Winner–Short Format

Jack & Marcel
July 1, 2002

Jack & Marcel

Distributor: London-based Entertainment Rights (44-208-762-6200)

Producer: Issy-les-Moulineaux, France-based Protecrea

Format: 150 x one minute

Style: 2-D animation

Some current broadcasters: Nickelodeon International, Family Channel (Canada), Fox Kids Europe, Fox Kids Latin America and TV2 (Norway)

Entertainment Rights has its cat-and-dog short on a long leash

Currently airing in more than 49 countries, Jack & Marcel owes its widespread success to its comedic value, absence of dialog and an increased broadcast demand for shorts, says Entertainment Rights managing director Jane Smith.

Sometimes friends and often enemies, Jack and Marcel–the tiniest dog and cat on TV–share uproarious mini-adventures in this fast-paced series that joined the ER lineup in 2001 following the company’s acquisition of London-based Link. ‘Without fail, people laugh when they watch it, and that’s rare,’ muses Smith. ‘There’s a little bit of Tom & Jerry in it–classic slapstick comedy.’

The series’ visual humor also helps to broaden its demo appeal, and the absence of dialog aids international travel. ‘If broadcasters are looking at acquiring programming and they don’t have to bear any dubbing costs, that’s attractive,’ says Smith. ‘Because the animation carries Jack & Marcel exceedingly well, it doesn’t need dialog–just like the old-fashioned shorts didn’t. It’s a contemporary classic short.’

With little breathing room available on international dials these days, Jack & Marcel’s high cycle of one-minute eps makes it an attractive buy since broadcasters can easily pepper it all over their schedules. ‘We’ll give broadcasters multiple runs on something like Jack & Marcel because it’s used as filler. The more it’s used, the more people will come back and renew–increasing the off-air appeal,’ says Smith.

Although it’s near impossible to collect ratings for a one-minute short, Smith says many broadcasters have asked ER to package it in a five-minute format so they can run it in blocks.

Going forward, long-term plans for the series include new episode production and the development of a Jack & Marcel merchandising program. ‘The characters are just phenomenal,’ says Smith, who will also consider commercial work and block hosting gigs for her cat-and-dog team.


Potatoes & Dragons

Distributor: France-based Alphanim (33-1-49-96-4400)

Producer: Alphanim

Format: 78 x seven minutes

Style: 2-D animation

Broadcasters: The series has been presold to RTBF (Belgium) and Kids Central (Singapore)


Distributor: Germany’s RTV International (49-75-186-1692)

Producer: RTV Family Entertainment and Germany’s Phenomedia

Format: 26 x one minute

Style: 2-D animation

Broadcaster: Fox Kids Germany

Funny Farm

Distributor: Toronto, Canada’s Gullane Entertainment (416-533-6767)

Producer: Toronto-based RedCap Productions

Format: 40 x five minutes

Style: Live action

Broadcaster: YTV (Canada)

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