The classic animated character ELMO AARDVARK is making a come-back on the Web. The new weekly animated series, ELMO AARDVARK, OUTER SPACE DETECTIVE!, debuted in March on renegadecartoons.com. The new Elmo adventures feature voice talent from June Foray (ROCKY & BULLWINKLE), Diane Michelle (ALLY MCBEAL), Corey Burton (DUDLEY DO-RIGHT), Phil Lollar (ADVENTURES IN ODYSSEY), Keith Scott (ROCKY & BULLWINKLE: THE MOVIE) and Will Ryan, grandson of Elmo Aardvark creator Terwilliger Ryan. The series follows the space-capades of the ukulele-playing marsupial.
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Fox Family will be adding two new animated series to its 2000-01 daytime schedule. DA MOB follows the life of a wanna-be hip-hop band on their futile journey to fame and fortune. The series is being produced by Happy Life Entertainment. DETECTIVE CONAN will be the newest anime series to hit the channel. The show follows the adventures of top detective Shinichi Kudo, who has been accidentally transformed back into a child by his enemies. The series is being distributed in the States by TMS. Twenty-six episodes of each series has already been secured.
J.J. Sedelmaier Productions has created the new opening for Comedy Central's second season of STRANGERS WITH CANDY. The opening, produced by J.J. Sedelmaier and directed by Ward Sutton, sums up the premise of the live-action series in 30 seconds. It follows the crazy life of series star Jerri Blank (Amy Sedaris) after she drops out of high school. Ward Sutton's heavy line and bright colors warps an animated Blank through a whirlwind ride of sex, drugs and prostitution that leads back to high school 30 years later. The lead animator on the project was Tony Eastman.
The new animated series MAX STEEL premiered at #1 for its rating slot. The new CGI series scored a 7.6 rating/24 share, finishing #1 with Boys 6-11 against all of its Saturday morning competition. The show also garnered Kids WB! a #1 rating with teens for the first time since May of 1999. The series, set in the fictitious, futuristic city of Del Oro Bay, centers around Max Steel, a young secret agent pitted against the evil plots of the mercenary organization, DREAD.
A new television series based on TOY STORY's Buzz Lightyear character will be coming to ABC and UPN in October. Walt Disney Television Animation is producing 65 episodes of BUZZ LIGHTYEAR OF STAR COMMAND -- 52 for UPN's "Disney's One Too" and 13 for ABC's Saturday morning lineup. Pixar will produce the CGI opening, but the series itself will be traditional 2D animation. Taking on voice duties as Buzz will be SEINFELD's Patrick Warburton, who's also starring in the live-action THE TICK series.
Director Kevin Smith is steaming over the treatment ABC has given his new animated series version of his cult-classic film CLERKS. After Disney owned ABC pushed back the premiere of the new series to May 31, 2000, Smith said the summer release date "almost ensures the show's failure" due to the traditionally low TV ratings of the summer months.
In a meeting with key advertisers, Cartoon Network executives unveiled their business plan for the 2000-2001 television season, including upcoming original series, program acquisitions, which includes the exclusive Looney Toons rights, and comprehensive on-line initiatives. Cartoon Network will produce four original half-hour animated series through 2001, including SHEEP IN THE BIG CITY. This, their ninth original show, will premiere with 13 half-hour episodes in fall 2000.
Mainframe Entertainment, Inc. announced that it will produce 26 all-CGI
ACTION MAN half-hour television series episodes for Hasbro Properties
Group, a division of Hasbro, Inc. Before the series begins regularly
scheduled broadcasts on Fox Kids in September, a one-hour ACTION MAN
special will air on Fox Kids Network in May 2000. SABAN International N.V.
will handle international distribution for the series. The new TV show is
based on Hasbro's ACTION MAN brand, the number one boy's action brand in
FAT DOG MENDOZA co-produced by Sunbow Entertainment and Cartoon Network
Europe, is set to premiere in the U.K. Animated by TMO-Loonland's Peter
Volkle at his Hungarian studio, the first of the 26 completed episodes will
air on February 28, 2000. The series is based off of Scott Musgrove's cult
comic book. Fat Dog and his boy Little Costumed Buddy live in Neighbourhood
X, which seems normal until one notices that ancient Rome and the Himalayas
In association with Children's Television Workshop and IF/X Productions,
CineGroupe will be producing 40 half-hour episodes of SAGWA, THE CHINESE
SIAMESE CAT for PBS KIDS. The series is adapted from the award-winning
children's book by Amy Tan, author of THE JOY LUCK CLUB. SAGWA follows the
title character's escapades through Ancient China. Each episode will
include 11-minute segments and related interstitials woven together by
music, folk stories and fairy tales. The executive producers of the project
Vitoria, Spain-based Mb Producciones is reaping a huge success from its new
animated series MIMI AND MR. BOBO. Since its debut on TVE, the average
share the series has received is 25.8. The show airs Saturday at 9 am and
re-runs at 8:30 am on Sundays. Mb Producciones is currently in negotiation
to create merchandise for the program with several well-known Spanish toy
and book companies. The company is also in the developing stage of a
feature based on the characters of the MIMI AND MR. BOBO series.
Spumco's John Kricfalusi will be bringing his offbeat humor to a new Fox
Kids Network series entitled, THE RIPPING FRIENDS. Scheduled to hit the air
Fall 2000, the show will follow the adventures of 4 wacked out superheros.
Kricfalusi will provide at least one of the voices for the series. This
show will be Kricfalusi's first television series since Nickelodeon booted
him off of his brain child REN AND STIMPY.
Montreal-based CineGroupe and Saban International Paris will co-produce a
new half-hour series entitled WUNSCHPUNCH. The show will be based on the
novel by Michael Ende, whose previous novel, THE NEVER ENDING STORY was
made into a live-action feature. Radio Canada will broadcast the series in
Canada and TF1 will air it in France. Hubert Gariepy and Bruno Bianchi will
produce the series and Philippe Amador will direct.
* Saturday, January 29 - Sunday, January 30, 2000. Ontario, Canada.
Cinematheque Ontario will present a series of screening of
animator/filmmaker Stan Brakhage's work. Since 1952, Brakhage has
experimented with manipulating celluloid by directly scratching,
hand-painting, etching and collage on its surface. What makes these works
so exquisite is the precision with which they are made. Brakhage's abstract
films are rewarding viewing for anyone interested in cameraless filmmaking
FX's offbeat series, THE DICK AND PAULA CELEBRITY SPECIAL, will return in
March with seven new episodes. Produced by Tom Snyder Productions, the show
follows Worcester, Massachusetts' favorite husband and wife talk show team.
The series features interviews with real and fictionalized characters,
including famous and even infamous historical figures. Some crazy moments
coming up on the series include: the first sighting of The Blair Witch as
she discusses her 10K Run for Testicular Cancer Awareness; Joan of Arc
BOXX Technologies recently unveiled their RenderBOXX NT and Linux rendering
system, which relies on Intel Pentium III 800MHz processors to 'bolster'
rendering times. Currently shipping is the RenderBOXX 4000 series with
single or dual processors, and a price tag starting from US$2365. The focus
of the 4000 series is to streamline workflow for visual effects and video
game professionals, and because RenderBOXX is very easy to set, has a
completely open rendering system (it does not require special rendering
Tom Snyder Productions, the creators of DR. KATZ: PROFESSIONAL THERAPIST,
have been assigned to create a new animated comedy series for Oxygen,
Geraldine Laybourne's new network to launch February 2, 2000 to accompany
the Web site of the same name. The comedy series titled HEY MONIE is based
on the life and longings of a single African-American professional woman in
big city America. This is the first network animated series based on an
African-American woman and her friends. The show is scheduled to air on
shockwave.com, One Infinity and Madlab Creative have produced Why2k@large which uses Flash 4 animation and MP3 streaming audio technologies to present an animated, multimedia series focusing on the approach of the year 2000. Live interviews were collected on the streets of New York City, New Orleans and San Francisco featuring what the American public thinks about the approaching Millennium.
Shockwave.com, owned and operated byMacromedia Inc., and Stan Lee, Inc. have teamed up to bring Stan Lee'sfirst episodic Web animation series to life. Stan Lee, the genius behindclassic comic characters like Spider-Man, the X-Men, and the IncredibleHulk, will create his new 5-minute "Web-isodes" using Macromedia Flashtechnology. According to Lee this new venture will allow the whole world tobe part of his new creations without limitations. This exclusive dealincludes Macromedia, Inc.'s $5 million purchase of Stan Lee Media Inc.
Fox has removed Saban Entertainment's SPIDER-MAN UNLIMITED, the futuristicSpider-Man series, and Columbia/TriStar Television's BIG GUY AND RUSTY THEBOY ROBOT, which was based on the Frank Miller/Geoff Darrow comic bookabout a little Astro Boy-like robot and his Gigantor-like pal, from the FOXKids line-up. Both series debuted in September. They have been replaced bySaban Entertainment's THE AVENGERS, and additional time slots for BKN(Bohbot Kids Network)'s MONSTER RANCHER and Toei Animation Co.'s DIGIMON:DIGITAL MONSTERS.
North Hollywood, California-based Film Roman has begun production on THE OBLONGS, a television series that will be distributed by Warner Bros. Television on The WB Network for the 2000 season. THE OBLONGS is the second animated prime-time series, after Howard Stern's DOOMSDAY for UPN, that Film Roman has added for the 2000 television season.
Kids' WB! has ordered 13 episodes of MAX STEEL, a new 3D CGI animated action-adventure half-hour series from SonyPictures Family Entertainment (SPFE) which is set to debut in January 2000.Set in the fictitious suburban city of Del Oro Bay, it centers around MaxSteel, a young international secret agent who was the product of abio-technical accident which infused him with nano-technology giving himbionic abilities. The teenage hi-tech hero is dedicated to protecting theEarth by fighting the most dangerous and sinister mercenary organization,
United Kingdom's ITV Network Centre has commissioned a second series of 13episodes of the animated series THE STORYKEEPERS from Dublin, Ireland-basedMonster Productions, an animation studio and distribution company formed in1995 by former management and artists from the Don Bluth studios. The newseries, produced by Shepherd Films, and distributed by Monster Distributes,will be delivered in Spring 2001 for broadcast on Sunday mornings. The newseries, which is a prequel to the existing series, is set in AD 8, and