Teletoon brings back its Pilot Project

The cartoon channel is reaching out to pros and amateurs alike in a search for the next big show.

Teletoon is trying to find its next big show with another round of the Teletoon at Night Pilot Project, an animation contest that calls on viewers to choose the winner.

Started this week, the contest is for both professional and aspiring animators, with the winner getting $10,000 and tickets to the Television Animation Conference and Ottawa International Animation Festival.

Fred Kennedy, the host of Fred at Night on Sundays, will play several of the submissions and talk about the contest each week, Russell Ward, VP, marketing, Teletoon, tells MiC.

‘He’s going to be active in showcasing these things and talking about them, so I think it gives a real creative voice to it,’ Ward says. ‘He’s a creator himself, he’s aspirational for these people. Having him as the face of the overall program is going to add to the authenticity in the sense it’s coming from creators and gives it that showcase and promotion this deserves.’

Teletoon is currently in talks with prospective sponsors for the contest. Rogers was the sponsor for the first edition of the contest, which launched in 2007.

Submissions will be featured on and Visitors will be able to vote on the sites for the week’s favourite pilots. A jury will choose the top five overall, which will be posted online on July 31. After another round of public voting, the winner will be announced Sept. 18.

The winner of the first round of the project was mafia-inspired cartoon Fugget About It, beating out 250 other submissions to get a development deal. The show is expected to premiere on Teletoon next year.

The contest is a bit different this time around, says Ward.

‘The first time we did this it was really limited to producers and people in the industry because the tools of creation weren’t yet there for everybody,’ he says. ‘But now that it’s a lot easier and people are creating animation in Flash and on their own computers, it’s available to everybody else. Anybody can enter this contest.’