Palred Media creates animated characters with modern-day relevance; invests Rs 2 bn

MUMBAI: Talk about the Indian animation industry and it still tinkles with the Tom & Jerrys, the Mickey and the Minis and the Hanna Montanas. Certainly mythology and history are the key influencers when it comes to storytelling in the Indian landscape.
However, Palred Media and Entertainment plans to break this clutter. The company, focusing on creating IP (Intellectual Property) in the M&E domain, has created two new Indian characters named Soori (male)-Poori (female) to craft out stories on modern-day relevance.
Targeted at children in the age group of 6-12, the characters will be available in live action content through cinema and TV shows. The company has earmarked an investment of Rs 2 billion over five years in the project and expects to garner revenues of Rs 300 billion from the same.

Palred Media will venture into interactive gaming animation for Soori-Poori in three years, while the 2D/3D animation content will be released in 2011-12. Merchandise, inspired by the characters, will also be developed in the long term.

According to Palred Media and Entertainment founder Palem Srikanth Reddy, the Indian children‘s entertainment content is heavily dependent on foreign programme and characters. "Also most of the Indian television series and movies for children are based on mythological characters or historical tales. But characters with relevance to modern India are scarce; it is this gap we are trying to fill with Soori-Poori," said Reddy.

Two scripts for movies have been developed and 52 story ideas have been generated for the TV shows. In the first phase, 13 episodes and one commercial feature film will be produced. The production activity will commence from mid-June. The company is in talks with TV channels as the release will be timed with next holiday season during Dussera and Diwali.

According to the company, 92 per cent of children watch TV daily wherein the animated television programming is a growing genre.

Says Madison Media Infinity COO and head, Madison Media Research Centre Mallikarjun Das, "Today the kids broadcasting industry attract approximately Rs 2-2.5 billion of advertising revenues and is growing at a rate of 8 per cent per annum."

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