Animation : How to get animated projects noticed by producers by Bob Harper

Bob Harper

How to get animated projects noticed by producers

This is a question from Derek Moore, that I moved here per RB's request:

"Hi Bob, I'm new to Stage 32, so really pleased to see there are animation producers here! Was wondering if you've any advice on how to improve one's chances on getting unsolicited tv series ideas to be seen by producers? I'm writing a series based on a mobile game I have out on Apple and Android. The subject matter and characters are multi-media marketable worldwide- so much so that I've already received concrete interest from major toy licencees (Inc Anjar and Becker Associates) and toy companies. All basically said if I make the tv series, they'd make the toys...so any tips on how to receive some attention from producers would be greatly appreciated! Many thanks."

Hey Derek,

Great question. Considering that you already have an IP and interest from licensing companies and toy companies, you will have an easier time getting people interested in your project.

First off, you need to get your pitch deck in tip-top order with plenty of artwork to support it. If you can, try to produce a one minute sizzle of how the show would look and feel.

Then, lay out how well your game has done, such as downloads, reviews, etc. and which companies have shown interest.

I would then contact production companies who have relationships with studios, streamers, etc. and mention in the first contact that you have an IP with licensing interest that you are trying to produce as a series. If you can't get through to those companies then reach out to managers who can help you open doors to those companies, or even the target buyers.

Stage 32 constantly has pitch sessions with managers and producers, many with an animation track record. Target the ones you think would suit your needs and hone your pitch to let them know the value of your property and your clear direction for the show.

Another option is to try and find showrunners you could attach to the project, who will have relationships with many of the parties that would be involved and lend comfort to the potential buyer that the production will be in good hands.

Yet another option is to put together a business plan and production/distribution plan to raise funds to produce it yourself, which then gives you leverage to sell to potential buyers.

Keep developing your project and keep pitching it.

Good luck!

Richard "RB" Botto

Simply an outstanding response, Bob. This is what these forums are all about. Let's get more of the animation community communicating here. Liking a post is one thing, getting involved is another! Be seen, be visible, and let's lift each other up!

Bob Harper

Thanks, RB - I'll do what I can to stay involved.

Derek Moore

Thank you so much for the reply Bob and all the advice...it is very helpful and informative! I just began approaching production companies here in the UK where I am from a month ago but will now also keep active looking into your other options, especially re pitch sessions to managers and producers here on Stage 32! Big thanks again Bob for the swift reply and advice and also thanks to Richard for this fantastic outlet you have created!

Todd Schowalter

Great topic. Something else that I would recommend is that along with having great artwork and characters, make sure you have a good story. Block the series out in 13 or so sample episodes with descriptions that portray who the characters are and define their personalities. Show how the series evolves and progresses over the course of the episodes, and most of all have a unique style and voice.

Steven Vandrilla

Thanks Bob for your guidance. It confirms and adds to the direction we have taken our series "Boo's PaperWorld" in. The project started a little over a year ago and has gotten to the point we have a writer, screenwriter, and production company signed on. The writers have multiple movies now showing on Amazon and cable TV and the studio has 3 Emmy Awards. We own our IP and it unlike anything ever created(I know everyone says that). We have also gotten approval from multiple non-profits to connect us in 160+ countries to their followers.

Our initial proof of concept is a 4 minute 3D animation and was sufficient to get quality people to sign on... but we are going to rebuild the characters to Pixar type quality, before offering it to a network or streaming service.

We are to the point that we are ready to raise funding to do the rework on the characters and produce the sizzler. The (as suggested) first 5 episodes have been written and I am looking for a strong partner for the financing end as a good part of any profit will be going to several of the charities that are connected to our efforts.

Any ideas, on specifically where to take this??

Thanks, Steve

Bob Harper

Hey Steven, you have a lot of good stuff going on with this project. You are pretty well set as far as your packaging and angle.

As far as financing goes, since this seems to be a project suited for nonprofit partners, then explore with them for donors, angel investors etc. who might have a connection to the subject matter. You can also look into crowdfunding and crowdsourcing for partial funding and getting people to support the cause.

You could also do books to build awareness and audience, to give more value to potential investors or distributors.

You can always run it the flagpole to streamers and networks to see if they have an interest in licensing and distributing this as a way of showing their support for the cause at hand.

Good luck with it!

Steven Vandrilla

Thanks for your reply!

Cab Bolton

@ BOB the GATEKEEPERS keep the doors locked, so always remember it is all about "WHO YOU KNOW & INTRODUCTIONS". With that being said we need sites like Stage 32 (introductions, pitch meetings and etc.) or you can sign up at IMDbPro and you can find "representatives" (agents, managers and lawyers) to 99% of anyone or any company in the entertainment industry. Go to IMDbPro and find out who represents your favorite animation producers or your favorite animated TV series or films, (agents, managers and lawyers) and get introduced to them from an entertainment attorney.

I found my own entertainment attorney and doors started to open. Good luck!

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