Hanging Out in Venice with the JibJab Crew

Remember that great scene in Annie Hall where kids in an elementary school classroom speak directly to the camera and indicate what they will become as adults? On Friday afternoon, a charming echo of that classic sequence unfolded at the offices of JibJab.

The company threw open its doors to celebrate the success of StoryBots, a content App aimed at families with children ages two to seven. A gaggle of kids in the target demo, mostly sons and daughters of JibJab employees, were running around the offices Friday trying out different aspects of the App, which is free to sample and costs $4.99 a month for a full interactive subscription.

At one point, a majority of those kids were seated around the JibJab boardroom table, raising their hands as co-founder Evan Spiridellis asked various questions and played animated shorts. Judging by this future career-achieving group’s response, StoryBots’ upcoming Animal Songs are going to be very popular.

We spent a good chunk of time at the pizza-fueled event talking with Evan’s brother and co-founder Gregg, who recalled the joys of being able for many years to walk to work in Venice and highlighted the massive popularity of JibJab’s interactive greeting card series for holidays like Mother’s Day.

Given JibJab’s tight connection with The Tonight Show, we couldn’t help but ask Gregg about our idea that instead of FOX, departing host Jay Leno should consider a newsier Al Jazeera talk show with DC journo-type guests. For what it’s worth, Gregg approved of the idea.

Check out the bouncy, infectious StoryBots content here.

@hollywoodspin rhorgan@gmail.com Richard Horgan is co-editor of Fishbowl.