NBC News has a profile of Next Media Animation, which has produced such viral hits as the “U.S.-Sino Currency Rap Battle” and “Liu Xiaobo: A Story of Hope and Struggle”:
Like its media cousin, Apple Daily (which has been banned in mainland China for years), NMA doesn’t shy away from tackling material politically sensitive to Beijing.
The team covered the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to Liu Xiaobo and has been contemplating “doing something on Ai Weiwei,” a high-profile Chinese artist who hasn’t been seen or heard from since he was detained on April 3.
“With stuff like that, it’s about striking the right tone,” said Logan. “[Ai’s detention] is such an important topic that we don’t want to take it too lightly.”
Everything else, however, they do thumb their noses at—an approach that given their popularity seems to be succeeding.
“Certain themes work well on the Internet,” said Logan, outlining narratives that portray a sense of affronted justice; are celebrity-driven (“I call it celebrity plus misery”) and are not already captured on video; or employ their newest experimental format, like the rap battle.
“We’re working on one about Obama versus Gadhafi,” he continued. “We’re still trying to figure out who will voice Gadhafi.”
See two of NMA’s hits below: