Animation academy soon to open in Cebu

Ehda M. Dagooc (The Freeman) - April 28, 2021 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — Animation studio, Toon City, is set to open an animation academy in Cebu, banking on the rich artistic talents in the province.

Scheduled to open this coming June, 2021, the Toon City Academy (TCA) expects to help Cebu develop its animation industry and eventually make the city as “Animation Hub,” said Juan Miguel del Rosario, president and chief executive officer of Toon City.

Del Rosario who is also the President of the Animation Council of the Philippines said that this opening, which aims to provide talent supply of highly skilled animators, is seen to boost the industry’s goal of increasing animation earnings to one percent of the $270-billion total global revenues.

At present, the country’s animation industry revenue is placed at $20 million to $30 million.

Toon City, which maintains headquarters in Manila and ranked 22nd best in the world, is working with big clients like Disney, Warner Bros., and Universal Studios.

De Guzman noted that there’s a huge demand for animators in the country due to the rising interest for animation from global entertainment companies.

“Toon City is looking for animators. There’s a lot of work and we know for a fact that people in Cebu are very talented. And we would like to expand our reach by asking the young people of Cebu to join Toon City or Toon City Academy,” Del Rosario said.

The TCA is the official training arm of Toon City, with veteran Filipino animators as instructors.

According to Del Rosario, jobs in animation industry pay well and provide jobs even for those who have not finished a four-year course. He added that 60 percent of their animators are non-college graduates.

Animators earn from P24,000 to P25,000 monthly, which is not bad especially for those who haven’t finished a four-year college course, Del Rosario pointed out.

Interestingly, there are animators who are earning an average of P100,000 monthly, depending on projects and work sophistication.

“We believe in the creativity of the Cebuanos. We believe the talent (for animation) is in Cebu,” said Del Rosario adding that the opening of TCA is a way of Toon City to share this opportunity for Cebu to shine in the field of animation “because we believe in the creativity of the Cebuanos.”

“We’re really here to tap the talent of Cebuanos and provide opportunity for them to work with us,” De Guzman reiterated.

Because the studio has a big client base, Toon City’s presence in Cebu will help provide job opportunities for Cebu-based animators, according to Toon City Academy Cebu president Mario Panganiban.

Toon City will be bringing jobs and would not compete with local studios because they would need more people to cope with the big projects given to them, Panganiban assured.

TCA Cebu will provide training for animators to the level and quality required by the major global entertainment companies, he said.

Panganiban noted that the potential and possibilities are great for Cebu if it could prove that it has enough talents that meet the level their clients require.

He added that Cebu’s creative sector could also look at other possible sources of revenue.

Even if Toon City caters to the entertainment industry, Panganiban noted that Cebu could also cater the gaming industry.

In 2020, the global gaming market was valued at $162.32 billion. It is projected to increase to $295.63 billion by 2026.

The Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry, in cooperation with Toon City and TCA, conducted a Virtual Animation Career Fair and Webinar last Saturday, April 24.

The event aimed at putting the creative talents of the Cebuanos to a notch higher level and be at par with sought after global animators.

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