Thursday, August 26, 2010

Korea Is Open For Business

Recently CASO was invited to participate at the Seoul Promotion Plan (SPP) which is a market dedicated to cartoon, animation and related contents run by Seoul Animation Center of the Seoul Business Agency. Along with the market, an International Animation Film Festival and Licensing fair also took place. It was an excellent venue for local and international property holders to show their latest projects and creatives.

Korea has been making great efforts in developing partnerships in Europe and North America to develop and distribute International and Korean based properties. Being able to witness first had at the spirit and energy of the market I believe there are many advantages in developing Korean/Canadian partnerships and co-productions. Many Korean companies appear to have access to capital and working with producers from around the world to produce universally relatable animated projects. There has been a large concerted effort to understand market trends outside their country and down the barriers of doing business abroad.

I was one of three speakers to present at the conference. My topic was trends in VFX and Animation in Ontario. I touched base on CASO responsibilities of:
• International Promotion and Marketing
• Industry Statistics and Competitive Advantage
• Education and Organizational Relations
• Government Relations
It is an excellent conference to attend, especially if you have never been to an Asia based market. Trends are quite different then in Europe or North America and many opportunities exist between continents.

If you would like to know more about my experience in Korea or would like to be introduced to reputable Korean companies in regards to a project, please feel free to contact me at

Special thanks to Jinsook Park, Executive Programmer of SPP 2010

Here are some pictures from the conference.

The Talent Pool – CASO Jump Start! Executive Breakfast Series

Last week’s Jump Start! Executive Breakfast was a great success and stirred much discussion on the state of digital animation and visual effects labour pool in Ontario.

The well attended event was lead by moderator and President of CASO, Michael Carter. Present were studio executives and producers along with representatives from Seneca, Centennial and Sheridan colleges, who shared their views on the current state of our sector’s labour force.

The topics discussed centered around domestic and international labour touching on costs and skill set; the school system in Ontario and the preparedness of their graduating students entering the workforce; as well as the current market economy and the competition that directly effects Ontario labour – we need the work to get the talent and the talent to get the work.

It was agreed that the skill sets and artistic talent of artists are the backbone to a successful studio. Particularity in Ontario, we have multiple streams to foster talent through our post-secondary educational system, ensuring that the level of artists graduating are of a high standard. It was also agreed it is imperative that the labour community and the colleges work together to continue to build this new talent base through these post secondary streams. This will ensure a strong and vibrant VFX and Animation labour pool that remains in Ontario which will enable us to meet market demands.

During the discussion the participants focused on and analyzed other animation communities. In particular, the success of the UK based community that collaborates through Soho Net. Also discussed was Ontario’s competitive advantage due to our excellent school system, the Ontario tax credits, seasoned artists and experienced studios. In contrast, the area touched upon as needing improvement was mainly the industry unified-technological standards in software, hardware and the overall pipeline.

There was mutual agreement amongst the participants that Ontario had the expertise and capacity to work on the higher budgeted 60 million dollar features.
They also felt that it was imperative that the studios needed to find a way to efficiently work together to both attract these types of budgets into the province and to support the level of work demanded by these higher profile films.

CASO thanks all the participants who attended, Ira Weiss, Category Business Manager and Hewlett Packard for their gracious support of our full roster of programming and the OMDC for their continued support and unwavering enthusiasm for the continued growth of our community.

We look forward to continued discussions and involvement of the whole community to build Ontario as the premier destination for innovative visual effects and animation, globally.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Final Call For The "Canadian - European Co-Production Forum"

Final call for Cartoon Connection Canada-EU
Animation producers have one last chance to register for this Canadian-European co-production forum.
Join 40 European delegates in Ottawa for three days of meetings, panels and networking.
Register at

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Greater Toronto Region - GameInc - Stakeholder Consultation Thursday, August 26, 2010 from 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM (ET), and it's FREE

The Ontario Digital Games Business Incubator Network (GameInc) is a network of startup resources that serve the Province's digital games development community. It connects related incubators, organizations and institutions to leverage each group's assets for the benefit of all.

The purpose of this meeting is to gain a better understanding of opportunities that may exist for GameInc to serve the needs of stakeholders in the Greater Toronto Region.

This meeting will be of interest to:

* Digital games developers
* Technology companies that are selling, or that want to sell, products/services to game developers
* Digital media incubators/accelerators
* Investment community members; i.e., angles and VCs
* Colleges and universities that offer digital game development related programming

Registered attendees will be sent the agenda by email.

For those that are unable to attend in person, a teleconferencing line will be available. Dial in details will be sent via email in advance of the meeting.

Please address any questions regarding this event to: Kathleen Webb, 416-878-8876,

Check out the website for more information

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

"The Talent Pool" Tomorrow, don't forget!

Just a reminder "The Talent Pool" happens tomorrow! RSVP to