Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Nickelodeon India Announces Summer 2021 Highlights, Full of New Episodes, Movies and Campaigns

Nickelodeon India announces content line up of new episodes, movies with #NicktoonsKaSummerDose

India - The Nickelodeon franchise entertains millions of young fans across India through its endearing characters and immersive stories. Through the last year the franchise has designed many category defining initiatives that have engaged with kids, brining a smile to their faces, and kept their spirits high in these trying times, thereby reinforcing its eminence as a responsible kids and family entertainment broadcaster. Nickelodeon continues to hold the leadership mantle with the flagship channels Nick and Sonic being the No. 1 & the No. 2 kids’ entertainment channels in the category.

This summer comes with many challenges for kids as they continue to practice social distancing, being indoors and staying safe at home. The need of the hour therefore is to inspire kids to stay positive and happy, despite these difficult times.

Nickelodeon is hence all set to bring summertime fun to the homes of kids and give many unforgettable and precious experiences with #NicktoonsKaSummerDose – A fabulous content line up of all new episodes, movies, a host of fun activities and innovative engagements that will keep kids happy and engaged while they stay safe at home.

As we step into summers, summer-time fun has commenced on a high with Nick welcoming the kids’ favourite prank gang Golmaal Jr. on the channel. The prank gang now entertains kids with all new episodes of their mischievous escapades every Monday to Friday at 12.30 PM with the message #NickPeSabGolmaalHai. The comic capers of the prank gang will be made the talk of the town through a high decibel multiscreen campaign- with TV spots on the franchise and cross promotions on lead GEC channels, on YouTube, gaming portals and on social media. Adding to the euphoria will be a one-of-a-kind partnership with Mad Over Donuts through a fun and delectable summer special box of donuts presented by the Golmaal Jr Prank Gang.

While the prank gang entertains and creates a laugh riot on Nick, summer celebrations get an unexpected twist with Pinaki and Happy – The Bhoot Bandhus on Sonic. The fun & entertaining family of ghosts will add to the entertainment quotient on Sonic through all new stories every Monday to Friday at 11:30am.

The campaign promoting the fun buddies will be done through taking a multiscreen approach that includes a TV campaign and promotions on digital mediums such as YouTube. The campaign promoting the fun buddies will be done taking a multiscreen approach that includes a TV campaign and promotions on digital mediums such as YouTube. The Bhoot Bandhus will be further brought to life on social mediums through engagements wherein kids will be seen taking the fun Bhoot Bandhus Tongue Twister challenge (#BBTTChallenge) along with a host of Innovative digital engagements to make sure kids are engaged in the comfort of their homes.

Shining bright through summer are new episodes and movies across the Nickelodeon franchise. The mischievous Golmaal Gang, adorable Motu Patlu and magical Rudra will entertain kids through all new episodes on Nick. The super cool Pinaki & Happy – The Bhoot Bandhus, Shiva, Ninja Hatori and Zig and Sharko will amp up the fun with fresh stories on Sonic, giving kids a reason to celebrate.  This apart, all new episodes of The Loud House on Nick HD+ and your favorite and adorable Peppa Pig on Nick Jr. will drive up the entertainment decibel, making sure that kids have a fabulous time indoors.

There will also be movies galore as Rudra infuses magic into summer with his superhit movie “The Land of No Where” while Motu Patlu’s comic capers will entertain kids through the Mini Movie- ” The Secret Mission of Motu Patlu” that is set to premiere on Nick in May. This apart, all the new episodes and movies of your favourite toons will also be available to stream on Viacom18's fun-learn kids entertainment app, Voot Kids.

Anu Sikka, Head – Content, Programming and Strategy, Kids Cluster, Viacom18

Anu Sikka, Head – Content, Programming and Strategy, Kids Cluster at Viacom18, said “At Nickelodeon our focus is on keeping kids entertained in these challenging times. Summer is a special time for children, and we have created a very robust content pipeline of some fun and exciting stories to make sure that they have a great time and stay motivated amidst the current scenario.

“We are here to make kids happy and are sure that the vast and immersive stories of our Nicktoons will transport them into a world of imagination and fun, giving them a reason to celebrate while lifting up their spirits,” Sikka said.

Sonali Bhattacharya – Head – Marketing, Kids Entertainment Cluster at Viacom18, said, “We believe that as the category leader and a responsible broadcaster we have a very important role to play in keeping kids engaged and in a positive frame of mind in these difficult times.

“We have re-imagined and pivoted our marketing plans and gone multiscreen so kids can remain entertained in the security of their homes. We are certain that our young audiences will feel happy and optimistic with our innovative summer offerings,” Bhattacharya said.

Summer started with World Creativity and Innovation Week that saw Nick Jr. along with Play Date encouraging kids to unleash their creativity indoors through a curated program of various activities such as music and movement, coding adventure, clay dough, mystery parties, chocolate making amongst others.

There will be interesting virtual activations on special occasions like Mother’s Day and Yoga Day that will create many memorable and happy moments for kids and families. Each interactivity would be brought to life digitally by the adorable Nicktoons that will surely add a dash of cheer to each day.

This summer it’s time to stay home and stay safe with Nickelodeon!

In additional news, Nickelodeon India recently won two awards at the 11th Dadasaheb Phalke Film Festival! Happy & Pinaki - The Bhoot Bandhus picked up the Best Animation Award, while children's favorite Rudra won the Best Feature Animation Award for Rudra: Secret of the Black Moon. Congrats Nick!

Our aim is to always create screen agnostic content: Viacom18’s Anu Sikka

The network’s kids channel Nickelodeon recently unveiled a robust summer slate.

KOLKATA: The pandemic has been an epoch changing event for most adults, but it has also had a significant impact on children, too. A year of being confined to their homes later, the world is no longer their oyster, but has shrunk to the small screen – their window to the unseen and unknown domain outside. No wonder that kids are consuming more content across all mediums, be it traditional modes or new age platforms. With summer vacation set to start amid partial lockdowns across the country, young viewers will tune in to TV more than ever.

To tap into the increased demand in April-June quarter, Nickelodeon recently unveiled a robust summer slate for kids. “This is a crucial time for the audience as well as the broadcasters because the viewership usually tends to be highest during this particular period. We have come up with the biggest ammunition that we can think of to roll out in this particular quarter,” said Viacom18 kids cluster content programming and strategy head Anu Sikka.

The network has come up with new episodes of all the series that have been doing exceptionally well on both Nick and Sonic. Hence, the new line-up includes new episodes of old favourites like Motu Patlu, Rudra, Golmal Jr., Pinaki and Happy - The Bhoot Bandhus, and Ninja Hatori. Though it relaunched Zig & Sharko on Sonic in the last quarter of 2020, it is not ruling out fresh episodes for this show as well. The summer line-up also includes mini movies around popular cartoon characters.

Last year, viewership for kids channels hit the roof when lockdown kicked in. While the ratings started returning to normal as things opened up, they are rising again now and are on course to reach the usual summer peak.

“In this era of uncertainty, we are trying to ensure when a child comes to watch Nick or Sonic, they should get that feeling of continuity that nothing has changed for them. So, there’s at least one aspect of life that remains unchanged for them,” Sikka added.

There has been marked shift in content consumption trends too in recent times. Earlier, children were not willing to accept new characters or it could take a substantial amount of time for them to do so. But Sikka highlighted that this behaviour has changed over the last two years. Today, audiences are keenly on the look-out for new series and characters. However, the success of new shows lies in effective storytelling and good animation, she remarked.

For instance, Pinaki and Happy - The Bhoot Bandhus was produced without following tried and tested methods; but on the back of unique content, it has done well and has climbed to the top five shows in the category within the past six months, mentioned Sikka.

Over the past ten years, another major change that has taken place in the industry is the emergence of indigenous content. “I don’t think there is any broadcaster who can think of success without creating Indian characters, and local Indian shows. Every channel which had success has been on the back of locally produced content,” stated the content programming head, adding, “Indian animation industry, the broadcasters in the kids’ category have adapted to this change extremely fast.”

Given the success of the genre, major OTT platforms have also started investing in the kids segment. Many industry experts have predicted that this trend would increase pressure on broadcasters. But Sikka is not worried about competition from OTTs. First, kids are not particularly interested in OTT exclusive content, said she; second, the network ensures that its popular characters, shows are present in all the spaces that draw young viewers.

“Our aim is to always create screen agnostic content. It does not matter where the child is consuming the content. I truly believe as a content maker, if your story is strong, if your content is strong, if the children like the characters you have developed, they will watch it no matter the platform. Nick-Sonic shows do well across all the platforms, whether they’re watched on Nick or Sonic or Voot Kids, or YouTube channel of Nick,” Sikka signed off.


Kids’ genre is too much ignored, advertisers need to realise its power: Anu Sikka of Viacom18

In an interaction with BestMediaInfo.com, Anu Sikka, Head, Creative, Content and Research, Kids TV Network at Viacom18, talks about the network’s summer plans for kids and the challenges of producing fresh content amid uncertainties and lockdowns

Children should not feel the burden of the disruption in the outside world and miss out their favourite cartoons and shows at a time when they are forced to stay inside because of the pandemic, says Anu Sikka, Head, Creative, Content and Research, Kids TV Network at Viacom18.

Sikka said kids expect a lot of new content from them and they also hope to deliver on their expectations.

For the summers, the network plans several new TV movies and a new series. Newer episodes of leading shows such as Motu-Patlu, Golmaal and Pinaki and Happy-The Bhoot Bandhus are also in the pipeline, Sikka said.

“Nickelodeon has been known to come up with clutter-breaking content. We have touched genres that have never been tried before in the kids' space in India. We will continue to surprise and dazzle children with content that they have not seen before,” she said.

Sikka spoke about the challenges in producing fresh animated content at a time when most cities are under lockdown. “Animation is a long-drawn process. It's not something that can be turned around very fast. The moment work shifts home, the process slows down. However, we are better prepared compared to last year. Last year, we were almost thrown into unknown territory. We had no clue about how things were going to roll out. This time, the challenges are fewer but they remain.”

“The content on both our channels is played in eight different languages. One of the biggest challenges is getting voice-over artists to operate from home as most places are under lockdown. Some artists have set-ups at home where they can record. But a majority of them do not have that luxury. It increases the pressure on us and dubbing studios as cleaning up the voices gets difficult.”

Speaking about their strategy for the digital space, Sikka said they want to make screen-agnostic content and ensure it is available where the audience is present. She said the shows popular on TV are also the ones that are successful on Voot Kids, an OTT platform.

“The effort is always to make content where we can get the attention of kids and entertain them. Today when we make content at Nickelodeon, we ensure it is played within our network and on every platform wherever kids are available. Voot has a wonderful and massive library of both acquired stuff as well as content produced within the network.”

Elaborating further, Sikka said they recently had a deal with Netflix to run Motu-Patlu movies on that platform. She stated while these are running on Viacom18’s own platform as well, the deal was made as there was a demand outside. “We are open to such deals. If a child is looking for some content somewhere, why not make it available?” she said.

Asked about Indian animation in terms of impact and longevity, she said comparing iconic characters of the West to Indian characters is unfair as animation is a very recent game in this country.   

“Indian animation series and characters began just 13-14 years ago. I can give our own example with Motu Patlu, which started airing in 2012. It is now 2021, almost nine years. It has stood the test of time. After that, we launched Shiva, which continues to top charts. All shows that we have produced have continued to be top players in the genre. We don’t know which show to stop producing, because all these continue to perform beautifully. The characters are as popular now as they were when we first launched.”

Advertisers often use kids' channels like an additional window to target audiences compared to other genres. Asked how broadcasters can tackle this challenge, Sikka said it is unfortunate that it is an under-indexed category. She said the kid's category has been growing consistently over the past few years and has a huge potential for family viewing.

“I think somewhere the advertiser needs to understand the power of the kid's category and the contribution of their viewership to TV ratings as a whole. It's not that we make massive jumps every year in terms of reach. But then it's a category that is growing consistently year on year and will continue to do so. It is unfortunate that it is so much ignored and as a result, it's under-indexed compared to all other genres on television.”

“Till the time this issue gets resolved, our hands will be tied and we will not be able to invest as much as we wish. While we feel that the quality of animation has not reached the levels of the West, we are not far behind. But it requires a lot of investment and the advertiser needs to realise the power of the content. It will always be a huge challenge for broadcasters and studios to continue to invest and improve the quality of animation till the time this category gets its due,” Sikka said. 


निकलोडियन ने 11वें दादा साहेब फाल्‍के फिल्‍म फेस्टिवल में जीते पुरस्‍कार

मुंबई। किड्स एंटरटेनमेन्‍ट चैनल निकलोडियन ने 11वें दादा साहेब फाल्‍के फिल्‍म फेस्टिवल में कई पुरस्‍कार जीते हैं।

किड्स एंटरटेनमेन्‍ट चैनल निकलोडियन ने अपने नाम एक और उपलब्धी हासिल कर ली है। इस चैनल ने प्रतिष्ठित 11वें दादा साहेब फाल्‍के फिल्‍म फेस्टिवल में कई पुरस्‍कार अपने नाम किये। पिनाकी एंड हैप्‍पी: द भूत बंधुज को बेस्‍ट एनिमेशन के लिये अवॉर्ड मिला, वहीं बच्‍चों के फेवरेट रुद्र ने रुद्र: सीक्रेट ऑफ द ब्‍लैक मून के लिये बेस्‍ट फीचर एनिमेशन का अवॉर्ड जीता।

भूत बंधुज एक भुतिया कॉमेडी है जो बेहद ही कम समय में बच्‍चों का फेवरेट बन गया है। मैजिक टून रुद्र इस कैटेगरी में अवॉर्ड पाने वाला पहला है। अपने लॉन्‍च के पहले हफ्ते से लेकर अब तक यह काफी हिट रहा और बच्‍चों ने इसे पसंद भी किया है। निकलोडियन का कल्‍ट शो मोटू पतलू इस चैनल का पहला ऐसा टून है जिसे 2019 में इस फिल्‍म फेस्टिवल में बेस्‍ट एनिमेशन- जूरी का अवॉर्ड मिला था।


Originally published: Thursday, April 29, 2021.

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