Look out PBS, Nick Jr. and Playhouse Disney, Cartoon Network and the Warner Bros. Television Group are putting together a new weekday morning franchise of original and acquired television targeted for preschoolers to premiere on Cartoon Network in spring 2005. The unnamed joint venture between WB and CN will mark both companies' first major production foray into the preschool market.
FUNimation Prods. has announced its acquisition of the GRAPPLER BAKI and GUNSLINGER GIRL anime TV series. The company has the rights to all 24 episodes of GRAPPLER BAKI, which aired in Japan in 2001. The sports series is based on the manga by Keisuke Itagaki, which is published by Akita Shoten in Japan. Produced by Madhouse in 2003, GUNSLINGER GIRL is a sci-fi action-adventure about a group of brainwashed girls, who have been trained to be professional assassins.
Bandai Ent. has announced it has secured the rights to three new anime series PLANETES, AVENGER and SHIN MEGAMI TENSHI DEVI CHILDREN.
PLANETES is a 26-episode sci-fi series produced in 2003 by Bandai Visual and Sunrise. Set in the year 2075, the hero works on a space station sweeping up space debris and dreams of owning a space ship of his own.
AVENGER is a 13-episode series produced by Bee Train (NOIR). In a bleak future, mankind has been forced to live in deteriorating dome cities and animated "dolls" take the place of children.
Cartoon Network brings back the world's greatest superheroes in a brand new half-hour series entitled JUSTICE LEAGUE UNLIMITED, which premieres on July 3, 2004 at 8:30 pm. This new series, animated by Warner Bros. Animation, expands on the activities of the DC Comics characters, following the conclusion of JUSTICE LEAGUE, and brings forth many more characters to help fight crime and thwart threats to Earth.
The N, the nighttime network for tweens and teens, premiere OGRADY the networks first, original animated series at 9:00 pm on July 30, 2004. The new half-hour, 13-episode series will air regularly Friday nights at 9:00 p.m. and repeats at 11:00 p.m. only on The N.
Aaron McGruder's THE BOONDOCKS comicstrip will be heading to Cartoon Network in animated form, reports THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. Cartoon Network is in final negotiations with Sony Pictures Television to air a half-hour series. Originally the strip was greenlit as a pilot by FOX, which passed on the series after seeing a six-minute reel earlier in the year. Cartoon Network would air the new series during it popular Adult Swim block. McGruder and Reggie Hudlin are exec producers on the show.
Wachtenheim/Marianetti LLC., current animators behind the SATURDAY NIGHT LIVES TV FUNHOUSE with Robert Smigel, is putting the finishing touches on a pilot, STROKER AND HOOP, set to premiere Aug. 1, 2004 at 11:30 pm during Cartoon Networks Adult Swim.
Comedy Centrals DRAWN TOGETHER, television's first animated reality series, is set to premiere on Oct. 27, 2004, at 10:30 pm with the first of eight episodes.
DRAWN TOGETHER presents a world where cartoon characters from various genres of animation are brought together to live under one roof. The eight characters leave their animated "reality" and enter a new world where their cartoon universes collide, combining different styles of animation and different personalities all "drawn together."
Anime Network moves from a strictly video-on-demand (VOD) format to a 24/7 national network beginning July 27, 2004, securing deals with major national advertisers in preparation for its launch, including interactive entertainment powerhouses Atari, Nintendo and Capcom.
MTV Networks' new digital gay-themed cable network LOGO unveiled its premiere development slate, which includes an animated series, CHELSEA BOYS, during the recent the TV critics summer press tour.
Australia's Film Finance Corp. has approved an investment in the animated series FAIREEZ as part of an overall injection of cash into two features, three miniseries and three children shows, reports VARIETY. FFC ceo Brian Rosen said the agency will invest A$18.5 million (US$13.5 million) in the television projects.
New episodes of REN & STIMPY ADULT PARTY CARTOON, from famed creator John Kricfalusi, will feature an endless supply of screams, grunts, contortions and other assorted, in-your-face absurdities of the that ornery asthma-hound Chihuahua, Ren and his trusting feline sidekick, Stimpy, airing midnight-12:30 am.
Icecandy Ent. recently provided more than 20 vfx shots for Sci Fi Channel's upcoming feature, SLIPSTREAM, from Promark Ent. Working with director David van Eyssen, Icecandy developed on-screen graphics, composited effects and created the main title sequence for the time-travel based action drama using Profound Effects' Useful Things 1.6.
The BBC has commissioned 26x15 more episodes of POSTMAN PAT from Entertainment Rights, prior to the show's debut on CBeebies and BBC2 later this year. This new commission brings the total amount of programming under license to the BBC to 78x15 episodes and 8x30 specials, ensuring POSTMAN PAT will run on the BBC into 2006 and beyond.
Nicktoons, Nickelodeon's digital channel for animation, has teamed with Frederator Studios and ANIMATION MAGAZINE to present The Nicktoons Film Festival. The first on-air festival of its kind, The Nicktoons Film Festival, will showcase independent cartoon filmmaking by animators from around the globe.
Adela JPs (Adela Josue Polin) book, THE CORPORATE CIRCUS, will be pitched as an animated series at the NATPE TV Producers Boot Camp, July 29-30, 2004, as both an adult animation show and as an animated interstitial in an office live-action sitcom. In addition to the book, the properties product line includes 15 office humor plush toys and an illustrated comical corporate Org Chart poster, which premiered at the New York Licensing International Show, London Brand Show and PPAI/ASI Shows in Las Vegas.
Nickelodeon Europe has commissioned Prism Entertainment to produce local versions of its unique NICKELODEON FAMILY animation.
Jules Borkent, senior director, programming, acquisitions & development, Nickelodeon Europe, asked Prism to produce three localized versions of the NICKELODEON FAMILY for broadcast on its channels in Spain, Benelux and Scandinavia to air at the end of the year.
Italian animation studio Lanterna Magica, along with studios Enarmonia and Melazeta, have been given the go-ahead to produce GINO THE CHICKEN, a 52-episode TV series. The show is a co-production with Italian state television, RAI and is scheduled to be delivered in January 2006. Lanterna Magica plans to use Toon Boom Animation's Concerto to produce the series.
4Kids Entertainment Inc. is offering two exciting new Japanese anime series to the global marketplace: TOKYO MEW MEW, a drama action series targeted to girls, and boys action/adventure series, F-ZERO.
MEW MEW (52x30) follows the adventures of five teenage girls who possess the powers of endangered animals and battle aliens who threaten mankind. These very contemporary teen girls are multi-taskers who accomplish all of this while juggling their time with homework and boys.
National Geographic Television & Films (NGT&F) Kids Programming and Production unit has optioned the acclaimed childrens book series, ADVENTURES IN COLOR, to develop and produce an animated television series.
NGT&F is working with Emmy Award-winning animation director/producer Ron Myrick and the original author/designer Tony Porto plus his team creative firm Three Communication Design (3CD) to develop this unique multimedia series.
Cartoon Network has acquired JUNGLE TALES, an animated series produced by Delhi-based Moving Picture Company India Ltd. The 3D show is a contemporary adaptation of stories from the PANCHATANTRA, a well-known collection of animal fables.
Chorion plans to produce two new animated television series based on the work of international best-selling childrens authors Roger Hargreaves and Enid Blyton. The London-based rights holder is looking for experienced animation companies to animate the properties.
These include a new animated series based on Roger Hargreaves MR. MEN and LITTLE MISS books and an animated series based on childrens characters created by Blyton
FOX Network and its FX cable channel have paid Sony Pictures TV $50 million for the broadcast/cable rights for SPIDER-MAN 2, reports VARIETY. As part of a 10-year agreement, FOX receives three runs of the movie during the first three years, starting December 2006. In 2010, Sony will have the rights to sell the film to other broadcast networks to share rights with FX for the last seven years of the contract. The original SPIDER-MAN flicks took in $60+ million from FOX and Turner's TBS/TNT.