Singapore kids' show to air spin-off in China

The Dream Defenders series, which follows twin heroes Zane and Zoey as they do battle in the world of dreams, has been sold to 80 countries since it was first broadcast in 2011. The earliest the adapted version may be released for the Chinese market
The Dream Defenders series, which follows twin heroes Zane and Zoey as they do battle in the world of dreams, has been sold to 80 countries since it was first broadcast in 2011. The earliest the adapted version may be released for the Chinese market could be two years from now.PHOTO: TINY ISLAND PRODUCTIONS

It will be adapted for the market there in tie-up with Chinese firm

A Singapore children's 3D animated series starring twin heroes who do battle in the world of dreams will now be adapted for the Chinese market.

Local animation firm Tiny Island Productions, which is behind the series called Dream Defenders, will work with Chinese media group WingsMedia to adapt the series.

The original series follows twins Zane and Zoey as they battle Icela, the evil ruler of Dreamworld, who threatens the real world with nightmarish creatures. The show has been sold to 80 countries since it was first broadcast in 2011.

The show's main heroes and monsters will be made Chinese for the adaptation, which will see China come under attack from mythical creatures such as the dragon, phoenix and qilin. A pair of Chinese twins will learn how to enter the dreamworld from Zane and Zoey, to protect China from these creatures.

Gaining an entry point into the Chinese market was not easy, said Tiny Island Productions chief executive David Kwok, as the country has very strict regulations. "We needed to have an adaptation of the Dream Defenders IP (intellectual property), rather than bring the original series in, as the Chinese market is very particular. We needed to include things from Chinese history, for example."

Tiny Studio Productions will work on the animation and creative content for the Dream Defenders spin-off, while WingsMedia will distribute it in and outside China.

The show will fall under a new science-fiction franchise called Starship MZ, which will include TV series, feature films and comics adapted for the China market.

Having inked the collaboration at the 23rd Shanghai TV Festival last week, Mr Kwok said the studio is now looking for investors and starting work on the spin-off.

He said no date has been fixed for the release of the series, but the earliest might be two years from now.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 23, 2017, with the headline 'S'pore kids' show to air spin-off in China'. Print Edition | Subscribe