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SpongeBob Sets Off on Snail Trail for Lost Pet in Primetime Special

SpongeBob inadvertedly causes his beloved pet snail Gary to crawl away and sets off in a desperate search to bring him home in Wheres Gary, a half-hour SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS special premiering on Nickelodeon Friday, Nov. 11, 2005, at 8:00 pm.

When SpongeBob (voiced by Tom Kenny) forgets to feed Gary for several weeks while attempting to beat the paddleball world record, the mewing pet snail becomes disillusioned and slithers away from home. Frightened out on the rough streets of downtown Bikini Bottom, the down-and-out snail is taken in by a strange but kindly old woman (voiced by Amy Poehler, SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE) who mistakes him for one of her other beloved pets.

When SpongeBob snaps out of his paddleball obsession a week later, he realizes that he has forgotten to feed Gary, who is now missing. With the help of his well-meaning but dim best friend Patrick, the distraught SpongeBob sets out on a wild search to find his pet mollusk and return him home. Meanwhile, as Gary is pampered and indulged in an endless assortment of snacks, he discovers a dark secret about this seemingly sweet old woman.

Launched in July 1999, the Emmy-nominated series has since emerged as a pop culture phenomenon and has held rank as one of the top kids shows on broadcast and cable television since its debut.

Kids love their pets and theres certainly some relatability here in the relationship between SpongeBob and Gary skewed though it may be, said Marjorie Cohn, evp, development and original programming, Nickelodeon. Its fun to see Gary express a whole range of emotions using only his signature meow.

Nickelodeon has been supporting the special with a month long off-air marketing campaign that includes print, outdoor and consumer product partner support. Leading up to the Wheres Gary premiere, kids have been encouraged to log onto to enter the SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS WHERES GARY? Sweepstakes and get a Trail of The Snail tracking card. The grand prize is a trip to the Nicktoons Studio to meet the production team of SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS and visit a voice recording session with the cast.

The special offers great art direction, original gags, wacky humor and strikes just the right sentimental toon about the value of pets and friendship that continues to make this show so entertaining for kids and adults.

Nickelodeon is offering a sneak peek and bonus coverage of the special on Nickelodeons broadband online platform TurboNick, available on

Kids may also visit where a snail-seeking undersea adventure awaits in the Trail of the Snail Flash game.

In addition, on Nov. 15, kids can pick up the SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS WHERES GARY DVD at select retailers.

SpongeBob SquarePants is created and exec produced by Stephen Hillenburg. Hillenburg created and exec produced THE SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS MOVIE, which hit theaters in November 2004.

Supervising producer/co-writer Paul Tibbitt served as a director/writer on SpongeBob SquarePants for all three seasons and is exec producer of the fourth. He wrote some of the shows most memorable episodes such as Ripped Pants and Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy. Tibbitt is one of the co-writers and storyboard artists on THE SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS MOVIE.

Aaron Springer co-wrote the special with Tibbit and was also storyboard director. Dina Buteyn was line producer, Peter Bennett art directed while animation directors were Alan Smart and Tom Yasumi.

Music was composed by Nicolas Carr, Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield and Stew.

SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS is a Nicktoons Production and is produced at the Nicktoons Studio in Burbank, California.