Four of the most prodigious Scottish-based business and artistic talents, including writer and comedian Phil Differ, have combined to create a unique and internationally-focused Scottish comic-strip character who is teeing up to take the world of global golf by storm.
Scratch MacTee, a grousing, grumpy but irresistibly good-hearted golf expert with a caustic Caledonian take on the idiosyncrasies of the ancient game, has just been launched after a long and meticulous period of preparatory groundwork.
He will be featured in major spreads in top international golf publications such as Today’s Golfer last month, Golf Illustrated, with its high net worth demographic, this month and the July issue of Golf Digest South Africa.
Its creators predict that this running start is just the beginning and that Scratch MacTee has the life, character and platform to develop into a major media and merchandising business tapping into the resources of 60 million golfers worldwide and a golf equipment market alone worth £14.7 billion.
The quartet behind comic hero MacTee – whom they say represents a philosophy of life as well as dry, humorous wisdom about the vicissitudes of golf – are an assembly of all the talents with strong track records of international achievement. They include:
- Phil Differ, the comedy writing genius involved in some of Scotland’s best known comedy successes, including Rab C Nesbitt, Scotch and Wry, Still Game, Watson’s Wind-up and Only An Excuse. Philip was signed up to the team to add the necessary comic accent to the strips.
- Norman Stone, the Scottish based award-winning film and documentary producer and director, whose illustrative skills have helped capture the nuances of MacTee. Norman established his international career with Shadowlands, starring Joss Ackland and Claire Bloom. He has won Baftas, Emmys and worked with actors such as Dirk Bogarde, Lee Remick, Jonathan Pryce, Peter O’Toole and Jeremy Irons.
- Alex Leonard, the accomplished finished artist and illustrator, who has been instrumental in the day-to-day development and has produced, written and illustrated published cartoons like The Giddy Limit as well as various campaigns for government led initiatives to private commissions.
- Stephen Tennent, a former sports professional turned entrepreneur who has used his sporting experience to achieve senior positions in advertising, marketing, sports management and sports apparel, including development of the Bobby Jones and Nicklaus ranges across EMEA. As the creator of Scratch MacTee, Stephen is keen for the character to be seen as an icon for the way golf should be, including the tradition, history and etiquette inherent in the game delivered with an abundance of humour.
Founding partner Stephen said: “The exposure we have gained straight away for this uniquely Scottish comic character is an early indicator of the kind of response we have always expected.
“The team we have put together to present Scratch MacTee – and the importance of Scotland to golf – to the rest of the world has impeccable credentials and they have achieved stunning successes in their own individual fields. Together, they will take Scratch to the top.
“The aim is regular syndicated cartoon script contracts across various global newspaper groups and new media wherever golf is played, merchandising opportunities and then, potentially, an animated cartoon series or a movie.”
Stephen said that the Scratch MacTee team was in discussions with a number of other publications and golf-centric websites. Golf will be the initial focus for the team to establish the character, though Scratch MacTee’s underlying philosophy of moral integrity means that opportunities can be targeted in other sectors.
He said: “As we were developing the character, a senior business person who was advising us said that one option would be to take the concept to Disney and sell it as a package for £10 million.
“But that is not the course we want to take. We want to experience the journey and see Scratch MacTee develop as a symbol for golf and the irreplaceable part that Scotland has in the long history of the game.
“It is all about Scotland, and St Andrews, and all the associations that we as a country have with what is now a worldwide phenomenon. In a few years time, when people think about Scotland and golf, we want them to think about Scratch MacTee.”
Scratch MacTee www.scratchmactee.com
Images Scratch MacTee_Jimenez strip.jpg ©Scratch MacTee Productions Ltd
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