ABC, CBC partner to amplify kids content with new funding program

EXCLUSIVE: The Australian and Canadian public broadcasters are launching Kindred, a new initiative to find and fund animated content for preschoolers and tweens.
March 10, 2022

Public broadcasters CBC (Canada) and ABC (Australia) are expanding their ongoing partnership with a new joint initiative to support kids animation production and gain an edge in a busy marketplace.

Open to projects from both new and established creators in the two countries, the Kindred ABC/CBC Animation Collaboration is seeking “fresh, innovative and artistic animation” targeting tween and preschool audiences. All shortlisted applicants will receive initial development funding, and projects that proceed further will be eligible for further development support and potential co-commissions from the broadcasters.

In statements announcing the new program, leaders from both networks emphasized the importance of working together to bring pubcaster-created content to the forefront of the vast kids entertainment universe.

“In a world where content is exploding, these kinds of collaborations are essential to public broadcasters’ ability to compete,” said Catherine Tait, president and CEO of CBC/Radio-Canada. ABC managing director David Anderson added: “In an increasingly crowded market, the ABC is committed to ensuring our world-class programming is not lost in the mix.”

Kindred is spotlighting two types of animated projects: tween content (10- to 14-year-olds) with a narrative driven by a female character or compelling ensemble cast, and focusing on comedy, surrealism, fantasy quests and/or identity; and preschool series concepts exploring an aspect of early childhood development that’s not currently well-represented in the marketplace. These projects should represent core values of comedy, kindness and empathy.

Online submissions will run from March 28 to May 16. Applications must reflect inclusivity and diversity both in the project and the creative talent behind it. And experience is not a requirement; successful candidates will be provided with support from the ABC and CBC as they search for a production partner.

The commercial partnership between the ABC and CBC started in June 2019 with a collaboration aimed at enhancing the reach and impact of content through shared distribution and resources. Outcomes to date include the ABC’s acquisition of original CBC Kids series Big Blue, as well as co-productions Kiri and Lou and Endlings (pictured). And CBC Kids acquired the ABC’s First Day, How to do Stuff Good and The Wonder Gang.

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