DHX Media and DreamWorks Animation have inked a five-year deal to co-produce 130 half hours of original animated content.
The programming will be produced in DHX Media’s Halifax- and Vancouver-based animation studios. It will air on DHX Television’s suite of channels, including Family and Family Jr., as well as the recently rebranded Family CHRGD and Telemagino. DHX Media is handling Canadian distribution of the new series, while DreamWorks is overseeing worldwide distribution.
Along with the co-production pact, DHX Media also announced it has licensed more than 1,000 half hours of programming from DreamWorks Animation, including series such as All Hail King Julien (pictured) The Croods and Dragons: Race to the Edge. The series will start airing on across DHX Television’s suite of channels as early as June 2016. With the deal, DHX becomes the exclusive Canadian network for DreamWorks Animation’s TV programming.
Along with the aforementioned deals, DHX Media has also entered into an agreement with DreamWorks Animation-owned AwesomenessTV to license 300 half hours of teen content for exclusive broadcast in Canada on Family Channel.
The Awesomeness series will air on Family’s new teen programming block, F2N, set to launch in January 2016. DHX Media is also handling distribution of AwesomenessTV content in Canada across all platforms, including SVOD and OTT services. The deal builds upon a previously announced original development and production agreement inked by DHX and AwesomenessTV in August.
This latest partnership between DreamWorks and DHX Media comes after the Halifax-based company lost its Disney licensing deal in April to Corus Entertainment. This September, Corus launched the Disney Channel for the first time in Canada. Following the loss of the Disney deal, DHX Television indicated it would aim to bolster its original programming slate for its suite of channels. Other original programs recently greenlit by DHX Television include Fresh TV’s Backstage, Aircraft Pictures and Dolphin Entertainment’s The Wonderful Wayneys and Banger Films’ Savvy.
DreamWorks Animation, meanwhile, continues to further its TV business strategy as the company has just appointed Katie O’Connell Marsh as head of global live-action television, where she will oversee the expansion of DWA’s television business into the live-action genre. Marsh joins DWA after having served since 2010 as the CEO of L.A.-based Gaumont International Television (GIT), a division of Gaumont that she built from the ground up.
From Playback. With files from Wendy Goldman Getzler.