DISCOP Joburg: Focus On Animation

Organizers of the next Johannesburg edition of the DISCOP film, television, digital and video gaming content market and coproduction forum announced a parallel NEXT GEN development and pitching program with a special focus on animation.

Slated from 14 to 16 November, DISCOP Johannesburg 2018 is expecting 1,500+ delegates from 90 countries representing 1,000+ companies – including 200 global and regional distributors, 500 independent producers and 350 acquisition and coproduction executives representing broadcasters, pay-tv networks, mobile operators, telecoms and streaming platforms.

Designed to help independent production companies achieve their full potential, NEXT GEN is specifically tailored to meet the demand of a rapidly changing audiovisual landscape under the influence of a marked preference for home-grown content, the emergence of local talents, viewers’ migration to on-demand streaming and mobile screens, increased mobility and faster internet.

Developed in partnership with the AFRICAN ANIMATION NETWORK this year’s NEXT GEN agenda will place a special focus on Africa’s thriving animation industry. The program will ensure animators have access to prime information and capture the attention of key players who could set them on a rapid upward trajectory.

Dubbed DISCOMICS a pilot festival designed for animators will feature works in progress to be pitched in front of broadcasters, content distribution platforms, producers, distributors and advertisers seeking fresh talent.

“The factors which influence the emergence of a booming animation sector in Africa are numerous and the most obvious is talent.” Says Nick WILSON, President of the AFRICAN ANIMATION NETWORK, who adds, “However, the pressing challenge for these talents is how to accelerate their development and help them be ready for progression more quickly.”

In addition, the NEXT GEN agenda will put under the spotlight new mobile distribution models, the vital relationship between content and music, the disrupting effect of the blockchain technology, licensing and merchandising opportunities, Nigeria’s fast-rising entertainment and media sector, and the rapid emergence of the video-gaming sector. Producers will also be able to explore partnership opportunities with Egypt, Canada, France and Morocco.

Producers will also benefit from strategic networking opportunities with key players representing the South African media ecosystem who will plug them into relationships and information sources that will help them move forward.

“This year’s NEXT GEN agenda is a ‘must attend’ event that will once again create value and opportunities for independent producers attending DISCOP Johannesburg.” Says Tim Mangwedi, DISCOP’s Director for Sub-Saharan Africa, who adds, “As a platform focused on content business, our mandate is to help future generations of creators weigh their options, measure the challenges that lie ahead of them, and assess the risk landscape.”

A 50% ‘Early Bird’ discount is available until 17 September for non-exhibiting delegates registering online via join.discopjohannesburg.com using EBDJ17SEPT as a promo code.

The NEXT GEN program will be finalized by Monday 17 September. Requests for animation submission forms must be forwarded to info@discop.com.

By Andrew Germishuys

Founder of SAMDB, Andrew has worked full time in the film industry since the early 2000's. He has trained as an actor, completing his LAMDA Gold Medal, and attending many courses in Cape Town acting studios, with masterclasses with some of the international industries top directors, producers and filmmakers. Working as an actor and armourer in the film and television industry have given Andrew a great balance of skills across the board when it comes to the entertainment industry. Catch him on Twitter: twitter.com/andrewgerm_za Instagram: instagram.com/andrewgerm_za IMDb: www.imdb.com/name/nm5390453/