Taking African animation and storytelling to the world

In this interview, Triggerfish's Stuart Forrest shares his plans to educate budding creatives and take African stories to the international stage.

Triggerfish Animation Studios CEO Stuart Forrest is making no small plans.

While Triggerfish is known as Africa’s leading animation studio, it has also become a valuable platform for local storytellers and animation artists to hone their craft for the global stage. Now, the award-winning company plans to make industry knowledge more accessible by hosting a series of free webinars with industry experts. 

“Right now, our big drive is to find talent from the continent and package their work into TV series and feature films that we can bring to the international marketplace,” said Forrest.

In 2015, Triggerfish's Story Lab programme, launched in partnership with the Walt Disney Company and the Department of Trade and Industry, provided a platform for budding animators. Zambian writer Malenga Mulendema is one of 8 Story lab winners and her animated cartoon, Mama K's Super 4 will be made by Triggerfish and distributed worldwide by British children’s entertainment company Cake. 

Aimed at children ages 4 to 6, Mama K's Super 4 is about 4 planet-saving African school girls. 

For Forrest, it's about bringing authentically African stories to the forefront, but also tailoring local video content for worldwide distribution. The programme and webinars drive home the idea that telling the story is equally as important as making sure the project is financially viable. 

According to him, “The next step in the evolution of African storytelling is a real awareness of where our storytelling fits in the world stage in terms of what can be sold on an international level – that’s what we’re hoping to achieve.”

On 4 November 2017, these web-based masterclasses will be published on the Triggerfish website as well as their YouTube channel where viewers can post questions about the seminar in real-time.

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