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Green Gold, TV Asahi to co-create new Ninja Hattori episodes

TV Asahi will have rights to all creative calls as well as the IP

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MUMBAI: The creator of India’s largest animated character is going abroad. Green Gold Animation, the company behind Chhota Bheem, is collaborating with Japanese broadcaster TV Asahi and its animation production arm Shin-ei Animation to produce new episodes of a show that’s also popular in India, Ninja Hattori. Though TV Asahi has all rights to make creative calls, Green Gold can contribute in cultural or custom-oriented inputs to the script.

Green Gold Animation content sales VP Bharath Laxmipati says, “Japanese flavour is something that we never had. Doraemon is not today’s time; it is from the 70s time. So, as of now, it is very important for the artists to always learn multiple styles and the collaboration with Japanese production house— Shin-ei will help them understand storytelling in very different lines. So that’s one of the reasons, apart from the strategic reasons, to produce Japanese content.” The new episodes of Ninja Hattori will be created in 2D-HD through a digitally mastered process. 

While some say Japanese content was used as fillers when the price to produce home-grown content was steep. But Laxmipati objected that it is unfair to slot that content as such. He says, “If you see viewership ratings, Japanese content is doing well. Of course, localised content like Chhota Bheem and others are today’s flavours but there are also places where Japanese content are still working well with the audiences.”

TV Asahi will hold the IP rights for the new series. When asked about retaining the IP rights for a production house’s creation, Laxmipati says that most broadcasting houses want to retain the IPs. “We are taking the initial risk of investing into IPs, so the production houses if they turn into pure production houses without the thought of having an output from the IP outrage broadcast, will die down because they don’t have the incentives to perform better and to further invest in creative energies.”

He suggested that there has to be a win-win model for both. The broadcasters and the studio producing their IPs should come together where it shouldn’t be 'my way or the highway', it should be a new way, where both are winning this process where some territories will be with the broadcasters, a few of them will be given to the production houses. He added that there has to be a certain limit to hold on and a certain extension of the property that will be given to exploiting like licensing or merchandising, product or promotional and among others. “So there are a lot of things on the table that the studios and the broadcasters can come together on, but this is only possible if the IP is successful,” he concludes.

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