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Television

Sweets On The Way

Oops! Remember last year, when we mentioned that Netflix was creating a new animated series based on Jeff Lemire’s critically-praised comic Sweet Tooth? Well either the news was incorrect, or else Netflix changed their mind about the format, because they just released a teaser trailer — for the new live action series. “Based on the beloved DC Comic, and Executive Produced by Susan Downey and Robert Downey Jr., Sweet Tooth is a post-apocalyptic fairy tale about a hybrid deer-boy and a wandering loner who embark on an extraordinary adventure.” All episodes will begin streaming on July 4th.

image c. 2021 Netflix

Winging to Your TV

Ava DuVernay, director of Selma and A Wrinkle In Time, has a new series in the works — with dragons. Wings of Fire was a novel series, then a graphic novel — and now, a new animated series on its way to Netflix. “Oscar nominee and Emmy Award winner Ava DuVernay has landed her animated family series, Wings of Fire, at Netflix. Based on Tui T. Sutherland’s #1 New York Times and USA Today best-selling book series, the epic fantasy saga will be produced by Warner Bros. Animation… Published by Scholastic, with 14 million copies in print, the Wings of Fire book series tells the story of a bitter war that has raged for generations between the dragon tribes who inhabit the epic world of Pyrrhia. According to prophecy, five young dragons will rise to end the bloodshed and bring peace back to the land. Raised and trained in secret from the time they were hatched, the Dragonets of destiny – Clay, Tsunami, Glory, Starflight, and Sunny – embark on an evolving quest that will bring them face to face with their true selves and the overwhelming scope of this savage war they are destined to bring to an end.” Stay tooned for more news about a planned release date!

image c. 2021 Scholastic, Inc.

They’ll Be Bok

Back when we first talked about  The Chicken Squad book series, we made a silly crack about how one day they might be made into a “chick flick”.  Well… maybe a TV series is a good halfway point? “The Chicken Squad, Disney Junior’s new cg animated comedy adventure hits the airways on Disney Junior and DisneyNOW on Friday May 14. The series, which was inspired by the popular kids’ book series of the same name by Doreen Cronin, follows a trio of young chicken siblings—Coop, Sweetie and Little Boo—and their retired search and rescue dog mentor, Captain Tully. Together, they team up on problem-solving adventures in their backyard to help their animal friends, while modeling what it means to be good community helpers and finding the joy in assisting others.” Animation World Network has more information, and a preview trailer too.

image c. 2021 Disney Junior

Mommy is Always Watching. Thank Goodness.

So here we are in April — Let’s talk about rabbits! Specifically The Runaway Bunny. We got this from Animation World Network: “First published in 1942, The Runaway Bunny is one of the many iconic children’s books by famous Goodnight Moon author Margaret Wise Brown; its poetry tells the story of a young bunny anxious to leave home and adventure out into the world beyond his rabbit hole, while also discovering the unending reach of his mother’s protection and love… Amy Schatz, documentary and short film producer and director, has spent the last year working with animator Maciek Albrecht to reimagine the classic 48-page tale into a 25-minute, 2D-animated musical, which premiered yesterday, March 25, on HBO Max.” Read the article to find out more.

image c. 2021 HBO Max

Let’s-a Go Sailing!

Look what they’re getting over in Italy! It’s a new 2D animated series designed to teach kids about ocean conservation (while they’re busy being entertained). “Based on an original concept by exec producer Federico Fiecconi (Founder & CEO, Graffiti Creative), AquaTeam-Sea Adventure follows world-famous marine biologist Marysun as she sets out with her friends Otty the Octopus (a whole rap group on eight legs) and teenage diving enthusiast Desy to explore the beautiful Mediterranean sea. As well as befriending dolphins, turtles and other sea creatures, the adventurers discover a deposit of plastic garbage which threatens a pod of sperm whales.” Animation magazine has all the details.

image c. 2021 Graffiti Creative

House Flies. Science is amazed.

Recently Aardman Animations tweeted about their new CGI TV series: “Lloyd of the Flies follows the adventures of Lloyd B Fly, a housefly and the middle child of 453. Lloyd lives with his parents, his little sister PB and their 225 maggot siblings inside a compost bin they call home. In the series, Lloyd and PB are often accompanied by Lloyd’s best friend, Abacus Woodlouse, and eccentric tag-along, Cornea Butterfly. Together they explore the strange world beyond the compost bin, where there is no shortage of lessons for Lloyd to very nearly learn.” Visit the Aardman web site for a whole lot more information. Bzzz!

image c. 2021 Aardman Animations

The Annie Awards for 2020

First the Ursa Major Awards announce their nominees for 2020, and now the Annie Awards — considered to be the Oscars of animation — have done the same. 2020 must have been a good year for furry animation, because many of the Ursa Major and Annie nominations line up! Onward and Soul are up for Best Feature Annies, while Wolfwalkers is up for Best Indie Feature — along with Shaun the Sheep: Farmageddon. And all of those are up for multiple individual achievement Annies too — like Best Character Animation, Best Character Design, Best Direction, and so forth. Best Special Production nominees include The Snail and The Whale and Shooom’s Odyssey, while the Best TV/Media for Preschoolers includes Muppet Babies, Stillwater, and The Adventures of Paddington. Also up for a variety of awards are TV and streaming favorites like Hilda, Bojack Horseman, Amphibia, Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Brand New Animal, She-Ra and the Princesses of Power, and Mao Mao — Heroes of Pure Heart. And more! Visit the Annie Awards web site to see all the nominees, and watch for an announcement about this year’s virtual awards ceremony.

image c. 2021 Cartoon Saloon

What’s Up, Boys and Goils?

And more from Animation World Network: “WarnerMedia Kids & Family released plans today to launch Cartoonito, a new preschool programming block built to support each child’s unique potential, set to debut on Cartoon Network and HBO Max this fall. In addition to today’s greenlight of Bugs Bunny Builders (WT), it was announced today that titles including Mush-Mush & the Mushables and Thomas & Friends: All Engines Go are among 20 new series that will be available at launch. WarnerMedia has pledged to grow this offering to nearly 50 new shows within its first two years.”  They have this to say about Bugs Bunny Builders: “Produced by Warner Bros. Animation and built on the solid comedic foundation of the iconic Looney Tunes, Bugs Bunny Builders brings the wackiness, humor and slapstick we’ve grown to love to a new preschool audience. At ACME Construction Company Bugs Bunny and Lola Bunny manage a crew of builders that, quite frankly, should not be anywhere near a construction site. However, by working together as a team, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Tweety and others use their tools and wild vehicles to pull off some of the looniest construction jobs ever.” Check out the article for more titles with some notable furry interest. Hey, they’ve even got Lucas the Spider!

image c. 2021 Warner Brothers

A Trio for Snowy Days

We just found out about three upcoming animated specials — all of which have some definite Furry interest in them. “Entertainment company TeamTO has acquired the TV, film, and licensing rights to three popular children’s books: Snowman (Snowy and the Snowman), by Jacques Duquennoy; Fox’s Garden (The Winter I Met the Fox), by Camille Garoche; and Something’s Fishy  (Penguin’s Ice Time) by Jean Gouronas. The three winter-themed stories will be produced as individual specials for the 2022/2023 holiday season… In The Winter I Met The Fox, directed by Emma Carré, a fox finds refuge from a cold and snowy evening in a greenhouse. Shy little Sacha overcomes his fears and comes to the rescue with Chickpea, a pet chicken. He is amazed to find that the Fox had babies and learns that friendship is about reaching out. Directed by Lois Espuche, Penguin’s Ice Time follows Penguin as he is ice fishing, but the fish aren’t biting. But why? A comedic cast of polar characters gather, chatter, wager guess and generally, aggravate Penguin until…they hear something below the ice! Snowy and The Snowman, directed by Sif Perlt Savery, stars Snowy, a young snowgirl living in Snowland with her elf parents. On her first day of hockey practice Snowy’s dream of flying like a superhero Snowman comes true as she rescues a little rabbit from a mighty Yeti.” Once again we have Animation World Network to thank for the news. Keep an ear open for release dates next year.

image c. 2021 TeamTO