Friday, January 19th, 2007


Cynopsis: Kids!


Good morning. It’s Friday, January 19, 2007 and this is your first early morning Kids! briefing.

Chris Meledandri, head of Fox Animation, credited with great film successes including Ice Age and Robots, has been hired away by Universal where, under a five-year pact, he will produce both animated and live-action movies, per a New York Times report.  Meledandri, who is expected to join the studio this spring, will establish an independently-financed unit that will produce family movies.  Previously, Meledandri was President, Dawn Steel Pictures where he served as Executive Producer of the feature Cool Runnings.

Piczo, Inc. ( ), a teen-targeted online social network, has raised $11 million in funding from US-based Venture Partners and Mangrove Capital Partners.  Launched in 2004, Piczo’s existing investors also include Sierra Ventures and Catamount Ventures.  The company plans to use the additional capital to continue expanding its service around the world, provide new tools that allow teens to build personal online communities and nurture relationships with strategic partners and advertisers.

In other kid/teen-centric online news, MySpace announced this week it is developing a new software, Zephyr, that will allow parents to track their kid’s use of its online social network.   The new software, currently slated for summer release, will be for Windows users only initially, and will alert parents/guardians will provide the vitals stats (name, age, location) of the kids listed on their MySpace site.  However, the software won’t provide parents with access into their kids accounts and/or profiles, passwords, nor password protected communications such as email.  The Zephyr software comes following MySpace’s introduction of a new set of safety and security features June 2006, aimed at protecting its younger users, as well as launching a parent and educator targeted internet safety campaign.

Almost as soon as news of Zephyr was being announced, MySpace and its parent company, News Corp., were being served with four lawsuits this week. The suits filed by four families in four different states, each allege their teen daughters were solicited online and subsequently abused by adults they met on MySpace.  Each lawsuit accuses MySpace and News Corp., of negligence, recklessness, fraud, and negligent misrepresentation by the companies.


Aardman International has inked a raft of license deals for Aardman Animation’s stop-motion animated series Shaun the Sheep (40×7′).  Targeted to K4-10, Shaun the Sheep was commissioned by CBBC, where it will premiere later this year.  TF1 (France) has picked up all rights including TV, home video and licensing & merchandising; Sony Creative Products has picked up all rights for Japan, and is negotiating a deal with a broadcaster in the territory; a pan-territory TV partnership has been completed with Disney in Asia, France, Italy, and Latin America, with sales in Central and Eastern Europe to Cartoon Network for their multi-territory feed. Also picking-up the series are HRT (Croatia) and Ceska Televize (Czech Republic); and the show will air on TSR (Switzerland), TVB (Hong Kong), and Logi Channel (Israel).  Israel’s Clasikaletet has the DVD rights there; In Scandinavia, Nordisk Film has picked up the home video rights and the series has been pre-sold to DR (Denmark), SVT (Sweden), NRK (Norway), YLE (Finland), while Alicom has secured the licensing and merchandising rights; pre-sales pact have also been set with co-producer WDR (Germany), ABC (Australia), TVNZ (New Zealand) and RTBF (Belgium).

Turner Broadcasting has furthered its agreement with the UK-based Two Way TV for two more years.  Under the extension Two Way TV will provide interactive content for Turner’s UK kids channels carried Virgin Cable UK including, Cartoon Network, Boomerang, Toonami and Cartoon Network Too.  Two Way TV will also develop a collection of additional games and interactive content that will be based on Cartoon Network’s original series/characters such as Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends and Ben 10 on telco TV platforms across the UK and Europe.


Film studio, Lionsgate and Habbo, the teen-targeted online community, have teamed-up to get input from teens on potential animated movie project.  Lionsgate is asking Habbo members to log onto Habbo sites worldwide and screen ten different animated shorts based on the Habbo World, and vote on which should be expanded into a long-form movie, which would be produced and distributed by Lionsgate on both DVD and online.  From noted animation studios, the shorts are produced in various animation styles (e.g. CGI, flash, 2D) by noted animation studios.  Votes can be placed for the next ten days.

Electronic Arts Inc. has launched The Sims Stories, a new line of standalone “laptop-friendly games,” aimed at both beginning and experienced players.  The first game in the line, The Sims Life Stories (rated Teen), introduces Story Mode, which provides players with the choice of following the lives of one of two characters.  Developed by EA Redwood Shores, the game is slated for release in the US on February 6 and in Europe on February 2, 2007.  The next The Sims Stories game titles are The Sims Pet Stories and The Sims Castaway Stories, set for release in summer 2007 and winter 2008 respectively.

Mattel’s American Girl division has unveiled plans to open two American Girl Boutique and Bistro, one in Texas at Galleria Dallas and the other in Georgia at Atlanta’s North Point Mall, later this year.  The retail locations will offer American Girl dolls, outfits, and accessories and books in addition to a Doll Hair Salon and mother/daughter events.  On the dining side, the Bistro will be open for brunch, lunch, dinner and/or dessert.  Each location will have separate party rooms and offer American Girl-themed birthday parties, which include games/activities, food and cake, and party favors.


Neal Shapiro, formerly President, NBC News, has been named President, Educational Broadcasting Corporation (EBC), licensee of public broadcasters Thirteen/WNET and WLIW NY.  Shapiro will take up his new position in February, succeeding William F. Baker President and CEO, EBC, in what will be a gradual transition during which Baker will continue as CEO with the ultimate plan to make Shapiro CEO in February 2008.  Baker has served with the organization for two decades, after passing the CEO orb to Shapiro in 2008, Baker will continue as an active member of the EBC team as President Emeritus.

Scholastic Corporation brings on a senior executive as two others make their egress.  Maureen O’Connell has been named to the newly created position, EVP, Chief Administrative Officer and CFO.  O’Connell will oversee Scholastic’s administrative functions, including Finance, Global Operations and IT, Human Resources, Strategic Planning and Business Development, and Legal.  O’Connell will report to Chairman, President and CEO, Richard Robinson.  Resigning from the company are Mary Winston, EVP and CFO and Peter Watts, SVP/Human Resources.  Winston will pursue her finance career, while Watts, who was with the company for just one year, will become EVP/Human Resources of a pharmaceutical company. O’Connell was most recently CFO, Affinion Group, Inc.  Previously she was CFO, Barnes & Noble and held several positions, ultimately President and COO, Gartner Inc.

Double Fusion, an in-game advertising company, has grown its sales group by three: Aaron Lassila joins the company as Director/Sales, Western Region.  Prior to this he spearheaded New Media business for Electronic Arts; Chris Negron has been named Director/Sales, Central Region.  Most recently Negron was with CNET Networks Entertainment where he served in Central Regions sales for the past three years.  Previously he toiled in the new media areas of ad agencies, Starcom IP and JWT Digital; Danielle Ryniker has been named Sr. Sales Manager, Eastern Region.  Prior to this Ryniker was East Coast Ad Director and Regional Sales Manager, CNET Networks Entertainment division. Previously, she cut her sales, advertising and media planning skills with Unicast, Universal McCann Interactive and OgilvyOne.

Friday Fun Fact:
On a clear day with blue skies, lightning can jump outside of its parent cloud and travel for more than five miles through clear air. This is called the “bolt from the blue” phenomenon. The study of lightning is called keraunopathology.

Answer to Yesterday’s trivia question: Before coming to live with Uncle Bill and Mr. French, where did the children live? INDIANA WITH THEIR PARENTS   Kudos to:  Jonathan Caspian-Go Maniac Media/NY; Chuck Howell-Library of American Broadcasting/College Park MD; Wendi Friedman Tush-The Lexicomm Group/NY; Kimberly Keeley–Safety 4 Kids, LLC/Stamford, CT; Susie Mains-Trilogy Talent/LA

Today’s Trivia Question: On this show you have a babbling Genie that says “Yapple Dapple.”  What cartoon is this? ( click here) 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
Gwen Billings for Cynopsis Kids!

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Cynopsis CLASSIFIEDSFor More classifieds, visit the classifieds page here

JOB OPENING: ADMIN ASST/OXYGEN/NY: Assistant to Pres, Interactive & SVP Prog. & Sched. 2-3yrs. Exper, Prof in MS Office, Multi-tasker, detail-oriented. Coll Deg Pref. Send cvr lttr/res: [email protected] ref job title subj line (1/26)

JOB OPENING: SALES EXEC-MUSIC SPECIALTY RETAIL POWERHOUSE WANTED/Dallas: Record Label/TV co. w/a track record & a catalogue. Must have strong retail relationships & ability to lead the charge! Res/mrktng strategy to: [email protected]  (1/26)

JOB OPENING: ACCT MGR AFFIL SALES/NBCU TVN Dist/Englewood Cliffs, NJ: 5 yrs exp cable affiliate sales, BA. Strategic sales pro w/focus on local mktg/sales initiatives. Please apply to, job #568018  (1/26)

JOB OPENING: ACCOUNT SERVICE TEAM/UPROAR!! /NYC: Must have broadcast and agency experience!  Will be based in NYC, Pawtucket, RI and East Long Meadow, MA  send resume to [email protected] (1/26)

JOB OPENING: CREATIVE TEAM/UPROAR! /NYC: New business requires additional staffing  must have broadcast and agency experience.  All based in NYC.  Send resume to [email protected]  (1/26)

JOB OPENING: SR RESEARCH ANALYST/CNN Research/ATL: 3+yrs bcast/cable rsrch; keen analytical/communication abilities; multitasking pro;
Nielsen/MS Office exp; info 71112br; Res: [email protected]   (1/26)

JOB OPENING: RSRCH ANALYST/Cartoon Ntwrk/Adult Swim/ATL: 1+yrs related media exp, Nielsen sftwr exp req; strong analytical & comm skills, interpret/position data; info 68090br; Res: [email protected] (1/26)

JOB OPENING: DIRECTOR,PR/ VERSUS/Stamford, CT: Director needed to create and oversee publicity efforts for fast growing sports cable net. 7 yrs exp + sports req’d. Apply at: EOE/AA/drug free (1/26)

JOB OPENING: AFFILIATE DISTRIBUTION ASSISTANT/Hallmark Channel LA: Support SVP and other NDS execs.  2 yrs.min exp. See full posting & apply at: (1/26)

JOB OPENING:SR PROD ACCT/Dallas: BA ,3+ yrs exp,  prof. in Prod Acct’g for TV episodic, home videos & overhead; Vista, & Excel, cost rpts, budgets, forecasting, cash flow a must. Supv. Payroll & A/P.  [email protected]   (1/26)

JOB OPENING: MARKETING ASST/National CineMedia/NYC: Direct report to VP of Marketing/admin work with assist on mktng projects/Bachelor’s deg. required. Send cover letter & resume:   [email protected] (1/26)

JOB OPENING: PR MGR/ Court TV News/NY: Oversee Court TV News PR: key anchor contact; pitch anchors/trials/online initiatives; field media requests; strong media contacts; 5+yrs exp req’d. news. Res: [email protected]      (1/26)

JOB OPENING: DIR AD SALES RESEARCH/Bravo/NY: Min 6 yrs exp in TV research req, min 4 yrs exp supporting national cable ad sales req, exp w/Nielsen Monitor Plus. Apply online at job #557146  (1/25)

JOB OPENING:  ACCT MGR, AFFIL SALES/NBCU TVN Dist/Englewood Cliffs, NJ: 5 yrs exp cable affiliate sales, BA. Strategic sales pro w/focus on local mktg/sales initiatives. Please apply to, job #568018

JOB OPENING: ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE/GSN/NY: Looking for an Account Executive for Ad Sales. Will promote & sell inventory on GSN & Send resumes to [email protected] Indicate “Account Executive-NY”  (1/25)

JOB OPENING: PR / FerenComm/NYC: Leading TV agency seeks Sr. AE and Account Mgr. to create and oversee PR campaigns for talk, drama and lifestyle series  to apply, email:  [email protected]  (1/25)

JOB OPENING: WRITER/PRODUCER /COURT TV/NY: Exp writing & producing promos for a nationally distributed TV ntwrk. Must have a compelling demo reel. Able to work in fast paced rating driven enviro.  Resumes: [email protected] (1/25)

JOB OPENING: SR MGR, MEDIA STRATEGY & PLAN’G/National Geo Channel/DC: Dvlp/execute off/on-air media plans; partner w/ external media agency; oversee b’cast logs; 3+yrs media plan’g within ntwrk or media agency; (1/25)

JOB OPENING:  INTERACTIVE MKTNG COORD/NY: Updating Six Flags website & utilizing mrktng database. Focus: copywriting/editing/streamlining content to keep in line w/ tone & creative dir of redesigned website. Res: [email protected] (1/24)

JOB OPENING:  WRITER, FREELANCE/Lou Reda Productions/Easton, PA: Should have proven track record writing non-fiction and documentaries. Contact [email protected] (1/24)

JOB OPENING:  VP AD SALES & SPONSORSHIP SALES/Retirement Living, Balt/DC area: 7-10 yrs. Ad Sales exp., lead the dev. + implementation of strategic sales initiatives on a local + national level, www.RL.TV (1/24)

JOB OPENING:  AD SALES MKTG MGR/NYC:  For development marketing & sales materials and created integrated client packages for the national ad sales team. Forward cover letter & resume to [email protected] (1/24)

JOB OPENING: EXEC ASST (EA) & ADMIN ASST (AA): EA to Pres. of NYC media boutique w/3+ yrs exp; AA for admin/research; BA/self-starter/determined/focused/loyal/strong PC & phone skills. / [email protected] (1/23)

JOB OPENING: ACCT EXEC/iVillage/Chicago: 5yrs+ media sales exp, online sales exp, acquiring high value clients, handle incoming leads & agency, maint’g relationships w/lrg scale clients. Apply:, job #570064

JOB OPENING: ACCT EXEC/iVillage/LA: 5yrs+ media sales exp, online sales exp, acquiring high value clients, handle incoming leads & agency bus, maint’g relationships w/lrg scale clients. Apply:, job #570067  (1/23)

JOB OPENING: ACCT MGR/Digital Media/NY:  Min 3 yrs media & online exp, coordinate & manage online business w/Acct Exe, liaison w/other depts w/in the online sales group.  Please apply, , job #568069.  (1/23)

JOB OPENING: SR MGR/DIR-MKT & PROMO/MTVN, NYC: Dvlp mktg events & promotions for mtvU. Client and agency experience a must. Manage staff. 4-5 years experience. Resume: [email protected]  (1/23)

JOB OPENING:   PROJECT MGR, SPECIAL PROJ/NBC Universal/NY: initiate, plan & supervise phases of prod, pre-planning to completion of on-air spots, tapes, new media assets, print materials job # 569804  (1/23)

JOB OPENING: RSRCH ANALYST/LIFETIME TV/NY: 1+yrs media exp, Nielsen software exp req; strong analytical skills, analyzing/reporting rating trends; exc. comm skills;  candidates apply: (1/23)

JOB OPENING: SALES PLANNER/Univision/NY: Generate upfront & scatter plans. Handle all aspects of ongoing deal maintenance & stewardship. Media experience. Spanish a plus. Apply: [email protected] EOE 1/11/07  (1/23)

JOB OPENING: RESEARCH DIRECTOR, PROGRAMMING/ HGTV/Knoxville – 8 yrs cable networks exp. Strong analytical skills & strategic thinker. Expertise: N-Power, other Nielsen and secondary tools. [email protected]  # 5850-U (1/23)

WINTER INTERNSHIPS – These positions are for credit only – nobody gets paid here. They are posted for free, and students work for school credit only. For more information on the specs for posting an Internship ad, email Trish at [email protected] .

WINTER INTERNSHIP CREDITS ONLY: PROD. INTERNS: Reality TV- Final Cut preferred. Prod. Co./NY seeks semester interns for hit series. Must be current student & available a min of 2 days/wk. Submit cover letter & resume to [email protected] (1/25)

WINTER INTERNSHIP CREDITS ONLY: VIDEO PRODUCTION INTERNS: Wanted for new NYC internet TV network.  Must have skill in DV shooting and non-linear editing.  Get real world production experience and build your reel. Resume to [email protected] (1/25)

WINTER INTERNSHIP CREDITS ONLY: College Sports TV/NYC: Seeks semester intern in our CREATIVE SERVICES/ON AIR PROMOTION DEPT. Must be current student & available a min of 3 days/wk. Submit resume to [email protected] (1/24)

WINTER INTERNSHIP CREDITS ONLY: MUSIC TALENT INTERN/VH1  LA Office: Looking for bright interns who want to learn about music talent booking & TV prod. Strong computer skills a must! Send resume and avail to [email protected] (1/23)


SITUATION WANTED: REALITY PRODUCER & SHOW RUNNER: Seeks employment. Extensive Development, Production, Story and Field experience. Network and Cable credits. (Reality, Lifestyle, Docusoap) [email protected] (1/25)

E-mail Trish Pihonak for rates and specs for Job Openings.

Are you looking for a job? Post your Situation Wanted Ad here — Email Trish Pihonak for specs.

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