Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Hotbed of Animation

It's up -- if smiling studio representatives are believed -- above the northern border.

... “There’s great talent in America on the animation side,” says Irene Weibel, head of Nelvana Studio, which has produced such toddlerdom faves as “Bubble Guppies,” “Max & Ruby” and the recent Disney Junior co-production, “Lucky Duck.” “I think that the key difference is the environment of funding animation as an industry in Canada. The government of Canada provides support in the way of tax benefits and subsidies to animation that is produced in Canada and that doesn’t exist in the U.S., and that gives the Canadian industry that kind of leg up.”

So desired are animators at Ottawa-based Mercury Filmworks that Disney TV Animation creators frequently request to partner with them when cooking up new series. ...

I think we need to be clear about the dynamics operating here.

Canadian animators are top-notch. As President Emeritus Tom Sito has long noted, Canadian artists can be found working in Southern California and on almost every continent on the globe. They're talented, they're prolific, they get around.

But if Canada wasn't handing out Free Money by the carload, Ottawa ... or Toronto ... or Vancouver ... wouldn't be teaming centers for cartoon and visual effects work.

Because what drives all this frenzied activity are subsidies and tax incentives. The instant any geographic locality stops spooning out its corporate dole, the Welfare Kings otherwise known as Diz Co., Viacom, Fox-News Corp. (etc.) move on.

That's the way we now roll in this brave new era of free enterprise corporate welfare.


Wil Hewson said...

When was Nelvana resurrected?
It died a number of yrs ago, right?

David said...

Nelvana never went away . Almost nothing remains of the original Nelvana studio from the 70's and 80's . The original founding partners have moved on. Nelvana was purchased by Corus Entertainment in 2000. The company continues under the Nelvana name.


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