Screen Australia has announced US$7.5 million in new production funding, some of which has been earmarked for a 10-part live-action series called Itch from Komixx Entertainment. The adventure-driven kids drama is also supported by Screenwest, Lotterywest and the West Australian Regional Film Fund.
Starring science-obsessed teen Itchingham Lofte, known as Itch, the series will tag along as he discovers a new element in the periodic table and is forced to go on the run to protect it. Itch is produced by Amanda Morrison and Tania Chambers, and written by Ron Elliot, Heather Wilson, Roger Monk, Jessica Brookman, Melanie Halsall and Dan Berlinka.
The fully funded series is based on a bestselling book series (pictured) by Simon Mayo that Random House Children’s Screen Entertainment optioned for multi-platform development back in 2014. Komixx Entertainment jointly owns RHCSE with Random House and agreed at the time to guide the project into creative development. Komixx expanded its operations into Australia two years ago, with a new Perth office that’s managed by transmedia production vet Amanda Morrison.
Screen Australia has allocated significant funding to kids projects in the last year, including an investment in three tween series: Aquarius Films’ The Unlisted, Ludo Studio’s Robbie Hood and Cheeky Little’s Spongo, Fuzz and Jalapena. And a few months ago, the government org granted funding to Like A Photon for its first animated features The Wishmas Tree and Combat Wombat, as part of a US$6.5-million production investment initiative to support domestic multi-platform content.