: The Drinking Detective‎ (2007) · Coraline (2009) · 9 (2009) · ParaNorman (2012) · The Boxtrolls (2014) · Ratchet & Clank (2016) · Kubo and the Two Strings (2016)