Kids are transformed into fish, trolls wreak havoc, and Plonsters get squished in two new series and a slateful of new episodes for existing shows from Egmont Imagination. Known for its emphasis on educational preschool programming, Egmont Imagination was founded in 1996 as the children’s division of Copenhagen-based Nordisk Film & TV. It is also one of 110 companies within the Egmont Group, which is owned by the Egmont Foundation, a charitable organization created to support social, educational, cultural and health services.
Budgeted at US$7.6 million, Troll Tales delves into Scandinavian folklore to bring family audiences a gaggle of indolent, grabby pranksters cavorting in Troll Forest. The 26 x 26-minute series is co-produced by Egmont Imagination, Copenhagen-based A.Film and Germany’s EIV Entertainment, and is animated in 2-D cel by A.Film. Broadcast rights have been sold to Danmarks Radio, with distribution being handled by Egmont in Scandinavia, Germany and Eastern Europe. Delivery is slated for May 2000.
Help! I’m a Fish plunges three ordinary kids into an underwater wonderland, when they are accidentally turned into creatures of the deep. The 75-minute feature, with a US$15.8-million budget, is being animated in classic 2-D cel by A.Film, Terra Glyph Dublin, Terra Glyph Madrid and Munich Animation. It will air for the first time on TV2 Denmark in spring 2000. The feature is being co-produced by Egmont, A.Film, EIV Entertainment, Munich Animation and Terra Glyph, with Egmont handling Scandinavian distribution, Warner taking on German distribution, and other distributors yet to be chosen.
Clumsy blue Hippo MumbleBumble is stumbling into a Cinar/Egmont co-production of the same name to guide preschoolers through a childlike world of wonder and discovery. Animated in 2-D cel by A.Film and Montreal’s Cinar, 39 new five-minute episodes, budgeted at US$2.7 million, are joining 26 five-minute episodes already completed. The original series has already been sold to TV2 Denmark, Germany’s Kinderkanal, Norway’s NRK, Finland’s YLE, and Canada’s CBC, and aired for the first time last month in Denmark. Delivery of the new episodes is set for spring 2000. Egmont is taking on distribution in Scandinavia, Eastern Europe and German-speaking Europe, and Cinar is picking up remaining worldwide distribution rights.
Finally, claymation Plonsters Plif, Plops and Plummy will continue to squelch for the preschool set, with additional episodes commissioned for delivery this May. Thirteen new three-minute episodes, budgeted at US$200,000, have already been sold to German broadcaster NDR, and will join the 39 x three-minute package already being broadcast around the world. The series is co-produced by creator Bettina Matthaei of Hamburg, along with Egmont and Tokyo’s JCA, and is animated by Hamburg-based Anima Studios. JCA is handing distribution in Japan, and Egmont is taking on the remaining worldwide distribution rights.