Bluey creators offer to design ‘unique’ Brisbane Olympics mascot

TV cartoon producers call chance to design something to join pantheon of Australian mascots ‘an amazing opportunity’

The creators of beloved Brisbane cartoon Bluey say they are keen to help design the city’s 2032 Olympic mascot.

Queensland’s premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk, revealed the animators had offered their services in her opening remarks at Tuesday’s state budget estimates.

“Just last week, the makers of Bluey reached out to see if they can help design the Olympic mascot,” the premier said.

Sam Moor, a producer from Ludo Studio, which makes Bluey, responded to questions by saying it would be “an amazing opportunity and privilege” for the Brisbane company to be a part of the Games.

“We would be well suited to a challenge of this size and we would love the opportunity to pitch something unique for it,” Moor said.

Palaszczuk said the government and Olympic organisers were “a fair way” from making decisions around the mascot, but the offer was “an example of the kind of homegrown talent we have that will make the Games the best ever”.

Last month, Birds Queensland officially nominated the palm cockatoo as its pick for the Brisbane Olympic mascot.

The largest cockatoo in the world, the stunning black birds with vivid red cheeks and distinctive bills are lovingly known as “rockatoos” for their punk mohawks, vocal dexterity and percussive talents.

If a Ludo-designed rockatoo were to represent the 2032 Games, it would join a pantheon of Australian mascots that includes Syd, Olly and Millie from the Sydney Games – a platypus, a kookaburra and echidna, respectively.

The Sydney Olympics mascots Millie the Echidna, Syd the Platypus and Olly the Kookaburra
The Sydney Olympics mascots Millie the Echidna, Syd the Platypus and Olly the Kookaburra. Photograph: William West/AFP/Getty Images
Roy Slaven and HG Nelson with a Fatso wombat, the unofficial mascot of the Sydney Olympics
Roy Slaven and HG Nelson with Fatso the wombat, the unofficial mascot of the Sydney Games. Photograph: Supplied by Channel Seven
Swimmer Lisa Curry raises a Matilda mascot after winning a gold medal at the 1982 Commonwealth Games
Lisa Curry raises a Matilda mascot at the 1982 Brisbane Commonwealth Games. Photograph: Getty Images

Along with the three official mascots from 2000 was an unofficial one dreamed up by the cartoonist Paul Newell and sports comedy duo Roy and HG: Fatso the Fat-Arsed Wombat.

A marsupial also represented the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games in the form of Borobi – billed as a “cheeky blue koala” whose name was derived from the Yugambeh language.

Brisbane’s Expo 88, widely regarded by Brisbanites of a particular vintage as a coming-of-age event for the river city, had a platypus named Expo Oz as its mascot. Expo Oz sported a yellow digger’s slouch hat and safari-style jacket.

Six years earlier, at Brisbane’s 1982 Commonwealth Games, the mascot was a mechanical kangaroo, Matilda, who stood 13 metres tall, weighed six tonnes and could move her head, wriggle her ears and wink.

After starring at the opening and closing ceremonies, Matilda wound up gracing a Gympie service station.

Ludo’s other cartoons include The Strange Chores, which premiered on ABC in October 2019.

The ABC has commissioned a second series of the cartoon, in which two teenage warrior-heroes and a ghost do chores to gain the skills needed to replace an ageing monster-slayer.


Joe Hinchliffe

The GuardianTramp

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