A week after greenlighting three direct-to-DVD feature-length specials for its Thomas & Friends, Fireman Sam and Mike the Knight brands, HIT Entertainment has announced the sale of more than 120 hours of preschool content to broadcasters across Europe, Australia, Latin America and Asia.
For Fireman Sam, season eight has been picked up by France 5, while Universal France has snapped up the home entertainment rights for series six to eight). Also in France, Lagardère Group has secured the rights for series 13, 16 and 17 of Thomas & Friends. This move will see the program rebranded for the group’s family network Gulli and preschool channel Tiji.
Spanish broadcaster Boing has picked up series 15 to 17 of Thomas & Friends and will also be airing King of the Railway.
In addition, Canal+ SVoD platform CanalPlay Infinity has acquired Fireman Sam series six and seven along with Angelina Ballerina series three to six. Meanwhile, 26 episodes of the first series of Mike the Knight are headed for Netflix Netherlands.
In the Nordic regions, AB Svensk Filmindustri (SF) has secured home entertainment and digital distribution rights for a range of HIT properties, including Bob the Builder, Thomas & Friends, Fireman Sam, Pingu, Mike the Knight and Angelina Ballerina. As well as being released on DVD, these properties will appear on its SVOD service, Children’s SF Favourites, which is available in Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Finland.
In Central Europe, cartoon channel Minimax, owned by ChelloMedia, and Polish channel Minimini have picked up Mike the Knight series two and the ninth series of Fireman Sam.
Over in Australia, ABC continues its long-standing relationship with HIT Entertainment, as the broadcaster has acquired series 17 of Thomas & Friends and the 60-minute special King of the Railway. The channel has also picked up series two of Mike the Knight.
Mike the Knight will also make its debut in Southeast Asia as Mediacorp picked-up the first series for Singapore television channel Okto. As part of the deal, Mediacorp also secured rights for series 17 of Thomas & Friends.
Thomas & Friends is also forging full steam ahead in Latin America, where Discovery Kids has acquired series 17 of Thomas & Friends as well as rights to broadcast King of the Railway.