I’ve been working on the story world extension of a new show for Cartoon Network called ‘The Amazing World Of Gumball’.
I want to go into lots of detail, but I can’t right now – it’s under wraps until we launch. The strategy was designed between seasons with a tight team – a handful on strategy from the Cartoon Network’s side, and of course the key creatives from the Gumball team: Ben Bocquelet, James Lamont, Jon Foster & Mic Graves worked on the creative & story lining.
We knew there was value in being in these spaces, but we new whatever we did – it had to be excellent. The team delivered some truly brilliant comedy – incredibly designed, beautifully written – and importantly – the content adheres to the strength of each publishing platform.
I was able to show some sneak peaks of the campaign to a select few, one of whom was film maker Lance Weiler who suggested I explore the value of transmedia on development process. He will be talking about this (Stories as R&D) at StoryWorld Conference in San Francisco later this year.
I asked writer James Lamont his thoughts on this. ‘It provided us with an opportunity to closely examine some of the less explored character traits of main characters – most notably Nicole – which has already had an impact on the writing of series 2, even helping to shape the entire plot of one episode.”
Jon Foster (writer) adds, ‘You get to imagine what life is like everyday in Elmore without Gumball necessarily tearing through it causing trouble’. And in terms of design, director Mic Graves notes ‘(it has given time for) Antoine Perez to play with mood and lighting in his art direction, something that will inform and inspire the work on the second series styling.’
Sorry I can’t say more. (What a tease). But you can read a whole lot more about the development process in the Toonzone interview with Ben here. And you can check out Gumball’s home made website here.
So begins my investigation into these kind of projects and their influence on the development process. Alongside marketing, publicity, reach, social engagement and all that jazz – can we add ‘development’ (in a measurable way) to the list of reasons we should commission story world extensions like these?
I will try to come back with more. And a list of the amazing creative & production Gumball people who worked on this when I can.
In the meantime – Gumball episodes premiere on Monday on Cartoon Network US 7:30/6:30 central. The rest of world later this year. And the online story world will debut soon…