Harun Robert on returning to tv with Disney’s ‘Think about That’, and the challenges in conserving at the moment’s youngsters entertained and knowledgeable
When Harun Robert aka Rob made his digital transition in 2014 — along with his YouTube channel, Mad Stuff with Rob — he managed to translate the robust fanbase he gained from tv into figures, averaging a number of lakh, even million views for every video.
However a query that adopted Rob like a shadow, regardless of the channel’s regular viewership, was when he would return to tv along with his personal present. He listened to their requests, which has now resulted in an artwork present for Disney Channel titled Think about That.
“It’s a totally totally different course of to make content material for digital. It’s a shorter and barely simpler format. However capturing for tv is extra elaborate; it’s difficult and rewarding. There’s this rush you get if you shoot for TV, which I’ve been lacking,” says Rob, over cellphone from Goa.
The format of Think about That is straightforward; it’s a do-it-yourself (DIY) present and a terrain he’s conversant in and mastered over time. He’ll interact with kids and inspire them to give you designs and craft fashions, introduce ideas and #lifelessons in a non-preachy manner — a la the extremely profitable M.A.D.
Rob, nevertheless, says that it’s unfair to check the present with M.A.D, which laid the inspiration for his viewers. “This present is exclusive in its personal manner and we have now created DIY tasks which are entertaining and fascinating,” he says.
The theme of the present is constructed round upcycling, the place artwork would take its form out of discarded supplies and on a regular basis trash. Rob agrees that it’s a idea that has been done-to-death by none aside from himself. However he counters this by drawing a meals analogy. “In the event you combine two elements, you get a brand new flavour. It’s the identical case with artwork as properly. There’s a lot on the market, even for artwork,” he provides.
The concept is to introduce re-purposing to youngsters, drawing designs and crafts centering round that. “We preserve producing recent trash lately. For instance, in my outdated present, I used to make fashions out of floppy disks, which have been changed by CDs. Now, it’s arduous disks,” he says, “As soon as trash adjustments, you give you a distinct thought and work round that.”
The massive image
When Rob was performing his bag of tips in earlier reveals, he was primarily coping with an viewers (learn: youngsters) within the pre-smartphone and Marvel period. Has the demography of the viewers modified, given the scant consideration span amongst at the moment’s tech-savy youngsters? “They’re probably the most difficult viewers to please,” says Rob, “Tv nonetheless has the attain as a result of it’s a household affair. I’m not simply catering to youngsters however households as properly. Even throughout the lockdown, most households experimented with artwork.”
Their publicity to know-how has solely made the trail simpler to speak with kids, says Rob. “We used to like comedian books once we have been youngsters since there was no TV. However at the moment’s youngsters are consuming loads on-line. The medium has modified, however the curiosity remains to be there. My function is to faucet into their curiosity.”
Which is why Rob has launched a particular section in Think about That, whereby he would take video requests from youngsters. “They will place a design request, or if they’ve a bunch of supplies and are in search of a approach to create one thing, we will additionally work round that.”
Greater than a decade into the enterprise, Rob has interacted and engaged with scores of youngsters, a few of whom take into account him an imaginary buddy. He recounts the one time a boy walked as much as him and mentioned: “Don’t you keep in mind? We have been watching the present collectively…” It took a while for Rob to understand what the boy meant. “He thought I used to be them by TV and was current with him. That’s the type of relationship I share,” he says.
Think about That will première on September 6 on Disney Channel