Good morning. It’s Tuesday, October 12, 2010, and this is your first early morning Kids briefing.
Starz Media agrees to sell Film Roman, the TV animation studio behind series including The Simpsons, King of the Hill, Super Hero Squad, among others, to a group of investors lead by former Film Roman President Scott D. Greenberg. The deal, the terms of which were not disclosed, is expected to close in fourth quarter. Greenberg left Film Roman in 2008 to join with animation producers Mark McJimsey and Joel Kuwahara to co-found the animation company Bento Box Entertainment. The new Film Roman investor group also intends to purchase Bento Box and combine the two production companies, under the management of Greenberg, McJimsey and Kuwahara.
Who will acquire Thomas the Tank Engine from Apax Partners? The question has been asked before but at that point there was no buyer. Now the word is that Chorion ink the deal for $700 million to acquire Thomas, per Daily Telegraph while others say it is too early to say. Others that are reportedly making a bit for Thomas include Viacom, Disney, which previously made a move for the property, and Entertainment One. Thomas is owned by Hit Entertainment, which in turn is owned by Apax Partners.
DreamWorks Animation unveils plans for a feature film 3D sequel to How to Train Your Dragon, which it will release in 2013. Again based on the books by Cressida Cowell, the movie sequel to How to Train Your Dragon (March 2010) will feature the star-filled voice cast including Jay Baruchel, Craig Ferguson, America Ferrera, Jonah Hill, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, TJ Miller and Kristen Wiig. Written and Directed by Dean DeBlois and produced by Bonnie Arnold, the new movie will be executive produced by Chris Sanders and DeBlois. How to Train Your Dragon will release on DVD and Blu-ray this Friday, October 15, 2010.
Disney Animation Studios is producing two new Prep & Landing holiday specials as follow-ups last year’s animated special Prep & Landing. First up is the new 7-minute short, Operation: Secret Santa, which will air with Prep & Landing this December. Set to debut for holiday 2011 is the half-hour animated special Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice. Featuring Santa’s elves, Lanny and Wane, Operation: Secret Santa stars Betty White as the voice of Mrs. Claus, and the return of Sarah Chalke (Magee), Dave Foley (Wayne) and Derek Richardson (Lanny), and Morgan Sheppard (the Big Guy). Operation: Secret Santa was written and directed by Stevie Wermers-Skelton & Kevin Deters, produced by Dorothy McKim, and executive produced by John Lasseter.
Production has begun on Disney XD‘s new animated series Motorcity. Created by Titmouse’s Chris Prynoski and produced by Disney Television Animation and Titmouse, Motorcity is set in a futuristic Detroit that has been taken over by an evil billionaire, Abraham Kane, who has banned personal freedoms including cars. Kane is challenged by The Burners, a group of rebel teens that create their own customized fleet of hot rods. The animated series features the voices of Reid Scott (My Boys), Nate Torrence (She’s Out of My League, Get Smart), Katie Micucci (When in Rome), Kel Mitchell (Kenan and Kel), Jess Harnell (Drawn Together), Brian Doyle Murray (The Middle), Jim Breuer (Saturday Night Live), and Mark Hamill (Star Wars) as Abraham Kane.
Rhys Ifans is set to star as the villain in Columbia‘s new Spider-Man movie reboot. The studio and filmmakers are not saying exactly which evildoer Ifans will play. Set to begin production this December, the movie also stars Andrew Garfield as Peter Parker and Emma Stone as Gwen Stacy. The movie will be directed by Marc Webb from a screenplay by James Vanderbilt and produced by Avi Arad and Laura Ziskin. Spider-Man will be released in 3D in theaters on July 3, 2012.
Sprout marks National Fire Prevention Month all this month with age-appropriate fire safety messages for preschoolers and new episodes of Fireman Sam. Sponsored by State Farm, the safety public service announcements feature Sparkles the Fire Safety Dog and his owner firefighter/safety educator Dayna Hilton.
The stars of Cartoon Network‘s new live-action TV movie Scooby Doo! Curse of the Lake Monster and the cast of Dude, What Would Happen will be guest players on a new episode of the network’s series Destroy Build Destroy tomorrow, Wednesday, October 13 at 8:30p. Robbie Amell (Fred), Hayley Kiyoko (Velma), Kate Melton (Daphne) and Nick Palatas (Shaggy) will face off with Jackson, Ali and CJ, the cast of another Cartoon Network series, Dude, What Would Happen. Scooby Doo! Curse of the Lake Monster premieres Saturday, October 16 at 7p, during the network’s family-targeted movie block Flicks.
Gorilla Nation Media’s GN Kids has created an ad campaign to support the launch of The Hub, the new joint Discovery and Hasbro kid and family-targeted network. The campaign is comprised of two flights, one that launched last week and one the debuts mid-November, which will focus on the Transformers animated series. Both will run on a range of websites including Cartoon Doll Emporium, Dragonball Z, Iconator, KidzBop, KidzWorld, StarWarsKids, TheKidzPage, WWE Kids, Jaroo, Marvel kids, and Millsberry. GN Kids is not representing The Hub’s advertising inventory.
Live + Same Day Ratings Kids Cable Network Averages (000) for Friday, October 8, 2010, 6am-11pm, ranked by K2-11:
Answer to Yesterday’s Trivia: This Saturday morning cartoon was about a group of cows who became cowboys … well, cows who ride horses. They also maintained law and order in their town. What was the name of this show? C.O.W. BOYS OF MOO MESA (ABC 1992-94) Kudos to: Debbie Stefanatos-www.Kidsay.com/Olathe Kansas; David Alderman-Disney Channels Worldwide/Burbank; Sam Ewing-Cartoon Consultants Group/PDT
Today’s Trivia Question: From what show did you learn to use your “premium secret ray gun with a flashlight” and shoot that beam of light thru your lum-a-glo card to reveal the secret “planet” symbols? (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.)
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