Corus Celebrates Franklin’s 25th Anniversary

Corus Entertainment’s Kids Can Press, Nelvana Studio and Treehouse are pleased to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Franklin, one of the world’s most adored preschool characters, with the release of a special edition of Franklin in the Dark, the re-release of 12 classic Franklin stories – available in stores today – and the Treehouse premiere of the new CGI-animated series Franklin and Friends on Friday, March 4 at 6 p.m. ET.

Press Release from Corus Entertainment

(February 1, 2011 – Toronto, Canada) Corus Entertainment’s Kids Can Press, Nelvana Studio and Treehouse are pleased to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Franklin, one of the world’s most adored preschool characters, with the release of a special edition of Franklin in the Dark, the re-release of 12 classic Franklin stories – available in stores today – and the Treehouse premiere of the new CGI-animated series Franklin and Friends on Friday, March 4 at 6 p.m. ET.

“Corus has a long history with Franklin, from the award-winning books published by Kids Can Press to the internationally successful classic television series produced by Nelvana,” said Doug Murphy, Executive Vice President and President of Corus Television. “We are proud to commemorate this milestone by issuing never-before-seen material in a special edition of Franklin in the Dark and by giving our audiences an updated version of the series with new CGI-animation on Treehouse.”

Twenty-five years ago, Franklin conquered his fear of the dark with the help of a night-light. Since the 1986 publication of Franklin in the Dark, Franklin has brightened story time for millions of children worldwide with over 65 million books sold in more than 30 languages. To mark the 25th anniversary of this popular little turtle, Kids Can Press is releasing a special, large-format edition of Franklin in the Dark. Available in Canadian stores beginning today, this special 25th anniversary edition offers never-before-seen archival material, including an excerpt of the first manuscript and a selection of original sketches. The anniversary will also be recognized with the re-release of 12 classic Franklin stories including titles such as Franklin Goes to School, Franklin and the Thunderstorm, Franklin Rides a Bike and Franklin and the Tooth Fairy. For more information please visit www.Franklin25.com. Nelvana Studio and Treehouse will mark the anniversary celebrations with the launch of Franklin and Friends, a new CGI-animated series with Franklin as the undisputed star of the show. In this Canadian original production, Franklin is filled with passion for Woodland, his family and friends. Franklin isn't perfect however, but he is working on it and his daily adventures encourage kids to be curious about the world. Featuring an ensemble of characters including, Bear, Fox, Rabbit, Beaver, Goose, Snail, and introducing quirky Aunt T, the stories of Franklin and Friends feature special themes including fun mysteries, Woodland events and outdoor activities.

In episode one, Franklin and Friends: Franklin and the Gecko Games/Franklin’s All Ears, premiering on Friday, March 4 at 6 p.m. (r) Saturday, March 5 at 9 a.m. and Sunday, March 6 at 9:30 a.m. ET, both Franklin and Beaver want to look after the Nature Nut’s pet gecko, Gordon. So, Goose creates the Gecko Games to find out who would be the best pet-sitter. Beaver is disappointed when she loses, so Franklin abdicates his win to her. Then, Franklin and Snail overhear their friends talking about a party –  but with no balloons, no music and no yummy treats! When they find out that there is no party, Snail and Franklin throw a party for everyone else instead.

Beginning on Tuesday, February 15, viewers can immerse themselves in the world of Franklin and Friends online by visiting http://franklin.treehousetv.com. Fans will find games, activities, as well as show and character information. The site will also feature fan-submitted artwork and exclusive stills from the show.

Corus Entertainment’s Nelvana Enterprises has also secured sales of the series to TF1 in France, Minimax in Eastern Europe, YLE TV2 in Finland, NRK in Norway, TVN in Poland, Discovery Channel in Latin America, Spacetoon in Indonesia, among others. Licensing opportunities are also available through Nelvana Enterprises.

Treehouse, seen in over 8.5 million homes across Canada, offers premium preschool programming and a rich co-viewing environment for children and their parents. Delivering a strong balance of educational, values-rich and entertaining programs, Treehouse delivers high-quality children’s series from Canada and around the world. A parent-trusted brand, Treehouse’s highly interactive website, TreehouseTV.com reaches over half-a-million moms per month. Visit the Treehouse website at www.treehousetv.com.

Nelvana Studio is a globally recognized animation studio that produces a stable of award-winning and globally renowned brands – from literary classics Babar and Franklin to shows such as 6TEEN, Rolie Polie Olie and The Backyardigans, the #1 preschool series in Canada.  Many of these series air on Corus Entertainment’s kids’ services in Canada and in over 150 countries around the world. Nelvana’s library now has well over 3,800 episodes of programming and has received over 70 major international program awards including Emmys and Geminis. Visit the Nelvana website at www.nelvana.com.

Kids Can Press is the largest Canadian-owned children’s publisher, with an award-winning list of over 500 picture books, nonfiction and fiction titles for toddlers to young adults, including Franklin the Turtle, the single most successful publishing franchise in the history of Canadian publishing, which has sold over 65 million books in more than 30 languages around the world. Visit the Kids Can Press website at www.kidscanpress.com.

Treehouse, Nelvana Studio and Kids Can Press are owned by Corus Entertainment Inc., a Canadian-based media and entertainment company. Corus is a market leader in specialty television and radio with additional assets in pay television, television broadcasting, children’s book publishing and children’s animation. The Company’s multimedia entertainment brands include YTV, Treehouse, Nickelodeon (Canada), W Network, OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network (Canada), CosmoTV, Sundance Channel (Canada), Movie Central, HBO Canada, Nelvana, Kids Can Press and radio stations including CKNW AM 980, 99.3 The FOX, Country 105, 630 CHED, Q107 and 102.1 the Edge. Corus creates engaging branded entertainment experiences for its audiences across multiple platforms. A publicly traded company, Corus is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (CJR.B). Experience Corus on the web at www.corusent.com.

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