UK-based SVOD Hopster has commissioned Saturday Club, a new original preschool series. Set to bow is early 2019, Hopster is producing the series, which aims to help kids explore empathy and emotions, in partnership with Northern Irish children’s media company Dog Ears (Puffin Rock).
Following four friends as they get together every Saturday to talk about their week and explore what life is like in other people’s shoes, the series encourages kids to recognize and imagine various emotions in an effort to increase their capacity for empathy. Illustrator and animator Robin Davey (Hey Duggee) will serve as creative lead on the show.
In addition to the series, a Saturday Club game is currently in development in consultation with UK-based EmpathyLab, an organization focused on developing empathy and social action in kids ages four to 11. The announcement of the commission is timed with Empathy Day, a nationwide initiative from EmpathyLab. Celebrated today, Empathy Day is designed to celebrate empathy’s power to make the world a better place.
Earlier this year, Hopster completed a new multi-million-dollar funding round led by its minority stakeholder, Sony Pictures Television Networks. The funding, which will help the app continue to offer an ad-free digital environment, was also supported by existing Hopster investors VentureFounders and the Angel CoFund. Since launching in 2013, the Hopster app has been downloaded more than two million times on connected TVs, mobile devices and tablets.