Inheriting the farmer’s estate and moving into a middle-class neighborhood is a dream come true for the porcine stars of Pigs Next Door. Coming to prime time on Fox Family Channel in the U.S., the series is targeted at a broad family audience. Germany’s EM.TV & Merchandising and Fox Family Worldwide are the co-producers, and Saban Entertainment is the producer. The concept is the first to come out of a three-year deal signed in late `98 between EM.TV and Magma in Galway, Ireland, to develop two animated series per year. Magma’s managing director, Ralph Christians is exec producer of the 26 half-hour episodes, which include a mix of cel and CG animation. Delivery is planned for spring 2000. EM.TV holds all rights for Europe, China, Australia, New Zealand and Quebec, and Fox Family Worldwide retains the rights for other territories.
A strange guest also arrives in EM.TV’s Momie Au Pair. A co-pro of EM.TV, Les Cartooneurs Associés in Paris and France 2, the cel-animated series features an Egyptian mummy that awakens in the 21st century. Looking to hide from an antique dealer, the mummy is discovered by two children, who bring her home to be their ‘au pair.’ The 26 x 22-minute series is aimed at kids ages eight and up, and is planned for delivery in September 2000. Les Cartooneurs Associés and France 2 hold TV distribution rights for French-speaking territories, and EM.TV is handling all other territories and all licensing and merchandising rights. Both series are budgeted at about US$300,000 per episode.