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Spanish tooner, TFI in pact for series

MADRID — Leading Spanish animation house D’Ocon Films Production has inked a deal with top French commercial broadcaster TF1 to produce six animated fiction series over the next two years. The total budget for the series stands at around $40 million.

“The deal formalizes a close working relationship which goes back to our first series, ‘The Fruitties,’ (co-produced by D’Ocon and TF1 in 1990),” said a source at D’Ocon Films.

But the pact also indicates one policy increasingly being adopted by European webs for their children’s programming. Much like other European broadcasters, TF1 has become sensitive to high levels of violence in animation, often originating from Asia.

TF1 president Patrick Le Lay has also made it clear to Daily Variety that he wants the French net to be less dependent on French company AB Production for responsibility over its children’s programming. The three series that TF1 brings to the deal will be generated through its own in-house operation.

In D’Ocon, TF1 has a good partner for series markedly low on violence. Using its patented D’Oc Animation System, and working with animation companies in France, Germany, Italy and the U.S., D’Ocon has produced 13 action animation series, typically featuring cuddly creatures strong on environmental attitude who use cunning rather than force to get their way.

Expanding fast, D’Ocon Films is currently in talks with Italian pubcaster RAI to sign a parallel deal for further TV animation series.

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