Award-winning international production houses Kindle Entertainment (UK) and Mediamax (Canada), and Toonz Entertainment, a preeminent content and animation company headquartered in India, have commenced production on the joint CBeebies and CBBC co-commissioned Jamillah & Aladdin (52 x 14’). The series, a contemporary re-working of the classic Arabian Nights story, is co-financed by Mediamax’s parent company – Canadian finance and production group Mediabiz. Filming of the series commenced on location in South Africa’s Western Cape this month.
Jamillah & Aladdin has been co-commissioned by Kay Benbow, Controller of CBeebies and Cheryl Taylor Controller of CBBBC. Michael Towner is the Executive Producer for CBeebies and Sue Nott is the Executive Producer for CBBC. Anne Brogan is the Executive Producer for Kindle Entertainment. The series is produced by Emma Stuart, the lead director is Rebecca Rycroft and the Head Writer is Kathy Waugh.
Imira Entertainment, a Toonz Entertainment company and Spain’s leading production and distribution company specialising in kids & youth programming, is on board to distribute the series worldwide (excluding UK, Ireland and Australia).
Aimed at a young audience, the series follows Jamillah (Blossom Campbell), a 21st century London girl who stumbles upon a curious lamp in her attic, and is transported back to ancient Baghdad by the lamp’s resident comical genie (Leroy Osei-Bonsu). There she meets Aladdin (Wilson Radjou-Pujalte), a street-smart young boy who knows the city like the back of his hand – who shows her a whole new world of adventure, excitement and magic. Accompanied by the genie, each episode sees feisty heroine Jamillah revisiting Baghdad where, together with Aladdin, she encounters a host of colourful characters – tricksters and travellers, fortune tellers and goat herds, and even the Sultan and his daughter the princess.
Kay Benbow, Acting Director of Children’s and Controller of CBeebies says: “Jamillah & Aladdin will transport viewers to an enchanting world full of adventure and intrigue. The series is packed with wonderful stories, that will delight and entertain our combined audiences.
Cheryl Taylor, Controller of CBBC. says: “I am certain that children of all ages will be drawn to our two colourful protagonists. Jamillah is a modern girl who embraces each new adventure with intelligence and determination and Aladdin imbues each tale with customary mischief and charm.
Anne Brogan Executive Producer Kindle Entertainment says: “Jamillah is a wonderful heroine and a great role model for girls. She is feisty and bold, courageous and kind, and a perfect match for Aladdin. She believes she can do anything he can – though he often disagrees!”
P. Jayakumar, CEO Toonz Media Group comments: “Jamillah & Aladdin is an authentically Eastern story with worldwide appeal, taking elements of the mystical past and weaving them into a fresh, modern series for audiences today to enjoy. We are fortunate to be working with industry-leading partners on this project, from Kindle Entertainment and Imira to the renowned CBeebies and CBBC channels.”
Karine Martin, CEO and President of Mediabiz, says: “Jamillah & Aladdin takes a fresh look at a classic tale that will appeal to audiences all over the world. We are proud to participate in a production that brings together talented individuals from four different continents for whom this universal tale resonates.”
Sergi Reitg, CEO of Imira Entertainment says: “This series is a combination of everything young audiences, and by extension broadcasters, are looking for – magic, adventure, strong storytelling and compelling characters. We can’t wait to bring Jamillah & Aladdin to the international market.”