Despite lingering controversy over its fall ratings drop, it was best-foot forward at Nickelodeon’s annual upfront presentation in New York this afternoon. The overall leading US kidsnet announced its upcoming season, unveiling plans to air 650 new episodes of programming across all genres. Additionally, Nick greenlit three new animated series and three original live-action shows.
On the animation front, the planned 300 new eps of programming will include new seasons of returning series SpongeBob SquarePants, T.U.F.F. Puppy, Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness, The Penguins of Madagascar, The Fairly OddParents and The Winx Club.
New to the net are: The Legend of Korra, a spin-off Avatar: The Last Airbender, where the series’ original creators Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko return to tell the tale of a new headstrong female Avatar, Korra; a full 26 half-hours of Raving Rabbids, based on the popular video game from Ubisoft, which the gameco is also producing; DreamWorks Animation’s Monsters Vs. Aliens, based on the feature film that grossed US$383 million worldwide in 2009; and Robot & Monster, also set for 26 eps that tells the tale of two buddies that inhabit a world populated by roaming gangs of Howling Cyber Monkeys.
Nick has also picked up four unnamed animated pilots from master toon man Butch Hartman.
On the live-action front, expect new eps of current series iCarly, Victorious, Big Time Rush and Supah Ninjas to join the sked. In terms of new series, Nick’s picked up 26 eps of Marvin, Marvin, starring internet sensation Lucas Cruikshank (AKA Fred). Then there’s Rags, a music-based series centering around a modern-day fairytale, which will debut with a two-hour original movie. Finally, the net has signed a development deal with UK pop group One Direction,which is slated to perform live at Nickelodeon’s 2012 Kids’ Choice Awards on March 31.
Nickelodeon President Cyma Zarghami also highlighted live-action projects in development, including a new series from resident Nick hit-maker Dan Schneider that will star iCarly‘s Jennette McCurdy and a series starring The X Factor‘s Rachel Crow.