MDeC & GCMA sign MOU with Korean Govt; 8 Co-productions deals in place

By AMRITA VALECHA | 29 July, 2011 - 14:17

Malaysia’s Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC) and Global Creative and Media Agency (GCMA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Korean Government recently last week in Seoul, Korea in an effort to boost cross-collaborations in global entertainment and media industry between Malaysia and Korea.
The MoUs were signed and witnessed by the public in Seoul during Korea’s Animation Week held from 19 – 22 July 2011, where GCMA in partnership with MDeC and Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) led a successful animation specialised trade mission, which was held concurrently with the SICAF, SPP, Seoul International Cartoon and Animation Forum, Seoul Character and Licensing Fair, and Asian Animation Forum.

12 Malaysian companies participated in the event, namely Media Prima, Action Tintoy, FrameMotion Studio, Firecrackers, Giggle Garage, Mexcomm, Sabtham’s Vision, Funcel, AppXplore, NetCarbon and Sifumedia. During the visit to Seoul, GCMA organised studio visits to SBA’s Seoul Animation Center, CJ E&M, Sunwoo Entertainment, NHC Media and SAMg Animation, as well as pre-arranged more than 80 meetings with Korean and other foreign producers and buyers.

The first MoU was signed between MDeC and KOCCA by Kamil Othman, Vice President of MDeC and Chung Dong Cheun, Vice President of KOCCA, while the second MoU was signed between GCMA and SBA Seoul Animation Center by Adam Ham, Executive Director of GCMA and Bang Joong Hyuk, Director General of SBA. Under the agreed terms, both MoUs revealed for all parties to mutually agree on a two-year cooperation in the marketing and promotion of cultural and content development between Korea and Malaysia, in an effort to spur and accelerate the growth in co-production and distribution of animation and games. Differing between the two MoUs, MDeC and KOCCA have agreed to cooperate in coordinating the annual Asian Animation Forum, while GCMA and SBA have agreed to cooperate in coordinating the annual Seoul Promotion Plan of SICAF. In addition, the Malaysian and Korean Agencies will also be exchanging best practices, network and transfer of technology through future in-bound and out-bound events, conferences, forums and exhibitions.

Recently in June 2011, MDeC has announced its new funnel of co-production funds - MAC3 Co-Pro Fund, which is intended to be awarded to qualified Malaysian Companies, in order to help innovative and progressive local companies to co-produce animation and game development projects with reputable partners that will contribute to the overall development of the Creative Multimedia Industries in Malaysia.

Kamil Othman, Vice President of MDeC said, “With the availability of strong Government backing for the development of the local contents industry, the time is right for Malaysia to encourage a cross-border approach in the content development programmes. Global partnerships with Malaysian studios will further strengthen this approach. We have begun a slate of successful co-productions with numerous Korean studios, and hope to partner with many more from America, Asia, Australia, the Middle East and others.”
Othman is pleased to reveal that MDeC’s co-pro funds have paid off well and Malaysia has successfully created a significant increased number of world-class original works; the creation of sustainable enterprises interms of job creation and market expansion; and talent development through leveraging on international partners to enhance creative, technical and human competencies locally.

During the GCMA official mission to Seoul last week, a Memorandum of Agreements (MoAs) was signed between a Malaysian and a Korean studio as well. Firecrackers Sdn. Bhd. and NHC Media Co. Ltd. signed a MoA to jointly produce a 2D animation TV series Eggmas (13 eps x 22 mins) which is due to begin productions by the end of the year and to be released by 2013 in Korean, Malay and English worldwide. The deal, worth an estimate of USD 4.2 million would include production, distribution, and licensing and merchandising.

Adam Ham, Executive Director of GCMA who was responsible to organize the mission to Seoul said, “I am pleased that among Malaysia’s many international co-production projects, the Korea-Malaysia combination is the most successful ones, as there are now a total of 8 international co-productions held between Malaysia and Korea simultaneously, in which three that are to be released in Quarter 4 in 2011.”

Malaysia-Korea Co-Production Projects:

  • Eori - 2D, 78eps x 7.5mins (Ed-Online Technologies with NHC Media)
  • Robot Arpo - 3D, 52eps x 13mins (Centraline Animation with Toonzip)
  • Ddung - 2D, 52eps x 11mins (Creative Media Lab with K-Production and Designseol)
  • Ninja Cat Ichi, Ni, San! - 2D, 52eps x 11mins (Avant Garde Studios with Cyber Chicken Animation Studio)
  • Playground Robot Bboing - 3D, 26eps x 11mins (Tulus Fikir with Crazy Bird Animation Studio and Synergy Media)
  • Mask Master - 3D, 52eps x 11mins (Intelture Technology with Studio W Baba)
  • YoYo Pet - 2D, duration TBA (Funcel with Jellyfish World)
  • Eggmas - 2D, 13eps x 22mins (Firecrackers with NHC Media)

Ham also noted that these partnerships with the Koreans have enhanced not only the creativity to Malaysian talents, but also significantly sparked multi-million dollars businesses in the international licensing and merchandising sector. The pre-sale of merchandises amongst the young adults and children in the Seoul Character and Licensing Fair, namely “Robot Arpo” and “Ddung” was a big hit and a true testament to a successful promotion of its character licensing.
Furthermore, it was announced in SPP 2011 in Seoul that Tul us Fikir (Malaysia), Crazy Bird Animation Studio (Korea) and Synergy Media (Korea) co-production title Playground Robot Bboing (26 eps x 11 mins) was recognised as the winner for „Best Planning Award? of the SPP 2011 Animation Pitching Competition. The 3D animation TV series is already in production and expected to be released by Mid-year 2013 worldwide.
GCMA, next will be leading a delegation to Gwangju, Korea to participate in the Asia Contents and Entertainment Fair 2011 during 21 – 24 September 2011. After that GCMA in partnership with FINAS, MDeC, MCMC and MATRADE will be coordinating the Malaysian Pavilion at MIPCOM (Cannes, France) during 3 – 6 October 2011, where over 30 companies have registered as participants already.