Three innovative Canadian children’s productions will take centre stage at MIPJunior, a leading international showcase for kid’s programming, bringing together in Cannes the world’s most influential buyers, sellers and producers of children’s content. The Canada Media Fund and Telefilm Canada have partnered with the Shaw Rocket Fund to present an exciting program that focuses on three highly innovative Canadian productions that cross the boundaries between print and digital.
Today’s children are digital natives who grow up with vast experience in the digital world; however, too often they use technology in limited ways because they view it as merely another form of entertainment. With the evolution of new literacies that include digital and media technologies, how we prepare today’s kids as consumers and indeed potential creators of media in the digital world will in part dictate how the audiovisual industry evolves.
We are in the midst of a new era in storytelling, yet reading will always remain at the heart of educational programming for children aged 4+. Canadian creators, producers and broadcasters are world renowned for their innovative approaches to the development of kids’ content, having created characters and universes that appeal to children around the world and that transcend language or cultural barriers.
The following productions featured at a MIPJunior session entitled “It’s All About Imagination!” creatively combine fun and education, helping children improve their literacy.
Created by Lucy Goodman, developed for Canadian audiences by Sinking Ship Entertainment and broadcast in Canada on CBC, Radio-Canada and TFO, Bookaboo is the story of a world-famous rock puppy who tours the globe with his band, playing drums to packed stadiums of adoring fans. Each episode features rock star puppy Bookaboo and a famous Canadian celebrity sharing a book. Previous guests include actor Jason Priestly, astronaut Julie Payette, dancer Nico Archambault, guitarist Jeff Stinco (Simple Plan) and news anchor Peter Mansbridge.
The brain child of Zuckerberg Media founder and CEO, Randi Zuckerberg, sister of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, Dot is the story of a tech-savvy young girl whose interactive adventures are meant to inspire children by showing the ways she uses technology to enhance her experiences and incorporate them into her playtime. An Industrial Brothers production, Dot debuted in Canada on CBC in September 2022. The show is also broadcast in the U.S. on NBC Universal’s Sprout network.
The Incredible Tales of Weirdwood Manor
An All Play, No Work creation, The Incredible Tales of Weirdwood Manor is a beautifully illustrated picture book, a stunningly animated movie, and a challenging series of games and puzzles, all in one extraordinary app for kids. An App Store Editors’ Choice, Weirdwood Manor has been both a ‘Featured’ and ‘Best New’ App in Canada and the US. The application won the 2022 Kidscreen Awards for Best Kids Game App, the 2022 Digi Award for Best in Mobile Entertainment and was selected runner-up in the App Store Best of 2022.
Other Canadians featured at MIPJunior as part of the conference programming include Deirdre Brennan, Content VP, Corus Entertainment; Michael Hirsh, Chairman, The Entertainment and Media Finance Group; Marney Malabar, Director, Kids TV – TVO; and Lisa Olfman, CEO & Co-Founder, Portfolio Entertainment.