Meet The People Behind Those Taiwanese Animated News Clips You See Everywhere

Around this time last year, Tiger Woods crashed his car outside of his Florida mansion, and the buzz surrounding the story was incredible.

Everyone wanted to know:

  • Where was Tiger going at 2 am?
  • Was he cheating on his wife?
  • Did Elin attack him with a golf club?
  • Were alcohol or drugs involved?

As Tiger and Elin kept silent about the matter, all anyone could do was speculate about what really happened.

Days later, an animated reenactment of the Tiger Woods crash appeared on YouTube showing two possible scenarios that lead to the crash. The voice-overs and subtitles were in Chinese, but the animation was all that was needed to tell the story.

The video brought to life everything everyone was talking about.  People went nuts for it.

Since then, we’ve all seen dozens of these kinds of videos on topics as diverse as TSA screenings and the iPhone 4/Gizmodo controversy.

So, who are the people behind these videos, and how did they come up with the idea?

Enter Hong Kong media tycoon Jimmy Lai.

Last year, he came up with this idea of using animation to tell a story that lacked pictures or video. Within his Next Media group, Lai created Next Media Animation (NMA) – a CGI shop dedicated to producing animated videos in support of stories published by the Next Media brands.

Based in Taiwan, Next Media Animation was responsible for the Tiger Woods animation. Since then, the Next Media subsidiary has created thousands of new videos.

With a staff about about 250 people, NMA does two hours and 10 minutes of animation a week, exec Michael Logan tells us. The massive crew can slap a news clip together in just three hours.

Watch our interview with NMA’s Michael Logan to find out more about the CGI shop:

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