In a deal worth $10 million, New York-based BKN New Media Inc. has outsourced animation to India’s UTV Toonz, the animation division of UTV Software Communications Ltd. Initial productions included under the pact are KongThe Next Generation and another 26-episode, 3D-animated series yet to be named.
UTV Toonz has also acquired distribution, licensing and merchandising rights to such BKN animation series as Legend of the Dragon, Roswell Conspiracies, Starla and the Jewel Riders, Skipper & Skeeto and Ali Baba Forty Thieves. Some shows will air on UTVs kids channel, Hungama TV.
We aim to, in a year, have the largest order book for an animation company in India, and our deal with BKN is one step further in that direction," says UTV CEO Ronnie Screwvala. "In animation, we market UTV, as well as India, as a destination and we believe there is a tremendous scope for our growth in this segment."
BKN is taking full advantage of the hype surrounding Peter Jacksons upcoming big-screen remake of King Kong. Allen J. Bohbot, CEO of BKN International, states, "BKN has made King Kong a major centerpiece of our companys expansive original animation slate, and we look forward to embarking on the production of KongThe Next Generation series and the Kong II: Return to the Jungle feature film with UTV, one of Indias and the industrys largest and most prolific 3D studios". BKN recently signed a number of licensing deals with partners in the U.S. for other Kong properties.