News in Brief

Southern Star hitches its wagon to Cloud 9
February 1, 2005

Southern Star hitches its wagon to Cloud 9

U.K. prodco Cloud 9 has recruited Southern Star International to handle the global distribution of its catalogue, including a new slate of animated projects from joint-venture Dreamcloud. Southern Star will focus on locking down more deals for Cloud 9 live-action properties like The Tribe and Scoobs, as well as securing new financing partners for shows in development. Set up in January 2004 with Brisbane-based animation house Light Knights Entertainment, Dreamcloud will bring several new preschool titles to the fold. The company is currently in pre-production on Roly in the Country with Blue, as well as developing a musical puppet series called Breakfast Time with Shine and Penny Drew, a live-action/CGI combo about a girl who discovers a magic pen.

Nick buys into Kappa Mikey across the globe

MTV Networks has inked its first-ever global acquisition deal, picking up the worldwide broadcast rights to Kappa Mikey, a 26 x half-hour series from New York’s Animation Collective. The series will debut on Nicktoons in the U.S. and on all of Nick’s international feeds in 2006, and MTV Networks International will also distribute the series to third-party broadcast outlets. The 2-D animated comedy follows the misadventures of American actor Mikey Simon after he joins the cast of anime series LilyMu and becomes the biggest star Japan has ever seen.

Teletoon aims to turn its Nelvana library into DVD gold

Canuck kidcaster Teletoon is hoping to widen its revenue base by getting into the US$1.7-billion Canadian DVD market. The net has partnered with fellow Corus subsidiary Nelvana to launch a new home entertainment imprint called Teletoon Presents, which will release several series from Nelvana’s library in cahoots with the prodco’s distribution partner kaBOOM!

The first release, My Dad the Rock Star, is expected to hit retail on April 4. Nelvana’s VP of home entertainment, Peter Maule, says the line will encompass every Nelvana series that Teletoon has aired or picked up, and will eventually extend to third-party shows for which Teletoon acquired home video rights along with its TV license.

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