Channel 4 launches animation site

Aardman, Lupus board venture

LONDON — U.K. pubcaster Channel 4 has beefed up its online offerings with the launch of a video sharing toon website run in cahoots with animation shingles Aardman and Lupus Films.

4mations, which bowed Monday, aims to bring together the best animation from around the world.

It is an advertising supported YouTube-style site that pays animators for their work, and joins other Channel 4 sites dedicated to documentary and comedy that provide a similar service.

4mations intends to embrace comedy, adult, sci-fi and 3-D work, plus games and specialist groups.

Users are able to view, vote, share and comment on content, embed their favorite clips on their own websites and social networks, upload their own work, pitch for paid commissions and complete for broadcast slots.

Jan Younghusband, Channel 4 commissioning editor, arts and performance, said: “Channel 4 has been a major supporter of the U.K. animation industry for the past 25 years.

“This year, we enjoyed Oscar success with Suzie Templeton’s film of ‘Peter and the Wolf’ and are continuing our commitment to animation with the launch of 4mations. I’m delighted to see Lupus Films and Aardman bring this unique outlet for creative talent to fruition.”

The web’s new media commissioner for factual, Adam Gee, said the site would provide a fresh focus for the broadcaster’s animation output and adopt a global perspective.

Partnerships in India, Canada and China and 4mations are in the pipeline.

“Animation is really at home on the Web and 4mations is the perfect place for the unique archive, the boundary-pushing new material and the all-important talent development schemes to come together,” said Gee.