Television

Viacom18's global push with international animation series

The Twisted Timeline of Sammy & Raj is being coproduced with Nickelodeon International.

https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/smartcrop_800x800/public/images/tv-images/2020/09/29/tt.jpg?itok=TzESASAL

MUMBAI: Entertaining kids on television is not a child’s play. Many an Indian broadcaster will agree. But Viacom18 owned Nickelodeon India has managed to do it well by bringing to life iconic characters like Motu Patlu, Gattu Battu, Shiva and Rudra amongst several others. Now the kids broadcaster is making its biggest bet: teaming up with its international associate Nickelodeon International to co-produce a new 2-D  animation series targeted at two to 14-year-olds all over the world.

Titled The Twisted Timeline of Sammy & Raj, it is slated to roll out on Nickelodeon’s international channels in 2021.

“The UK and the US are two nations that produce a lot of animation content. India is the only region other than these two which has scaled up its original IP animation production capability,” says Viacom18 content & research Kids TV network creative head Anu Sikka. “When the UK team approached us, we thought as so many productions are happening in India why not do something from India. The idea was to create an IP and a show which works across the globe.”

Read more news on Viacom18

And that’s why it took the teams from the two companies which included - Sikka and Nickelodeon VP animation Chris Rose - two years to crack the project. Sikka brainstormed with her Indian colleagues to come up with the basic concept, which was then fine-tuned and honed jointly with the Nickelodeon International team. “We have incorporated India’s cultural nuances in the show in order to make it more endearing for both Indian and international audiences,” reveals Sikka.

The writers room for The Twisted Timeline of Sammy & Raj is now located in the US under head writer Jordan Gershowitz’s supervision. Creatives are being supervised by both the UK and Indian creative teams with the animation being done at Big Animation’s Pune studio.

Read more news on Nickelodeon

The channel is using Frame.io for better connectivity as well to clear assets and storyboards. Sikka highlights that due to the pandemic, the entire process slowed down. According to her, the studio has gradually picked up the pace and arranged software and necessary equipment for employees sitting at home. She says: “Luckily for kid's content and animation, we did not require any shoots, so our work didn’t stop. Yes, initially the challenge was to coordinate with everyone, there were internet connectivity issues at some places. There were initial hiccups but now we are back on track. Pre-production work that also includes conceptualisation and writing went at a rather swifter pace.”

Sikka says that while the IP of the new series lies with Viacom18, distribution will be done by Nickelodeon International in the territories where it can be sold. Of course, the first telecast right will lie with all Nickelodeon channels. She says her  primary focus is to launch the show on a larger scale, and then depending on the traction the channel will look further into distribution and licensing.

She points out that English dubbing will be done in both India and the UK, but the dubbing of the content in Hindi and other regional languages will be completely homegrown. She further adds, a movie franchise could also be in the works – just like Motu Patlu -  depending on The Twisted Timeline of Sammy & Raj’s popularity.

Animated shows on Indian television are budgeted at between Rs 12-25 lakh for a 2D series and Rs 22-35 lakh for a 3D one. Sikka was loathed to reveal the budget of the co-production. But industry sources reveal that it might be in multiples of what Indian shows can command.

The news about the co-production has warmed many an animation industry veteran’s heart. Says one of them: “This is so good. There was a time when India was known for outsourcing and not for original IPs. But recent efforts like Mighty Little Bheem by Green Gold on Netflix and Vaibhav Studios’ Lamput on Cartoon Network has made waves globally and are telling a different story about India’s animation prowess.”

The hope, amongst most industry professionals is that The Twisted Timeline of Sammy & Raj will take that story of animation further into its next chapter. 

Latest Reads

https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/26/img_26012021_155502_800_x_800_pixel.jpg?itok=q9YHYp73
Arnab Goswami to voluntarily, publicly disclose all his financial dealings

MUMBAI: Clearly, the face-off between the Maharashtra government led by Uddhav Thackeray, the Mumbai police led by its chief Param Bir Singh and Republic Media promoter and editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami is not going to end quickly or easily.

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/25/qomn.jpg?itok=JfTdFL6Z
Women viewership in sports show a steady growth, but are the brands ready?

New Delhi: It has been long believed that television mostly provides content aimed at its women viewers. The family dramas and reality shows have pivoted around this notion and advertisers have made the most of it to reach out to their rooted female audiences.

Television TV Channels Viewership
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/25/ragha.jpg?itok=YAOuWTpM
Animal Planet ropes in A-Capella group RaagaTrippin’ for a Republic Day special music video

MUMBAI: This Republic Day, Animal Planet is releasing a soulful natural symphony music video in association with RaagaTrippin’, the famous Indian A-capella group known for creating instrument-free music. This unique rendition of the famous patriotic song ‘Saare Jahaan Se Achha’ composed through...

Television TV Channels Factual
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/25/partho_dasgupta.jpg?itok=n9gOUFVy
I worked with my team to ensure manipulation of TRP ratings: Partho Dasgupta

NEW DELHI: One of the prime accused in the alleged TRP manipulation scam, former BARC CEO Partho Dasgupta, in a written statement has admitted to getting money from Arnab Goswami in return for rigging the TRPs to make Republic Network lead the charts, Indian Express reported. He claimed that...

Television TV Channels Viewership
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/25/hist.jpg?itok=jExJb3GK
This Republic Day, HistoryTV18 brings viewers true stories of courage and sacrifice in Kargil War

India, January, 2021: 21 years after the Kargil War, the sacrifices of India’sbrave still remain etched in the nation’scollective memory. The war began with the infiltration of Pakistani troops into Indian territory in May 1999. After 60 daysof fierce fighting, the war ended with the Indian Army...

Television TV Channels Viewership
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/25/logo.jpg?itok=XdQ06aFT
Republic Media Network alleges collusion between Times Network & Congress

The TRP scam that was unearthed by Mumbai Police on 8 October 2020 has brought the industry to a new low. Multiple broadcast networks have been attacking each other while the former leaders of the rating agencies have come under the scanner of investigation agencies.

Television TV Channels Viewership
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/25/et-now.jpg?itok=fNg6Li3n
ET Now launches programming line up for union budget 2021

In the run-up to Union Budget 2021, ET Now has announced an exclusive programming line-up with the theme, ‘Vaccine For Growth’. The budget programming is set against the agenda for India's ambitions to become a $5 trillion economy, as the country sees silver linings after the Covid2019 outbreak.

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/25/2.jpg?itok=EEQNlRg3
What will James Murdoch and Uday Shankar invest in?

James Murdoch and Uday Shankar have announced a new joint initiative to invest in health care, online education and digital media initiatives in India. We all know that. For James, the partnership is expected to be a major priority and the centre of gravity for his $2 billion Lupa Systems,...

Television TV Channels People
https://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2021/01/23/img_23012021_134655_800_x_800_pixel.jpg?itok=qkboorCF
Barc week 2: Star Plus, Colors & Sony Sab continue to remain top three channels on pay platform

MUMBAI: Star Plus, Colors, and Sony Sab have continued to remain in the list of top three channels on pay platform in week two (Saturday 9 January 2021 to Friday 15 January 2021) of Broadcast Audience Research Council of India (BARC) data. &TV, too, has retained its hold on the number 10 slot...

Television TV Channels Viewership

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories

* indicates required