CMC: Sky kids move is ‘step in the right direction’

Kids-logo-460_2MorphSky’s move into original children’s content commissioning has been welcomed by an influential UK kids media body.

Anna Home, chair of the Children’s Media Foundation, said yesterday’s announcement that the European satcaster was beginning to commission content was a “step in the right direction”.

UK indies, who have long struggled to sell shows to UK broadcasters despite tax-breaks and other local funding mechanisms, are among the most likely beneficiaries of Sky’s strategy.

“The Children’s Media Foundation welcomes Sky’s announcement that it is commissioning original UK children’s content,” Home said in a statement. “Indeed, we welcome any additional commissioning of content from UK producers, but particularly fully-funded content, which has a British perspective.”

Currently, the BBC is by far the biggest funder of UK-created kids programming, with Channel 5’s Milkshake! block and, to a lesser extent, ITV also active in the space.

Home said that while new entrants were welcome news to produces, it was unclear the extent Sky would commission new shows for its Sky Kids App, which was officially unveiled this week.

“It is too early to see to what extent Sky intend to fund programming and whether producers will still be required to find additional funding from elsewhere, but this is certainly a step in the right direction,” said Home.

Sky this week commissioned Bristol-based Aardman Animation to create a new version of the classic British Claymation series Morph and an accompanying live-action how-to show.

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