Press Kit Felix
Hello - this is FELIX
Published in more than 20 countries, translated into 29 languages, more than 7 million copies sold worldwide - these are the plain but impressing facts about the books on the adventurous plush rabbit Felix. In 2002 he started his career in TV, which was broadcasted in various countries, such as England, Island, Israel, Italy, Japan, Finnland, Hongkong, Korea, Norway, Poland, Taiwan, Thailand, Tschechia, Sweden, Singapure and Slowakei. In spring 2005 and 2006 Felix made it into the cinemas and licenses are sold all over the world. Felix - a character that travels the world.
Everything started in 1994, when Annette Langen and Constanza Droop first introduced the adventurous plush rabbit and his friend Sophie in their book "Letters from Felix". Since then Felix, who tends to get lost from time to time and to have exciting adventures, has conquered the hearts of children all over the world.
Felix - "informative but not didactic"
A fixed part and gag of the books are the humorous and informative letters which Felix sends to Sophie while he is travelling. In addition the books always contain a small surprise gift. The special effect is that at the same time the letters give the young readers many interesting pieces of information on Felix´ respective whereabouts. "My stories are meant to be informative but not didactic" Annette Langen says about her work. It therefore takes her usually 3 months of research until all the facts she uses in the books are "watertight". For "Letters from the Circus", for instance, she met people from Circus Krone and Circus Roncalli and interviewed children at the School for Circus Children in North Rhine-Westphalia. That's how she learned amazing details which allowed Felix to feel the real circus atmosphere and to write letters to Sophie about life in the circus. From her own experience Annette Langen knows that the readers will think about the contents of the books just in the same way as Sophie gets interested in doing her own research. The books are suitable for children aged 5 and up but are most attractive for young readers aged 6 - 9 years.
Many letters from Felix
London and New York, Asia and the North Pole - Felix has travelled (almost) everywhere. Everything started with his first trip to the big cities London, Paris, Rome, Cairo and New York ("Letters from Felix", 1994). The next time he disappeared in a museum and travelled back to the past: to the Middle Ages, to the time of the Vikings, to the North American Indians, to the ancient Greeks, to ancient Japan and to the Stone Age ("New Letters from Felix", 1995). Then he explored the endangered regions of our blue planet ("Adventurous Letters from Felix", 1996). In 1997, the "Christmas Letters from Felix" were published which he wrote from the North Pole and from the Christmas celebrations around the world. In November 1999, Coppenrath published Felix´ fifth adventure,"Letters from the Circus". In this book, Felix travels with the Circus Barelli, and later on he travels in a flying suitcase “Worldbest Letters from Felix”to discover exciting destinations like a Vampire’s Castle in Transilvannia, India, the great wall in China, the Everglades and Mexico’s pyramids. In “Felix visits children from all over the world” he discovers kids’ everday life in different cultures.
Many letters from FelixFelix - an international star
Just as Felix conquers the world his books do, too. By now they have been translated into many languages and are available in Denmark, Finland, France, Greece, Great Britain, Hungary, Israel, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey, Australia, Canada, Japan, Korea and in the United States of America. In the four last-named countries in particular, it is by no means natural that German books are regarded as interesting. In Israel, the "Letters from Felix" have been crowned with exceptional success. For weeks on end, the book was the number one on the bestseller list.
In 1995, the "Letters from Felix" were awarded the title "educationally valuable" by the Association for youth and social research. The book was said to contribute greatly to international understanding and solidarity. In the Netherlands, the book was awarded the "Quill of the Month" in July 1995.
In addition, the enthusiastic reactions of teachers which the author and Coppenrath have received in great numbers ever since the books were published show that Felix´ adventures stimulate the fantasy of whole kindergarten and school classes in many ways. Clever elementary school teachers use the books for different subjects. They are particularly successful in classes where children from different cultures learn together because the Felix books arouse an interest in other countries and help to understand their different customs at the same time.
"At the moment, I'm planning a series of lessons on foreign countries, and what could come in handier than the Felix books?" (Ms Tatjana Beljin-Bierschenk from Anröchte)
"... I would like to baptize this multinational class "Felix class" because I plan to use various Felix books both in language teaching and in the teaching of general knowledge. I want to introduce the character of Felix as a curiosity-driven discoverer." (Ms Nolte, teacher at the Astrid Lindgren School in Kaarst)
Felix has also been used in museums and in the work with the handicapped.
Verlag an der Ruhr, a German publisher, has brought out teaching aids for "Letters from Felix","Christmas letters from Felix" and "Felix' Letters from the Circus", which are used by many teachers in elementary schools.
The "Felix cult"
The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, one of Germany's most influential daily newspapers, stated that the letters from Felix were particularly interesting for several reasons, and one of the greatest women's weekly magazines (Brigitte) called the phenomenon the "Felix cult" which originates from the books and stimulates the fantasy of children and adults in many ways over and over again.
In February 2007 Felix was connecting Jewish and Arab children. Based on the ‘Letters of Felix’ the Goethe Institute (German Cultural Center) in Jerusalem has initiated a book project in which Jewish and Arab children are asked to write letters about their daily routines, their festivals, and their way of life. The children’s letters were presented at the International Book Fair in Jerusalem.
Since 2006 Felix’ image is present on the outside Finnish trains and within the family compartments and his adventures are presented in the planetarium of Münster.
In the children's area of the public swimming pool in Leichlingen and Ettlingen motives from the Felix books were painted on the walls. Felix can be seen there riding on a camel on the beach, sleeping under palm trees or diving into the sea with dolphins - scenes from the Felix books which prove that Felix has become a "cult" indeed.
Letters to Felix
Projects such as "Write a letter or draw a picture for Felix" which were carried out in Germany, in the Netherlands and Japan met with good response, too. The letters from Felix fans all over the world which arrive at Coppenrath´s show how strongly children feel with the stories. Melanie (aged 9) writes: "Felix, I have never seen you but I believe in you!" In the letters Annette Langen is confronted with questions such as "Why is Felix called Felix?", "How did you get the idea to write about Felix and Sophie?" and - one of the most frequently asked questions - "How old is Felix?" To the latter question Annette Langen can only answer that "Felix is a rabbit in the prime of his life"! With regard to the letters that reach her every day she adds: "The honesty and the enthusiasm which show in all the children's letters are the most valuable reward for me."
E-mails to Felix
Communication with Felix fans of all ages is unlimited today. In addition to his postal address in Martinistraße, Felix has his own website. At www.felixclub.de, children can send him e-mails, sign his guest book or play exciting games with Felix.
In 2001 an internet project has been launched by the Japanese licensee. For the duration of one year, Felix traveled the world and reported on his journeys. A very special project won first prize in December 1998 during the "Netdays NRW" contest: an elementary school class from Bochum sent Felix via e-mail to different countries as an international ambassador in order to get in touch with other schools, both within Germany and abroad. What convinced the jury and the prime minister of North Rhine-Westphalia to award this committed class the first prize was their choice of subject as well as its effective realization.
Even more Felix books
In addition to the well-known Felix books, Annette Langen and Constanza Droop have published various other books which focus on Felix the plush rabbit. For his cookbook "Felix Receives a Message in a Bottle", the plush rabbit has collected mouthwatering recipes from all over the world. "Felix, what time is it?" explains how the hands of a clock work and what they mean. The "Felix Address Book" offers much space for the addresses of friends and gives interesting details about countries all over the world in addition. "My First Day at School" is a keepsake album in which all the memories of this special occasion can be captured. In his useful pupil's calendar with much room for important notes, Felix answers many questions related to various topics. Various "Felix Advent Calendars" and a great number of photograph albums, sticker books and postcards complete the Felix series.
Travelling with Felix
Felix is one of Coppenrath's favourites - not only in the books, but also in a wide range of toy and gift items which are created by the "Spiegelburg Edition": the original plush rabbits in various sizes and styles, delicious Felix chocolate, Felix games, a Felix rubber stamp set and a broad range of stationery items. What is more, for all those who love travelling as much as Sophie's little rabbit does, there are stout Felix suitcases, practical backpacks and attractive travel accessories.
In addition to the Spiegelburg items, many licensees have developed their own high-quality Felix products. There are Felix children's glasses (by Nussbaumer), bed-linen (by Herding), stockings (by Malerba), lamps (by Stand By! Lighthouse Lichtprodukte), embroideries (by acufactum), home textiles (by Spiegelburg Home), baby's bottles (by SIGG), a whole range of wallpaper designs (by Marburger Tapetenfabrik), place mats (by Saleen), textiles (by Mottom), video tapes and DVDs (by Highlight Video), cards (by Incognito), shoes (by Bavaria Sonor) and organic chocolate (by Weinrich). When the German post brought out three Felix stamps for parcels in 1999, these were met with great enthusiasm around Easter and the start of school that same year.