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Final Frontier Brings Animation Roster to China

Based in Shanghai, Final Frontier is the first international production company in the country representing a roster of animation studios and directors.

Nike China’s ‘The Road to HBL’ is one of two initial projects executed in Asia by Shanghai-based Final Frontier.

SHANGHAI -- Final Frontier became May 11 the first international production company permanently on the ground in China representing a roster of animation talent.

Entirely animated commercials have been a rarity in Chinese campaigns and animation services have tended to be just a small part of China-based agency, production and posthouse offerings. Other international roster-based production companies have dipped their toes in the market, but until now none have set up full-time in China.

‘Year With Uber’ by Le Cube and R/GA Shanghai is one of two initial projects executed in Asia by Shanghai-based Final Frontier.

Based in Shanghai, Final Frontier represents 15 animation studios and directors in the Asia-Pacific markets.

The award-winning roster includes design and motion studio Tendril (Toronto and São Paulo); stop-motion specialists Can Can Club (Buenos Aires); motion design and animation studio, Le Cube (São Paulo and Buenos Aires); BleedVFX (Buenos Aires and Barcelona) best known for 3D simulations; and mixed media powerhouse Los York (Los Angeles and New York). Between them, they offer the full suite of animation services, including 2D, 3D, motion graphics, stop-motion, visual effects, fluid and particle simulation and mixed media, as well as music and sound design for animation and video games.

Gustavo Karam

Final Frontier was founded by the same team behind Le Cube. Executive producer of both companies Gustavo Karam said Le Cube had ambitions to expand into new markets, but didn't want to simply follow the crowd to the United States. When Le Cube’s first job for China last year proved an successful experience, Karam said, “it opened our eyes up to this vast, vibrant market, where the creative scene is blowing up and brands are hungry to explore new approaches.”

Since its soft launch in late 2017, Final Frontier has already executed two major projects in Asia.

For Year with Uber Le Cube worked with R/GA Singapore to create personalized, region-specific 2D animated music videos based on Uber trip data. The campaign received widespread acclaim and a Motionographer Motion Award nomination in the UX/UI category.

The second was Nike China’s The Road to HBL with R/GA Shanghai, a stylized 90-second, 2D POV animation promoting the brand’s nascent basketball platform.

Final Frontier’s team in China currently comprises Karam and a compact support staff. Karam will begin visiting agencies in Shanghai this month.

Source: Final Frontier

Thomas J. McLean's picture

Tom McLean has been writing for years about animation from a secret base in Los Angeles.