Beyond Entertainment Partners with Custom Nuts


Beyond Entertainment, part of Banijay, has entered a new partnership with independent animation and creative studio Custom Nuts.

The two companies, called Beyond Custom Nuts, will co-produce animated series for the international market. The first three projects, including Jock and Sunny, will be launched at Kidscreen Summit this month.

Jock and Sunny, a sci-fi slapstick comedy, sees the titular characters stranded in a sci-fi version of Tokyo, where they must survive shady jobs, the local rock scene and deportation.

The other projects launching at Kidscreen Summit are Shape & Shapers, an anime-inspired series about surfing, subculture and the evolution of the modern surfboard, and Classical Chaos, a curated collection of kid-relatable animated classic literary adaptations.

Further projects will be added to the pipeline through 2023 and into future years.

Custom Nuts was co-founded in 2019 by Silas Hickey, former regional head of development and original production for AsiaPac at Cartoon Network, and Matthew Howison.

Melinda Wearne, Beyond Entertainment’s executive in charge of scripted development and production across kids and premium drama, has been heading the new relationships between the two companies.

“This new co-production venture combines Beyond’s strength in scripted storytelling and its international reach with the unique creative talents of the Custom Nuts team to present an exciting opportunity for us both,” Wearne said. “Our partner’s knowledge of and expertise in both anime and Western cartoon narratives gives it a unique edge, and together we are well placed to create and deliver truly global entertainment. We are thrilled to announce this new partnership and cannot wait to formally introduce Beyond Custom Nuts titles at Kidscreen.”

Hickey added, “The opportunity to combine anime and Western cartoon storytelling, and formal aesthetics, is a creative vision that I have always been driven to fulfill. Beyond Custom Nuts was formed to solve these kinds of complex transnational conundrums. Beyond’s scale and expertise will help us to accelerate the time from script to screen without compromising on quality—or our creative vision—and will allow us jointly to retain more control and ownership over our IP as we take it out to the market. We have exciting times ahead.”