Cartoon Network goes 100% local with animation competition

Cartoon Network, the leading children’s TV channel in South Africa, has announced that they will be going local this year, partnering with some of Africa’s finest talent across animation, copy writing, post production and audio creation, to produce one-minute shorts of the winning work of this year’s Cartoon Network Imagination Studios competition. The Imagination Studios initiative was created to inspire, motivate and celebrate the wild imaginations of children, allowing them to conceptualise and create their very own Cartoon Network friendly character duo. The first place competition winners, from each of the four categories, will now get to see their animated creations live on TV on Cartoon Network across Africa.

The EMEA multiplatform initiative that celebrates and champions creativity amongst the youth will be a local first for Cartoon Network’s Imagination Studios, resulting in Cartoon Network contracting powerful alliances with locally selected partners to inject some local African flavour into the first locally produced animated shorts. Cartoon Network has contracted with the Pan-African animation company MyChild TV, who will act as the executive producer coordinating all parties involved in the completion of the Imagination Studios shorts. To write the script for the shorts, Cartoon Network has partnered with Cape Town-based Punch Money Studios who won the Turner Kids Animation Pitching competition at DISCOP in 2016 for their Cloud Life project. Also jumping on board, Cartoon Network has partnered with Mindseye Creative, a 2D animation studio based in South Africa and Audio Militia, an award winning post-production facility specialising in the original composition of music, sound design and final mix for a variety of media (TV, radio, film, games). To top it off, local comedians and voice over artists, including Nina Hastie, Trevor Gumbi, Richelieu Beaunoir and Alex Radnitz, will add an element of personification by lending their familiar local voices to the project. Together, the creative team will bring the winning drawings to life through motion, style and sound. “We here at Cartoon Network are so excited about Imagination Studios, so much so that we decided to take it a step further this year, by involving some amazingly talented, locally selected, third-party professionals. This local alliance will simply take what we have already previously perfected, and rejuvenate it by injecting a unique, authentic, African flair which will not only be engaging, but relatable to our audience too,” says Turner spokesperson. “We have been extremely impressed by the amazing creative energy present within each of the partners and this energy, together with the imaginative entries received in this year’s Imagination Studios competition, has reinforced our investment into localising content and our promise to further mentor the African animation industry.” Nick Wilson from Animation South Africa (ASA) adds, “It is really cool to see that international brands such as Cartoon Network are starting to fully localise their content in order to speak to, and engage with, their audience on a deeper, richer level. We are so honoured and excited to have been selected to work on this project, presenting us with many areas of potential and growth for the African animation industry, ensuring that our creative voices as Africans continue to be heard.”

The winner’s animated duos will be aired on Cartoon Network across Africa in October. To catch a glimpse of the winning artwork, visit the Cartoon Network Imagination Studios microsite .