Future of the tube…

Not the boy next door...
September 1, 1999

Not the boy next door

The slacker subculture is poised to go mainstream next year with the delivery of Nelvana’s new 2-D toon co-pro Robin. Created by Sweden-based Happy Life Animation’s Magnus Carlsson, the 13 x 26-minute series is slated for completion in March.

With a per-episode budget of roughly US$250,000, Robin stars a 20-something loser who defines life’s necessities as such: a sampler, a stereo and a sofa bed. Unemployed and single, Robin revels in memories of his dysfunctional childhood and spends the days spinning real-life stories featuring an eclectic crew of winos, film buffs and militant tranvestites. The character Robin was spawned in a wacked out, MTV Award-winning spot Carlsson produced for U.K. band Radiohead. Partnering with Toronto’s Nelvana on the series are Sweden’s AB Svensk Filmindustri, Svierges Television AB and TMO Film GmbH.

Three’s Company on acid

Paris-based indie studio Sav! The World Productions is also shopping a misfit series at this year’s MIPCOM. Featuring a band of outcasts who live in an abandoned house in the suburbs, Squat is a six x 26-minute series that exec producer Savin Yeatman-Eiffel describes as ‘South Park, but with a deeper psychological level.’ The motley cast, which includes a fetishist lawyer, a raver, an acid-head artist and a nosy drag queen, is modeled after Yeatman-Eiffel’s friends.

With a budget of US$1.7 million, Squat layers 2-D character animation over real-life textured backgrounds. Negotiations for the series with ARTE are underway.

Boxed babies on barbituates

Set in the year 2027, 240 is Spain-based Chromosoma’s 13 x 26-minute ode to societal dysfunction and cynicism. Starring the world’s first clonic child, the 2-D series pokes fun at humanity’s inherent selfishness and decadence. Babies of the future come in convenient boxes, eat dog food and take tranquilizers before bedtime. Co-pro partners include France’s Alphanim and L.A.-based Palm Pictures. Delivery is set for winter 2000, and the per-ep budget is US$350,000.

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