Nickelodeon and DQE‘s co-produced Indian IP, ‘Keymon Ache‘ will start airing on Nick India from 9th May at 7pm.
‘Keymon Ache‘ (animation TV series of 26 half hour episodes) is based on the everyday life of an ordinary yet different nine-year-old boy known as Rohan Tendulkar and his set of magical toy friends. Rohan is very attached with his magical toy friends and his most favourite one is a bag, Keymon who sings raps, dances and more.
AnimationXpress.com‘s Farhatnaz Ansari spoke to Nina Elavia Jaipuria, Senior Vice President & General Manager, Nickelodeon India to know more about Nickelodeon‘s first Indian IP ‘Keymon Ache‘.
What look and feel have you tried to give to the series?
Very Indian. If you look at the characters, Rohan looks like an ordinary average Indian 9 year boy, there is ‘Mataji‘ who is in salwar kameez, there is a father who is C.A. and he travels a lot. There is normal Indian school. There is professor Mishra. There is mini who is smartest girl in Rohan‘s class. There is Syd who is the bully.
It is very Indian show and it is very magical as Keymon has the power of getting other toys and gadgets to life. His whole mission in life is to help Rohan in every thing that he does and therefore he brings these toys and gadgets to life, who try to solve Keymon‘s problems. So there are lots of funny episodes and sometimes they have morals. There is lot of rap music and lot of Bollywood influence.
What time slot will Keymon Ache air on?
Monday to Friday 7pm. There will be repeat telecast during the day.
What is the age group targeted for this series?
All the age groups. But its mainly targeted at 5+ kids. Though I imagine the way show is created and written, the families will enjoy it equally.
What all promotional activities have been planned around the series?
We have the scope of taking the show multi-platform. And to start with we have a dedicated website which will be launched on May 9th called www.keymon.in which will host a lot of games because the whole idea of Keymon was not only to create an endearing and engaging character that captures little kids hearts, minds and imagination but the character that goes beyond and that kids can play with.
The whole idea is to engage with Keymon even beyond television so therefore we have video games like ‘Match and Punch‘, ‘Fruit Punch‘, ‘Missile Games‘. We have Keymon downloadables in terms of wallpapers and screen savers. We also have downloadable Keymon music videos, one liners, Keymon masks, Keymon school labels and so on. On the mobile front, there is whole host of stuff as well. If you sms Keymon to 56882 you can receive a link where you can enjoy Keymon video games, caller tunes, ring tones, download wallpapers.
There‘s also a game called Keymon dance master. The game allows the users to help Keymon teach dance steps to Rohan then there is other one which is Keymon scooter race so there is lots of interactivity.
I think for the first time we are trying to do an innovation on IVVR (Interactive Voice & Video Response) as well and its not just voice but video on 3G and we will have dedicated numbers. Kids have to simply dial that numbers on 3G and they can enjoy Keymon videos. We will engage with our over 70,000 fans which we have on facebook already with lot of Keymon contest, Keymon give aways, Keymon videos and all.
What are your plans for Licensing and Merchandising?
We are looking to take Keymon into merchandising so to begin with we are looking at story books and activity books of Keymon which will come out a month after the launch. And we are also trying to create a lot of awareness, sampling and buzz for the show.
We do have an outdoor plan along with TV plan across channels since kids are watching a lot of general entertainment on our own network including Colors and Sab. We are also looking at McDonald‘s screens.
What all languages will the series be in?
Starting with Hindi, Tamil and Telugu. And we will do English as well later on.
What was the budget of the series?
Enough for us (Nickelodeon and DQE) to co-produce.
Who are the key people involved in creative development of this series?
We provided the content to DQ and they executed this project for us. DQ in the past has also created a lot of international project for us. The creative inputs and story writing and script wring has been done at our end. The story of the series has been written by Nikhil Vyas.
What is the main attraction/USP of the series?
It is one of its kinds. First Indian animation show entirely produced in India. It has a complete Indian concept. Very relevant with the Indian connect and Bollywood flavour.
For example in one of the episodes when Keymon comes to life someone squeezes him and says, “TUM ZINDA HO?” and Keymon replies with an unusual twirl, ” NAHI MEIN PREITY ZINTA HU!” You cannot find this anywhere else it is very very Indian, very connectable, very relevant and very relatable. It‘s regular slice of life of a 9 year old boy and how Keymon changes his life and his world.
How was it working with DQE?
It was fantastic and couldn‘t have been better. There was so much of sharing. All of us had our point of view and since we all listened to each other, we got the best product out of it. You will see very fine 2D high definition animation in the 26 half hour episodes and you will figure that it is so very beautiful in terms of color, character development, the way the characters are created, the house, the school etc.
What was Nick‘s experience in creating its first Indian IP?
A lot of excitement along with a lot of risk but we were fairly sure of what we were doing because we think we know the pulse of the kids today so we should have the risk appetite when doing new and pioneering different things.
We hope that the kids will receive it well and fall in love with our endearing character. The whole process was full of excitement, risk, agreements, disagreements but I think at the end of the day the product is a winner. The beauty of all these things depends on 3 things according to me- 1) If you have a very compelling narrative and if you have told the story well, 2) If your character has the ability to capture the hearts and minds of people and 3) If you have a superlative quality of animation then for sure you have a kickass product.
Are there any plans of developing more Indian IPs?
Yes there definitely will be. It‘s the time for us to create our own assets while we‘ll continue acquiring new shows we will have the robust pipeline as well because we believe what we have done for Keymon is something you cannot buy off the shelf hence we will create more assets for ourselves.