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NBC’s not stressed; new toon in works

U.S. network NBC aired only three episodes of the prime-time animated series Stressed Eric before pulling it off the air due to disappointing ratings (Nielsen average 4.8). The show, produced with British broadcaster BBC by Klasky Csupo and Absolutely Productions, had been specially dubbed with a new voice track for American viewers, and was slated to air for six episodes through the end of the summer season. A spokesperson for NBC said that the network may air Stressed Eric again in the future, and is actively looking to develop animation projects. While NBCs reaction to cancel Stressed Eric may seem premature, the network is not giving up on the prime-time game. In fact, NBC has ordered a fully-animated pilot of a new series created by comedian David Spade (Just Shoot Me) and writer Drake Sather. Tentatively titled Peewee, the show is being developed with Brillstein-Grey Entertainment and animated by Sony Pictures Imageworks, for possible launch in January 2000. The pilot should be ready by January 1999. If the show goes forward, it will be the networks first original prime-time animated series, created for the network, since Mr. Magoo (UPA, 1964/65).