Wednesday, April 06, 2016

Cartoon Troubles on the Iberian Peninsula

Things might be ducky for animation in the U.S. of A., but there's some turbulence just now over in Spain.

... Spain ranks as the fifth-largest animated feature producer in the world, making 28 movies over 2010-14, when its animated pics sold more tickets outside Spain (11.3 million) than France (8.6 million) did.

Wracked by economic recession, Spain’s TV animation sector is something of a different story. Its main broadcasters aired close to 2,400 hours in 2009 and under 500 hours in 2013. The economic crisis, which halved TV advertising, and shows migrating to niche channels for children could be reasons. ...

But Spanish companies are looking to markets beyond Europe: the U.S. and China. Spain’s Ilion Animation Studios is producing a 3D tentpole animated feature for Paramount Animation. A China-Spain project was announced on March 5 — “Bikes the Movie,” directed by Manuel Javier Garcia (“Tombatossals, la leyenda”) and co-produced by Valencia’s Animation Bikes AIE and Chinese conglom CVC Group. ...

A lengthy Spanish recession that takes money out of consumers' pockets might be some of the reason for Spanish animation's doldrums. Four years ago, unemployment was 27%, horrific by almost any standard. It's slowly come down since then, but it still stands at 20%.

Like lots of other countries (and states) Spain is banking on tax breaks -- the every-popular Free Money gambt -- will help goose the domestic animation industry.


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