Cartoon Network knows it’s good to be #1. And #2!
Good morning. It’s Tuesday, March 24, 2009, and this is your first early morning Kids briefing.
Cartoon Network is teaming up with the NBA to develop long and short-form basketball-themed content across a multiple platforms (e.g. online, mobile, VOD and on-air). The partnership and builds on Turner Broadcasting’s 25+/year relationship with the NBA. The deal tips-off with Cartoon Network developing the new short-form series, My Dad’s a Pro, which follows the kids of NBA players and will bow with the beginning of NBA season in fall 2009. Also launching this fall will be a basketball-themed area on CartoonNetwork.com that will feature a mix of multimedia content.
UK-based Walker Productions, a unit of kid’s publisher the Walker Books, partners with Ireland’s JAM Media and author/illustrator Polly Dunbar to develop a TV series based on Dunbar’s preschool picture book series Tilly and Friends. The US editions are published by Candlewick Press, part of the Walker group, and publishers in France, Germany, Norway and Japan have all signed up to Tilly and Friends, with more deals to be announced this year.
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The new preschool animated series Ben and Holly’s Little Kingdom (52×11) makes its world premiere on Nick Jr. UK on Monday, April 6, 2009 and will air daily at 7:30a and 4:30p. Produced by animation company Astley Baker Davies and E1 Kids UK (f/k/a Rubber Duck Entertainment), Ben and Holly’s Little Kingdom follows the adventures of Princes Holly (a Fairy) and her best pal Ben Elf in the mini kingdom hidden in the flowers and grass. The series will air across Nickelodeon networks around the world.
ABC will air the Peanuts specials It’s the Easter Beagle, Charlie Brown and Charlie Brown All Stars back-to-back on Tuesday, April 8-9p. Charlie Brown All Stars has not aired on TV since spring 1982, when it ran on CBS. Hey, and worth noting here is that Peanuts celebrates its 60th anniversary in 2010.
BBC Worldwide completes sale of the preschool series In the Night Garden to Chinese Central Television (CCTV). Under the deal CCTV acquires all 100 episodes In the Night Garden, which will launch on CCTV in the second half of 2009. In the Night Garden is produced by Ragdoll Productions. Additionally, UYoung is appointed as licensing agent for In the Night Garden responsible for developing a comprehensive licensing program, with the first product lines set to launch this year.
PBS Kids and PBS Kids Go! celebrate Earth Day on Wednesday, April 22, with the fourth annual PBS Kids Share the Earth Day and a new web-based Earth Day Channel on pbskidsgo.org. The on-air event features premiere episodes Cyberchase, Curious George and Arthur, and themed episodes of Super Why!, Sid the Science Kid among others. Eco-centric content and activities will be featured online at pbskidsgo.org, pbskids.org, PBS Parents and PBS Teachers. Additionally, the new PBS Kids Go! video player will host an Earth Day channel with themed content from Arthur, Design Squad, and Maya & Miguel, as well as web-exclusive sites such as Eekoworld, where kids can create and monitor their own creatures in the wild, and The Greens, a web-based series about the Green family and sustainability/ecology/environment/being green.
Televix Entertainment signs broadcast deals in Central and South America for Amberwood Entertainment‘s CGI animated series RollBots (26×30). Coming out of NATPE 2009, RollBots has been picked up by Medcom TV (Panama), Televicentro (Nicaragua) and ZAZ, a Pay-TV broadcaster operated by MVS Networks covering Spanish-speaking Latin America. The RollBots TV series made its premiere on YTV (Canada), with the simultaneous launch of the online gaming world at RollBots.com. 4Kids Entertainment is the worldwide merchandise licensing agent for the property, and also holds the US broadcast rights for the series, which will air on TheCW4kids Saturday morning programming block.
CCI Releasing inks a range of broadcast pacts for the teen-targeted movie Alice Upside Down including deals with: YTV (Canada); Disney Latin America; Starz (US); Globo TV (Brazil); Disney (Scandinavia) (Australia and New Zealand); Epelpol Entertainment (Poland); Falcon Films (Middle East) and Noga (Israel). Further deals for Alice Upside Down are also in the world for France, Italy, Germany, Mexico, and another in the US. Produced by Alice Partnership, organized by Open Pictures and Avondale Entertainment Production, Alice Upside Down stars Alyson Stoner (Camp Rock, Cheaper By The Dozen), Lucas Grabeel (the High School Musical movies) and Luke Perry and Penny Marshall among others. The movie is based on Phyllis Reynolds Naylor’s books about Alice, a tween, who moves to a new town with her dad and teenaged brother.
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Atlantyca Entertainment has entered into a publishing deal with Chinese publishing houses, 21st Century to publish 60 titles in the Geronimo Stilton book series for release throughout Mainland China. 21st Century will publish an initial 10 titles during the local Chinese Festival for children, just before the Children’s Day, June 1, 2009. The first titles under the deal include: Attack of The Bandit Cats, The Mona Mouse Code, Four Mice Deep In the Jungle and Surf’s Up, Stilton.
Disney Online is launching a French language version of Club Penguin for Francophone kids. Founded in British Columbia in 2004, the new French language Club Penguin site is supported by a French speaking staff in Europe and Canada. In addition to being available in English and now French, the virtual world is also in Portuguese, with a Spanish version launching this summer.
The Intellectual Property Office (f/k/a the Patent Office), Aardman Animations, SGA Productions and the Science Museum are partnering to launch Wallace & Gromit present A World of Cracking Ideas, which opens at the Science Museum in London on Saturday, March 28. The exhibition is designed to inspire a new generation of innovators. The almost $3m exhibition has been funded by the Intellectual Property Office, and designed and built for Aardman Animation by SGA Productions in association with IY A Studios. This furthers the relationship between Intellectual Property Office and Aardman who have worked together for the last three years on the UK Cracking Ideas competition, which encourages schoolchildren to innovate. Aardman is considering other venues for the exhibition after it closes in London in November.
Activision Publishing names Dan Rosensweig as President and CEO, RedOctane, the unit that develops the Guitar Hero and upcoming DJ Hero. Formerly COO, Yahoo!, Rosensweig will report directly to Mike Griffith, President and CEO, Activision Publishing. Kai Huang, former President and CEO, RedOctane, who along with his brother Charles Huang created Guitar Hero, will continue working at RedOctane reporting to Rosensweig. Rosensweig currently serves as a partner at Quadrangle Group, a private investment firm.
Debra Lande is named Publisher, Klutz. Lande takes up her new post at the end of the month, and will report to Ellie Berger, President/Trade Publishing, Scholastic, and will work in tandem with John Cassidy, CCO/Klutz. Most recently, Lande was Director/Production Innovation, Chronicle Books.
Live + Same Day Ratings Kids Cable Network Averages (000) for Thursday, March 19, 2009, 6am-11pm, ranked by K2-11:
NICKELODEON: K2-11 1096; K6-11 505; TWEENS 9-14 389
DISNEY CHANNEL: K2-11 832; K6-11 509; TWEENS 9-14 383
CARTOON NETWORK: K2-11 532; K6-11 321; TWEENS 9-14 219
DISNEY XD: K2-11 162; K6-11 101; TWEENS 9-14 78
Source: MTVN Research from Nielsen Media Research Data
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Answer to Yesterday’s Trivia Question: Animated mice Pixie & Dixie were seen on what classic TV cartoon series? HUCKLEBERRY HOUND Kudos to: Joseph Streich-StrikeforceNY/NY; Marc J. Beck-MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL/New York; Dusty Ratledge-Scripps Networks/Knoxville; Joshua Fierman-O’Dwyer PR/New York; Richard Quan-Imaginary Time/San Francisco
Today’s Trivia Question: Besides Cynthia Turner, who has a doll named Cynthia? (Email [email protected] 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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