Tuesday, June 29th, 2010

Cynopsis: Kids!

06/29/10

Good morning. It’s Tuesday, June 29, 2010, and this is your first early morning Kids briefing.

Conexion Media Group, an entertainment/media rights management company, enters into a TV option deal with HarperCollins Children’s Books.   The first project under the deal is to develop and produced an animated series based on the publisher’s preschool-targeted book series Have a Go Harvey, from author Tania H Newton.  The pact also marks Conexion’s first step into TV production.  Writer/editor Colin Davis (Dr Who, Blakes 7, Engie Benjy, Kid Clones in Space and Rocketboy & Toro) is writing the scripts for the series.  Conexion plans to present Have a Go Harvey series pilot at Mipcom this fall 2010.

Marvel Entertainment unveils the creation of a small screen division, Marvel Television, and appoints accomplished writer/executive producer Jeph Loeb as EVP, Head of Television.  Loeb will work with Dan Buckley, Publisher & President/Print, Animation & Digital Divisions, Marvel Worldwide to bring Marvel’s properties to TV as both live-action and animated projects.  Loeb will also head series development and distribution for the TV projects and direct-to-DVD series.  Loeb will report to Alan Fine, EVP/Office of the President and Chairman of Marvel Studios’ Creative Committee, and Buckley.  A multi-time Eisner-Award-winning comic book writer (Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, Daredevil, Spider-Man, the X-Men, Batman, Superman, among others), Loeb most recently served as writer/co-executive producer on Heroes.  He also served as writer/executive producer on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, as well as a writer/producer on Smallville and Lost, and wrote the movies Commando and the Teen Wolf movies (1985, 1987).

NEW PRODUCTION & DEVELOPMENT

Marvel Studios adds Tommy Lee Jones to the cast of its live-action feature film Captain America: The First Avenger, per Variety.  He will play Colonel Chester Phillips.  Directed by Joe Johnston, the movie already stars Chris Evans (Captain America), Hugo Weaving (Red Skull), as well as Hayley Atwell, Sebastian Stan and Stanley Tucci.  Releasing on July 22, 2011, the movie will be distributed by Paramount.

MORE KIDS STUFF

The animated action-adventure series Metajets ( www.metajets.com ) makes its US debut on Cartoon Network this Sunday, July 4, with a five-hour marathon (11a-4p).  A co-production with Cookie Jar Entertainment and Korea’s Sunwoo, immediately following its launch Metajets will be stripped Mondays-Fridays at 6a.

Radio Disney will debut the first of its serialized one-act radio plays, My Dream, on Monday, July 5 at 9:25a on Radio Disney and RadioDisney.com ( www.radiodisney.com).  Targeted to kids and tweens, My Dream is filled with sound effects and stars Daphne Blunt (The Young and the Restless, Big Time Rush) as Kayla, a teen whose life is all about music.  The story revolves around Kayla as she composes an original song, prepares for her first performance and overcomes stage fright, while also dealing with school, family and friends.

Summer, baseball and Peanuts come together when the special Lucy Must Be Traded, Charlie Brown airs Wednesday, July 14 at 8p on ABC.  Based on Charles M. Schulz’s comic strips, this seasonal special originally aired on ABC in August 2003.  Lucy Must Be Traded, Charlie Brown comes from the team that brought us all the Peanuts holiday specials, with Lee Mendelson as executive producer, and produced and directed by Bill Melendez and Larry Leichliter, and featuring original music by Vince Guaraldi and David Benoit. Peanuts is licensed and syndicated by United Media.

MARKETING/LICENSING

Faith-based producer Big Idea Entertainment will release its new DVD, VeggieTales: It’s a Meaningful Life, this October 2 and 5, 2010 in Christian and general market retailers respectively. The title features Meant To Be, a new original song from artist Steven Curtis Chapman, as well as other music.  The It’s a Meaningful Life release will be supported by a marketing and ad campaign with licensing and promotional partners including American Greetings, Burger King, McDonald’s, Chuck E. Cheese’s, Denny’s, KFCO, Gymboree, Gund, Show Hope, Family Life and others.  Additionally, Big Idea will host Family Fun Nite screening events this fall at churches nationwide, while Christian retailers will offer events to coincide with the DVD release.

American Greetings Properties (AGP) and its Korean licensing agent, Asiana Licensing Inc. (ALI), have inks deals for Care Bears in Korea, where the property launches this fall.  Partners signing on for the Korean market include She-A (kids/juniors/babies merchandise, stationery, pens and notebooks) and Forever Times (watches, hair accessories).  Further plans in the territory include expanding the licensing program across key categories, including apparel.  ALI will feature Care Bears on air at the Seoul International Cartoon & Animation Festival next month at COEX in Seoul, Korea.

Jumbo Games, a manufacturer of puzzles and games for kids and adults, names new sales agents for the South West of England.  Beginning this July, Mark and Mike Edwards will serve as agents for independent accounts for the South West territory.  Meanwhile, Tony Ryan exits the Netherlands-based company.

Get your flux capacitors ready! Universal Studios Home Entertainment will celebrate the Back to the Future milestone anniversary with the release of the Back to the Future 25th Anniversary Trilogy on Blu-ray and DVD on October 26, 2010.  As Marty would say, “heavy!”  To answer Doc Brown’s quandary about why things are so heavy in the future, it might just be the bonus features and not a problem with the earth’s gravitational pull.

  • The Blu-ray HDTV release also includes U-Control  allowing viewers to learn more about individual scenes in all three movies through the Setups & Payoffs, Storyboard Comparison and Trivia Track features, as well as getting additional content via BD-Live and the viewers internet connected player.  The Blu-ray release also lets viewers bookmark scenes, use USHE’s pocket Blu app for remote control, video timeline and mobile-to-go (this unlocks bonus content to stream), and browse titles, and a keyboard.  Additionally, the Blu-ray release includes the featurette Back to the Future Night (1×30), which is hosted by Leslie Nielsen and aired on NBC prior to the first TV broadcast of back to the Future.
  • The Blu-ray and DVD release features 2+ hours of new bonus content, including a new six-part retrospective documentary, Tales from the Future, featuring previously unseen interviews with cast, crew and filmmakers, including Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson and director Robert Zemeckis, as well as producers Bob Gale and Neil Canton, and executive producer Steven Spielberg.  Also included are: The Physics of Back To The Future  a discussion with celebrity/author/physicist Dr. Michio Kaku; Nuclear Test Site Ending storyboard sequence  the proposed original ending of the film; 16 deleted scenes; Q&A with Fox; Q&A commentaries with Zemeckis, Gale and Canton; and existing featurettes about the movies Making the Trilogy: Chapters One, Two & Three, The Making Of Back to the Future Part I, II & III, and The Secrets of the Back to the Future Trilogy; among other bonus features.

EXECUTIVE MOVES

TV veteran David Nevins is named President/Entertainment, Showtime Networks, which is a subsidiary of CBS Corporation.  Nevins, who had been President/Imagine Television, succeeds Robert Greenblatt who announced plans to exit the Showtime at the end of his current contract next month.  Nevins will report to Matthew C. Blank, Chairman and CEO, Showtime Networks.  Based in LA, Nevins will be responsible for developing, acquiring and supervising all aspects of programming for all of the Showtime Networks channels, which includes Showtime, The Movie Channel, and multiplex channels such as Showtime Family Zone, Showtime Extreme, Showtime Next, Showtime Women, among others, as well as HD and VOD channels.  Before his almost decade with Imagine, Nevins developed and executive produced many series as EVP/Programming, Fox Broadcasting, and prior to that oversaw series as SVP/Primetime Series at NBC.  Greenblatt is credited with helping to revitalize Showtime with original programming success including Dexter, Weeds, and Nurse Jackie to name a few.

RATINGS

Disney Channel‘s world premiere of the TV movie 16 Wishes on Friday, June 25 (8-9:40p), was the top telecast of the day among K6-11 (2.2 million) and Tweens 9-14 (2.1 million).  The network was also the top TV network in Total Day on Friday in K6-11 (953,000) and Tweens 9-14 (819,000), as well as in primetime with K6-11 (1.7 million) and Tweens 9-14 (1.5 million).

Live + Same Day Ratings Kids Cable Network Averages (000) for Friday, June 25, 2010, 6am-11pm, ranked by K2-11:
NICKELODEON:         K2-11 1243; K6-11 778; TWEENS 9-14 634
DISNEY CHANNEL:     K2-11 1371; K6-11 948; TWEENS 9-14 816
CARTOON NETWORK: K2-11   541; K6-11 371; TWEENS 9-14 275
NICKTOONS:             K2-11   190; K6-11 150; TWEENS 9-14 153
DISNEY XD:               K2-11   189; K6-11 136; TWEENS 9-14   87
Source: MTVN Research from Nielsen Media Research Data



Answer to Yesterday’s Trivia:
   This cartoon character from the late 1990’s last name was Shortman.  What is his first name?   ARNOLD on NICKELODEON’S HEY ARNOLD!  Kudos to .. nobody!?!? 

Today’s Trivia Question: This cartoon character  from the late 1980’s speaks with an Australian accent but bares the name of a famous Mexican/American dairy product.  Who is he?  (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.)

Later —
Gwen Billings for Cynopsis Kids!
gwen @cynopsis.com
06.29.10

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