Jetpack Brings Two High-Flying Shows to Annecy
U.K.-based Jetpack Distribution continues to deliver a colorful catalog of animated shows to outlets all around the world. The global distributor of series such as Kitty Is Not a Cat, Moley, Clangers and Mighty Little Bheem will have a strong presence at the Annecy market this month. CEO Dominic Gardiner was kind enough to tell us a bit about Jetpack’s hot slate: Can you tell us a bit about the two standout shows Jetpack is taking to Annecy? Dominic Gardiner: First up is Alice’s Diary, a delightful, upper-preschool-age 2D animated show, which is a co-production between Portugal-based Sardinha Em Lata, Spain’s Alice AIE and Brazil’s Geppetto Films. We have 52 x four-minute episodes. It’s currently in production and centers around a little girl named Alice who tries to understand the world through her own art. It is set to air on Portuguese public service broadcaster, Radio e Televisão Portuguesa (RTP), Spain’s national broadcaster RTVE and Disney Junior in Latin America. Next, we have the hilarious cartoon spoof animal documentary Critters TV, produced by Dublin-based Turnip & Duck. We have 26 11-minute episodes of the 2D flash animation and live-action series aimed at 4-8 year-olds and their families. The series was funded by Screen Ireland, RTEjr and the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland with the support of incentives for the Irish Film Industry from the Irish Government.
What makes these shows stand out?
Alice’s Diary offers a magical insight into the individual thoughts of Alice, the adorable, quirky, and highly imaginative 6-year-old lead, as she invites viewers into her beautifully illustrated diary. As Alice talks, she draws and her pictures come to animated life, adding a captivating and comedic visualization of what she’s thinking. It’s a beautiful and sweet show which will be highly captivating for this age group. (Alice’s Diary will be available from Q4 2022). On Critters TV , for the first time in the history of television, audiences get an animal’s-eye view on nature documentaries and learn some facts about the natural world along the way. Think Gogglebox if the audience were animated wildlife characters. It features a cast of hilarious cartoon animal families, from fun-loving foxes to filthy fleas, oddball squirrels to very silly owls. It’s genuinely unique and laugh-out-loud funny! It is strongly appealing for kids everywhere.
Can you tell us a bit about the history of Jetpack?
We launched at Annecy in 2014 and since then have grown our catalog to 1500 half hours of high quality, characters driven shows, working with 47 producers. We help shows flourish and thrive! And have extensive market knowledge and a buyer network. We celebrate the creativity and efforts of our producers, and a show’s provenance is an important part of how we sell. More than 80 % of our revenue is export and we’re a truly global business, selling in 194 countries worldwide.
What kind of shows do you look for?
Within our catalog we have a wide ranging selection across all genres and age groups, and offer buyers a great deal of choice. All our shows have a high level of quality and they stand out! They travel well, connecting with audiences through universal themes such as comedy, strong characters, friendship and teamwork. We often celebrate shows that are a bit off-the-wall with quirky and unusual elements. We watch our shows and genuinely love them! Perhaps we are big kids, but when they make us laugh we know they are something special. Increasingly we are acquiring more shows in development, and working alongside producers to help nurture series and bring them to fruition. We plan to keep growing this side of our business. We have recently expanded the team and restructured, with more dedicated resource focused on acquisitions, means we can give producers more — and improved — creative feedback.
What’s your take on the constantly changing world of animation in 2022?
There is an increasing demand and consumer value placed on educational content, especially that which is seamlessly integrated with entertainment. The education-tech sector is booming. The entertainment industry needs to keep up, as tech is a major part of a kid’s life and screen time. Kids trends often move faster than any company can and we need to react and be ready to produce quickly and economically. YouTube is one of the most universally accessed platforms in the world by kids, and they are not always watching animation that costs a million bucks an episode. Quality is important, but it doesn’t have to cost the earth! For more info, visit jetpackdistribution.tv