DIC Entertainment and Riverdale Productions announced an agreement to co-produce, distribute and merchandise a new animated television series based on the JOSIE AND THE PUSSYCATS comic book. Riverdale Productions is the film and television arm of Archie Comic Publications and MultiModal Media Group.
Since Fox didn't air their usual Sunday animation block of THE SIMPSONS, KING OF THE HILL and FUTURAMA, there were only three shows that made their way to primetime this week. Tied with five other shows for 104th, WBs THE PJS scored a 1.4 rating/2 share. Tied with four other shows for 110th, UPN's GARY & MIKE scored a 1.3 rating/2 share. Tied with four other shows for 115th, UPN's CELEBRITY DEATHMATCH scored a 1.2 rating/2 share. These ratings and shares represent primetime TV in the U.S. on broadcast networks for the week starting Monday, March 18 through Sunday, March 25, 2001.
UPN has ordered a pilot for an animated sketch series from Urban Entertainment. The untitled project will feature Webtoons bridged together by an animated host. Urban Entertainment plans to license some content from other sites for the series. Company founder and CEO Michael Jenkinson said to the DAILY VARIETY, "It will be a broad sweep of the best stuff that's out there on the Internet. It will be youthful and hip and will definitely have an attitude." This deal isn't the first between UPN and Urban Entertainment.
Visionary Media will offer 26 half-hour TV episodes of WHIRLGIRL, the Flash-animated Internet series, via Catherine Branscome of Branscome International. "WHIRLGIRL has been recreated for TV with more animation and greater frame rates than are seen online via FlashCast, a proprietary process developed in-house by Visionary," explained Visionary Media acting CEO Buzz Potamkin.
On Sunday Fox aired a rerun of THE SIMPSONS, which placed #34 for the week, pulling in a 7.7 rating/12 share. KING OF THE HILL climbed into 62nd place with a 5.6 rating/9 share. Fox aired two special episodes of THE SIMPSONS on Wednesday from 9 10 pm. The 9:30 pm broadcast finished 65th with a 5.4 rating/9 share and the 9 pm broadcast placed 71st with a 5 rating/8 share. FUTURAMA fashioned a 4.5 rating/8 share in the 76th slot. At 109th, THE PJS hocked a 1.5 rating/3 share.
BKN International has rolled out 52 episodes of the animated fantasy adventure series ULTIMATE BOOK OF SPELLS. The story begins when friends Cassy, Gus and Verne discover the Ultimate Book Of Spells, which takes them on a journey to Earths center, where they must use their special powers to thwart the evil wizard, Zarlak. The series was originally titled JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH and so far BKN has completed 26 twenty-two-minute episodes. "Im tremendously excited about the prospects for this series," said Leslie Nelson, managing director, BKN Television Sales SAS.
German EM.TV has signed a co-production deal with Spain's Planeta 2010. Already EM.TV has signed deals on four series and negotiations are in progress on five additional shows including 13 new episodes of DRAGON TALES, which is co-produced with Children's TV Workshop and Columbia TriStar TV Group. The signed deals include: 26-episodes of kids' comedy MR. BABY; 13 episodes of PIGS NEXT DOOR, co-produced with Fox Kids Int. and Magma Films; THE WORLD OF TOSH based on a Swedish fable; and NICK AND PERRY, co-produced by Germany's WDR and France's Ellipse Animation and M6.
After slipping into the top twenty last week, THE SIMPSONS fell to #26 this week with an 8.7 rating/14 share. The special Monday 9 pm broadcast of THE SIMPSONS tied five other programs for 53rd, taking home a 6.1 rating/9 share. In a three-way tie for 63rd, KING OF THE HILL brought in a 5.6 rating/9 share. All alone in 73rd place, FUTURAMA racked up a 4.9 rating/9 share. In a three-way tie for 108th, WB's THE PJS piled up a 1.6 rating/3 share. At its new Friday 9 pm time slot, GARY & MIKE managed to scrounge up a 1.4 rating/2 share in a five-way tie for 111th place.
ABC has announced that a new Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen cartoon series will be joining the "Disney's One Saturday Morning" block in the fall of 2001. Mary-Kate and Ashley will play movie actresses who star in a different action/adventure, mini-movie each episode. The girls will host a live-action lead-in to each episode's animated exploits. The series will be produced by Dualstar Animation, a division of Mary-Kate and Ashley's highly successful Dualstar Entertainment Group, in association with DIC Entertainment. The Olsens will serve as executive producers with Robert Thorne.
A new POKEMON incarnation, THE MUMMY and SHERLOCK HOLMES are all set to hit the Kids WB! for the 2001-02 season in the U.S. The Kids WB! weekday afternoon line-up has been completely renewed. POKEMON: THE JOHTO JOURNEYS, which is the network's #1 rated kids' series for the season, along with CARDCAPTORS, POKEMON and JACKIE CHAN ADVENTURES will all be returning. Weekday mornings will gain new episodes RESCUE HEROES: GLOBAL RESPONSE TEAM and SHERLOCK HOLMES IN THE 22ND CENTURY. BATMAN BEYOND will also return in the Monday-Thursday 7-8 am line-up.
Disney has placed an order for 13-episodes of a new animated series for "Disney's One Saturday Morning," entitled TEAMO SUPREMO. The new Walt Disney Television Animation show will join the ABC line-up in the fall of 2001. The series will follow a trio of pint-sized heroes -- Captain Crandall, Rope Girl and Skate Lad as they battle the forces of evil and homework. The series' style is based on the bright, colorful themes of the mid-1960s, the comic book-style of the live-action BATMAN and GREEN HORNET television series and the architectural concepts popularized at the 1964 World's Fair.
THE SIMPSONS skipped into the top twenty with a 9.8 rating/15 share. Tying with Sunday's DATELINE in 58th, KING OF THE HILL scored a 6.2 rating/10 share. At #75, FUTURAMA forged a 4.9 rating/8 share. THE PJS tied a rerun of THE JAMIE FOXX SHOW for 101st place, garnering a 1.9 rating/3 share. After being preempted last week, UPN aired GARY & MIKE and CELEBRITY DEATHMATCH twice this past Friday. The special 9 pm GARY ranked 109th with a 1.3 rating/2 share. The 8:30 pm airing of DEATHMATCH sunk in a 1.2 rating/2 share in 112th place.
Making a jump from #39 to #22, THE SIMPSONS scored a 9.7 rating/15 share. On Sunday at 7 pm on ABC, THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF DISNEY aired the animated classic LADY AND THE TRAMP as a promotional boost for the Tuesday, February 27 release of the direct-to-video sequel. The film garnered a sturdy 8.5 rating/13 share. In a four-way tie for 57th, KING OF THE HILL pegged a 6.3 rating/10 share. FUTURAMA landed in 79th, with a 4.8 rating/8 share. This week, UPN's Friday night animation block of GARY & MIKE and CELEBRITY DEATHMATCH was preempted for a repeat airing of SHOCKING POLICE VIDEOS.
At a press conference in New York on Wednesday, Cartoon Network executives unveiled the new TV and online schedule for 2001-2002. The network announced four new series for 2001. Launching in June 2001, TIME SQUAD, created by Dave Wasson (MAX AND HIS SPECIAL PROBLEM), centers on a group of time travelers who must travel into the past to change events, which are disrupting the future. Launching in August 2001, SAMURAI JACK, created by Genndy Tartakovsky (DEXTER'S LABORATORY), tells the story of a great warrior displaced to the distant future by the evil shape-shifting wizard Aku.
Comfortably remaining the top toon, THE SIMPSONS ranked #34, with an 8.8 rating/14 share. In a three-way tie for 63rd place, KING OF THE HILL pegged a 5.8 rating/10 share. Also in a three-way tie, FUTURAMA descended into the 78th slot with a 4.9 rating/9 share. Sinking into the WB basement, THE PJS piled up a 1.5 rating/3 share. However it was UPN's animated Friday line-up that proved the worst in toondom. GARY & MIKE placed 114th with a 1.4 rating/3 share and CELEBRITY DEATHMATCH placed 116th with a 1.3 rating/2 share. These ratings and shares represent primetime TV in the U.S.
After last week's impressive 9.8 rating, THE SIMPSONS slipped this past week, finishing in 41st place with an 8.2 rating/12 share. Its Fox Sunday night animation cohorts, KING OF THE HILL and FUTURAMA, took #73 and #79 respectively. KING garnered a 5.5 rating/9 share and FUTURAMA grabbed a 4.6 rating/8 share. The rest of the primetime animated fare, CELEBRITY DEATHMATCH, GARY & MIKE and THE PJS finished in the cellar all tied for 111th place, with a 1.5 rating/3 share.
© ABC, Inc.
PARTY OF FIVE star Jennifer Love Hewitt will be making her first-ever animated appearance on Disney's THE WEEKENDERS. The Valentines-themed episode will premiere on Saturday, February 10 (8:30 am ET/7:30 am PT) on ABC. Voicing her animated alter ego, Hewitt will play one of the girls the WEEKENDERS kids try to set up with their friend, Tino, who is smitten with a girl the group doesn't like. Hewitt's other voice work includes Medusa on Disneys HERCULES television series, and characters for the upcoming video sequel to HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME and Miramax Films upcoming THE ADVENTURES OF TOM THUMB AND THUMBELINA.
The all-new TOM & JERRY short, "The Mansion Cat," which aired on Cartoon Network UK during New Year's, will hit Cartoon Network's Boomerang Network on Sunday, April 8, 2001. Produced and directed by Oscar winning TOM & JERRY creator Joe Barbera, the new toon will be part of Boomerang's TOM & JERRY marathon running from Sunday, April 1, 8 am through Monday, April 9, 8 am. "The Mansion Cat" will air on the hour every hour starting Sunday, April 8 at 8 am.
TV-Loonland AG and AAC KIDS, Canadian media giant Alliance Atlantis kids label, have announced their acquisition of Neptuno Films new animated preschool series, CONNIE THE COW. The three firms will partner to transform the property into a global franchise, complete with TV, home video, DVD, merchandising, publishing and Internet projects. Created and directed by Josep Viciana, this series follows restless and curious Connie who lives on a farm with her nurturing mother, who always has now handy advice, and her father, a very strong yet tranquil bull.
A week after the Super Bowl cut its numbers greatly, THE SIMPSONS rebounded with an outstanding 27th place finish, garnering a 9.8 rating/15 share. KING OF THE HILL climbed into 59th place with a 6.4 rating/10 share. At #79, FUTURAMA beamed down a 4.9 rating/8 share. Lifting itself out of WB's ratings basement a little, THE PJS finished in the 106th slot with a 2 rating/3 share. However, UPN's GARY & MIKE sunk further into the cellar with a 1.6 rating/3 share. Its Friday night toon partner, CELEBRITY DEATHMATCH placed 121st, with the worst rating of the week for UPN, a 1.3 rating/2 share.
Audience numbers for top toon THE SIMPSONS were hurt this past week due to the Super Bowl, NFL football's championship game, airing in the same time slot. Bart and the family scored a 4.1 rating/6 share in 81st place. At #91, FUTURAMA and KING OF THE HILL scrapped up a meager 2.5 rating/4 share. UPN's animation Friday block of CELEBRITY DEATHMATCH and GARY & MIKE drummed up a 1.6 rating/3 share tied in 106th place. In a three-way tie for #118, WB's THE PJS scored the lowest numbers of the week for the network a 1.1 rating/2 share.
Cartoon Network is reuniting the Justice League of America once again! The cable cartoon haven has announced that it has ordered 26-episodes of JUSTICE LEAGUE from Warner Bros. Animation. Emmy Award-winner Bruce Timm (SUPERMAN & BATMAN) will be directing the new series, which will re-team such DC Comics heroes as Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, The Flash, Hawkgirl and Martian Manhunter.
In 44th place, a rerun made THE SIMPSONS' numbers slip, however it remained the top toon for the week with a 7.8 rating/11 share. KING OF THE HILL came in at #74, with a 5.7 rating/9 share. FUTURAMA rocketed in at 79th place, garnering a 4.8 rating/8 share. After high ratings in its debut on UPN, GARY & MIKE sunk to 108th place with a 1.6 rating/3 share. In a three-way tie for 111th, THE PJS scored a 1.5 rating/2 share for the WB. At #114, CELEBRITY DEATHMATCH drummed up the second lowest rating on UPN for the week a dismal 1.4 and 2 share.
AtomFilms has signed deals with TiVo, In Demand and Cisneros Television Group (CTG) to provide content for the offline networks. TiVo will feature AtomFilms' shorts on the company's digital video recorder channel. Programming will air on TIVO TAKES, TiVo Direct and the "Now Showing" section of TiVo Central. The deal also calls for the two firms to co-produce content under both brand names. In addition, starting in March, AtomFilms will be the exclusive provider of short content for In Demand's 28 million household pay-per-view subscribers.
The long forgotten work by CURIOUS GEORGE-creators Margret Rey and Hans Augusto Rey -- WHITEBLACK THE PENGUIN is becoming a TV series. Publisher Houghton Mifflin has enlisted Vancouver-based animation house Mainframe Entertainment to create the show. The book centers on Whiteback, who journeys out into the world to discover new stories for his North Pole radio show. The story was originally created in 1937 when the Reys lived in Paris, but was only published for the first time this past year.