For years, FXX has been asserting its ambition to push into animation. Those plans are finally bearing fruit. In September, the Walt Disney Company-owned comedy-focused cabler will launch Cake, a half-hour late-night series that will combine animation and live-action shorts.

Cake will be “its own unique series as well as incubator for shorter shows that could be developed into half-hour series,” FX Networks chairman John Landgraf said at the Television Critics Association event this week, per a report in Deadline. “We think there is some truly superb and original creative work being done in short form, and Cake on FXX will be a fantastic medium to highlight some of the best of it.”

Other than that, details about the new show are under wraps. However, the channel, which skews toward the 18–34 age group, launched a new talent-scouting scheme in 2018: the FXX Elevation Award is handed out annually at GLAS Animation Festival, with the winner receiving $25,000 to develop an original animated project with FXX.

That grant honors work that “embodies distinctive characters, bold storytelling, and a singular point of view.” It is understood that the projects by the grant recipients may appear on Cake. The first two winners of the award were Niki Lindroth von Bahr and Sophie Koko Gate.

FXX’s animation strategy is being spearheaded by Kate Lambert, FX Networks’s senior vice president of series development and animation. She was responsible for developing Archer, which premiered on sister channel FX before migrating to FXX. In the past, Landgraf has signalled his intention to commission animated shorts of unconventional lengths: one or three minutes, as well as the more typical seven and 11 minutes. “I think by doing short-form animation, we will add another dimension to the channel, which is still pretty young-skewing,” he told Deadline in 2017. “Television is being consumed on many more screens, and I’d like FXX to follow young consumers in their short-form consumption habits.”

(Image at top: “The Adventures of OG Sherlock Kush,” a web series that was part of Animation Domination High-Def’s Youtube channel.)

Alex Dudok de Wit

Alex Dudok de Wit

Alex Dudok de Wit is Associate Editor of Cartoon Brew.

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