Nick Dorra is a digital content and animation producer. He has been a producer for 16 years and now works on Content Strategy for Rovio Entertainment.
MIPBlog: What’s the most innovative thing in kids entertainment right now in your opinion, and why?
Nick Dorra: I’m pretty sure that something really disruptive is going to come out of the 3D printing corner sooner rather than later. The first attempts will be clumsy and lean too much on old logic and ideas, but in the medium term there will be some really ground-breaking things happening with video, games and 3D printers, all under the umbrella of relatable characters.
> Why does kids TV have such potential for innovation? Do kids have a different relationship with technology than adults?
I think it’s evident that they do. When you then combine online tools, direct distribution like YouTube or Vimeo and an open mind, you can get great results. As the quote from Zen teacher Shunryu Suzuki goes: “In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert’s mind there are few.”
> What is your favourite kids IP right now, and why?
To this I will answer Minecraft, just because of the sheer left-fieldedness, with which it so recently shook up the whole Kids content industry. There are many other brands that I could have named, but Minecraft sort of became the poster child of that huge shift in play and viewership patterns that took many in the industry by surprise. Plus I just love the story of KurtJMac and his quest of “Far lands or bust”. If you don’t know about it, go read it here.
> How do you see the (near) future of kids entertainment?
If I may tag my predictions with the accuracy warning of a cheap weather forecaster I could imagine the following:
· Broadcasters will realise that for kids’ content, exclusivity does not matter. Rather, the wider the reach of the brands on your channel, the better off you are, too. This is already happening.
· Smart broadcasters will also realise, that leaving certain digital rights to the producer will enable the producer to better build their brands and audiences, giving these broadcasters a leg up on their competition.
· Thirdly, Nickelodeon will make their smartest move ever and finally start producing more Invader Zim episodes, blasting any competition into outer space.
> What is your vision for the Angry Birds brand and how do you see Toons.TV evolving?
There’s a whole lot happening around Angry Birds right now: We’ve just released new material around Angry Birds Transformers, and our new spin-off Angry Birds Stella. We’re also hard at work on our feature film slated for summer 2016, and all the fun we’ll bring our fans before that.
Toons.TV meanwhile has continued with strong viewership, just passing 3 billion total views since it launched, and we’ll be bringing more exciting content for our fans to watch, as well as showcasing our coming original productions, Angry Birds Toons season 2, Piggy Tales and the Stella series.
Nick Dorra is one of our pre-MIPJunior 2014 kids entertainment ambassadors. These posts are coordinated by Debbie Macdonald, a children’s media consultant. She was formerly VP, programming director at Nickelodeon UK, having worked in acquisitions at the BBC. You can find her on LinkedIn here.
Top photo: Rovio’s Angry Birds Toons series