Canadian Creativity 2012
It’s hard to resist the charms of a company where the CEO is also dubbed Supreme Commander, while professing to be a “neo-nerd.”“Grown adults sitting at a computer making fantasy cartoons, I think would justify the title,” says Asaph “Ace” Fipke, “Nerd has become cool.” Fipke founded Nerd Corps in 2002 and snagged a 52-episode order along with a toy deal right out of the gate with its first original series, “Storm Hawks.” Its next success came with “League of Super Evil,” which ran for three seasons. Its latest action comedy “Slugterra,” is set to launch on Disney XD in October. “It’s poised to be the next big boys television property,” predicts Fipke. Nerd Corps seeks to create an immersive world that includes interactive games, toys, and licensing. In between working on IPs, the nerds have worked on shows such as “Max Steel,” “Hot Wheels: Battle Force 5,” and “Monster High” for Mattel. As fun as it is to discover the child within, kids animation is also big biz. “From a business perspective you create, through animation, these fantasy worlds and fantasy travels well,” Fipke says. It’s an effective business model that has netted Nerd Corps “incredible” international sales. After all, this genre doesn’t face the same difficulties as others when it comes to exporting to the world. That’s why other Vancouver companies, such Atomic Cartoons, are also finding success catering to kids. Atomic has worked on major properties such as “Spider-Man Unlimited,” “Transformers: Rescue Bots,” and its own homegrown hit, “Atomic Betty.” An interesting newcomer angling for a way in is Bron Animation. The company will develop and produce original kids animated properties with a focus on absurd comedy with plenty of action, starting with “Mighty Mighty Monsters” based on the Sean Patrick O’Reilly book series. Kids rule.