Cartoon Network At The Children’s Media Conference 2016
Today (07/07/2016), was the final day of the annual Children’s Media Conference in Sheffield, probably the most important annual event in the year where the British children’s media industry gather and discuss their ideas, their work and their plans for the future. Yesterday (06/07/2016), Turner (Cartoon Network, Boomerang, Cartoonito) along with Viacom (Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., Nicktoons) and Disney (Disney Channel, Disney XD, Disney Junior) ran a combined content commissioner event. Turner, Viacom and Disney are the three major players in the UK children’s pay-TV industry.
During Turner’s part of the session, Cecilia Persson, VP of Programming & Content Strategy for Kids Channels at Turner EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) stated that Cartoon Network is looking for more original show ideas from outside the United States, Sarah Fell (Executive Director for Cartoon Network’s The Amazing World of Gumball) was also there to emphasise the importance of international kids programming. The Amazing World of Gumball was used as a successful example, produced by Cartoon Network but made outside the United States which is Turner’s main and home country.
At present, there is around 20% of non-US content airing on Cartoon Network UK, 40% of Boomerang’s schedule is content from outside the United States, half of which is commissioned. Nearly 100% of the programming on Cartoonito is acquired (not counting the programming from Turner’s sister company, Warner Bros.).
Micro-formatted content is also being commissioned and Mighty Magiswords produced by Cartoon Network Studios is one example, which has evolved from an interactive choose-your-ending fifteen-second animated shorts into a full-blown 11 minute per episode show.
In terms of Turner EMEA’s current operation, the situation of the UK leaving the European Union (which still might not happen) won’t affect their operations in the short-term and they’re still committed to using the UK as a creative base and to take advantage of children’s content/animation industry tax breaks.
Sean Gorman, Director of Cartoon Network UK, took part in an UK/Canada content collaboration session, two countries united by a common language, history and culture, both countries also have a large animation and kids TV production industry.
— The CMC (@childmediaconf) July 7, 2016
— Gabrielle Smith (@GabySmithTV) July 5, 2016