Spanish animators receive local boost
Spanish animators can now look to one of their local broadcasters as a major funding resource, thanks to a commitment by RTVE to inject US$14.5 million into toons over the next three years. The landmark deal, signed by RTVE’s former director Jose Antonio Sanchez and FAPAE president Pedro Perez, means the broadcaster will select toons for its local and international schedules and will assist with the promotion of these shows at programming festivals. By law, Spanish broadcasters must commit 3% of their budgets to local productions, yet serialized animated fare was never part of this equation.
Cloud 9 and Light Knights dream in animation
Queensland-based Cloud 9 Entertainment Group has teamed up with fellow Aussie studio Light Knights Entertainment to establish a new production company called Dreamcloud, which will specialize in animated series. First up on Dreamcloud’s slate is a CGI preschool offering called Roly in the Country with Blue (52 x 12 minutes), about a polar bear and a snail who live on a farm with a range of wacky livestock. Also in development is Penny Drew (26 x half hours), a CGI/live-action combo for six- to 12-year-olds about a girl whose magic pen makes her drawings come to life. Cumulus, Cloud 9′s sales arm, will retain global distribution rights to both series.
Foothill partners at home to further its global goals
Hot on the heels of signing a first-look co-pro deal with U.K.-based creative house Phew!!, Santa Barbara, California-based producer/distributor Foothill Entertainment has forged a strategic alliance with L.A. prodco phuuz entertainment in an effort to expand their respective international footprints. Under the terms of the broad deal, Foothill will hunt down international financing and distribution opportunities for phuuz programs like Vessels, a futuristic tween sci-fi series in which an ‘infection’ spread by alien carriers threatens the human race.