WHAT’S A PITCH PARTY?
We open up an entire section of our publication (read by more animation decision-makers than any other) to 1/6th page advertisements that pitch new ideas. For less than the cost of a workshop on “breaking into the biz” you can get your great idea in front of our major readers. [NOTE: This opportunity is only available once a year. AND to help you out, we're offering these ads at a heavily discounted price!]
PLUS! We’ve enlisted a panel of ten powerful development execs, producers and agents to judge your entries. The Pitch Party winner will receive a chance to pitch the judge of his or her choice and will receive FREE Pitch Party Participation.
WHO’S JUDGING THIS THING?
We’re very fortunate to have some of the most powerful TV development execs in the world looking at your pitches this year. They are:
As EVP for Alloy Digital, a major creator/distributor of next gen media and entertainment for the 12-34 set, Blumberg guides editorial strategy and programming development for Alloy-owned sites and video channels underl the Alloy Digital Network. These include popular properties Clevver TV, Crushable, The Escapist, Gurl, The Gloss, Teen, SMOSH, along with recently launched YouTube channel spin-offs SMOSH Games and Shut Up! Cartoons. The network currently reaches an audience of 90 million consumers and has over 30 million followers on its varied social media profiles. With the combined numbers of its YouTube channels, Alloy’s properties rank No. 1 in total subscribers (over 6.5 billion views)–including SMOSH and Clevver TV which have reached 2 billion and 1 billion views respectively.
Blumberg continues to serve as President of Alloy Digital’s pop-culture phenomenon SMOSH, which Time Magazine called the “SNL of the Internet” and hit Forbes‘ “30 under 30.” The award-winning comedy website and multiple top-ranked YouTube channels attract a devoted audience of teens and young adults that reach more than 10 million total platform subscribers. Under Blumberg’s guidance, SMOSH has blossomed into a multi-faceted enterprise that includes multiple record-setting channel spinoffs, top-charting musical endeavors, merchandising brand extensions, mobile apps, gaming and theatrical exhibition. He is also the brainchild behind SMOSH’s Shut Up! Cartoons, the original animation channel that ranks as one of YouTube’s fastest growing and most viewed of the platform’s premium channel initiative.
Before making a splash at SMOSH, Blumber served as president of Walt Disney Television Animation, where he oversaw production of more than 1,000 episodes delivered to Disney Channels and other global distribution outlets. His resume also includes a stint as EVP of Harvey Entertainment, where he managed media and merchandising activities for evergreen brands Casper the Friendly Ghost and Richie Rich.
As a life-long Marvel fan, animation VP Cort Lane says he is thrilled to develop and produce shows within the rich Marvel Universe. In addition to supervising the animation development team, he serves as current series executive on all ongoing series. Drawing on a wealth of experience in entertainment, interactive media and marketing for children, Lane is well suited to lead Marvel’s expanding slate of productions and co-productions.
Most recently, Lane served as development executive and supervising producer on Ultimate Spider-Man for Disney XD’s Marvel Universe programming block, as well as the upcoming shows Marvel’s Avengers Assemble and Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H., set to join XD’s Marvel block July 7 and August 11 of this year, respectively.
Lane has also worked on co-productions of Iron Man: Armored Adventures with Method Animation for Nicktoons and Marvel Anime: Iron Man, Wolverine, X-Men & Blade with Madhouse for Japan’s Animax, as well as developing and supervising production on The Super Hero Squad Show for The Hub. Previously, he served as Director of Development for Marvel Animation, working on co-productions like BET’s Black Panther.
Prior to joining Marvel in 2008, Lane spent seven years at Mattel producing animated, live-action and interactive entertainment across brands like Barbie, Hot Wheels and Fisher-Price. His period at Mattel includes several productions, including supervising Universal’s Barbie in A Christmas Carol and developing Monster High.
As his matter-of-fact biographry states, “Fred Seibert makes cartoons and television networks.” While true, this is putting things a bit simply as Seibert has been a fixture of the TV industry and animation community since the ’80s, when he revolutionized channel branding as MTV’s first creative director. In the same decade, Seibert and partner Alan Goodman turned around then-floundering kids network Nickelodeon. In 1992, he became the last president of Hanna-Barbera Cartoons and turned around the studio by creating Cartoon Network’s What a Cartoon!, which spun off into popular series Cow and Chicken, Dexter’s Laboratory, Johnny Bravo, The Powerpuff Girls and Courage the Cowardly Dog.
Seibert founded Frederator Studios in 1997 after Hanna-Barbera was brought into the Turner/Time Warner fold. In addition to Frederator’s first-look deal with Nickelodeon–which has spawned The Fairly OddParents, ChalkZone, My Life as a Teenage Robot, Nicktoons Film Festival, Oh Yeah! Cartoons, Random! Cartoons and Fanboy and Chum Chum–the studio also produces Cartoon Network’s hit action comedy Adventure Time. Seibert also founded one of the first online toon channels, Channel Frederator, as well as Next New Networks (acquired by YouTube) and Cartoon Hangover, home of Penn Ward’s Bravest Warriors.
This year, the enterprising Seibert started up Frederator Books, a digital-only ebook publisher whose first title The Lieography of Babe Ruth came out in March, followed by The Lieography of Harry Houdini; both by Alan Katz. Additionally, Seibert currently serves on the board of directors for Sawhorse Media, creator of the social media Shorty Awards, and popular blogging platform Tumblr.
As veep of PBS’s acclaimed children’s programming division, Linda Simensky collaborates with producers, co-production partners, PBS station programmers, and distributors throughout the development, production, post-production and broadcast phases for PBS KIDS programming. Since joining the channel in 2003, Simensky has helped develop hit shows that reach 82% of kids 2-8 in the U.S.–including Curious George, The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That, Wild Kratts and WordGirl–as well as PBS KIDS’ latest series, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, inspired by Fred Rogers. Her efforts in transforming the preschool and school-aged programming lineup have helped make PBS KIDS the most trusted educational media brand for children, with its shows consistently ranked number one with moms and in the top five with preschoolers. Simensky is currently working on new pre-k series Peg + Cat, premiering this fall.
Prior to joining PBS, Simensky was senior VP of original animation for Cartoon Network, where she oversaw the development and production of The Powerpuff Girls, Dexter’s Laboratory, Samurai Jack, Courage the Cowardly Dog and other major projects. Simensky began her career with a nine-year tenure at Nickelodeon, where she helped build the animation department and launch such popular series as Rugrats, Doug and The Ren & Stimpy Show.
Simensky is a past-president of ASIFA-East, and the founder of New York chapter of Women in Animation. She has lectured at numerous colleges and animation festivals, and has taught courses in animation at the School of Visual Arts in New York. She has written for numerous animation publications and has had several essays published in books including Nickelodeon Nation and The Children’s Television Community.
Simensky holds a bachelor’s degree in communications and history from the University of Pennsylvania and a master’s in media ecology from New York University.
As Vice President of Programming Hub Network, which is an entertainment destination for kids and their families, Ted Biaselli is responsible for guiding projects in all stages from development to air and through current production. As the executive in charge of some of Hub Network’s most successful programs, such as the two Daytime Emmy® Award-nominated series, R.L. Stine’s the Haunting Hour: The Series and The Aquabats! Super Show!, as well as the two Daytime Emmy® Award-winning series, Family Game Night and Transformers: Prime, Biaselli has used his passion and knowledge of the industry to help fuel some of the highest-rated programs on the network, including Littlest Pet Shop.
Biaselli, who reports to Hub Network’s President and CEO Margaret Loesch, has spent over a decade in kids’ entertainment. His experience over the course of his career — which includes programming, production, writing, character design, digital media and voice acting — gives Biaselli unique insight into the creative landscape of kids’ television. Hub Network is a multi-platform joint venture between Discovery Communications and Hasbro, Inc. On October 10, 2010 it re-branded from the former Discovery Kids Network and presently reaches nearly 73 million U.S. cable and satellite households.
Prior to joining Hub Network, Biaselli worked in animation development at Disney Channel, Playhouse Disney, and Disney XD. The Philadelphia native received his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Theater Arts from the city’s University of the Arts. He is a member of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS) and the Screen Actors Guild and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA).
In his role of Executive Vice President of FremantleMedia Kids & Family Entertainment. Bob Higgins oversees the creative direction for FME’s kids’ business, as well as managing content, including acquisitions, development and sales of TV and digital programming. FME’s current programming slate includes animated series Max Steel, Monsuno, Tree Fu Tom, the live-action/animation The Aquabats Supershow! and the hit live-action sci-fi adventure, Wizards Vs Aliens.
A longtime champion of children’s programming, Higgins previously served as Chief Creative Officer at WILDBRAIN, where he oversaw the company’s television and feature film development and production, including developing and executive producing HBO’s Emmy-nominated The Ricky Gervais Show. Before joining W!LDBRAIN, Higgins was Senior Vice President, Programming and Development for Cartoon Network’s kids businesses from 2003 through 2007, where he managed Cartoon Network’s development, production, acquisition and programming departments and oversaw new original animated series, shorts, Cartoon Network features and specials. Among the many accomplishments during his tenure with the network, Higgins oversaw the development, production and launch of a number of hit series, including Chowder, Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends, My Gym Partner’s a Monkey, Ben 10 and Camp Lazlo.
Prior to Cartoon Network, Higgins was Senior Vice President and Executive Producer for Classic Media, Inc. in New York City, where he executive produced the feature film, Underdog. And before that, he served as Senior Vice President of Creative Affairs for Sony Pictures Family Entertainment (SPFE), Vice President of Creative Affairs at Columbia TriStar Television Children’s Programming and acted as Director of Development at Nelvana Communications.
Ross joined the then-newly formed, Los Angeles-based Hasbro Studios in 2009, and has since developed a number series for the studio, including Kaijudo: Rise of the Duel Masters, Littlest Pet Shop, My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic and the seven-time Emmy Award-winning series Transformers Prime.
Most recently, Ross worked in partnership with Shanghai Media Group’s kids’ channel Toonmax in China to produce the Mandarin-language, live-action/animated hybrid series Pei Le Doh: Elf in a Can, based on the hugely popular brand Play-Doh. He continues to work with other Hasbro brands in the China market.
Previously, Ross worked in programming and development at NBC, Sony Pictures Television and Crackle. A native of Cleveland, Ohio, he is a graduate of Florida State University, where he received a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts degree in theater.
In her current role as SVP for global kids’ entertainment giant Nickelodeon Group’s toon division, Jenna Boyd oversees the pipeline of all new animated series as well as the comedy shorts program, focusing on finding creator-driven original comedies, fresh animation styles and developing contemporary classics for the new generation. Previously, she served as VP of Live Action Development, overseeing scripted and unscripted programming slates for Nickelodeon, TeenNick and family originals for Nick at Nite, including Wendell & Vinnie.
Boyd’s career with Nickelodeon began over 15 years ago as a production intern for the studio’s live-action comedy Kenan & Kel at their Orlando, Florida studios. She then moved to New York to work in the TV Land programming department, transitioning to Nickelodeon production where she developed and produced live-action and animation properties for the network. Boyd relocated to Los Angeles in 2004 to serve as Director, Development where she oversaw production of critically acclaimed animated hit Avatar: The Last Airbender.
Having grown up in New Jersey, Boyd received her degree in Telecommunications from Ohio University. She currently lives in California with her husband and young twins, who must be a great test audience.
As veep of original programming for Fox Entertainment’s edgy branch-out channel FX, Kate Lambert has already scored big points with the toon community by being the primary development exec behind Matt Reed’s animated spy comedy Archer. She has also been involved in developing pilots of hit series Sons of Anarchy, Justified, The Americans, American Horror Story and Louie, to name a few. Most recently, she has worked on the newly-green lit animated pilots Chozen from Danny McBride’s Rough Pictures and Big Foot from executive producer Seth Rogen.
A USC graduate, Lambert began her career in television at HBO Entertainment as a development assistant in the original programming department, specifically working on iconic series The Sopranos, Deadwood and The Wire. In 2006, she moved to FX Networks, where she served as the development assistant to Matt Cherniss, then-head of Drama and Comedy development for FX. During that time, she worked on the critically-acclaimed series Damages and The Riches pilot. Last year, Lambert was named one of Hollywood’s Fastest-Rising Stars on Hollywood Reporter‘s Next Gen list.
Lambert graduated from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor of Arts in Broadcast Journalism and Cinema/Television. Having grown up in New Jersey, Lambert has adapted to her SoCal home—when she’s not hard at work on FX’s next hit, you can find her at the beach.
As veep of Cartoon Network’s comedy animation, Lelash oversees the development and ongoing production of the network’s hilarious toon series, which has helped drive CN to consistently rank as the #1 network among boys. Creatively responsible for projects from pilot development through series production, he also supervises the studio’s shorts development program as a means to discover new series and to cultivate new talent.
Lelash is an executive producer of Cartoon Network’s pop culture phenomenon Adventure Time and the Emmy® Award-winning Regular Show, both of which are produced at Cartoon Network Studios in Burbank, CA. He is currently overseeing production on three new original animated comedy series— Steven Universe, Uncle Grandpa and Clarence —each developed from Cartoon Network Studios’ vibrant and prolific shorts program. In addition, he also supervises hit original comedies produced at outside studios for Cartoon Network, including The Collective’s Annoying Orange and Warner Bros. Animation’s MAD and The Looney Tunes Show. Previous projects he has overseen include the animated comedies Robotomy, Secret Mountain Force Awesome, The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack, Squirrel Boy and Class of 3000.
In his role as director of comedy development, Walter J. Newman is responsible for developing and producing comedy live-action series and animated programming for Adult Swim. Newman supervises original Adult Swim live-action and animated comedies including Loiter Squad, The Eric Andre Show, Black Dynamite, China, IL, The Boondocks, SuperJail and upcoming pilots including Harold & Kumar, which is based on the popular movie series.
Prior to joining Adult Swim, Newman was a development executive at Comedy Central where he discovered and developed the comedy group Mail Order Comedy into the current series Workaholics. He also spent time in program development for VH1 as well as the film and TV production company Circle of Confusion.
AND WHAT DO I WIN?
For one thing, a whole lot of print and online coverage! Not only do you get a 1/6th page ad in our print edition, if you’re a winner, you’ll get additional editorial coverage, a chance to pitch your idea to the judge of your choice and the cost of your entry reimbursed. BUT, WAIT! There’s more … (here’s a big list of everything you could get just by entering).
- 1/6th page in the July edition of Animation Magazine, distributed to readers in over 100 countries with bonus distribution at the San Diego Comic-Con.
- A high-powered panel of development execs and producers will personally evaluate your pitch.
- If you win, you get to pitch your idea to the Judge of your choice. Plus! You’ll get editorial coverage in our July edition.
- If you win, you get FREE Pitch Party Participation.
- If you come in second or third, you’ll get editorial coverage in our July edition.
- We also run a STAFF PICKS contest. So if our staff picks you, they’ll write about why you won in our July edition.
- We run an ONLINE READERS’ POLL using your 1/6th page ad. So for one week your ad will be online and oggled by more than 100,000 unique visitors. AND! You guessed it! We also write about the winners of the online poll in our July edition. (Don’t worry, we monitor our ONLINE READERS’ POLL carefully. No reader can vote more than one time!) The Online Reader’s Poll begins on or about June 10.
Toon Boom has generously donated three copies of its award-winning Storyboard Pro software license (total value: $3000) to the top three winners of this year’s Pitch Party.
HOW DO I ENTER?
1) Contact us to reserve our entry space! Email: [email protected] or call: 818-665-2050
2) Send us the elements of the ad: the image(s), the contact information as you want it to appear in the ad, and your pitch (also to appear on the ad – 30 word max), and we can create the ad for you, or you can create the ad according to the following specs:
Dimensions: 2.25″ wide x 4.875″ high
• Adobe Photoshop Files – Images should be Tiff, Jpeg, EPS or Photoshop file (if EPS or Photoshop file include Fonts). Images should be either Bitmap, Grayscale or CMYK. NO RGB or Indexed Color. Resolution should be 300dpi.
• InDesign Files – Include all used images, printer and screen fonts. Include a PDFx-1a including bleed and cropmarks with your submission.
• Adobe Illustrator Files – Convert all fonts to outlines and save as EPS. Do not leave fonts embedded. If this can’t be done, send printer and screen fonts with your file. Fonts need to be stuffed.
3) The entry fee is $375. Ask about our special student discounts.
4) Materials and payment are due by June 3.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How Do I Protect My Idea? Well, the easiest answer is “by entering the Pitch Party.” If you’re pitching your idea in our magazine then your idea has appeared in print with your name attached; your idea is no longer floating around out in the ether for anyone to pick up. To further protect yourself though, we suggest registering your idea with the Writers Guild. Go to www.wga.org for more info.
WHAT KIND OF STUFF CAN I ENTER?
Anything! As long as your idea has the potential to be animated, you can enter a television series, movie, game, whatever!
WHAT SHOULD I ENTER?
Basically an idea that’s different; something our judges haven’t seen before. Most development folks want a show that is “character-driven”. In artist-speak that just means they’re looking for a show that has a strong character at the center of the action and, if it’s a TV show, a character that people can latch onto. Remember to pick a really strong image for your entry, one that describes your show or its main character in a striking visual manner. Concerning your 30-word description, all we can say is re-write, re-write, re-write. Don’t just give us the first thing that trips off your fingertips onto the keyboard and into Microsoft word. Work it! Then read it to your friends. They’ll tell you if they get it or not. (And, we know this sounds dumb, but run a spell check.)
WHEN DO YOU ANNOUNCE THE WINNERS?
As soon as our July issue hits the newsstands, around July 1st. We will also be hyping our winners online during the week of Comic Con July 18-21, 2013 (www.comic-con.org/cci/).
Animation Magazine is not responsible or liable for ensuring the images used in Pitch Party Participant advertisements are the property of the advertisers/participants.