Sunday, 21 May 2017

Recent Chinese Trade Show

At most western trade shows, you can arrange meetings in advance.
At a recent Chinese trade show that I went to (one of the largest trade, outsourcing & investment event for IP - tv/film, animation, games, comics, toys etc) if you are new, you have to work way harder. It's like you are a fan hunting for the autograph of the superstar. (Get the scan of his WeChat account so that you can get in touch with the top executive from the biggest companies. They hardly read their emails)
The best part of the game is you do not know who is the superstar. So you need to do your research. Try to find out which talk your superstar is attending. It could be a press conference of a series they have invested in etc. Or pay attention to the host at the event. Normally the VIP sit in front. They are part of the evaluation panelist for project being pitched. The host will announced who the VIP are. Once the event is over, you need to go straight to him asap as many will do the same. Or during networking, walk around, trying to hijack into others conversation.

At the one to one business matching, I was told that Chinese companies do not like to have a schedule of appointments every 30mins like what we used to do in Western market. So it is really like a market place. You walk from table to table to look for the buyer. (They will put a badge on the table) You do not know which company (buyer) is there at the table before hand. And the buyer is different in the morning and afternoon. So you need to walk around. When you see a good buyer, you need to circle around the table like a vulture. Once you see a vacancy, put your yourself on the seat immediately ha ha. Else someone else would.

If you are shy, you might end up going home empty handed. I felt uneasy at first. But there is no choice. In order to survive, one must seize every opportunity. Once you get the attention and interest, do your best as this is the only chance to impress them.
Coming to China is really a good training for survival.

Monday, 15 May 2017


Dream Defenders, an original IP created by our partner, Tiny Island Productions, Singapore, has reached out to 80 countries around the world and broadcasted on five channels in USA alone. This year, Dream Defenders VR app was launched, allowing audiences to continue to explore the adventure in the show’s Dream Worlds.

To continue reading this article, click here!

Sunday, 14 May 2017

China Market Intelligence on Animated Film 2017

This is what I gathered from my recent trips to China. I started going to China 2 to 3 years ago. (All numbers below is in USD.) 
Typical Animated Feature Film Budget is below USD$2M. Especially those animation coming from TV series. (This is on the safe side to recoup.) 
For those with budget close to 7M probably targeting at higher quality and aiming for a box office at least close to 60M. 
Those who dare to push the budget at 10M need to have past track record of box office beyond 100M like Monkey King: Hero is back. USD$153M 
Current there are about 100 animated films in China in production or raising funds. They are paying a lot of attention to IP and globalisation. How many will make it to the cinema, still a question. Guess the bubble will eventually burst. That is why opportunities is in the next 2 to 3 years.

40M to 60M is considered to be decent box office. Below this number means performance not too good. 
Potential box office is close to US. Which is close to USD$400M. 
In 2016 - there seems to be a chance to hit 40M to 60M 
In 2017 - the numbers seems to drop. Average about 6M 
E.g China Animated Films (Targeted China Market) Boonie Bears: Entangled Worlds - Box Office $76,630,780 (Has done well on tv series) 
GG Bond: Guarding - 
Box Office $6,503,093 
Foreign Animated Films (Probably requires huge marketing dollar)… 
Zootopia - Box Office $235,591,257 
Kung Fu Panda 3 - Box Office $154,304,371… 
Sing - Box Office $31,379,920 
The LEGO Batman Movie - Box Office $6,372,757 
Kubo and the Two Strings - Box Office $6,114,589 
A lot of interest in Anime content. Tencent is investing a lot in such IP. 
Your Name did very well in China. Box Office $83,678,210 
Other potential investors include Alibaba Youku, Wanda, QiYi, Alpha etc

Most people feel safer to target at pre school content for feature. Which is very different approach in US. Most of these films are of lower quality and lower budget. It is tapping on their tv series publicity.
6 to 12 not easy as most kids are busy studying. 
They do have an interesting market where it is not easy to do it overseas. This is the youth market. From 13 to 26. Your IP should probably involve life style, music and computer games market. 
One unusual thing in China. I thought the stereoscopic 3d market is dead. There still seems to be a demand in Chinese Cinema. Until when, I do not know. For now, it still seems quite hot. Every movie must be in 3d.

The main TV Station in China. CCTV

Saturday, 13 May 2017

Visited StarMaster

StarMaster - A very interesting company that I have visited in Beijing. We have known each other for a few years. Their growth has been tremendous. They have very clever and unique strategy to grow their IP. Their comic site has more than a million fans.

Meeting Aaron Zhou by David Kwok

6th May 2017

I am so happy to be able to finally meet Aaron Zhou. 周迅 Aaron is one of the founder of Big Big Sun. 大千阳光. He is the 1st Assistant Director & Animation Supervisor for the China's Box Office Record Breaking Animated Feature Film “Monkey King hero is back”. Their pre production work is amazing and they are currently working on a Animated Trilogy. Previously, he used to be the key member of Original Force Beijing before starting his own 160 men team.

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Precious opportunity by David Kwok

It was not easy I must say. I am glad that eventually I have made it here. It is a good beginning to build a relationship. Thanks to the executive from Wanda Media who has given me this precious opportunity. I am very grateful.

Monday, 8 May 2017

Friday, 5 May 2017

Met the top executives from Wingsmedia

Fortunate to meet the top executives from Wingsmedia. All these years, they have been very supportive to us. Wingsmedia is part of Shanghai Media Group. SMG (The organisation that has invested in Oriental DreamWorks) Wingsmedia help to globalise China IP. They also help to bring in foreign IP into China.

Monday, 1 May 2017

Some miracle coincidence on newspaper: written by David Kwok

This newspaper mentioned a promising young man from NYP in his final year whom I do not know at that time in 2003. Next to his news, it summarised a big part of my career. It talked about the second animation company I worked for which was my turning point of my career. It mentioned about the first animated series Simeon Rex we worked on with a batch of great friends (Who are now pioneers working in major companies in the industry). We finished the episode with no pay for 6 months, hoping to use the episode to save the company. The article also mentioned the animation association SAC I have been running since 1999. Eventually, I hired this promising year man from NYP during his grad show. (Not knowing he is the guy in the papers.) 

He was one of the top student at his time. Over the years, we fought for good and bad times together and became best friends. This promising young man is now my VP for production. The second in command in Tiny Island. He is now a father himself just like me. Many years later I found this newspaper and was shocked to see many years ago, he was mentioned just beside my news. At that time, we did not even know each other. It almost feels like the newspaper show signs that we are destined to be in this journey together someday. This promising young man is Ang Chwee Hock. Thanks for being part of my journey.