Dated: 3 December 2007
From an errant duckling to a girl who cannot get rid of an insistent cloud over her head, these are just two of the simple but endearing stories of Tales Alive – one of the first print-to-screen series of English-language animated shorts from original Singapore works – set to debut on MediaCorp TV 12 Kids Central on Tuesday, 4 December, for the entire month.
Produced by Peach Blossom Media, Tales Alive, presented in a myriad of illustration styles and animation, is adapted from nine original children's storybooks published under the Media Development Authority’s (MDA) First Time Writers and Illustrators Publishing Initiative (FTWIPI) which supports aspiring authors and illustrators in the publication of their first works1. The series, which targets pre-schoolers with some stories suitable for older children, will be shown as three and a half minute interstitials on MediaCorp TV 12 Kids Central, the official broadcast partner, on weekdays between 12.30 - 3.30pm. To give viewers further insights into the stories behind the animation and the creative experiences of the books’ creators, two-minute interview capsules with the authors with excerpts of the animation, will also be shown on MediaCorp TV 12 Arts Central (please see Annex A for more details on the episodic synopsis).
Among the stories’ line-up is The Elephant and the Tree - a simple tale with a powerful message on conservation. The book has sold its English language rights to the Running Press, one of US' largest independent publishers. Said author Jin Pyn, “The elephant and the tree are now alive as I had imagined when I drew them. My gratitude to MDA and the Peach Blossom team for having incorporated my views and visions, and making me so much a part of the process of breathing life into my creation.”
Added Neil Johnson, author of The Falling Raindrop, “Considering how media is exploding beyond print, I was really keen in the idea of taking our story to screen. Working on the Tales Alive project has now given us ideas of how to extend The Falling Raindrop to the interactive world of the internet and even children’s computer games.”
Commenting on the significance of the series, Mr Seto Lok Yin, Assistant Chief Executive Officer (Industry), MDA said, "Tales Alive has successfully brought to life the creations of budding Singapore literary and illustration talents. This meaningful animation series is a wonderful example of cross-media opportunities for content creation which we encourage the media industry to leverage on. MDA is proud to support these timeless stories which the whole family can enjoy.”
Said Huang Kun Quan, Producer, Peach Blossom Media, “The opportunity to adapt original local children’s story books from FTWIPI gave us a chance to work closely with and be inspired by Singapore’s writing talents. Our goal was to translate their vision from print to screen, while injecting our own creative and artistic expertise. This collaborative process has yielded nine animation shorts, each with a unique style and we are proud to showcase them to Singapore viewers. Plans to distribute the programme beyond Singapore are also on-going.
Starting 7 December, viewers will be able to visit the series’ dedicated website at www.TalesAlive.sg. Created by Peach Blossom Media, it will offer the public added information on the creation of Tales Alive as well as feature snippets from the animation clips and interview capsules with the creators of the storybooks.
1FTWIPI began in 2005 by MDA in partnership with the National Book Development Council of Singapore, to nurture aspiring local writers and illustrators who have yet the opportunity to publish their works. This is among a slate of initiatives by MDA to develop fresh talents in the local publishing industry. The inaugural FTWIPI yielded 14 storybooks of which nine have been turned into short-form 2D animation programmes.
- ends –
For media enquiries, please contact:
Mr Huang Kun Quan
Peach Blossom Media
Tel: +65 6742 8332
Ms Tessa Monteiro
Media Development Authority of Singapore
Tel: +65 6837 9757
Ms Nazlene Zainal
Senior Manager, Channel Promotions
MediaCorp TV12 Singapore Pte Ltd
Tel: +65 6225 8133
About Peach Blossom Media
Peach Blossom Media is the pioneer of original content who has enjoyed tremendous success worldwide. Since its inception in 2002, Peach has notched up an impressive track record,producing a wealth of internationally successful animated series like Tomato Twins, Taoshu – The Warrior Boy, Wild Animal Babies and Growing Up Creepie. Our clients include international broadcasters such as Nickolodean Asia, Jetix, Spike TV, Yahoo and MTV.
Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA)
Formed in 2003, the Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA) plays a vital role in transforming Singapore into a Global Media City and positioning it at the forefront of the digital media age. MDA spearheads initiatives that promote developments in film, video, television, radio, publishing, music, games, animation, media services and Interactive Digital Media. At the same time, in ensuring clear and consistent regulatory policies and guidelines, MDA helps to foster a pro-business environment for industry players and increase media choices for consumers. For more information, visit www.mda.gov.sg andwww.smf.sg.
About MediaCorp TV 12 Kids Central
MediaCorp TV12 Kids Central, the most-watched kids channel in Singapore, is the one-stop channel that educates, informs and entertains with the best in local and international kids programmes. By providing 60.5 hours of kids programming each week -- the highest commitment from any free-to-air channel in the world -- Kids Central makes compulsive viewing for children aged four to 12 years.
MediaCorp TV12 is part of MediaCorp. As Singapore’s largest broadcaster and one of the region’s most renowned broadcasters, MediaCorp offers a complete range of media businesses: TV, Radio, Entertainment Productions, Movie Productions, Newspapers, Magazines, Electronic Media and other broadcasting services. MediaCorp’s vision is to become one of Asia’s top media companies by delivering valued content to the world. For more information, please visit www.kidscentral.com.sg
ANNEX A – TALES ALIVE EPISODIC SYNOPSIS AND QUOTES BY THE AUTHORS Duration : 9 x 3:30 minutes Format : 2D Animation Shorts
1. The Falling Raindrop by Neil Johnson and Joel Chin A story about a little raindrop with a larger lesson about life and even a little science to the miracle of the world we live in.
“It is always hard to put your idea into the hands of others and trust that they will feed and look after it; make it grow bigger and stronger. Taking my story from print to animation meant doing just that. It wasn’t easy to let go but I learnt a lot doing it.” – Joel Chin
2. The Little Nightingale Who Can’t Sing by Angie Featherstone and Stephanie Wong No matter how hard she tries to sing, Holly sounds just like a telephone ring. She decides to run away when her siblings cannot stop laughing at her.
“The day we were told that our book will be turned into animation is probably one of the best days we have ever had! Full creative rein over projects are few and far between in reality so having so much freedom was really a blast. We are extremely grateful to MDA and Peach Blossom Media for making this possible.” – Angie Featherstone and Stephanie Wong
3. What I Love Most by Agnes Liew This is a story about Annie and her best friend Teddy, and the many things she loves – cookies, rainbows, tapping her feet…
“I took part in the "First Time Writers & Illustrators Publishing Initiative" in 2005 to challenge myself and to see how far I would go. To see my book turning into an animation short film is truly an exciting and fulfilling experience for me. I have learned a lot from this experience which I thank MDA and the National Book Development Council of Singapore for making this possible!” – Agnes Liew
4. That Little Girl by Julie Ee A story about Emily, who may seem a little picky and strange to us, at her fourth birthday party.
"That Little Girl started off as a personal story and to have it come so far, is really a blessing and a reminder that you really don't know where life will take you.” – Julie Ee
5. Emily the Duckling Says “Humph!” by Ka Lim Emil is a cheerful duckling and part of a happy family. But like us, she sometimes gets a little frustrated.
"It was fascinating to be part of the entire process from thinking up the story to visualising the characters and their actions to condensing it down to poses for the book to finally seeing it all re-animated as a cartoon! MDA has played a massively important role in the whole process after the publication of our books, well above and beyond what we expected to be the original scope of their involvement. Peach Blossom Media also pulled together a great team of creative professionals!" – Ka Lim
6. The Elephant and the Tree by Jin Pyn Orchestrated in a rhythmic style after nursery rhymes, this story is about an enduring friendship between an Asian elephant and a tree, with a dose of reality.
7. One Fine DayM by Michelle Tham Chloe wakes up one morning to find a cloud looming over her head which she just cannot seem to get rid of.
"It is a total different approach of re-telling the story, one which makes it more alive to the audience. The characters seem to pop out of the screen and their antics made me laugh and totally refreshed the story for me." – Michelle Tham
8-9. Ben’s Friends from the Rainforest (Parts 1 and 2) by Adeline Foo The charming stories about Ben’s adventures with a lizard and a monkey, introduces children to animals commonly seen in Singapore’s rainforests.
“It was interesting how the story came to life in animation. The characters now have a voice and how they sounded different from what I had in mind when writing the stories. The team also displayed initiative in creating additional animated illustrations to fill up the entire cartoon snippet for my original book had fewer drawings.” – Adeline Foo