Irish animation will be brought even more to the fore on television screens from next week with the launch of Boulder Media’s new 40 x 11 minute 2D and 3D series, ‘The Amazing World of Gumball’ on The Cartoon Network on Monday, May 2nd and Monster Animation’s 20 x 7 minute series, ‘Punky’ on Tuesday, May 3rd.
Monster Animation’s new RTÉjr TV series, ‘Punky’ tells stories from the everyday life of Punky, a little girl who has Down syndrome. The first ever animated TV series in the world in which the lead character has Down syndrome, the 20 x 7 minute series will be broadcast twice a day on the RTÉjr programming block of RTÉ Two, before a move to the RTÉjr channel on Saorview which will be launched as part of the analogue switchover.
In the series, Punky is a happy little girl who loves music, dancing and hugs! She loves playing with her big brother, Con, and jumping around with her dog, Rufus and she enjoys helping around the house with Mum and trying to make Cranky, her grandmother, just a little less cranky. The character of Punky is voiced by Aimee Richardson who herself has Down syndrome and Down Syndrome Ireland provided support and reviewed material during development and production of the series.
‘Punky’ was created by Lindsay Jane Sedgwick (David) and developed with and produced by Gerard O’Rourke (Ballybraddan) for Monster Animation & Design Limited. It was commissioned by RTÉ Young People's programmes and was funded by RTÉ, the IFB, the BAI’s Sound & Vision Fund and Section 481.
The Amazing World of Gumball
Boulder Media’s new TV series ‘The Amazing World of Gumball’ is to have its premiere on the Cartoon Network on Monday, May 2nd. Produced by Robert Cullen (Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends) and Anne Tweedy (El Tigre) for Boulder Media, the series follows the misadventures of twelve-year-old Gumball and his family in the weird and wonderful town of Elmore. In the series, Gumball’s school friends include a tyrannosaurus rex, a cheerleading peanut, and a banana.
Commissioned by Turner Broadcasting, core production of the series was carried out at Boulder Media in Ireland with 3D elements for the series provided by Germany’s Studio Soi in Germany. Robert Cullen, Creative Director with Boulder Media tells IFTN that the series has had a huge effect on their company’s set-up, “It was a great experience to work on a show that was trying something completely new, in terms of style and animation techniques,” he says. “Because the show combines 3D animation with 2D and also with live action, it threw up a lot of challenges. One of the big things we got out of the project was working in 3D, prior to Gumball we only dabbled in it. And now we have our own 3D department.”
The 40 x 11 minute series took 18 months to complete with 53 people employed by Boulder media to work on the show. Furthermore, Turner Broadcasting have already commissioned a second season of ‘The Amazing World of Gumball’, in advance of the rollout of the first series with production expected to commence in June.
‘Punky’ will broadcast from Tuesday, May 3rd on RTÉ Two at 10:25am and 1:45pm daily.
The first two episodes of ‘The Amazing World of Gumball’ will broadcast on May 2nd on Cartoon Network. The full series will run at a later date to be confirmed.