Coronavirus lockdowns give cartoons big boost

Animation streaming increased by 22 percent during coronavirus, according to Reelgood

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Due to coronavirus, more people are staying at home, spending time with their families and binge-watching cartoons.

According to streaming aggregator Reelgood, animation streaming has increased by 22 percent since the start of coronavirus lockdowns nationwide – the largest spike of any genre.

The numbers reveal most people are leaning towards easy-to-watch content in a time of crisis. Family-oriented streaming has increased by 17 percent and musicals by almost 13 percent, while genres like horror have seen an eight percent decrease.

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Animated shows like “Rick and Morty” have seen a 12.9 percent boost in streaming from March to May 2020, and other feel-good shows like “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” and “Schitt’s Creek” have seen spikes around six percent.

HBO Max launched its streaming platform Wednesday with its own timely selections of animation TV, including an adaptation of the classic cartoon series "Looney Tunes."

Looney Tunes, Warner Bros. Media

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The new service by AT&T and WarnerMedia is featuring streaming favorites like “Friends” for $15 a month, making HBO Max the priciest subscription service on the market.

Cartoons are also seeing a boost due to the fact that the virus has shuttered production of live-action entertainment, while animation and voice-overs can be produced almost anywhere.

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The transition to at-home production has been easier for some studios like Netflix, according to Steelhouse CEO Mark Douglas, who emphasized that the streaming giant is a Silicon Valley tech company.

"They are comfortable with technology," Douglas said. "Netflix is creating content worldwide, so they were the first to go international... and they are producing a lot of content all over the world."

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