Getting in toon with 'Celtic Tigger'
THE GOOD NEWS for Ireland’s animation industry – dubbed the Celtic Tigger – came in threes this week.
First up was Dublin-based Jam Media, which announced it would create 60 jobs after its series Roy – a mockumentary about a “cartoon boy” that is part animation, part live action – was re-commissioned by the BBC, leading to a €8.5 million investment in the company.
“Because of Roy, we’ve developed an appetite for live-action dramas,” says Jam Media chief executive John Rice, who added that the group would launch a new company, Jammy, in Belfast early next year.
Then it was the turn of Colm Tobin’s Kite Entertainment, which saw its comedy series Science Fiction picked up for international distribution by the UK company Aardman Rights.
Twitter jokesmith Tobin – who is not to be confused with his near namesake Colm Tóibín – uses humour to explain scientific facts to eight to 12-year-olds via a mix of puppetry and animation. It is currently airing on RTÉ and CBBC.
The two deals were announced in the wake of the MIPCOM Jnr entertainment content marketplace, which took place last weekend ahead of this week’s main MIPCOM event in Cannes.
The week of happy tidings was rounded off by the release of the International Emmy nominations, with Cathal Gaffney’s firm Brown Bag Films receiving a nod for The Octonauts in the preschool category and The Amazing World of Gumball, on which Irish company Boulder Media serves as co-producer, up for the kids’ animation award.