Good morning. It’s Thursday, April 28, 2011, and this is your first early morning Kids briefing.
Studio100 Media inks a carriage deal with Switzerland’s cable operator upc cablecom for the distribution rights to the pay TV kid/family-centric Junior TV channel. Under the agreement upc cablecom, a unit of Liberty Global, will feature Junior TV across all its digital platforms, via cable and broadband, in Switzerland beginning May 2011. Studio100 Media will provide kid/family programming including animated series such as Maya The Bee, Heidi, and Tabaluga, as well as the preschool series Zigby, Bumba, Plop, Bibi Blocksberg, and the teen-targeted telenovela Amika.
Jeremy Renner, Jennifer Lopez, Wanda Sykes, Keke Palmer, and Aziz Ansari and hip hop artist Drake join the voice castoff the fourth Fox and Blue Sky Studios’ (Rio, Ice Age) fourth installment of the animated Ice Age movie, Ice Age: Continental Drift 3D, per THR. The new cast members join returning stars Ray Romano, Queen Latifah, Denis Leary, John Leguizamo, Seann William Scot and Josh Peck. Ice Age: Continental Drift is set for release on July 13, 2012. An animated Ice Age Christmas TV special is also in the works, as well as a mobile and online game based on the franchise.
Cartoon Network is set to premiere the new mixed animated and live-action comedy, The Amazing World of Gumball on May 9 at 7:30p, as part of the network’s Monday night animated comedy lineup. From Cartoon Network Development Studio Europe, the series feature a combination of 2D and 3D animation in a live-action setting and revolves around the misadventures of 12-year-old Gumball, a blue cat with a giant head, his friends, a T-Rex, a cheerleading peanut and a banana, and his family, his Dad, a 6’4″ pink rabbit who stays at home while his Mom works in the rainbow factory — oh sure there are others too but you get the picture. The Amazing World of Gumball is created by Ben Bocquelet and directed by Mic Graves. The series is slated rollout in other countries, including the UK, in fourth quarter 2011.
3net, the joint venture 24/7 3D Network from Sony, Discovery and Imax, acquires rights the kid-targeted stereoscopic 3D CG animated series Dream Defenders (26×30) from Singapore’s Tiny Island Productions, a Stereoscopic-3D CG animation production company. Under the deal 3net ( www.3net.com ) takes the US 3D broadcast, home video, publishing and merchandising rights to the property. 3net plans to debut Dream Defenders in fall 2011. The series follows Zane and Zoe, twins and rivals as the Dream Defenders, the last line of defense, along with their supercomputer Zeus, between the real world and the nightmare creatures of the Dreamworld, which come to life and threaten to take over.
Animalitos Exploradores (Wild Animal Baby Explorers, 80×15), a new kid/caregiver-targeted series from National Wildlife Federation (NWF), has just debuted on Spanish-language network Vme in its daily Vme Ninos block (7:30a-12:30p) and on the 24/7 kid-targeted cable channel Vme Kids. Based on NWF’s preschool magazine, Wild Animal Baby, the series features a combination of 3D animated characters, the NSI (Natural Science Investigators) as they explore the natural world around them, and HD live-action segments that are designed to encourage kids/caregivers to get outside and explore their backyards and neighborhoods. NWF’s mission is to inspire Americans to protect wildlife for the future of the country’s kids and to educate kids about wildlife and wild places through its various magazines, such as Ranger Rick, Your Big Backyard and Wild Animal Baby. Animalitos Exploradores is also an outgrowth of the popular NWF’s DVD initiative, which launched in 2006 under the Wild Animal Baby name.
DreamWorks Animation SKG and Gaylord Entertainment (producers of Hee Haw, owners of the Grand Ole Opry) are partnering to provide family guests at its Gaylord Hotels a DreamWorks experience. The partnership will include live activities, such as character breakfasts, themed Christmas events, summer poolside activities, themed food and drink offerings, private birthday parties, parades, merchandise and other types of movie and character themed entertainment. Gaylord Hotels will begin by featuring “live” character appearances from current DreamWorks Animation franchises, including Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, and Madagascar, as well as future movies and characters from the studio. Vacation packages featuring the “DreamWorks Experience” will go on sale in July 2011. The program will go live at all four resorts from November 2011, as part of Gaylord’s Christmastime programs.
The National Hockey League (NHL) and Visimonde have teamed to launch Rinksters ( www.rinksters.com ), a new K6-12 targeted, hockey-themed virtual world. Designed to encourage kids to make healthy lifestyle choices and promote social well-being, Rinksters also introduces kids, the potential next generation of fans, to the world of hockey. Rinksters offers a free and subscription based features, including hockey-themed games, the chance to collect virtual currency, chat features, and of course customization of your own avatar. Rinksters was created by Visimonde, an Edmonton-based designer/developer of virtual words and online games. The Edmonton Oilers were the first NHL club to participate in Rinksters.
The new Nickelodeon Land at Pleasure Beach, Blackpool ( www.nickelodeonland.co.uk) in England, is set to have its grand opening on Wednesday, May 4, with the help of David Hasselhoff (yes, one in the same from Knight Rider, Baywatch, and The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie). Also on hand for the celebration will be SpongeBob SquarePants, Patrick, Dora the Explorer, and the Rugrats, among others. Nickelodeon Land, which opens for previews this Saturday at Pleasure Beach, is a new 6-acre area at Pleasure Beach, featuring 12 Nickelodeon character-based rides, including SpongeBob’s Splash Bash and Rugrats Lost River, and attractions, and of the only Nickelodeon Shop.
The Lego Group and NASA, through their Lego Bricks in Space ( www.legospace.com ) project that aims to encourage kids to get interested in science, technology, engineering and math, will sending 13 Lego Education models to the International Space Station (ISS) on board the Space Shuttle Endeavor, which launches this Friday, April 29. The models will be used in eight activities that will be conducted by ISS crew to explore the effects of microgravity on simple machines, and available to teachers nationwide to use in classroom curricula via video and crew commentary. Each activity will have a downloadable teacher’s guide and student worksheet so that the same activities can be conducted by students on Earth and the results compared and contrasted. The in-class portion of the Lego Bricks in Space project will be available to educators from September 2011. Legospace.com currently features information about four of the activities and their educational value, as well as offering a range of downloads, video links, a Legonaut game, and various facts about space exploration.
Live + Same Day Ratings Kids Cable Network Averages (000) for Tuesday, April 26, 2011, 6am-11pm, ranked by K2-11:
NICKELODEON: K2-11 1105; K6-11 437; TWEENS 9-14 338
DISNEY CHANNEL: K2-11 910; K6-11 469; TWEENS 9-14 331
CARTOON NETWORK: K2-11 456; K6-11 284; TWEENS 9-14 231
DISNEY XD: K2-11 151; K6-11 107; TWEENS 9-14 83
NICKTOONS: K2-11 101; K6-11 65; TWEENS 9-14 48
Source: MTVN Research from Nielsen Media Research Data
Answer to Yesterday’s Trivia: On the show, what is the secret occurrence when one utters the word SHAZAM? THE SECRET WORD THAT TRANSFORMS BILLY BATSON INTO CAPTAIN MARVEL Kudos to: Bob Friedland-Toys R Us/NY; Julie Stowell-Tribune Media Services/NY; Tom Potter-Radio Disney/NY; Adam Schlesinger-Cartoon Network/NY; Tod Visdal/Seattle
Today’s Trivia Question: Who owned a pair of ducklings named Oliver and Stanley? (Email Cynthia@cynopsis.com with your answer and be sure to include your name, company, city and time zone. Unofficial rules: Only the second four correct answers from each time zone will be mentioned; and once you’ve been mentioned in any of the Cynopsis editions, you can’t be mentioned again that calendar week.)
Gwen Billings for Cynopsis Kids!
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