When you stop growing you become stagnant or rather start dying slowly as per Pablo Neruda. Broadcast has been the hub for animated content in India due to its wide approach and extensive reach. Television has been the only home for animated content with channels catering to a wide variety of audience both in India and overseas.
However, the digital disruption wave has brought about a paradigm shift in terms of showcasing the content. Large chunk of content has been drifting to digital platforms like YouTube, Netflix, VOOT, Hotstar and other OTT players. While this shift continues, there are some players who intend to sustain their mark in television as well as venture into the digital medium to evolve with the changing trends.
Green Gold Animation recently entered a three year deal with Amazon to showcase its animated content on Amazon Prime Video. As per the deal, Amazon Prime Video has picked up exclusive streaming rights for upcoming TV episodes and movies of Super Bheem, Chhota Bheem, and Mighty Raju. Also, Prime members will have access to Green Gold Animation’s content library, including popular kids’ shows like Chhota Bheem, Mighty Raju, Krishna Balaram, Chorr Police, Luv Kush, Vikram and Betaal and Krishna and the film Chhota Bheem Himalayan Adventure.
To delve deep into the deal, AnimationXpress spoke to Green Gold Animation, COO and executive director, Samir Jain and chief strategy officer, Srinivas Chilakapudi. They expressed, “With this deal, we intend to grow in the digital space as that is the need of the hour. Television is undoubtedly the hub for animated content due to its years of presence and considerable reach but being present on digital platforms is equally important. We want to make our content easily accessible to our audience.”
Major existing IPs of Green Gold have all been commissioned to Amazon Prime for a period of three years. Thus, though the IP rights belong to Green Gold, Amazon will have the liberty to showcase the content in these years on its SVOD (subscribed video on demand) platform. Also, Amazon will have the first right to refusal for Green Gold’s newer upcoming properties. So if the animation studio comes with anything new, the e-commerce giant will have the first preference of deciding whether to showcase it or not.
“In the west, digital has taken over the market. People want to watch content on the go. Almost everyone in the US has access to internet. Parents handover smartphones, tablets and laptops to their kids to watch content on the internet. Toddlers are often kept engaged with online content on these devices while their mothers and fathers complete their daily chores. So there is no chance of losing kids audience in the digital medium in fact with this deal, we are going to increase our audience base.”
Green Gold wants to target the young audience through Amazon Prime as youngsters are major users of the internet. Television has helped the studio to build a large kids audience but through this move now they can cater to a mature age group as well.
Speaking about why Amazon as a partner, Chilakapudi said, “Amazon is one of the biggest successful brand. It has huge content library and widespread user base. Moreover, Amazon.com also has merchandised products of Green Gold’s various IPs. Therefore, coming on Amazon Prime will help cross promotion of merchandising on the e-commerce platform.”
Amazon Prime Video will probably launch in India during this Diwali as Amazon has been gaining content aggressively by signing deals with Dharma Productions, T-series, Vishesh Films and animated series Baahubali: The Lost Legends. Therefore, the leading animation show and most popular character Chhota Bheem will just add to the value of Amazon’s existing library.
Green Gold Animation has also won the ‘Licensor of the Year’ award for the fifth time in a row at the Franchisee India 2016 event. Venturing into the digital space with a prominent digital giant, Green Gold aims to just expand its reach and making it convenient for a large audience. Both Chilakapuddi and Jain concluded, “Digital will act a supplementary platform instead of a competitor to broadcasting. It will help grow the content and the reach.”