Friday, December 22, 2017

Random House Expands Nickelodeon Preschool Publishing Program For The Little Ones

Nickelodeon has been successfully expanding its preschool programming over the past few years with a raft of new shows, and the network’s master publisher, Random House, is along for the ride.

“All of Nickelodeon’s new preschool properties have done really well, and it’s not just Paw Patrol. Blaze and the Monster Machines and Shimmer & Shine have done great too,” Chris Angelilli, RH’s Vice President (VP), Editor-in-Chief, and Executive Director, licensed publishing, reported to Publishers Weekly. “Nickelodeon does an incredible amount of research on the target audience and has an amazing understanding of what preschoolers and their parents are looking for, as the success of its preschool properties shows.”

Among the recent Nick Jr. properties on Random House’s list is Rusty Rivets, which premiered on the network in November 2016. Produced by Spin Master (also the originator of Paw Patrol), the show, which integrates a STEM curriculum, is about a 10-year-old boy who solves problems by building mechanical inventions—including a robotic dinosaur—from spare parts. Random House followed with a full complement of preschool formats in July of this year.

Meanwhile, the publisher began releasing titles for Nella the Princess Knight in spring 2017, following the debut of the TV series in February. "It’s about a girl who is as comfortable wearing a crown and tiara as she is with a sword and shield," Angelilli said. “And her best friend’s a unicorn. It doesn’t get any better than that.” Themes include girl empowerment, friendship, and conflict resolution.

Newer programs include Sunny Day, which premiered on Nick Jr. in August, with entrepreneurship, problem-solving, and self-expression at its core. “Sunny Day is a 10-year-old who owns her own salon and uses creativity and sometimes hair products to solve problems,” Angelilli said. Publishing will launch in January 2018. And Top Wing, produced with Industrial Brothers and 9 Story Media Group, launched last month online. “It’s about a rescue squad of birds that uses teamwork and amazing vehicles to save the day.” The first books release next summer.

Most of the publishing programs are similar in terms of formats, with readers, 8x8s, sticker-activity books, and the like being the focus. “We have core formats that work really well in the preschool space,” Angellili said. “We stick to the tried and true. But when there are specific themes we try to find a format that fits.” He cited a jacketed picture book by Nella creator Christine Ricci as an example. “It’s a real storybook property, so it was natural to launch with something like that.” Similarly, Rusty Rivets has a building-themed sticker-puzzle book among its titles.

Nickelodeon continues to expand its preschool slate. And, outside of the preschool realm, the network is debuting a new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles animated series, titled Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, next year. Random House will add to its extensive Turtles list with titles tied to the new show.

Imprint’s Preschool Pot of Gold

Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group’s Imprint division is developing its first licensed publishing program for preschoolers. (Imprint also has a Sesame Street title coming up, but it is a gift book for adults.) The company recently acquired the global master publishing rights from Genius Brands for a line of books tied to Rainbow Rangers, an animated series set to debut on Nick Jr. in the USA and Caribbean Basin. Imprint had previously teamed with Genius Brands on SpacePOP.

“A lot of publishers do a lot of great stuff for preschool, so we wanted to wait for the right thing,” said Erin Stein, Imprint’s publisher. “This was the one for us.”

The property, which Stein believes is likely to attract viewers in the 3–7 age range, features a team of seven girls with diverse ethnicities, each representing a color of the rainbow. “Who doesn’t love rainbows?” she asked, adding, “It has a good, layered story and attractive, colorful artwork, and the palette isn’t all pink and purple. The rainbow broadens that a little bit.”

The series also features themes of kindness and respect, concern for the environment, and especially friendship. “In each episode different combinations of characters navigate a challenge, but also their relationships with each other,” Stein explained.

The publishing program, which will debut in spring 2019 following the fall 2018 premiere of the TV show, will include traditional tie-in formats such as readers and 8x8s, as well as a picture book. “I’m excited to play up the rainbow aspect and the adorable look of the show through original artwork,” Stein said.

She hopes to cross-promote the books with other licensees of the property, as happened with SpacePOP. Manufacturers creating products for Rainbow Rangers to date include Mattel for toys; Bentex, Handcraft, Global Design Concepts, and H.E.R. for apparel and accessories; Jay Franco for bed and bath, and Taste Beauty for health and beauty products.

More Nick: 2018 on Nickelodeon USA | New Shows, Specials, Events, Movies, Episodes, and More!
Follow NickALive! on Twitter, Tumblr, Google+, via RSS, on Instagram, and/or Facebook for the latest Nickelodeon, Nick Jr. and School of Rock News and Highlights!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Have your say by leaving a comment below! NickALive! welcomes friendly and respectful comments. Please familiarize with the blog's Comment Policy before commenting. All new comments are moderated and won't appear straight away.