Rainbow Butterfly Unicorn Kitty. No, it’s not a Lisa Frank fever dream; it’s the new kids show in the works from Saban Brands. The animated comedy/adventure series stars Felicity—a magical cat that is part rainbow, butterfly and unicorn—and her best friend Miguel the Chihuahua. Each episode explores female empowerment and non-conformity when Felicity’s magical abilities allow her to transform with the powers imbued by her mythical makeup—she can shoot glowsticks from her paws and lasers from her unicorn horn. Athena, a book-smart owl, and Betti the Yetti round out the quirky cast of characters.
“It’s different. It’s definitely out there,” says Fred Soulié, Saban Brands EVP of global distribution and consumer products. “It’s also really cute and so funny. The humor comes from the relationship between Felicity and Miguel; they’re the comedic duo.”
Vancouver, Canada-based Bardel Entertainment is animating Rainbow Butterfly Unicorn Kitty, which targets kids six to 11. The 2D toon also features photo-real elements. And with balance achieved between the colorful and fantastical through Felicity and the more down-to-earth and active Miguel, Soulié expects the series to perform equally well with boys and girls.
Saban is currently in talks with a global linear kids broadcaster, with plans to launch the show in the US in fall 2018. An international rollout for the series will follow shortly thereafter. Soulié says Italian prodco Rainbow (which acquired Bardel in 2015) is on-board as a co-producer and will represent the property in Italy, along with a number of additional European territories.
Meanwhile, Saban has tapped California’s Funrise Toy as a global master toy partner and co-production partner. Funrise’s toy line will cover a number of categories including figures, playsets, plush and dress-up. And Saban is currently on the hunt for additional licensees for apparel, accessories, interactive and health and beauty categories. Like the show, the CP program will target boys and girls ages six to 11.
According to Soulié, the program will reflect the personalities of each character, as well as different versions of Felicity. She transforms with the powers of her rainbow, butterfly and unicorn features, and various consumer products will represent each of these aspects of her magical abilities.
“She transforms on the show, and that will translate to the products,” Soulié says. “You’ll see different versions of the kitty in the line [depending on which of her powers are being represented], and that provides different options for kids to identify with and interact with her and the other characters.”