Baboon Animation Africa (BAA), a new branch of the multi-Emmy-winning company Baboon Animation, has partnered with the well-established African Animation Network (AAN) to create a new animation business paradigm focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion. The move is a step toward the continent’s development of a socially conscious animation industry.
“We are building on the success of Garbage Boy and Trash Can, the new WarnerMedia show. Our goal is for African innovators to have true ownership, and we have the contacts in place to make that happen. Through their social impact aims, AAN pioneered this strategy. In the next six months, we’ll be announcing five additional game-changing initiatives,” stated Mike de Seve, President of Baboon Animation. “We are cultivating raw talent and shows equitably and responsibly that puts creators in charge.”
In 2018, Baboon took the lead in African markets. De Seve was invited to join in a Pan-African talent development partnership with Annecy International Animation Festival/MIFA by Nick Wilson, Founder and Head of Projects & Content at AAN.
Wilson, who developed and produced Africa’s first half-hour adult animated comedy in 2015 and founded AAN in 2016, said, “Baboon is a wonderful creative partner for this enterprise.” “We have connections with Africa’s best comic stars and animation talent.” So the word is out that if you have a show, we are the guys to call. We are the first global media company to produce African shows in Africa.”
Baboon Animation and African Animation Network hope to attract top talent through various outlets, including AAN’s next competition, The Great Big African Animation Pitch (TGBAAP), which is set to take place in early 2022. This AAN-Baboon partnership will assist underrepresented series creators in gaining a place at the table in Africa’s fast-growing animation industry.
“We are altering the way animation development is done and challenging everyone else to do the same,” de Seve added. “This is what true collaboration looks like.”