MIDDLETON, Wis., November 5, 2015 – American Girl, a premium brand for girls and a subsidiary of Mattel, Inc. (MAT), presents four new, digital content platforms to connect, inspire, and champion girls across the globe. The original programs—Z. crew, AG Life, Short Form Films, and For Girls, By Girls—shine a spotlight on the amazing creativity, talents, and interests of girls everywhere, while fueling a sense of belonging and connection.
“Our American Girl roots are in creating smart content for girls, and we’re excited to expand our efforts in the digital arena,” said Kathy Monetti, SVP of Global Marketing for American Girl. “Whether the new content is for girls, about girls, by girls, or starring girls, we hope it brings all girls together in a shared, meaningful experience.”
American Girl Short Form Films
Working with the creative crowdsourcing studio Tongal, American Girl is bringing to life its inspiring BeForever characters—1950s Maryellen and 1970s Julie—in two, original 15-minute short form films. The Maryellen film will be released today on the American Girl YouTube channel, followed by the Julie film on November 12. Written, directed, and produced by members of the Tongal creative community, the short films star up-and-coming young actresses Harlie Galloway (Cincinnati, OH) as Maryellen and Jolie Ledford (Hudsonville, MI) as Julie. Both girls were chosen from a public voting phase that received unprecedented response from the Tongal community.
AG Life is an original, 24-episode lifestyle series created in partnership with Driver Digital, a leading next- generation youth and family entertainment company. Engaging girls from around the world, the new series premiered October 23rd on the American Girl YouTube channel, with new episodes debuting every Friday through April 2016. A team of five upbeat girls host the show, sharing their real-life experiences and celebrating friendship, teamwork, and having fun. Each 4- to 5-minute episode focuses on a theme (e.g. Thanksgiving, Girls Who Rock!, and Fall Fashion), and incorporates recurring topic segments including: Awesome Girl, which features real girls from the American Girl community; Cool Crafts; This or That interactive quizzes; as well as segments on peer-to-peer advice, money skills, pop culture, and food.
For Girls, By Girls
For Girls, By Girls is a brand-new series of non-fiction short films created, directed, and edited by real-life girls. Available on the American Girl YouTube channel, the films were created in partnership with Adolescent, a Los Angeles-based production collective representing directors aged 13-27 that was founded by creative director Ramaa Mosely. The films, aimed at slightly older fans (13 and up), explore girl-centric themes and ask thought-provoking questions like What do you think could happen if girls joined forces? and What’s one thing you can do to lift girls up? For Girls, By Girls builds on a new movement that American Girl ignited earlier this fall withThe Pledge, which celebrates the collective strength of girls and shows them that, together, they’re truly unstoppable. The new film series leverages the power of real girls to challenge and rally other girls to support, encourage, and inspire one another.
“Z. crew” is a new, stop-motion animated web series about making stop-motion films for fans of American Girl. Developed in partnership with digital content marketing and social media agency InPulse Digital, the 10-epsiode series is a first of its kind for the brand and stars an all-new AG vlogger character named “Z.” Each episode is an example of original storytelling that inspires American Girl fans’ own creativity. Since its launch in early September, “Z. crew” episodes have racked up more than 1.3 million views on YouTube, with fans sharing hundreds of their own original stop-motion videos featuring their AG dolls, and joining the conversation around every new episode with the hashtag #AGZcrew.
About American Girl
American Girl is a premium brand for and about girls and a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT, www.mattel.com), the worldwide leader in the design, manufacture, and marketing of toys and family products. Headquartered in Middleton, WI, American Girl offers an inspiring world of dolls, experiences, and entertainment to empower and unite girls of all ages. Best-selling lines include Truly Me™, Girl of the Year™, Bitty Baby™, and the classic historical character line BeForever™. The company sells products through its award-winning catalogue, on www.americangirl.com, in its experiential retail stores nationwide, and in specialty boutiques at select Indigo™ and Chapters™ in Canada and El Palacio de Hierro locations in Mexico City. American Girl’s mission is to fuel belonging and connection among girls, a goal that has already earned the loyalty of millions and the praise and trust of their parents and educators.
Tongal is bringing the world’s creative work to the world’s creative talent. Tongal is a crowdsourced studio, connecting a global community of independent filmmaking talent with advertisers, brands, agencies and studios to produce original video content. With more than 1 billion views and 1,000 successful campaigns to date for iconic names like Anhueser-Busch, Procter & Gamble, LEGO, General Mills, Bacardi, NASA, Lionsgate and more, Tongal is the creative resource of choice for innovative businesses that want to scale video content to reach today’s audiences. Tongal’s creative community has produced TV commercials, digital advertising and other original content, delivering advertising and entertainment to screens around the world, from Snapchat to the Super Bowl to Sundance. Tongal is based in Santa Monica, CA.
About Driver Digital
Driver Digital (www.driverdigital.com) is a premiere Family Entertainment Studio and Network providing outstanding media content across the digital landscape. By creating, producing and distributing quality kids and tween entertainment on YouTube, Driver Digital has become one of the leading “digital first” studios in the demographic. Driver Digital’s sister company, DRIVER Media (www.driver.tv), is an industry-leading production company working for major ad agencies and brands including Coca-Cola, Pepsi, AT&T Microsoft and General Motors.
Adolescent, helmed by Creative Director Ramaa Mosley and Executive Producer Hope Farley is a production collective dedicated to the representation and mentorship of directors aged 13-27 years old for commercials, music videos and social media content. Many of the directors represented by Adolescent are accomplished professional photographers with published work, gallery and museum shows. Others are exceptional filmmakers in film programs across the country. A few were discovered outside of any program and are creative visionaries, shooting and posting their work on social media sites. All have a strong point of view that speaks directly to youth culture. Adolescent’s function is to harness and cultivate each young director’s natural visual and storytelling gift and to connect them with advertising agencies and brands looking for a unique and youthful voice for a wide range of projects.
About InPulse Digital
Founded in 2004, InPulse Digital is a global, independent agency known for excellence in multi-platform digital content marketing, social media strategy, and execution for specialized brand segments ranging from entertainment, media to kids. InPulse Digital is one of the first digital and social media agencies that developed bilingual web and app development and bilingual social media asset management for Latin America and the US Hispanic media and entertainment brands. InPulse Digital has 3 offices—Miami, Montevideo and Buenos Aires, with a complete team of digital natives who specialize in non-linear content creation, curation, production, social media publishing, and digital media planning and buying. InPulse Digital’s clients include Mattel, E! Entertainment, Canal Sony, Azteca America, Food Network, Universal Music, Sony Music, recording artists, global soccer superstar Rafa Marquez, and kids’ iconic properties Barney and Strawberry Shortcake, among others.
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