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84 projects bound for Cartoon Forum

Les Astronautes’ What It Takes

Eighty-four projects are set to be pitched at the in-person Cartoon Forum event in France in September, with French and Irish producers responsible for over half of them.

France leads the selection with 33 projects, followed by Ireland with 11, while Germany has eight, Spain has six and Belgium will bring five.

As previously reported by C21, this year’s edition will not feature any projects led by UK companies because of the country’s decision not to participate in Creative Europe’s Media programme after Brexit.

The UK is usually among the best-represented countries at the event, which went online-only last year due to the pandemic but is hoping to return as an in-person event in Toulouse between September 20 and 23.

Portugal, Czech Republic and Denmark are set to participate with four projects each, while Italy and Poland will both have three and Finland, Latvia and Ukraine will be present with one project each.

Almost half (41) of the selected projects are series aimed at children aged between six and 11, while 25 of the projects are targeted at preschoolers and four are aimed at families. The number of titles aimed at young adults/adults is 14, marking a small rise on last year.

Nearly 20 of the selected projects are adaptations of comic books or books and they include: My Dog, God & the Pokethings, from TNZPV Productions in France; Freaked Out from Autour de Minuit in France; and Freddy Buttons Wacky Mysteries from Treehouse Republic in Ireland.

Global hits such as Peppa Pig have been discovered at the annual event, which has been running since 1990 and has taken place in Toulouse since 2012.

The line-up, which is available to view in full here, includes four projects from Cartoon Springboard, the pitching event for new talent also run by Cartoon Forum organiser Cartoon. The next edition of Cartoon Springboard is set to be held in October in Valencia, Spain.

The four projects are: Anselmo Wannabe, from Italy’s Ibrido Studio; Hygge, from Germany’s Dreamin’ Dolphin Film; What It Takes, from France’s Les Astronautes; and Space Ham from Denmark’s MiniCosmos.

UK companies will be able to attend Cartoon Forum 2021 as viewing participants or buyers. They could have also been coproduction partners on projects led by producers from countries that are participating in the Media programme. This is currently the case for other non-EU and non-Media participating countries such as Switzerland.

Earlier this month Annick Maes, general director of event organiser Cartoon, told C21 the organisation was hopeful the situation around UK companies could change in the future.

“We hope an agreement will be set up in the future between the UK and Media so UK projects can be eligible again. There is nothing in the pipeline in the latest news as we know, but we keep a sharp eye on any update,” she said.

“Cartoon Forum must remain a showcase for European animation and coproductions are a key element. It is important for us that the UK remains involved in events as producers but also as buyers who invest in European animation. We cannot carry out any lobbying actions, but we deeply hope that British animation will always be part of the adventure of European animation.”

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