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Netflix Picks First Animated Series From Africa

Netflix recently added The South African produced original animated series, “Mama K’s Team 4” to its archive of African content. Zambian writer Malenga Mulendema created the series.

 

Mulendema was one of the eight winners of the Triggerfish Story Lab in 2015. Animation studio Walt Disney backs the pan-African talent search. Cameroonian artist Malcolm Wope designed the series.

 

The creator, Mulendema, said that the experience of watching cartoons as a child in Zambia inspired her. She explained that none of the heroes at the time looked like her or lived in a world like hers.

 

 

Staged in Lusaka, Zambia, the series features four teenage girls living in a futuristic version of the African city. A retired secret agent recruits them to save the world. Aimed at children aged 6 to 11, “Mama K’s Team 4” draws inspiration from 90s R&B and hip-hop girl groups. The series has 26 episodes, each of which is 22 minutes long.

 

Triggerfish Animation Studios and British Kids’ and family entertainment company CAKE made the super-hero series. The Cape Town-based animation studio has grown to become the powerhouse in South Africa’s animation industry. They produced two of the five top-grossing South African films of all time. They are Adventures in Zambezia in 2012 and Khumba in 2013.

 

The Vice President of original animation at Netflix, Melissa Cobb, expressed their excitement to give African writers a global platform to be heard. She added that “Mama K’s Team 4” has the potential to allow African children of the new generation see themselves in the powerful characters illustrated in the series.

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