12/10/14: ION shuffles Qubo to Sundays, CynKids cross-platform content webinar is TODAY, Nick opens 2015 Animated Shorts & Writing programs


Good morning. It’s Wednesday, December 10, 2014, and this is your first early morning briefing.


ION Television is shuffling its child-centric Qubo Kids Corner weekly three-hour programming block from Fridays to Sundays beginning Jan. 4. The block features three educational and informational series–Dive Olly Dive, Harry and His Bucket Full of Dinosaurs and Doki–airing back-to-back for the first time from 9a-noon. ION is supporting the kids block with a dedicated media buy featuring cross-channel promotion and a digital spend that includes banner, webpage takeovers and video.


WEBINAR: Developing, Programming & Distributing Multi-Platform Kids Content

Cort Lane, VP of Animation Development & Partnerships at Marvel
Sharon Rechter, EVP of Business Development at BabyFirst
James Nadler, Senior Development Executive at Guru Studio
Jef Kaminsky, VP of TV Development & Programming at Scholastic Media



Heigh ho, heigh ho, Disney XD will get a second season of The 7D. Beginning Friday, Dec. 26, the series will begin airing on weekends during the Disney Junior block on Disney Channel, and launch on Disney Junior in early 2015. Emmy winner Tom Ruegger is back as exec producer, as are Kelly Osbourne, Jess Harnell, Leigh-Allyn Baker and the rest of the voice cast. As well as being a strong TV performer, accompanying app The 7D Mine Train has been downloaded more than 1.85 million times.

Join CynKids TODAY, 1:30-3 ET, for a webinar about content creation, development and marketing in today’s multiplatform viewing environment. Our expert panelists Jef Kaminsky, VP of TV Development and Programming at Scholastic Media; Cort Lane, Marvel Television VP of Animation Development and Partnerships; James Nadler, Senior Development Executive at Guru Studio; and Sharon Rechter, BabyFirst EVP of Business Development will detail how to create story arcs that live between episodes and seasons, engage your audience across platforms, and ensure discoverability. Register here: http://www.cynopsis.com/webinar/developing-programming-distributing-multi-platform-kids-content/


New to TeenNick for the new year is live-action mystery series Open Heart. Debuting Tuesday, Jan. 20 at 9p, the series is produced by Epitome Pictures, a DHX Media company (Degrassi), in association with marblemedia, Open Heart follows the 16-year-old rebellious daughter of a fractured family of doctors, who uses her stint as a hospital volunteer to secretly investigate the disappearance of her father. The show will air regularly on Tuesdays at 9p, and reunites some of the original Degrassi team with a slate of newcomers. To encourage super-fandom, the Open Heart: Unlocked! App launches in January on iOS and Android, enabling fans to join the plot during and in between episodes to keep up with the investigation. The series will also launch on Canada’s YTV in January.

Discovery Family will unwrap a new Littlest Pet Shop holiday special on Saturday, Dec. 13 at 12:30p. The special, “Winter Wonder Wha…?” focuses on the importance of giving, not just getting. It ushers in the series’ third season, which features 26 new episodes and culminates in two-part finale starring Heidi Klum as the voice of Heidi the Beagle.


Nickelodeon announced an open call for its 2015 global Animated Shorts Program. Submissions are being accepted Feb. 1March 31. Marking the fourth year for the program, the network’s development team will continue to oversee domestic and international pitches for the Nickelodeon and Nick preschool audience. Last year’s program yielded its first 13-episode series greenlight with Chris Savino’s The Loud House, which will premiere in 2016. Additionally, past select animated shorts will be found on the Short Toons section on Nick.com and the Nick App. 

Nickelodeon is also expanding its Writing Program, now in its 15th year, to include for the first time a contender who lives outside the U.S. among the four finalists. The program offers aspiring television writers the opportunity to hone their skills while writing for live-action and animated shows; it receives more than 1,400 applications each year. This year’s program will be modified to a six-month length, with one selected participant spending the first three months in London with the international production and development team, followed by six weeks in the writers’ room in LA. The participant is then paired with an animator for the remainder of the program back in London. The four newcomers join an alumni group of 44.

For those who just can’t wait for the Frozen film sequel, happy news. Disney will preview a new mini sequel of sorts on the big screen before its live-action Cinderella reboot. Frozen Fever is directed by Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee and promises a new original song by Oscar-winning Frozen songwriters Robert and Kristen Anderson-Lopez. Cinderella dances into theaters on March 13, 2015.

Family Channel in Canada added 15 performances to the sold-out national tour based on its series The Next Step. The stage show travels across Canada from Feb. 3March 29.

Scholastic on Friday will co-host the sixth annual Pajama Program School Drive this Friday, Dec. 12, at the Scholastic Store in Soho, NY. Nearly 100 children from four NY schools, including Staten Island, Bronx, Queens and Brooklyn, will head to the store to donate pajamas and participate in a story reading with milk and cookies.


Fuhu is now offering a $4.99 monthly subscription service for its line of tablets. The nabi Pass includes music, movies, TV, shorts, ebooks, apps and games plus access to Wings Unlimited, Fuhu’s educational suite aimed at developing math, reading and writing skills for kids in pre-K to sixth grade. The nabi Pass launches with content from companies including Walt Disney Records, National Geographic Kids, Cupcake Digital, Paws Inc. and Nelvana; additional content will be added in the coming months.

Paddington bear is upping his social status. The Weinstein Co. and FullBottle launched a digital ad campaign to support the January theatrical release of Paddington that features influencers from social video platforms who created authentic content promoting both the movie and a special Paddington-themed version of the Cut The Rope: Holiday Gift app, and the theme of friendship. The campaign marks the first time Weinstein has promoted a mobile game sponsorship with influencers from popular social video platforms. The videos will appear across FullBottle’s distribution platform, which reaches more than 27 million kids in COPPA safe environments via custom video ad-units that are seen around desktop and mobile games. Video creations span stop-motion, special effects and comedy genres from artists including Gwyn Brigman, Andrew David and Daniel Ojanlatvaall hand-picked by FullBottle. “Authentic creative has continuously delivered strong metrics for our advertising partners,” says Reed Berglund, FullBottle CEO.

GameRoll, Driver Digital’s kid-safe proprietary technology, released a suite of tools and services including audience-building capabilities aimed at boosting opportunities for both publishers and game developers. GameRoll enables game publishers to serve video pre-roll ads before gameplay on websites and mobile applications across its JustKids Network. Combined with GameRoll’s reach and scope, JustKids passed both Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network in reaching K6-12 per September comScore.


StoryToys and Sesame Workshop are sharing the love. The two companies teamed for the first time to develop Elmo Loves You!, a 3D pop-up storybook app for iOS. The app contains 15 interactive scenes, where children can play peekaboo with Elmo, help Ernie to drum, exercise with Cookie Monster, practice counting with the Count and more. Highlighted narration, a first for a StoryToys app, supports early reading skills.

Cupcake Digital is releasing the fifth in its series of Strawberry Shortcake apps in collaboration with AG Properties. Perfect Puppy Doctor is available now for iOS devices and shortly for the Amazon Appstore, Google Play and other app stores. It features a storybook with guided narration for children to read along with or a muted function that allows more advanced readers to read at their own pace. In addition to the original story and coloring pages, the app includes a multi-leveled activity, which allows children to be a veterinarian as they nurse seven puppies back to health from various ailments.

Baby Genuis’ A Trip to the San Diego Zoo app became available for digital download Dec. 9 chock full of gorillas, hippos and many of the world’s endangered animals. Kids can even watch one of the zoo’s happiest moments: the birth of their first giant panda, Xiao Liwu.

Two appsNew Beginnings and Rhythm and Responsibility–from Genius Brands International’s Warren Buffett’s Secret Millionaires Club content are now available via LeapPad tablets.

Tablets remain a top wish-list item for the holidays, and the Joan Ganz Cooney Center just released Family Time with Apps: A Guide to Using Apps with Your Kids, a guide that provides tips on how and why to use apps together in everyday routines and situations. The guide features eight scenarios where families can interact using apps and support children’s learning and development in real-life situations, comic strips illustrating approaches adults can take to engage with kids around apps, and tips on what to consider when selecting apps for kids.


Who couldn’t use a pair of Adventure Time-themed Doc Martens? Cartoon Network collaborated with British footwear brand Dr. Martens on a limited-edition boots line for adults and kids inspired by the series, with characters Finn and Jake appearing on three boot designs beginning in early March. Never before seen Adventure Time content will premiere in a special 30-second film to celebrate the launch of the collection.

Disney Consumer Products is launching a new Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy merchandise line including toys, apparel, accessories, electronics, home goods and collectibles in time for the holidays and the DVD and Blu-Ray debut this week. Partners include KIDdesigns, Funko and Hot Wheels, plus apparel partners – including Mad Engine, C-Life, Hybrid-Jem Sportswear, and Freeze.

Never mind the Eaten Alive fallout, Discovery Consumer Products is turning its attention to a new partnership with Smart Play for Animal Planet toys and with MasterPieces Puzzle Company for Animal Planet and Shark Week puzzles and craft sets. The new items from Masterpieces and Smart Play will be available in 2015.


The Doc is in the house. Disney UK is launching online destination Doc’s World as an extension of hit Disney Junior series Doc McStuffins. The site launch follows successful extensions of Sofia’s World and Jake’s World on Disney.co.uk, with content accessible across desktop, tablet or mobile.

CBeebies commissioned a third season of Tree Fu Tom, for airing in 2016. The co-production between CBeebies in-house and FremantleMedia Kids & Family Entertainment debuted on CBeebies in 2012 and has consistently performed well on the channel and is now broadcast in over 123 territories across the globe.

Turner Broadcasting has licensed DHX Media’s new CGI series Inspector Gadget, an update of the classic kids cartoon, for Boomerang channels across EMEA, Latin America and Asia Pacific. Inspector Gadget was also commissioned by Teletoon in Canada and will premiere on the network in 2015.

In related news, Turner will relaunch Boomerang is in six Asian markets next year, offering original content for the first time, including new episodes of classic series from Warner Bros. Studios. Boomerang initially will be available in the Philippines, Cambodia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Singapore and Myanmar. Launch content includes the Inspector Gadget reboot and DreamWorks Animation’s Turbo FAST series. In April, Mr. Bean will make his debut on the network, followed by Tom and Jerry, and Be Cool, Scooby-Doo! Turner acquired Mr. Bean from Endemol throughout Asia Pacific, Latin America and EMEA in April.


Top 10 Basic Cable Ratings for the week of Dec. 1-7, 2014

K2-11 Total Programming Day

K2-11 Prime (Monday  Sunday 8-11p.m.)

K2-11  (Monday-Sunday 6 a.m.-11 p.m.)

K6-11 Total Programming Day

K6-11 Prime (Monday  Sunday 8-11p.m.)

K6-11  (Monday-Sunday 6 a.m.-11 p.m.)

K9-14 Total Programming Day

K9-14 Prime (Monday  Sunday 8-11p.m.)

K9-14  (Monday-Sunday 6 a.m.-11 p.m.)

Source: Disney from Nielsen Media Research National MIT, ranked on coverage ratings
Viewing Type: Live + Same Day

K2-11  Top 10 Programs for the week of Nov. 17-23, 2104
12/4/14/Teen Titans Go!/TOON/6-6:30p/1207
12/2/14/Home Alone 3/DSNY/8-9:45p/1204
12/7/14/25 Days of Christmas/FAM/8-8:30p/1181
12/6/14/Rabbids Invasion/NICK/11:30-12p/1181
12/6/14/Mickey Mouse Clubhouse/DSNY/8-8:55a/1132
12/7/14/I Didn’t Do It/DSNY/8:30-9p/1098

K6-11  Top 10 Programs for the week of Nov. 17-23, 2014
12/7/14/I Didn’t Do It/DSNY/8:30-9p/1025
12/4/14/Teen Titans Go!/TOON/6-6:30p/968
12/7/14/Austin & Ally/DSNY/9-9:30p/957
12/7/14/Liv and Maddie/DSNY/8-8:30p/954
12/2/14/Home Alone 3/DSNY/8-9:45p/921
12/1/14/Good Luck Charlie, It’s Christmas!/DSNY/8-9:30p/892
12/3/14/Home Alone: The Holiday Heist/DSNY/8-9:40p/882
12/7/14/Girl Meets World/DSNY/7:30-8p/853
12/5/14/Dog With A Blog/DSNY/8:30-9p/848

Source: Turner Research based on Total US Television Universe of 115,800,000 homes.

Weekend box office estimates for the top-grossing kids/tween/teen movies rated G, PG or PG-13, provided by Rentrak for Dec. 5-7, 2014:

The Hunger Games Mockingjay, Part 1 (Lionsgate) PG-13 $22.03 million (weekend) $258.15 million (3-week cume)
Penguins of Madagascar (20th Century Fox) PG $10.91 million (weekend) $49.4 million (2-week cume)
Big Hero 6 (Disney) PG $8.04 million (weekend) $56.2 million $177.46 million (5-week cume)
Interstellar (Paramount) $7.79 million (weekend) $158.45 million (5-week cume)
Dumb And Dumber To (Universal) PG-13 $4.28 million (weekend) $78.19 million (4-week cume)
The Theory of Everything (Focus Features) PG-13 $2.65 million (weekend) $13.59 million (4-week cume)


Answer to last week’s Trivia Question: What sales business did Warren Buffett start while he was in high school? He sold pinball machines Kudos to: David Stern, BARD Entertainment, NY.

Today’s Trivia Question: Which Disney film’s profits largely helped build Disney Studios in Burbank in 1937? Email cathy@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and time zone.)

Cheers — Cathy Applefeld Olson
Cathy@cynopsis.com for
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