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Category: Television

Headline News

Groening Gives Simpsons Animated Reality

Matt Groening, creator of THE SIMPSONS, at last gives voice to an animated version of himself on the "My Big Fat Greek Wedding SIMPSONS episode airing April 18 at 8:00 pm on FOX. Groening has often shown up as an image, but this is his first speaking role.

In the episode, Principal Skinner gets cold feet before his pending nuptials so his fiancée, Edna Krabappel, calls off the wedding. Skinner asks Homer for help while Marge tells Edna to keep looking.

Headline News

King of the Hill's Testa Inks 20th Century Fox TV Deal

The King of the Hill co-exec producer Garland Testa has inked an exclusive two-year overall deal at 20th Century Fox TV, it was reported by VARIETY and confirmed by Fox TV. Testa will continue with the animated sitcom, as well as eventually create, develop and produce new projects for the studio under a large seven-figure deal.

Serving HILL for the past three seasons, her episodes include the Annie-nominated "Aisle 8A" and "Chasing Bobby.

Series Headline News

Katzenberg Talks Up Costly CG-Animated Pride Series

Jeffrey Katzenberg has been aggressively promoting DreamWorks Television's first primetime CG-animated TV series, FATHER OF THE PRIDE, a comedy about the backstage antics of the Siegfried & Roy Vegas act involving the squabbling family of white lions. Already given a 13-episode order by NBC with a September 2004 debut (possibly the coveted Thursday 8:00 pm slot being vacated by FRIENDS, though not confirmed), THE NEW YORK TIMES reports that FATHER OF THE PRIDE is costing between $2 million and $2.5 million per episode.

Games Headline News

Buzztime & DISH Network Team on Multiplayer Trivia Game Service

Buzztime Ent. Inc. and EchoStar Communications Corp. have teamed to launch a premium interactive trivia game service on EchoStar's DISH Network. The new in-home, multiplayer game service combines Buzztime's proprietary Countdown trivia game format and vast library of trivia game show content with EchoStar's application software to allow DISH Network subscribers to play the games on their existing, in-home set-top boxes.

Film Headline News

Plympton Gets Spotlight On Sundance Channel

Sundance Channel will spotlight the work of maverick animator Bill Plympton starting May 2, 2004 with broadcasts of two his feature films and a shorts collection.

The short film program, MONDO PLYMPTON, leads off at 8:00 pm, featuring the films, YOUR FACE ANIMATOR, ONE OF THOSE DAYS, HOW TO KISS, 25 WAYS TO QUIT SMOKING, PLYMPTOONS, DRAW, NOSEHAIR, PARKING, which appeared at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival, and EAT WELCOME, winner of the Canal+ Award at the 2001 Cannes Film Festival. (2001).

Animation Headline News

Nicktoons Serves Up Traditional Style Toons Leader Dog & Tortellini Western

Nicktoons, Nickelodeons new 24-hour animation channel, will premiere Animation Collectives two new original series LEADER DOG and TORTELLINI WESTERN. The first LEADER DOG episode premieres at 8:00 pm April 18, 2004 while TORTELLINI WESTERN episodes will debut later in the season. LEADER DOG tells the story of a junkyard dog, plucked from the pound to lead an advanced civilization on a distant planet. An homage to Spaghetti Westerns, TORTELLINI WESTERN follows the wild west adventures of a recently arrived immigrant family.

Kids Headline News

TLC and Discovery Kids Add Peep to Lineup

PEEP AND THE BIG WIDE WORLD, an engaging new animated series about a little chicken and his friends that teaches science literacy to preschoolers in an entertaining way, launched April 12, 2004 on The Learning Channel at 8:00 am and will premiere April 19 at 8:30 am on the Discovery Kids Channel.

Headline News

Matrix Stream Canada Seeks VOD Content

Matrix Stream Canada is conducting a search for video content material to fill up new digital Video-on-demand channel network. The call is open, but not limited, to children's, sports, documentaries, comedy, animation, movies and other content.

Animation Headline News

Acme Filmworks Lands Drew Carey Pilot

Bringing animation to TV in a new way, Acme Filmworks and comedian Drew Carey are joining forces to create the improv comedy pilot, THE GREEN SCREEN, for The WB. Carey will re-team with his WHOSE LINE IS IT ANYWAY cast to perform improv comedy sketches, which will be filmed in front of a greenscreen, allowing animation to be added to the backgrounds. The cast includes Ryan Stiles, Kathy Kinney, Colin Mochrie, Greg Proops, Brad Sherwood, Sean Masterson, Kaitlin Olson and John Mangum.

Super Headline News

Nick Features Dora’s Super Silly Special April 12

Nick Jr.s number-one preschool heroine Dora gets her own primetime special, DORAS SUPER SILLY FIESTA, broadcast April 12, 2004 at 8:00 pm on Nickelodeon. The special episode invites kids to join Dora on her journey to the Super Silly Fiesta, a party filled with funny games and riddles plus silly songs and all of Doras pals including cousin Diego, Boots, Swiper and the Silly Mail Bird.

Headline News

DIC Goes Trolling For A Hit

Trolling for its next hit, DIC Entertainment has acquired worldwide entertainment and licensing rights from the Troll Company (a.k.a. Dam Things) to the iconic spiky, colorful-haired Troll character to be developed into an entertainment and lifestyle brand for tweens, called TROLLZ.

Nickelodeon Headline News

Danny Phantom Materializes On Nickelodeon

Half-human, half-ghost DANNY PHANTOM has materialized on Nickelodeon with comic adventures as he straddles two worlds as a shy freshman at Casper High and a heroic phantom-fighter with ghostly superpowers -- courtesy of creator Butch Hartman (THE FAIRLY ODDPARENTS) in an all-new animated series airing Fridays in primetime. The series saw a special premiere on April 3, 2004 at 9:30 pm and features back-to-back episodes on April 9 on its regular night and time at 8:30 pm.

Headline News

Disney's Coqui Loco Lands All Star Voice Cast

Edmonds Ent.'s Disney Channel pilot COQUI LOCO has landed a list of Hollywood talent, reports VARIETY. The CG animated series will star the voice of Roise Perez (DO THE RIGHT THING) as well as Luis Guzman (BOOGIE NIGHTS) and Freddy Rodriguez (SIX FEET UNDER).

Set in a tropical rain forest, the show chronicles the life of young tree frog Coquita, who dreams of a singing career. The idea was created by Doreen Spicer (THE PROUD FAMILY), Stephen Langford (ROMEO) and Tracey Edmonds, who exec produce the show.

Series Headline News

Sci Fi Makes a Host of Series, Specials Announcements

Sci Fi Channel has its extensive slate of new series and specials for the next season. New series include a live-action WITCHHUNTER ROBIN series and the new CG series AMAZING SCREW-ON HEAD from HELLBOY creator Mike Mignola. In addition, the slate of specials sees several productions based on popular book series and a three picture series created by Stan Lee.

Headline News

DECODE Does Hat Trick’s Bromwell High For Channel 4

DECODE Entertainment is co-producing the new 2D animated series BROMWELL HIGH with award-winning U.K. independent Hat Trick Productions for Channel 4s primetime schedule in 2005.

DECODE has worldwide distribution rights to BROMWELL HIGH excluding the U.K. and Ireland and already has a deal already in place with TELETOON Canada.

Cartoon Headline News

Cartoon Network Shifts Toonami To Saturday, Creates Miguzi

Cartoon Network has announced that it will change its action-adventure programming line-up by shifting the Toonami block to Saturdays and creating the new block Miguzi.

Beginning April 17, Toonami will air from 7:00 11:00 pm. The Saturday night version of Toonami will continue to be hosted by TOM and feature series such as DRAGONBALL Z, YU YU HAKUSHO and TRANSFORMERS: ENERGON. Other series to air exclusively as part of Toonami's include GUNDAM SEED, DRAGONBALL GT and RUROUNI KENSHIN.

Headline News

Mondo TV Signs Production/Licensing Deal with India's Padmalaya

Mondo TV has signed a new deal with Padmalaya Telefilms Ltd. to co-produce and commercial exploit four new animated TV series as well as the licensing of 1,000 Mondo TVs library episodes. The deal sees 104 half-hour episodes, each having a budget of $135,000, to be produced at Padmalaya Telefilms, worth $14 million to the Indian studio, which is a subsidiary of Zee Telefilms Ltd.

Headline News

EM.TV Makes Big Moves, Acquiring & Distributing Content

Since EM.TV head Werner Klatten sold his 24.8% stake in the troubled company to European investment firm Constant Ventures II, EM.TV has made several big acquisition and distribution announcements. These deals along with the announcement of a waiver agreement with 94.22% of the company's former bondholders is seen as a positive sign of the stabilization of the embattled production and licensing firm.

Series Headline News

Alliance Atlantis Lands Broadcast Deals for Dragon Booster in UK & Australia

Alliance Atlantis has announced is has secured broadcast deals with Channel Five and BSKYB in the U.K. and an Australian broadcast deal with ABC TV Australia for its new CGI animated childrens property, DRAGON BOOSTER. U.K. digital TV platform BSKYB secured Pay-TV rights to the series, which will air on Sky One, the U.K.'s leading non-terrestrial entertainment channel, staring in January 2005. Channel Five, who secured Free-TV rights, will air the series in their branded "Shake" block on Saturdays in 2005.

Series Headline News

Spectra Begins Production on Toopy and Binoo

Beginning in April, Spectra Animation will begin production on a new animated series titled, TOPPY AND BINOO. The 26x25 series is geared toward pre-schoolers and was developed and commissioned by Treehouse Original Prods. The series is set to air in September 2005.

Based on the successful book series by Dominique Jolin, who is participating the production the TV series, the story follows Toopy and his friends as they traverse Toppy's comical imaginary world. Dominique Mendal will produce with Raymond Lebrun and Nicolas Lemay directing.

Headline News

Nelvana & Weta Combine CG Talents On Jane And The Dragon

Corus Ent.s Nelvana has announced a co-production agreement with Weta Workshop for the comedy-adventure series JANE AND THE DRAGON. The 26x30 animated show, based on the book series by writer Martin Baynton, will be targeted to the six to 11-year-old audience.

Set in Medieval times, the series follows the exploits of 13-year-old girl, Jane, who is a Knight of the Kings Guard that keeps a giant green dragon in her backyard.

Show Headline News

Family Guy Officially Goes Back into Production

20th Century Fox Television has officially committed to producing a minimum of 22 new half-hour episodes of Seth MacFarlanes Emmy Award-winning animated comedy series, FAMILY GUY, more than two years after the series aired its last original episode. The move comes on the heels of the series elevation to pop culture phenomenon, as demonstrated by its enormous success on DVD and on the Cartoon Network.