New Ways to Engage With Kids Explained At Malmo
The diversified market of Children's film and media in the digital age is the focus of this year's opening industry day on March 11 of the Financing Forum for Kids Content in Malmo.
Over the following two days 27 kids projects (including seven from Nordisk Film & TV Fond's High Five Cross Media Content for Kids initiative) will be pitched to over 50 financiers. One of them, the Swedish cross-media fantasy adventure for girls Valkyria will be used as Transmedia Case Study.
Annette Brejner, head of the Financing Forum is bullish about this year's event. "We have twice the number of serious financial players attending this year-compared to 2012- and much more companies from the cross media, digital, VoD, gaming industries," she says.
The industry expert Wendy Bernfeld (Rights Stuff BV, Netherlands) will give the tools on how to navigate in the new digital landscape in terms of licencing rights across various platforms, while Jason DaPonte (former exec producer BBC Online, mentor for BBC Creative Network) and Asta Wellejus (former Zentropa Interactive CEO) will explain how to engage kids instead of just letting them watch shows on the different platforms.
Twenty European projects selected by the Financing Forum will be pitched, with Sweden bringing the largest crop (six), followed by Denmark and Finland (three each). In terms of genre, animation is still the most popular (nine projects), although drama for kids is gaining ground. "We see more daring projects that challenge the dramatic form and go deep into various levels of emotions", says Brejner who cites Hurricane(Illusion Film, Swede), Nora's Pearl (Eyefeed, Sweden) and Girl and Mermaid (Fisher King Production, Finland).
In terms of target audience, the trend is for a wider scope of projects reaching out for all children age groups, whereas a few years ago most projects were aimed at tweens.
For Brejner, having the seven High Five Cross Media Content for Kids projects in the pitching sessions brings another layer of highly elaborate shows in development to the eyes of potential financiers. "I couldn't be more thrilled about our collaboration with Nordisk Film & TV Fond" she says.
The seven High Five Cross Media Content for Kids projects that were granted NOK225,000 in development support from Nordisk Film & TV Fond and that have benefited over the last four months from intensive tutoring from international experts, under the guidance of UK-based Power to the Pixel include Alfie Atkins (Maipo Film, Norway), Gigglebug (Anima Boutiquer, Finland), Karl Dymling-Guided by Ghosts(Breidablick Film produktion/AB Svensk Filmindustri), The Snowflakes (Nice Ninja, Denmark), Twin Pigs (Kongo Interactive, Denmark Ib the Dog (Hunden IB, Denmark) and Valkyria (KORE Film & Transmedia, Sweden).
The pitching of the seven Nordic cross-media projects in Malmö will be moderated by Paul Tyler founder of Handling Ideas and Power to the Pixel CEO Liz Rosenthal.
For the first time, a children's jury will select the best pitch and the winner will be announced on Wednesday March 13, 2013 at the Financing Forum's closing ceremony.
Here under is a brief description of Valkyria, Transmedia Case Study.
The cross-media fantasy adventure for girls is produced by Lund-based Anna Nevander (KORE Film & Transmedia). Based on the actual mythology of ancient matriarchal societies it is designed to encourage female empowerment. The project consists of a feature film, a web-series, a smartphone app, a collective and participatory exhibition online of artistic works created by the target group that will eventually be collected into a book: The Valkyrie Girls', and of living drama camps where the target group can participate in the creation and production of the project ‘Valkyria Girls' Camp'. According to Nevander, some visual parts of the show that will be used as a prequel to the feature film will be shot this summer; 500 members have signed up on the project's Facebook page and 700 artistic works have been gathered for the online exhibition. The feature film is expected to go into production in 2015. Besides Nordisk Film & TV Fond's High Five Cross Media Content for Kids Scheme,Valkyria has received backing from the BoostHbg Talent Development Programme the business development programme Nya Näringar Skåne region, and Skandia Idéer för Livet.
January 10, 2013
Cross-Media Experts Help Kids Content Creators Think Differently
As part of Nordisk Film & TV Fond's High Five Cross-Media Content for Kids Development Scheme, seven of the world's leading cross-media specialists attended the recent High Five Power to the Pixel Lab in Gilleleje, Denmark and gave mentoring support to seven Nordic cross-media projects for kids.
Producers were advised to focus on the core of the story universe and to consider new business models. The event took place November 12-16, 2012.
Organised by Nordisk Film & TV Fond with London-based cross-media expert Power to the Pixel, the High Five Power to the Pixel Lab was an eye-opener for several Nordic producers and creators who came to share ideas, experiences and receive professional guidance for their projects. The seven cross-media for kids projects that were discussed are Alfie Atkins (Maipo Film, Norway), Gigglebug (Anima Boutique & Kuusaerna, Finland), Karl Dymling-Guided by Ghosts (Breidablick, Sweden), The Snowflakes (Nice Ninja, Denmark), Twin Pigs (Kongo Interactive, Denmark), UB the Dog (Klassefilm, Denmark), and Valkyria(KORE Film, Sweden).
The mentors that shared their expertise were Liz Rosenthal, head of Power to the Pixel, Greg Childs, former BBC kids programme specialist and CEO of Childseye, Adam Sigel, LA-based writer/producer of content for multi-platforms, Paul Tyler, founder of media consultancy agency ‘Handling Ideas', Nuno Bernardo, producer of Transmedia company BeActive, Anne Mette Stevn, International Editor and User Experience Designer for Egmont Group and Thomas Howalt, Business Developer for game company Hapti.co.
Rosenthal felt the Lab was successful in helping the cross-media content creators ‘focus on the core of the story again'. "It can be difficult for producers to go back to the heart of their project, to the reason why they want to make a cross-media project. They tend to concentrate on the bits around the core. We help them focus on the idea in the middle and find the tools to communicate that idea".
To help producers engage with users of different platforms, the experts stressed the need to look at what Paul Tyler called the ‘holy trinity of cross-media' consisting of the creative, business and financing plans triangle. "So far, European producers have been used to focusing on the creative and financing plans. Users' interaction with cross-media has brought in new business models and suddenly they are being challenged by this new triangle and the relationship between them that brings them together" said Tyler.
From the producers' perspective, the Lab was ‘inspiring' but also immensely ‘challenging'. "Everything I thought I knew was turned upside down," confessed Nice Ninja's Thomas Borch Nielsen who came to explore the possibilities to expand the universe of his project Best Project at BUFF:FF 2012 - The Snowflakes - with a game. "Being movie makers at heart, we thought that the game would be a smaller part of the trans-media universe, perhaps just a marketing tool. Not only did our approach to that strategy change completely, but we managed during the week to come up with an awesome game design and even had time to polish the gameplay and the marketing plan together with the experts. We got some new tools, both creatively and financially, that we have never worked with before, which we will put to use over the next months", said the Danish producer who also worked on the successful animation feature exports Sunshine Barry & the Disco Worms and Marco Macaco.
Anttu Harlin from the new Finnish production company Anima Boutique said the Lab‘enabled, inspired and challenged him' to think of his highly original projectGigglebug (developed for YLE) ‘in an even wider context'. "Back at home, work often becomes task orientated and the drawing of a larger context was useful and informative. It helped us think about the building blocks of why we do what we do. On top of that, the week built our confidence and we found plenty of little ideas to implement here and there."
Maipo Film's Kristin Ulseth who brought the project Alfie Atkins based on the famous Nordic property, felt the Lab helped her ‘validate the strengths of her project and pinpoint its challenges'. "While some of the mentors' input felt like new tools that will enable us as film producers to speak and work more confidently with the development of a game, other general and specific advices have already been implemented in our game concept", she confirmed.
The next stage for the recipients of High Five Cross-Media Content for Kids support will be to attend the Financing Forum for Kids in Malmö (March 11-13, 2013) where they will pitch their projects to potential financiers.
For further details on the seven Cross-Media for Kids click here.
November 13, 2012
Cross Media For Kids At Malmö Financing Forum
The Financing Forum for Kids' Content - the only one of its kind in Northern Europe - will be held from March 11-13, 2013 in Malmö. Over 27 cross-media projects (including seven part of Nordisk Film & TV Fond's High Five Cross-Media Content for Kids) will be pitched to over 200 Nordic and European industry people.
Previously known as BUFF:FF Financing Forum, the event runs parallel to BUFF Children and Youth Film Festival. The highlight of the event is The Open Arena, Pitching event where producers introduce their innovative cross media ideas. Among the moderators is UK expert Liz Rosenthal from Power to the Pixel.
Annette Brejner, Head of the Financing Forum said: "I've already received huge interest on our programme from a range of international financiers. I am particularly happy to welcome for the second time High Five Cross-Media Content for Kids. Two projects introduced last year (The Snowflakes produced by Denmark's Nice Nija ApS, andValkyria produced by Sweden's Kore Film and Transmedia) will be presented again in a more elaborate stage of development. All industry people attending will be able to learn from their experience."
Besides the Pitching event, the Focus on Global Digital Media Market for Kids Content sessions will include presentations from international keynote speakers and from major Nordic and European broadcasters. Accredited participants will also be able to meet Commissioning Editors from Nordic film institutes, representatives from Regional film funds, Nordisk Film & TV Fond, Power to the Pixel, publishers and people from the game industry.
For further details check: http://www.thefinancingforum.com/