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Television

Save the Fuzzlies!

Animation World Network let us know about another new animated series on its way to Nick Jr. “Nickelodeon has set the premiere of their brand-new animated preschool series, Abby Hatcher, created and produced by Spin Master Entertainment… Abby Hatcher tells the story of a little girl with a big heart who helps her friends, the amazing and quirky Fuzzly creatures, fix their mishaps, learn from their mistakes and negotiate their emotions… Abby is an eternally optimistic, kind-hearted seven-year-old girl who loves to lend a helping hand to others and accepts everyone–no matter how different they are. In Abby’s world, humans coexist with Fuzzlies, incredible creatures that each have their own unique abilities that make them special, and Abby’s parents’ hotel is home to many. Together with her best Fuzzly friend Bozzly, Abby goes on wild adventures to fix Fuzzly mishaps and help them in any way she can.” Spin Master Entertainment are the folks who previously gave us PAW Patrol.

image c. 2018 Spin Master Entertainment

Birds in Flight — School

Somehow we missed this — ’till we came across it on DVD! According to Wikipedia, “Top Wing is a Canadian computer-animated television series created by Matthew Fernandes of Industrial Brothers and produced by Industrial Brothers and 9 Story Media Group. Taking place on Big Swirl Island, an island inhabited by birds, Top Wing follows four eager young birds—Rod, Penny, Brody, and Swift—who work together at Top Wing Academy as new cadets to earn their wings by helping their community. With the help of mentor Speedy, the cadets take on different missions for their rescue skills and also help those in need, all while learning important lessons.” You can check it out on Nick Jr.’s web site as well.

image c. 2018 Nick Jr.

Mole Magic

And here’s another project we found out about thanks to Animation Magazine: “A new CG-animated, uplifting TV special featuring an all-star British voice cast is underway! Lending their talents to Master Moley (currently in production) are Star Wars franchise regular Warwick Davis, The Escape star Gemma Arterton, Emmy and BAFTA nominee Charles Dance, two-time Oscar nominee Julie Walters, and Golden Globe nominee Richard E. Grant. The 30-minute special, based on an original story conceived as a bedtime tale by James Reatchlous, will follows the adventures of a mole who wishes to be the keeper of a magic book which has the power to bring peace between humans and moles. Master Moley is being directed by Leon Joosen (animator on Space Jam, The Rescuers Down Under, The Little Mermaid, Oliver & Company, et al), from a script by Ricky Roxburgh (Tangled: The Series) and Arthur Landon.” No word yet on when they plan to complete this, so stay tooned!

image c. 2018 Signature Entertainment

Golden Dinosaur and Purple… Thing

More from Animation Magazine and Kidscreen: “London-based distributor CAKE has picked up international rights to stop-motion series Kiri and Lou… Featuring paper and clay stop-motion animation from Antony Elworthy (Coraline, Corpse Bride), Kiri and Lou is written and directed by Harry Sinclair and co-produced by Fiona Copland from indie production company Stretchy, and Heather Walker at  Yowza! Animation (Curious George, Welcome to the Wayne). Aimed at three- to six-year-olds, the show focuses on the friendship of a feisty dinosaur and a gentle creature—who are joined by an unlikely group of animal friends.” It also features the voices of Jemaine Clement (Flight of the Conchords, Moana) and Olivia Tennet (Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers) as the lead characters. Visit the official web site to find out more.

image c. 2018 CAKE

From (Really) Small Screen to… Bigger Screen

More from Animation Magazine. Turns out that a well-known animated app is now being turned into a full-fledged animated TV series. This is from Kidscreen: “9 Story Distribution International has picked up distribution rights to Dr. Panda and will start selling the new 3D-animated series in all global territories except China, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan and select MENA countries at MIPCOM… Aimed at kids ages three to six, Dr. Panda is the first 3D-animated series from the same-name kids app developer that has racked up more than 95 million downloads and five million active monthly users since rolling out its first app-connected toy and AR app in 2017. The show is created and co-produced by Malaysia’s Giggle Garage Animations (Origanimals, Kazoops) and Spider Eye Productions (Jungle Junction, Thomas & Friends) in the UK. It’s directed by Patrick Chin and written by Daan Velsink (Panic!, Snapshot, Bingo!) and Chris Parker (Peppa Pig, Shaun the Sheep). Its titular main character tries out new jobs and solves problems with his friends in each episode.” The producers hope to have the new show ready to roll out before the end of this year.

image c. 2018 9 Story

Bear, Bear, Dragon

Animation Magazine recently let us know about two anthropomorphic animated TV series coming from Singapore’s August Media and South Korea’s Studio Gale. First up there’s Tish Tash. “The series centers on young and hugely imaginative Tish, her bear family, and her larger-than-life imaginary friend, Tash. No matter what troubles they face — be it the age-old terror of long, boring car trips or helping Tish’s baby brother not be sad about losing his favorite toy — these special friends can create new worlds around themselves, embarking on imaginative adventures and finding their own creative angle to help solve any problems that life throws at them.” Then there’s Journey of Long, a comedy that “… follows the adventures of a dragon with a dream of becoming the world’s top chef”. Check out the video clip over on YouTube. Both these shows premiered at MIPCOM, and they’re hoping for world-wide distribution in 2019.

image c. 2018 Studio Gale

One Little Girl, One Magic Forest

Also at CTN Expo we found out about Left Pocket Studio (in Shanghai) and their international TV series Emmy & GooRoo. “Emmy, our brave little hero, is 5-years-old and the only little human girl in the whole Magical Forest. Emmy loves exploring the fantastical world she lives in with her best friend GooRoo, a big, furry, and huggable creature who takes care of her when they go out to play.” The official web site includes a trailer for the series.

image c. 2018 Left Pocket
Studios

The Annie Nominations for 2018

Once again the International Animated Film Society (ASIFA) have released  their list of nominees for the 2018 Annie Awards — the Oscars of animation, to many folks. And once again, we’ve had a banner year for animation with Furry content — so there are lots of anthropomorphic movies, TV series, short films, and other goodies among the Annie nominees. By far the furriest film among the nominees for Best Animated Feature is Wes Anderson’s Isle of Dogs — which is also nominated for Character Animation, Production Design, and Voice Acting (Bryan Cranston as Chief). But nominees Early Man, Ralph Breaks The Internet, and even Spiderman — Into The Spiderverse (yes!) had their own Furry content — and each of them are nominated in several categories too. Among the nominees for Best Independent Feature is Tito & The Birds, while one of the nominees for Best Animated Special Production (limited release) is The Highway Rat. England is well-represented in the Best Character Animation in a Live Action Production category (whew!), with both Paddington 2 and Christopher Robin receiving nominations. In the Best Animated Short category check out Lost & Found by Wabi Sabi Studios, while the brand new Best Virtual Reality category includes Crow: The Legend by Baobab Studios and the game Moss by Polyarc. Over on the television side of things, the category of Best Commercial includes four nominees that are very Furry! The rest of the Television categories include a parade of familiar and new Furry titles, including The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle, Bojack Horseman, DinoTrux, Disney’s Mickey Mouse, Hey Duggee, Hilda, Kung Fu Panda: The Paws of Destiny, Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and Tumble Leaf. Needless to say there are too many cool nominations to list them all here, so head on over to the Annie Awards page and check them out for yourself! The Awards will be presented on February 2nd at UCLA.

image c. 2018 Fox Searchlight Pictures

Not Moose. Dog. And Squirrel.

Chances are you’ve seen (or at least heard about) Dog and Squirrel, part of Nickelodeon’s Animated Shorts Program. But have you met the creator, Andrea Gerstmann? Over at her web site you can see examples of her other works in character design, background painting, layout, and fine-art painting. Lots of animal stuff to see, plus a few humans thrown in for good measure.

image c. 2018 by Andrea Gerstmann