Disney: Storytelling Launchpad

By Prachi Srivastava , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Media Publishing | July 21, 2014
The channel has launched a new property 'Kahani Masters', which will give kids an opportunity to unleash their imagination and share their stories.

Kahani Masters' promo

Bikram Duggal

P Jayakumar

Buoyed by the wildly successful Jet Set Go, Disney Channel has launched a new property that aims at taking its storytelling legacy to newer heights. Titled 'Kahani Masters, it will "encourage the creative minds of the youngest generation" and give them an opportunity to unleash their imagination and share their stories with the entire world through an animated movie scripted by the children themselves.

A one-of-its-kind initiative, Kahani Masters began on July 14, with an on-air solicitation campaign wherein children can send in their stories through post/email to the Toonz Animation website. The last day for sending in entries is August 12.

According to Bikram Duggal, executive director - marketing kids channels, consumer products, retail, publishling and franchise, Disney India, there are four key brand promises that Disney India offers - kids can express themselves, follow their dreams, believe in themselves and celebrate their families. "With Jet Set Go, we have taken care of celebrating with the family. We have been keen on doing one property on kids expressing themselves. Since, as a company, we are all about telling stories, the idea of doing 'Kahaani Masters', was to encourage them to express themselves," adds Duggal.

Dhimant Vyas (veteran Animation Film Designer), Vaibhav Kumaresh (credited for making Jet Set Go's animation promos) will judge the selection of five winners from the entries received. The selected winners will then go through a workshop session of three days in Toonz Animations Studio in Trivandrum in September to polish their flair for storytelling and detailing.

The channel is seeking entries from its target group, 4-14 year olds. The format can be anything, from a written story to a cartoon strip but the criterion is that it should not be very long as the channel plans to make 2-3-minute animation shots from these stories.

P Jayakumar, CEO, Toonz Animations told afaqs! that the animation production company will help these kids to direct their stories and provide technical assistance. "Everything, right from colour scheme, to direction and visualisation will be suggested by these kids to the animators during the three-day workshop. There will be minimum intervention of the professional animators."

Besides running the promo for 'Kahani Masters' on Disney India Network, the channel has an outreach programme for 200 schools in six cities - Chandigarh, Lucknow, Nagpur, Kolkata, Ahmedabad and Bhopal.

For the record, 'Jet Set Go' is a contest wherein the winners get an opportunity to fly to Disneyland with their families and the characters of the shows on Disney Channel. The channel has received around 17 million entries for the contest in three years.

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