Nick Jr. and NOGGIN will blend their creative and management teams into a unified group -- Nickelodeon Preschool, the largest preschool and parent's destination in the world -- with 109 hours of preschool television a week, representing 56% of all preschool programming on television. The new preschool team will be led by Brown Johnson who has been named evp/exec creative director, Nickelodeon Preschool and gm of NOGGIN.
Nina Jacobson has signed a three-year, first-look agreement at DreamWorks Studios, according to THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. This deal comes six months after she was removed as head of the Walt Disney Motion Pictures Group. The new agreement goes into effect in January.
Jacobson previously worked at DreamWorks as a senior film exec prior to taking the post of president of the motion picture division at Disney in 1998. At DreamWorks, she developed hits, such as WHAT LIES BENEATH and ANTZ, for which she is credited as formulating the original idea.
Rainmaker announced today (Dec. 4, 2006) that former Mainframe ceo Rick Mischel will now serve as an exec producer with a first look deal at Rainmaker. Rainmaker recently acquired Mainframe Ent. Mischel was instrumental in the sale of the company and will moves into his new role immediately.
NBC Universal today (Dec. 4, 2006) announced expanded responsibilities for several senior executives, and appointed Michael Pilot as new head of Ad Sales.
Rhythm & Hues film division president Richard Hollander is leaving the Los Angeles area visual effects studio to join Bay area Pixar Animation Studios as a producer, according to the HOLLYWOOD REPORTER.
R&H' film division exec producer Lee Berger succeeds Hollander as R&H's new president in February, the trade reports.
Hollander reportedly had been looking for new challenges, and learned of a producing position at Pixar through former Lucas Digital president Jim Morris, who joined Pixar as producer two years ago.
Lisa Hill joins Cosgrove Hall Filmsin the U.K. as PR and marketing manager, as the studio, the birthplace of childrens classics -- including DANGERMOUSE and COUNT DUCKULA -- celebrates its 30th anniversary and embarks on a new era by developing a slate of new programs.
Hill has six years PR and marketing experience and is an associate member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (ACIPR). She has spent the last three years raising the profile of North West Vision (the film, TV and digital media agency for Englands North West).
Artist owned-and-operated effects boutique Brickyard VFX has hired lead 3D artist Julian Sarmiento to join the CG division. He joins co-heads of the CG department, Robert Sethi and Yafei Wu.
Peter Risafi has been upped to svp, brand marketing/exec creative director, for Comedy Central and will continue to be based at the company's headquarters in New York City. In his newly expanded role, Risafi will be responsible for all brand creative and strategic marketing, ensuring a consistent look and unified voice for the Comedy Central brand across all media and platforms. This includes consumer, ad trade and affiliate marketing; network brand strategy and creative positioning; its digital assets and all other ancillary businesses.
News Corp. has appointed 18-year Fox veteran Peter Levinsohn, 40, president of Fox Interactive Media (FIM), following the resignation of the unit's current president, Ross Levinsohn, effective Nov. 27, 2006.
Cartoon Network has signed veteran animation exec/creator Sam Register to a first-look deal to develop both kids and adult programming for the network.
Sam brings a talent and vision to the world of animation and programming that fits our sensibilities perfectly, said Jim Samples, vp/gm for Cartoon Network. He has a successful and proven track record with Cartoon Network as a development exec with prominent projects from BEN 10 and TEEN TITANS to MY GYM PARTNER IS A MONKEY, and we are thrilled to be continuing our relationship with him in this capacity.
TV-Loonland has appointed Kirsty Guthrie UK sales & licensing consultant for its new pre-school brand LITTLE PRINCESS (produced by The Illuminated Film Co).
After working in the licensing industry some 11 years, Guthrie left her position at Universal Studios to set up independently as KJG Ltd. just over a year ago.
A decade of Don Hertzfeldt's acrid yet amiable animation comes to DVD at last on Bitter Films Vol. 1 1995-2005. Taylor Jessen reviews and interviews the animator.
MTV Networks International has promoted Mark Levine to svp, Nickelodeon marketing & communications, in an expanded role to drive Nickelodeon's continued business growth and kids'-first brand proposition around the world. Pooja Midha also has been promoted to vp, marketing, reporting to Levine.
Warner Bros. Pictures has appointed Chris deFaria to evp, digital production, animation and visual effects, Warner Bros. Pictures.
Blue Fang Games has hired Bill Schofield as director of software engineering. He will be responsible for creating and driving the vision of the engineering department, and aligning it to deliver on Blue Fang's mission and goals. Schofield will also coordinate and prioritize departmental work, foster use of best development practices and apply his extensive knowledge and experience with Agile development to game development projects at Blue Fang.
As part of recent expansion efforts at Post Logic Studios, post engineering expert Merle Sharp has been appointed chief technology officer, and Tracey Grimes returns as director of sales. With these new hires, Post Logic Studios remains well positioned to build on its current success and become a model for the digital services company of tomorrow.
John Cawley chats with Bob Boyle about the challenges the creator faces balancing production on two new shows, Wow! Wow! Wubbzy! and Yin Yang Yo!, which air on two separate networks.
Thirty-year animation veteran Ellen Besen is the new creative director of the Kalamazoo Animation Festival International (KAFI) to be held May 17-20, 2007, in downtown Kalamazoo. Michigan. She will oversee the competitions, screenings, professional development and networking interaction between todays and tomorrows animators booked for the four-day festival in the southwest Michigan community.
Dale Hendrickson, who worked on the original She-Ra and He-Man series, chats with veteran producer Lou Scheimer about his work on the two series, as well as his overall career in animation.
Jeff Small exits Revolution as its coo to join DreamWorks Studios as coo.
"We are excited about Jeff joining DreamWorks," said Stacey Snider, co-chairman/ceo. "I know Steven Spielberg and all of us here look forward to having this talented executive on our team. His range of experience at all levels of a studio which I recognized firsthand when we were both at Universal will be an asset throughout the company."
Small oversaw Revolution's business and legal affairs, finance, physical production and administration.
Carl D. Folta has been upped to Viacom evp, corporate communications, and will serve as the company's chief communications strategist and spokesperson. Folta was evp, office of the chairman.
Mika Salmi has been named to the newly created position president of global digital media for MTVN. Salmi will work across MTVN's growing portfolio of multiplatform brands to further develop and implement the company's strategy of building an engaging universe of music, games, entertainment, networking and interactivity for its communities of targeted audiences. Salmi was ceo of Atom Ent., the company he founded and was acquired by MTVN in August 2006.
Scott Guthrie has been promoted to svp, North American sales and distribution, for THQ. He will manage the company's North American sales, retail marketing, sales planning and operations teams, which directly serve retailers throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico.
Adrian Pennington chats with Peter Lord, Aardman co-founder and producer Flushed Away, on the companys adventures in CG.
Kristin Lowe has been promoted to vp, production, Universal Pictures, overseeing the day-to-day production activities for many of the studio's most anticipated films, including CHILDREN OF MEN, THE KINGDOM and BREACH.
Lowe joined Universal Pictures in 2004 as director of development, following a stint as director of development at Warner Bros. Pictures, She joined WB in 2002 as a creative exec after posts both at MGM and Michael Bay Films.