Apple TV+ Animated Series ‘Harriet the Spy’ to Debut Nov. 19

The Apple TV+ animated series “Harriet the Spy” will premiere Nov. 19 with five episodes.

More episodes will debut in spring 2022.

The animated adaptation of the iconic children’s novel is produced by The Jim Henson Company and features Beanie Feldstein as the voice of 11-year-old Harriet alongside Emmy Award winner Jane Lynch as the voice of Ole Golly, Harriet’s nanny.

Set in 1960s New York when the original book was published, “Harriet the Spy” follows the outspoken and perpetually curious 11-year-old Harriet M. Welsch. More than anything, Harriet wants to be a writer, and in order to be a good writer, she think she needs to know everything. And to know everything she decides to become a spy.

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Joining Feldstein and Lynch are Lacey Chabert as Marion Hawthorne, the ringleader of a group of popular girls at Harriet’s school; Kimberly Brooks; Crispin Freeman; Grey Griffin; Bumper Robinson; and Charlie Schlatter.

Australian singer-songwriter Courtney Barnett wrote and performs the original theme song for the series, which she released as a single Oct. 13 under her Mom + Pop record label and is now available on Apple Music.

The Apple Original series is  written and executive produced by Will McRobb (“The Adventures of Pete & Pete”) with Sidney Clifton (“Black Panther” animated series, “Me, Eloise”) as producer.

Genius Brands’ ‘KC! Pop Quiz’ Trivia Game Show Debuts on Kartoon Channel!

Genius Brands International’s “KC! Pop Quiz,” a trivia game show series for kids, debuted with two episodes Oct. 12 on the streaming service Kartoon Channel!

It’s the second original series and first live-action program for Genius Brands.

“KC! Pop Quiz” is a daily game show based on pop culture hosted by Casey Simpson, star of the “Nickelodeon” series “Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn” and an influencer across TikTok, Twitter and YouTube, with a social media following of more than 12 million.

Kartoon Channel! will debut new episodes daily after school.

In “KC! Pop Quiz,” aimed at kids 6  to 11 years old, two kid contestants (aged 9-12) compete head-to-head, answering questions correctly to earn points, which are redeemable at the end of the game for prizes selected from a virtual prize room. The winner returns to play again the next game.

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Question topics come from pop culture, such as music, movies, social media, sports, toys and gaming. There are also general knowledge questions in categories that include geography, history, language, science and technology. In each episode, contestants are given the opportunity to win kid-centric items ranging from Macbooks to Xbox consoles and iphones to a chocolate fountain and a giant gummy worm. Nobody goes home empty-handed.

“There is simply nothing like this show out there for kids and families today,” Kartoon Channel! president Jon Ollwerther said in a statement. “‘KC! Pop Quiz’ is a high-energy game show that offers kids a highly engaging entertainment experience with cool prizes, that speak to today’s kid in their own language. Where else can kids test their knowledge of Roblox, Justin Bieber and JLo all in one place?”

Kartoon Channel! is accessible on Comcast, Cox, Dish, Sling TV, Amazon Prime, Amazon Fire, Apple TV, Android TV, Android Mobile, Google Play, Xumo, Roku, Tubi, Samsung Smart TVs and LG TVs. Kartoon Channel! can also be streamed through mobiles devices by downloading the app or on desktops by visiting www.kartoonchannel.com.

Kartoon Channel! Gets New Spanish-Language Content

Genius Brands International has announced a new Spanish-language content service for children — ¡KC! En Español — on its streaming platform Kartoon Channel!

Kartoon Channel! also announced Oct. 5 that it is now available on Pluto TV.

With ¡KC! En Español, Kartoon Channel! expands its current  platform to serve the Latino children’s community in North America. The new Spanish-language children’s program service will reside on the main Kartoon Channel! platform and function as a sub-brand of Kartoon Channel!, similar to Kartoon Classroom!, which premiered in September 2020. The offering will launch with Genius Brands’ “Rainbow Rangers,” in addition to “Thomas Edison’s Secret Lab,” “Mi Perro Chocolo,” YouTube’s “Spanish Tree TV” and “Stan Lee’s Mighty Seven.”

“Not only is this the right entertainment and cultural move for Kartoon Channel!, but it also makes good business sense too,” Jon Ollwerther, president of Kartoon Channel!, said in statement. “Today, 26% of kids in the U.S. under the age of five are of Latinx heritage, a number that is only expected to grow. Further, 83% of Latinx audiences are streamers, versus 73% of non-Latinx audiences. Finally, digital ad-spend focused on the Latinx audience in the United States has more than doubled from 2015 to 2020 and the market today is estimated at over $1.5 billion. We look forward to this becoming an important and growing contributor to the business of Kartoon Channel!”

“Following the success of our educational sub-brand Kartoon Classroom!, ¡KC! En Español was the obvious next step for us,” Michael Riley, Genius Brands International’s chief diversity officer, said in a statement. “We’re proud to announce this new offering during Hispanic Heritage Month and to better serve the Latinx community, now in English and en Español.”

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Genius Brands International’s digital network Kartoon Channel! is a family entertainment destination. Kartoon Channel! delivers  content across multiple platforms, including Comcast, Cox, Dish, Sling TV, Amazon Prime, Amazon Fire, Apple TV, Android TV, Android Mobile, Google Play, Xumo, Roku, Tubi, Samsung Smart TVs and LGTVs. Kartoon Channel! can also be streamed on TVs and mobiles device by downloading the app, or on desktops by visiting www.kartoonchannel.com.

‘Tom and Jerry’ Preschool Series Gets Greenlight for HBO Max and Cartoon Network

The first-ever preschool “Tom and Jerry” animated series “Tom and Jerry Time,” produced by Warner Bros. Animation, has been greenlighted as part of WarnerMedia Kids & Family’s new Cartoonito preschool programming block, debuting on HBO Max and Cartoon Network.

Combining comedy with key early learning concepts, “Tom and Jerry Time” aims to teach young viewers the skills they need to explore the world around them, according to the studio.

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“Based on the beloved classic that so many parents grew up with, ‘Tom and Jerry Time’ introduces a whole new generation to these iconic characters with a fresh and original take,” Amy Friedman, head of kids and family programming at Warner Bros., said in a statement. “For our youngest audience, Sam Register and his team at Warner Bros. Animation managed to keep all the playful hijinks, drop all the cartoon violence, and add the most delightful early childhood learning through song and story.  It’s playful — with a purpose — and we think parents and their little ones will love watching and learning together.”

Presented as a series of animated musical shorts, “Tom and Jerry Time” turns the world created by the cat-and-mouse rivalry into a cartoon classroom. Preschoolers will be introduced to their comical mischief — chasing, pranking and outsmarting each other — while also learning key social and emotional skillsets, lessons in independence, early math and literacy skills, and other key preschool educational concepts, according to the studio.

Sam Register (Looney Tunes Cartoons) is executive producer. Will Finn (Tom and Jerry in New York) serves as showrunner and co-executive producer with Denise Downer (Stillwater) on board as story editor.

Episodes of ‘Arthur,’ ‘Hero Elementary’ and ‘Wild Kratts’ Headed to PBS Kids Prime Video Channel in July

PBS Distribution will be adding new volumes of “Arthur” and “Hero Elementary,” along with a “Wild Kratts” special, to the PBS Kids Prime Video Channel in July.

The subscription rate for the PBS Kids Prime Video Channel is $4.99 per month with an Amazon Prime or Prime Video subscription.

Due July 2 is Arthur Vol. 24. In one episode, George creates a piece of art for the country-wide art show with the help of guest artist, Kevin Sampson. Also, Arthur must learn how to control his temper after getting angry over a pair of sneakers in “George Scraps His Sculpture/Arthur’s Big Meltdown.” Then, in “The Great MacGrady,” Arthur and his friends find out that Mrs. MacGrady is diagnosed with cancer. The kids must learn how to come together to support each other.

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Starting to stream July 16 is Hero Elementary Vol. 8. In the two-part “Heroes in Space,” Sara is excited to celebrate the full moon viewing with her pals, but they notice that half the moon seems to be gone. Sparks’ Crew flies to the moon to investigate where the other half went. In “Squeak to Me/Team’s Song Theme Song,” Sparks’ Crew wants to make their own theme song. Then, when Sparks’ Crew is looking for their classmates in “Search and Rescue/Secret Lives of Teachers,” the kids are shocked to see their teacher on the weekend outside of school. What happens when a toy train display featuring a model replica of City Town is ruined is explored in “Back on Track/Switcheroo-er.”

Coming July 13 is Wild Kratts: Cats and Dogs. In the special, while on the African savanna, Chris Kratt and Martin Kratt observe lots of wild cats and dogs interacting with each other. Soon, Wild Kratts kids are calling in from all over to ask about these wild animals and whether they’re like their own pets. Zach, who has been secretly listening to all the questions, comes up with a scheme to capture and sell these creatures as “special” pets. The brothers, plus Aviva, Koki, and Jimmy, race to save the wild cats and dogs and protect them so they can live free and in the wild.

Also coming to the PBS Kids Prime Video Channel in July are Let’s Go Luna Vol. 8 and Nature Cat: Ocean Commotion.

‘Rugrats: The Complete Series’ Due on DVD May 18

Rugrats: The Complete Series will arrive on DVD May 18 from Nickelodeon and Paramount Home Entertainment.

All nine seasons (more than 67 hours, airing from 1991 to 2006) from the Emmy Award-winning show, including special episodes “Runaway Reptar” and “All Growed Up,” will be available on one 26-disc collection. Other extras include “Babies in Toyland,” “Tales From the Crib: Snow White” and “Tales From the Crib: Three Jacks & a Beanstalk.”

“Rugrats” follows the secret life of babies Tommy, Chuckie, Phil, Lil, Kimi, and Dil, plus toddlers Angelica and Susie, as they embark on misguided adventures (in reality and their vivid imaginations) right under the noses of their unsuspecting parents and grandparents.

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The series features the voice talents of E. G. Daily (“The Powerpuff Girls”) as Tommy, Tara Strong (“The Fairly Odd Parents”) as Dil, Nancy Cartwright (“The Simpsons”) as Chuckie, Kath Soucie (“Danny Phantom”) as Phil and Lil, Cree Summer (“Robot Chicken”) as Susie, and Cheryl Chase (“All Grown Up!”) as Angelica.

PBS Kids Channel Available on Samsung TV Plus

The PBS Kids channel has been added to Samsung TV Plus and is available for free on tens of millions of Samsung smart TVs across the country.

It joins eight other free kids’ channels on Samsung TV Plus.

PBS Kids includes such shows as “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood,” “Wild Kratts” and “Odd Squad.”

Other family friendly channels on Samsung TV Plus include The Lego Channel, Moonbug Kids and KiDoodle.TV. The Samsung TV Plus platform includes more than 160 free channels of movies, news, sports and more.

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New Series ‘Donkey Hodie’ Headed to PBS Kids Prime Video Channel May 3

PBS Distribution May 3 will add the new series “Donkey Hodie” to the PBS Kids Prime Video Channel.

The subscription rate for the PBS Kids Prime Video Channel is $4.99 per month with an Amazon Prime or Prime Video subscription.

Following the adventures of Donkey Hodie, granddaughter of the original Donkey Hodie character from “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” (now known as “Grampy Hodie”), the new preschool puppet series arrives with three volumes. Children follow Donkey and her pals as they go on music-filled adventures while learning valuable lessons about resilience, persistence and problem solving.

The series is produced by Fred Rogers Productions (“Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood”) and Spiffy Pictures (“Nature Cat”) and features original music along with reimagined versions of Rogers’ songs.

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In volume one, Donkey Hodie must wait until all her pals are together to open a present. She uses her imagination to help pass the time. Then, Harriett Elizabeth Cow wants Donkey and her pals to try her new invention, the Bounce-a-Rino, and they must decide who bounces first. Also, a scary monster appears during Donkey and Panda’s sleepover.

In volume two, Donkey gives her new flower too much water, and it grows so big that it disrupts her garden and her pals’ fun. Then, when the wind ruins Donkey and Panda’s Camp Buddy Buddy plan, they must change the plan. Plus, Donkey and Panda host King Friday for the day, but they don’t know what kings like to do.

In volume three, Donkey and Panda lose Bob Dog’s favorite ball in Spooky Shadow Swamp, and they must find their inner bravery to get it back. Then, a noisy penguin interrupts Donkey and Panda’s band practice. Plus, Donkey creates a sculpture for the Someplace Else art show, makes mistakes and feels ready to give up.

Also coming to the channel in May are volume 10 of “Pinkalicious & Peterrific” and volume 17 of “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood.”

Genius Brands Appoints Harold Chizick President

Genius Brands International, a creator and licensor of multimedia entertainment content for children, has appointed Harold Chizick president, overseeing the global content sales, consumer products and marketing business.

Chizick is co-founder of ChizComm Ltd. and ChizComm Beacon Media, subsidiaries of Genius Brands.

He reports to Genius Brands’ chairman and CEO Andy Heyward.

Chizick, who will continue to run ChizComm Ltd. and ChizComm Beacon Media, will be responsible for driving global strategies across licensing, distribution and marketing for Genius Brands’ growing portfolio of brands, including “Stan Lee’s Superhero Kindergarten,” starring Arnold Schwarzenegger; “Shaq’s Garage,” starring Shaquille O’Neal; “Stan Lee’s Universe”; “Rainbow Rangers”; “Llama Llama”; and more, as well as the company’s streaming platform Kartoon Channel!

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“Since acquiring ChizComm and ChizComm Beacon Media earlier this year, I have experienced firsthand the level of expertise, creativity and passion that Harold brings to the business,” Heyward said in a statement. “As we continue to build our team and focus on the brands we are bringing to market, I know that Harold and our executives are in a position to dramatically drive the growth of Genius Brands in the coming years.  His expertise and relationships in the toy and game world in particular are unmatched.”

“It is an incredible time to play an integral role in building Genius Brands presence on a global scale, and I look forward to working with Andy and the executive team to take the company to the next level as we rollout new brands to the content and retail marketplace this year,” Chizick said in a statement.

Chizick has more than 20 years of experience in public relations, social media, promotions, events and product launches. At the helm of ChizComm, founded in 2013 by Harold and Jennifer Chizick, “he brings a collaborative, inventive approach to marketing for partners and clients,” according to a Genius press release.

Netflix to Bow Animated Family Series ‘Wings of Fire’ With Ava DuVernay

Netflix has announced a new family animated series “Wings of Fire” based on the best-selling series of Scholastic books and produced by Ava DuVernay and her Array Filmworks.

The book series from author Tui T. Sutherland has 14 million copies in print.

The animated adaptation will feature 10, 40-minute episodes. In the story, a bitter war has raged for generations between the dragon tribes who inhabit the epic world of Pyrrhia. According to prophecy, five young dragons will rise to end the bloodshed and bring peace back to the land.  Raised and trained in secret from the time they were hatched, the Dragonets of destiny — Clay, Tsunami, Glory, Starflight and Sunny — embark on an evolving quest that will bring them face to face with their true selves and the overwhelming scope of this savage war they are destined to bring to an end.

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The series is executive produced by DuVernay, Dan Milano, Christa Starr, Justin Ridge, Tui T. Sutherland, Sam Register and Sarah Bremner for Array Filmworks.

“Within this epic book series from the mind of Tui Sutherland is an elegant saga filled with wisdom and wonder, exploring ideas of belonging and bias, camaraderie and community,” DuVernay said in a statement. “On behalf of my colleagues Sarah Bremner and Paul Garnes of Array Filmworks, we’re thrilled to partner with Netflix and Warner Bros. Animation for this dynamic adaptation where five young dragonets fulfill their destiny and show viewers how to fulfill their own.”

“We couldn’t be more proud that Ava has chosen Netflix as the home for her first animated series,” Melissa Cobb, VP of original animation for Netflix, said in a statement. “An epic fantasy saga full of sweep and spectacle, ‘Wings of Fire’ promises to be a must-see event for the whole family.”

“The ‘Wings of Fire’ books have captured the imagination of millions,” said Sam Register, president of Warner Bros. Animation and Cartoon Network Studios. “In Ava, Justin, Christa and Dan we have a visionary creative team that will bring that same sense of wonder and adventure from the books to life with animation and create the next great animated family series at Netflix.”