“Mainly, we are looking for content for kids aged between four and ten years old”
Industry Report: Animation
Julie Lind-Holm Hansen • Commissioning editor of Animation, DR
We sat down with the Danish executive to discuss the pubcaster’s participation in the forum, its editorial strategies and the type of content it seeks
During this year’s edition of Toulouse’s Cartoon Forum (19-22 September), we seized the opportunity to meet up with Julie Lind-Holm Hansen, commissioning editor of Animation at Danish pubcaster DR. Our chat covered DR’s presence at the forum, its strategies and the current state of Danish animation, among other topics.
Cineuropa: Why is it important for DR to attend Toulouse’s Cartoon Forum?
Julie Lind-Holm Hansen: It’s important because we want to be inspired by all of the experienced and incredibly cool people attending Cartoon Forum – and all their work! We love exploring new tendencies of animation as well as expanding our network of ambitious and creative people.
What are your main activities here at the forum? What type of content do you seek?
This year, DR was represented by our programme buyers, commissioning editors and sales managers of children and youth content. Though our main activities differ every year, we are always looking for new animation projects to bring to Denmark. In addition, DR Sales was nominated as an investor of the year, so that attracted some extra attention. Mainly, we are looking for content for kids aged between 4-10 years old.
What type of young audience does DR target? How has it shifted over the last two, three years owing to the pandemic and the surge of streaming?
During the pandemic, all streaming services have intensified their focus on children’s content as an essential way to get loyal subscribers. As we believe that animation is important in a family context with kids aged 4-10, DR has increased its efforts in this area and aims to stand out with a clear position in the market when it comes to animation. Right now, we are in post-production with more than four new animation shows, ready to be released in 2023. Animation is expensive, therefore, nearly all our projects are internationally financed and DR is involved as co-producers.
How would you judge the current state of Danish animation? What are its strengths? What about the areas that need improvement?
The current state of Danish animation is very good, looking at it from a creative perspective. Danish animation studios are very experienced in delivering high-quality animation. They have very well-developed aesthetic skills and a lot of high-end story-boarders, designers and animators are based in this country. We’re also experts in delivering high quality animation even on low budget projects. From a producer’s perspective, the financial status in Denmark sometimes seems like an uneven playing field compared to other closely connected companies, due to the inability to access Danish tax credit for animation.
In what ways would you contribute to some projects in development presented here that you may find interesting?
We are interested in both licensing and co-producing. Since animation is a process that takes time and costs a lot of money, we have supported several development projects. During the development phase, we decide whether we will go into production or not.
How do you distribute your content?
It depends if we are acting as licensees or co-producers. If we co-produce or have fully-financed smaller projects, we hold more rights and a lot of distribution platforms to tap into. If we have a brand and hold its rights to work with on platforms other than TV, we often expand the projects to be published as books, apps and games, we organise events and we develop educational content around it. Sometimes, we also use the main characters of “Cirkus Summarum” [DR’s own circus show] to promote them.
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