CAKE, King Banana TV and Paper Owl Films have announced they are teaming up on 2D animated family sitcom Nikhil & Jay for CBeebies.
Nikhil & Jay is based on award-winning author Chitra Soundar’s book series Nikhil and Jay inspired by her own dual heritage family of British and South Asian heritage. With brand new visuals, this 52 x 11 minute funny family centred animated series is steeped in comedy while preserving the love and warmth of the original books.
The series will be produced for CBeebies by King Banana TV (Yakka Dee!, Meet the Experts), Paper Owl Films (Pablo, Happy The Hoglet) and CAKE (Angry Birds Summer Madness and Supa Team 4), with funding from Northern Ireland Screen. CAKE will own distribution rights and will be selling the series internationally. The team will reflect both South Asian and British cultures and encourage and mentor new talent from diverse backgrounds. Becky Overton (Thomas and Friends, Ninja Express, Justin’s House) leads a diverse writing team with Exec Producer Chitra Soundar ensuring cultural authenticity at every level. The characters are designed by Chris Allen, the talent behind the design of Yakka Dee!
Nikhil & Jay tells the adventures of two young brothers whose Mum is Indian by heritage and Dad is English. With a myriad of grandparents, uncles and aunts, both Indian and English, their life is a rich blend of customs, traditions, festivals, foods and music. A family sitcom written from a place of knowledge, love and authentic, lived experience of two cultures coming together, Nikhil & Jay celebrates the similarities and differences with fast paced wit and visual humour.
Kate Morton, Head of BBC Children’s Commissioning & Acquisitions 0-6, said, “Chitra’s books are full of heart, warmth and humour and we are so happy to bring Nikhil & Jay to CBeebies. It is a truly lovely show and it’s so important that children get to see themselves reflected on screens. We can’t wait to bring these stories to life”.
Lotte Elwell, Company Director, King Banana TV said, “Everyone at King Banana is so excited to be working with this fantastic team to bring Chitra’s experiences to the screen. We know that the stories, character and humour in Nikhil & Jay will have a huge impact on the pre-school audience”.
Gavin Halpin, Managing Director, Paper Owl Films said, “We are delighted to be working on this beautiful show, it comes from Chitra’s heart and her passion for seeing all children reflected on screen”.
Ed Galton, CEO at CAKE said, “We love the authenticity of the books that Chitra created and are looking forward to working with the talented creators and producers at Paper Owl and King Banana in bringing this project to the screen”.