04/17/18: Can’t keep an iconic duo down: DreamWorks Animation Television reboots Rocky and Bullwinkle


CynopsisKIDS
Good morning. It’s Tuesday April 17, 2018, and this is your your first early morning Kids briefing!


IN THE NEWS
 
It’s big news when Carol Burnett returns to television… and in a show that puts kids center stage, no less. A Little Help, debuting on Netflix May 4, will feature Burnett and a gaggle of 4-8-year-olds, in all their opinionated, unfiltered glory, providing their take on a variety of dilemmas brought in by everyday adults, and a celeb guest each episode. Guests include Julie Bowen, Mark Cuban, Billy Eichner, Taraji P. Henson, DJ Khaled, Lisa Kudrow and Wanda Sykes. Burnett, Steve Sauer, Mark Bracco, and Izzie Pick Ashcroft are exec producers of the show from A Mabel Cat Production in association with dick clark productions. All 12 eps will be released at once.
 
The 77th annual Peabody Awards noms are in. In the category of children’s & youth programming, contenders are Andi Mack (Horizon Productions, Disney Channel) and A Series of Unfortunate Events (Netflix). The awards ceremony will be held in NY on May 19.
 
 
PRODUCTION & DEVELOPMENT
 
Disney Junior greenlit animated comedy T.O.T.S., about best friends Pip and Freddy, a tenacious penguin and a kind-hearted flamingo, who are the only non-stork delivery birds in-training at Tiny Ones Transfer Service. As new members of the esteemed team, the junior flyers must take tender care in transferring baby animals – kittens, cubs, bunnies and puppies among them – from the nursery to their forever families around the globe. Series was created by Travis Braun (Vampirina, Fast Layne), who also serves as a co-exec producer with Vic Cook (Mickey Mouse Clubhouse), who also serves as director, and Chris Gilligan (Goldie & Bear) as co-executive producer.
 
The first original comedy is slated to bow on Universal Kids. The Greenfields, produced by Six Eleven Media in association with DHX Television’s Family Channel in Canada, is slated to bow this fall. Series comprises 20 half-hour episodes and follows 11-year-old Max Graham and his eclectic group of neighborhood friends as they navigate the ups and downs of running a start-up out of mom and dad’s garage. Greenfields was created by Derek Harvie, and exec-produced by Harvie and Charles Bishop.
 
In related news, a couple of other shows are headed to Universal Kids. Mighty Mustangs will mark its US debut on the net in June. Produced by Matchbox Pictures, series is a goal-kicking comedy/drama about a group of 14-year-old girls who abandon the sidelines and start their local soccer club’s first all-female team. Also in June, season 3 of Mako Mermaids, from Jonathan M. Schiff Productions, debuts and follows three magical teenage mermaids who work together after a land-dweller boy accidentally becomes a merman… The Next Step, from Boat Rocker Studios, will mark its season 6 US debut on Universal Kids in August 2018. The tween drama series broadcast in more than 120 countries worldwide follows the lives of an elite group of dancers as they attempt to win the national dance championships… Next, Nowhere Boys, from NBCUniversal and Matchbox Pictures, will mark its season 4 US debut in Q4.
 
DreamWorks Animation Television is creating two original series for Amazon Prime Video: a new take on The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle, slated to premiere May 11 in the US, UK, Germany, India and Japan, and a series inspired by another familiar franchise, Kung Fu Panda: The Paws of Destiny, which will debut globally later this year. The iconic talking moose and flying squirrel are back in a serialized comedy exec-produced by Scott Fellows (The Fairly OddParents, Big Time Rush) and Tiffany Ward, daughter of the original series producer Jay Ward. Tara Strong (The Powerpuff Girls, Teen Titans Go!) voices of Rocket J. Squirrel, Brad Norman (America’s Most Haunted) voices Bullwinkle J. Moose, Ben Diskin (Hey Arnold!) voices Boris Badenov and Rachel Butera (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) voices Natasha Fatale. Paws of Destiny is from executive producers Mitch Watson (All Hail King Julien) and Elliott Owen (All Hail King Julien), and Lane Lueras (The Adventures of Puss in Boots), and follows the action when four panda kids stumble upon a mystical cave beneath Panda Village. Series marks the first time an original series from DreamWorks Animation Television will be made available to Prime Video customers worldwide.
 
The Jim Henson Co. is in production on a feature film based on Fraggle Rock.
 
WOW! Unlimited Media company Frederator Networks is in production on a raft of new programming including season 2 for Netflix of Castlevania, based on the Konami video game. For Amazon, Frederator is producing Costume Quest, based on the video game from Double Fine Productions Will McRobb, co-creator of The Adventures of Pete & Pete, is showrunner; exec producers include Fred Seibert, Kevin Kolde and Eric Homan. Also, Frederator is producing a new season of Pendleton Ward’s Bravest Warriors with Nelvana, for Frederator Digital’s Cartoon Hangover Select channel on Ellation’s VRV VOD platform. Bravest Warriors is exclusive to Cartoon Hangover Select in the US; linear rights are available through Corus Entertainment.
 
Frederator also has a crowded development pipeline. Among them: Catlantis, based on the children’s book of the same name by Russian author Anna Starobinets, will be a cartoon story edited by Brydie Lee-Kennedy (The Amazing World of Gumball, Bravest Warriors), and a project in conjunction with Recursion Media and author Faith Erin Hicks based on Hicks’ The Nameless City graphic novels. Frederator is also developing Manly by Jesse and Justin Moynihan, based on a short film from Frederator’s Too Cool! Cartoons incubator series.
 
A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE
YOU ASKED, WE DELIVERED.
Cynopsis created an Upfront/NewFront Portal to provide you with a convenient, easy-to-use resource center for the busiest time of the year. Sponsored by The Weather Channel Television Network, we’ll provide coverage + access to the following:
 
Network resource guides detailing programs, demo info, and more
Digital (and printable) calendar of the Upfront/NewFront schedule
Updates from the presentations, road shows, meetings, and more!
 
If you haven’t checked it out yet, what are you waiting for?
Click here

NEW & RETURNING SERIES
 
Original MythBuster Adam Savage returns to his roots as host and executive producer of MythBusters Jr., a new Science Channel series that will give six kids a chance to show off their STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) skills. The 10-ep series will debut in Q4 2018. MythBusters made its TV debut on Discovery Channel in 2003 and ended its 14-year run on the net in 2016. MythBusters Jr. will be produced by Beyond Productions, with John Luscombe executive producing for Beyond and Wyatt Channell executive producing for Science Channel.
 
 
COMING UP
 
Lifelong DuckTales aficionado Lin-Manuel Miranda makes his debut as Gizmoduck in a new DuckTales ep premiering Friday, May 11 at 8p on Disney Channel and DisneyNOW, as part of the inaugural “Duck Week.” Miranda voices Duckburg’s preeminent hero who has Latin roots, a reimagining of the character by executive producer Matt Youngberg and co-producer and story editor Francisco Angones.
 
The inaugural Duck Week takes flight Sunday, May 6 with activities in conjunction with ESPN, Disney Studios, Disney Parks and Resorts, Snapchat and more. The stunt is in collaboration with Unity Technologies and includes a PSA celebrating diverse families as part of Disney-ABC Television’s annual Foster Care Awareness campaign with FosterMore; new shorts featuring Webby and interstitials featuring baby ducks in reimagined scenes from favorite Disney Channel shows including Andi Quack, Raven’s Pond and Duck in the Middle.
 
 
DIGITAL DATA
 
AR getting real at Nick: Nickelodeon unveiled a new augmented reality update for its No. 1 mobile game app Sky Whale. The AR-enhanced Sky Whale app allows users to bring the Sky Whale realm into their surrounding physical space through a device in a 360-degree immersive experience. With nearly 30 million global downloads since launch, Sky Whale averages 2 million active monthly users… Additionally, the “Do Not Touch” button featured in the Nick App, is available now as a standalone Do Not Touch AR app featuring interactive surprises and mini games.
 
 
AROUND THE INDUSTRY
 
The British Kidz Bop Kids will be the opening performers for four Harlem Globetrotters shows this spring, including at London’s O2, on the UK leg of their tour in May. Five new music videos – including for Havana, New Rules and Anywhere – have been produced and will be released on the UK Kidz Bop YouTube Channel, adding to the 9.7 million UK YouTube views to date.
 
Broadway’s Frozen will be eligible for the Tony for best original score, according to a determination by the Tony Awards Administration Committee. This despite a portion of the score coming from the Disney movie.
 
The Jim Henson Co. acquired the rights to Stacey O’Brien’s memoir Wesley the Owl: The Remarkable Love Story of an Owl and His Girl. Dolphin Tale co-writer Karen Janszen (A Dolphin Tale, A Walk to Remember, Mars) is attached to write the film/TV adaptation. It’s based on the true story of a Caltech biologist whose mentor asks her to raise a baby barn owl with a wing injury. What starts as an objective study of owl behavior blossoms into an incredible story of love spanning 19 years. Henson CEO/president Lisa Henson (The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance) is producing with Halle Stanford and Sarah Maizes for Henson Co. Andrew Trapani (Winchester, American Werewolf in London) and Mark Hantoot also are co-producing with Larry Hummel and Tera Kurtz.
 
 
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
 
Nickelodeon International greenlit live-action kids series The Covurts (working title). It’s the first original co-production for Nickelodeon with Nutz Productions, the producing arm of Israel’s Ananey Communications. Nick parent Viacom last year acquired a minority stake in Ananey. Forty half-hours have been ordered, to be distributed to Nick’s global audience in 170 countries via the brand’s 100+ channels and blocks. The series is in preproduction and will film in Israel for a 2019 debut. Story, from creators Tom Riles, David Guest and Patrick Quinn, is about highly trained secret agents tasked with fighting an evil international organization. Little do they know that it’s actually their three kids.
 
 
STATS
 
On Friday, April 6, the spring break event eps of Disney Channel’s Stuck in the Middle and Bizaardvark ranked as last Friday’s top two TV telecasts among  K6-11 and K6-14, respectively, in Live + 3 day national ratings from Nielsen. Stuck in the Middle posted double-digit gains week to week in Total Viewers (+18%, 1.41 million), K6-11 (+34%, 591,000/2.5 rating vs. 440,000/1.8 rating) and Ki6-14 (+32% – 760,000/2.1 rating vs. 576,000/1.6 rating). Bizaardvark grew over the prior week by 11% in Total Viewers (1.25 million vs. 1.13 million) to its most-watched telecast since December’s holiday broadcast.
 
A CYNOPSIS MESSAGE
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EXECUTIVE MOVES
 
Vishnu Athreya has been promoted to SVP, programming at Cartoon Network, where he’ll add series development for Boomerang while continue to oversee scheduling, acquisitions and strategic positioning of programming across all platforms for Cartoon Network and Boomerang.
 
Sesame Workshop promoted Michael H. Levine to chief knowledge officer. He is the founding executive director of the Joan Ganz Cooney Center, and in his new role will cultivate new and existing relationships with educational partners, policymakers, think tanks, and academic groups to enhance staff learning and professional development.
 


Answer to Last Week’s Trivia Question: Who voiced the Great Gazoo on The Flintstones? Harvey Korman. Kudos to: Martha Girard-PBS Kids/Arlington, VA; Brad Stern-Opperr Technologies/Flushing, NY; Tom Potter-Disney Digital Network/NY; Julie Stowell-Gracenote/Queensbury, NY; Andy Pittman-TAMU/College Station, TX; Richard Quan-Heat/San Francisco; David Westberg-SAG-AFTRA Federal Credit Union/Burbank
 
Today’s Trivia Question: What’s the name of the alter-ego Lilly adopts so she can attend Hannah Montana concerts in secret in Disney Channel’s Hannah Montana (2006-11)? (Email trivia@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and time zone. Unofficial rules: A limit of four correct answers from each time zone will be selected.).
 
Today’s Anagram: Neon Wheel Bit Set (Email trivia@cynopsis.com; first respondents with the correct answer who aren’t in trivia will be posted in tomorrow’s newsletter.)
 
Roberta Caploe
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