Cartoon Network will kick-off its month-long Shocktober celebration with an original half-hour special featuring the cast of THE GRIM ADVENTURES OF BILLY AND MANDY, entitled "Jacked Up Halloween." The special will first air on Oct. 1, 2003 at 8:00 pm with an encore on Oct. 30, at 8:00 pm. Together, Billy, Mandy and the Grim Reaper deal with typical suburban challenges -- school, family, and dispatching unwanted visitors from the spirit world.
Nicktoons, Nickelodeons digital home for kid TVs animated hits, will add four new shows to its line-up in 2004, helping the network near its goal of 25% original by 2005. A new on-air look for the network, new packaging and two comedic interstitial series will roll out beginning Oct. 6. Also, leading the network will be its newly appointed, first-ever general manager, Keith Dawkins.
Fox Kids Europe (FKE) is taking 144 half-hour episodes of fresh programming to MIPCOM, including three new kids properties, SONIC X, TUTENSTEIN and SHAMAN KING.
FKE has acquired all TV and home video rights for the world, excluding North America and Asia, for 52 half-hour episodes of SONIC X from TMS Entertainment Ltd. This marks the first animated adaptation of the videogame and TV series hedgehog hero to be created in Japan, (DIC Ent. did the first animated TV series in the U.S.).
TLC Ent. will premiere its latest five-part animated mini-series, THE KIDS' TEN COMMANDMENTS (K10C), on Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN). Episode #1, THE NOT SO GOLDEN CALF, will debut in primetime on October 31, 2003 with the remaining episodes, THE REST IS YET TO COME, A LIFE AND SETH SITUATION, STOLEN JEWELS, STOLEN HEARTS and TOYING WITH THE TRUTH, airing the week of November 10.
Revisiting its roots in original animation that produced such mega-hits as THE POWERPUFF GIRLS, DEXTER'S LABORATORY and COURAGE THE COWARDLY DOG, Cartoon Network today announced an all-new Cartoon Cartoons Shorts program to commission an initial 20 original shorts covering a wide variety of animation styles and formats, it was announced Sept. 29, 2003 by Jim Samples, evp/gm of Cartoon Network Worldwide.
Marking its foray in the TV industry, One31 Media has joined forces with Kickback Media to unveil an action-packed animated series, BC BATTLERS. Targeted for kids 6-11, the 52x26 series combines turbo charged dinosaurs with riveting sci-fi adventures.
One of the hottest toy franchises to emerge this year in the U.K., BC BATTLERS will be supported by a TV advertising campaign that runs through to Christmas 2003 on Fox Kids and Cartoon Network. The toy range features cutting-edge radio controlled vehicles.
Cromosomas big offering for MIPCOM Jr. and MIPCOM is TOM, an animated series produced with the EBU. The 26x26 series features a big, friendly dinosaur who goes on big adventures with a little girl named Wanda and a boy named Tip, while he searches for his long, lost homeland. Their journeys around the world offer insights into how to appreciate the world we live in.
The Indigo Group will venture to Cannes with four new projects in tow for MIPCOM. The new projects include TOBY THE PRINCE OF WHALES, TINGUARO, BRADYS BEASTS and FREDDIE THE FROG.
Rainbow Animation and RAI Fiction have employed fashion designers to catch the eye of buyers and viewers in the new animated offering, WINX CLUB, a 26 half-hour series featuring stylish fairies and cool boys training to be juristic knights.
Premise is about three schools for fairies, witches and boys. Bloom, a fairy in training from Earth and her four schoolmates form the WINX Club to combat their enemies, the witches. The boys lend their aid to the WINX Club in the crusade to eradicate evil.
MTV Networks Europe will deploy Pinnacle Systems' Liquid blue, chrome and Liquid Edition (formerly Liquid purple) editing tools within their new, shared workflow operations in Benelux. The purchase is part of an extensive program by MTV Networks Europe to build a fully networked broadcast environment for their MTV, TMF and Nickelodeon TV channel groups within the region.
Pleasant Grove, Utah-based Eggington Prods educational 3D series, X-POWER, has begun its 10-episode run on PBS. Designed to help children learn algebra, each 15-minute episode follows a team of five young adventurers and their alien guide as they are enlisted to do battle against the Others, using Algebra knowledge as their weapons. X-POWER was produced by Slim Goodbody Corp. and is being distributed by GPN Educational Media.
Buena Vista International Television (BVITV) has concluded multi-year, multi-genre licensing agreements for the daytime and primetime programming on terrestrial channel Super RTL in Germany. The sale of childrens and family programming includes live-action and animated features, TV movies, as well as Disney-branded animated and live-action kids series.
TV Land will replay its first computer-animated special, THE ALAN BRADY SHOW, Oct. 5, 2003 (10:30-11:00 PM, ET/PT), giving the cabler another chance to gauge audience response in determining the commercial viability of a potential series. THE DICK VAN DYKE SHOW spin-off features Emmy Award-winner Carl Reiner reprising his caustic character in voice-over.
Boomerang has announced its fall 2003 line-up of classic cartoons. Properties added include THE FLINTSTONES and THE JETSONS, which are leaving Cartoon Network altogether. The new line-up marks a 44% change from last year.
Universal and NBC have struck a deal to create a dramatic TV pilot based on the 2004 summer thriller VAN HELSING. Entitled TRANSYLVANIA, the show will not be a spinoff or sequel, but will take place in the same universe as the feature. This deal is the first between NBC and Universal since negotiations by GE to purchase Universal from Vivendi began. The films director Stephen Sommers (THE MUMMY) first came up with the idea for the TV series over a year ago when he was hired to direct the feature.
Visual effects shop Eden FX continues its role as the primary provider of CG work for the syndicated Paramount Television series ENTERPRISE, which launched its third season Sept. 10 at 8:00 pm on UPN. Eden FX will be providing more of its Emmy-Award winning vfx, including two new, entirely computer-generated creatures.
FOX Broadcasting gave Matt Groening two tries at animated series and was amply rewarded with THE SIMPSONS and FUTURAMA. Now Seth MacFarlane, creator of FAMILY GUY, which aired on FOX for three seasons, is creating a pilot sitcom tentatively titled, AMERICAN DAD, according to VARIETY. If greenlit, the series could launch in fall 2004.
MacFarlane plans to provide several voices on AMERICAN DAD, as he did on FAMILY GUY. Helping him create, write and exec produce the pilot are FAMILY GUY veteran writers Mike Barker and Matt Weitzman.
To commemorate the 75th anniversary of the "Popeye the Sailor Man" franchise in 2004, King Features Syndicate has christened production of a brand-new 3D computer-animated POPEYE TV and home entertainment special. Mainframe Entertainment will not only animate but, according to DAILY VARIETY, has secured international distribution rights in several markets, including TV rights in Canada and TV/DVD/VHS rights in the U.K. and Australia.
The U.K.s Toonami channel, dedicated to action/adventure/anime animation, has landed STAR WARS: CLONE WARS. The new 2D series from Lucasfilm and Cartoon Network Studios chronicles the adventures of the STAR WARS heroes during the events that directly follow EPISODE II. The third Cartoon Network channel in Europe, Toonami, started broadcasting on September 8, 2003 and will begin airing CLONES on November 10. Cartoon Network will debut the new show in the U.S. on November 7. SAMURAI JACK and DEXTER'S LABORATORY creator Genndy Tartakovsky is the lead animator on the series.
Sit back and get ready for 100 years of animation history in Bravos special THE ANIMATED CENTURY. Hosted by animated teacher Professor Elderberry and his student Horace, the show presents clips from the most important animated films of all time. The special delves into all forms of animation from cel to puppet to sand. Included in the special are works from Emile Reynaud, Winsor McCay, the Fleischer Bros., Walt Disney, Chuck Jones, Bob Clampett, Jiri Trnka, Raoul Servais, Yuri Norstein and many more.
ABC finally, officially, released its new ABC Kids fall lineup, which starts Sept. 20, 2003 with two new series, LILO & STITCH, THE SERIES, a spin-off of last summers highly successful animated feature, as well as Disney Channels hit sitcom, THATS SO RAVEN. Commenting on the new additions, Jonathan Barzilay, gm/svp of ABC Kids and Toon Disney said, These distinctive series will add new dimension to the popular ABC Kids lineup.
ABC Kids Saturday Morning Line-Up (all times are ET):