Interview with Michael Logan, Next Media Animation

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Everybody is talking about Next Media Animation and 3d animated news. Michael Logan tell us more about production progress of their videos.

 

1. When and how did you come up with the idea to create a full service 3d animation studio?
The first news animations were published in September 2009. The research and development process took place for several years before that. Animated news is an evolution of a visual style of storytelling that Apple Daily and Next Media are well known for. The idea is animate the ‘missing’ action … ie those scenes not captured on video. Animation is a tool to help fully explain a story. In our view, having a news story without an animation is like having a newspaper without a color photograph … it just isn’t done. Our viewers have come to expect animation from our video news coverage.

2. How many people are involved in making a video?
There are presently 200 people at Next Media Animation and we have plans to add more. NMA provides news animation to the Apple Daily websites in Taiwan and Hong Kong, the NextTV station in Taiwan and to external clients.

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3. Which software do you use for making your videos?
We use a variety of software and hardware tools that are well known throughout the animation industry. But what is important is not what tools we’ve acquired, but how we’ve applied them. We have set up a production process that allows us to turn around animations in the space of three hours, which is very important when working within an hourly news cycle

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4. Who are your main clients?
Again, our main clients are internal: Apple Daily websites in Taiwan and Hong Kong, the NextTV station in Taiwan. Externally, we have done work for the Cartoon Network, BBC, etc.

5. Did you expect a success like this?
Yes, and we expect to be even more successful in the future.

6. Tiger Woods, Google, Apple, North Korea. How do you choose the topics for your next videos?
We’re a news company at heart and we animate whatever is driving the news cycle.

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7.Your animation are pervaded with a subtle irony. Is this the key to making successful videos?
Just like there are different styles of written articles (straight news, features, commentary) there are different styles of animated news stories. Some of our animations are straight news. Some are satirical and having a sense of humor helps.