Thursday, March 24, 2022

Nickelodeon Renews 'SpongeBob SquarePants' for Season 14

ORDER UP! Incurable optimist SpongeBob SquarePants, Patrick, Sandy, Mr. Krabs, Plankton and Squidward, along with all of the denizens of Bikini Bottom, will plunge into all-new adventures with a 14th season (26 episodes) of the most-watched kids’ animated series for 20 consecutive years.


The news was announced today by Brian Robbins, President & Chief Executive Officer, Paramount Pictures & Nickelodeon, and Chief Content Officer, Movies and Kids & Family, Paramount+.

Bikini Bottom continues to expand with more episodes of the first two spinoff series Kamp Koral: SpongeBob’s Under Years and The Patrick Star Show, which was recently picked up for a second season, along with three character-driven movies launching exclusively on Paramount+, and a fourth theatrical release from Nickelodeon Animation currently in development.

Since its launch July 17, 1999, SpongeBob SquarePants has reigned as the most-watched kids’ animated series for 20 consecutive years, while generating a universe of beloved characters, pop culture catchphrases and memes, theatrical releases, consumer products, a Tony Award®-winning Broadway musical and a global fan base.  SpongeBob SquarePants is the most widely distributed property in ViacomCBS Networks International history, seen in more than 170 countries and territories, translated in 30+ languages, and averaging more than 100 million total viewers every month. SpongeBob SquarePants was created by Stephen Hillenburg and produced by Nickelodeon in Burbank. The character-driven cartoon chronicles the nautical and sometimes nonsensical adventures of SpongeBob, an incurable optimist and earnest sea sponge, and his undersea friends.

Watch SpongeBob SquarePants and The Patrick Star Show on Nickelodeon, and 200 episodes of SpongeBobThe SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The RunKamp Koral: SpongeBob's Under Years and The SpongeBob Musical on Paramount+! Try it FREE at ParamountPlus.com.


Listen to The SpongeBob Musical here!

CALLING ALL GOOFY GOOBERS! (ROCK!) Are ya ready for a deep dive into the world of SpongeBob SquarePants? The SpongeBob YouTube channel is THE PLACE for all fan-favorite SpongeBob moments! We’re serving up everything from legendary scenes to remixes of classic songs to deep dives into Bikini Bottom lore. Be sure to check back every week for Music Mondays, Wumbo Wednesdays, and Flashback Fridays! Subscribe now at https://www.youtube.com/SpongeBobOfficial!

Shop SpongeBob!: https://www.spongebobshop.com - SpongeBob face masks now available, with ALL proceeds going to charity!


Originally published: March 24, 2022.

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Nickelodeon to Host NickFest in October 2022

Nickelodeon will debut NickFest, a two-day slime-filled festival in October 2022!


Taking place over October 22-23 in Los Angeles, the event for kids and families will feature music performances by top pop stars and one-of-a-kind experiential moments with the brand’s most beloved shows and characters.

First launched in Africa in 2015, NickFest is Nickelodeon's festival for kids and families that features a unique combination of live musical performances from some of the most popular artists, appearances from the stars of Nickelodeon's hit shows, as well as a variety of Nick-themed games and activities, and tons of Nickelodeon's trademark slime.

Following its success in Africa, NickFest events have been held in Portugal and Spain.

According to the filing, ViacomCBS has applied to register NICKFEST under the category "41 - Education, entertainment, sporting and cultural services", with the description: "Entertainment services rendered through the medium of television, namely, a musical variety program; entertainment, namely, organizing and producing musical events, dance and theatrical performances; providing a website featuring non-downloadable audio-visual content in the nature of music, music performances, dance, films, movies, video recordings featuring festivals; providing online newsletters in the fields of arts, theatre, entertainment, concerts, festivals, and other entertainment and cultural events via e-mail; online journals, namely, blogs featuring arts, theatre, entertainment, concerts, festivals, and other entertainment and cultural events," which suggests that Nickelodeon is planning to launch NickFest in the USA!

ViacomCBS applied for the trademark on September 30, 2021, and is still pending.

In addition to the trademark application, ViacomCBS registered the domain nickfest.com on January 12, 2020.

NickFest will follow the success of SlimeFest, Nickelodeon's music festival for kids, which, following international success, was held in the U.S. in 2018 and 2019. There were plans to host a SlimeFest event in 2020, however, this was indefinitely postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Stream all your favorite Nickelodeon shows old and new on Paramount+. Try it FREE at ParamountPlus.com!


Originally published: March 24, 2022.

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Nickelodeon Renews 'PAW Patrol' for Season 10; Announces Rubble Spinoff

The PAW Patrol are on a roll! Building on the global success of PAW Patrol, Nickelodeon is renewing the global award-winning, top-rated preschool series for a 10th season (26 episodes, produced by Spin Master Entertainment) that will follow the PAW-some pack of pups, including Chase, Marshall, Rubble, Skye, Rocky, Zuma, Everest and Tracker, on even more action-packed rescue missions and adventures--whether it’s deep in the unexplored regions of the jungle or out-of-this-world trouble in Adventure Bay.


Coinciding with the property’s 10th anniversary in 2023, is the TV series’ first-ever spinoff centering on Rubble and the release of the movie sequel PAW Patrol: The Mighty Movie.

The news was announced today by Brian Robbins, President & Chief Executive Officer, Paramount Pictures & Nickelodeon, and Chief Content Officer, Movies and Kids & Family, Paramount+, at Nickelodeon’s annual upfront presentation held at New York City’s Palladium Times Square.

PAW Patrol fans can stream full episodes of PAW Patrol, PAW Patrol: The Movie and PAW Patrol Live! At Home featuring "Race to the Rescue" on Paramount+. Try it FREE today at ParamountPlus.com.


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Blue's Big City Adventure: First Look at New 'Blue’s Clues & You' Movie

Paramount+ has unveiled a first look at "Blue's Big City Adventure", the brand new movie inspired by Nickelodeon's beloved animated series, Blue’s Clues & You!, premiering this fall!


Blue York City

The brand-new film follows hosts Josh and Blue as they head to New York City, with the help of Steve and Joe, to audition for a big Broadway musical.

"Blue's Big City Adventure" will premiere exclusively on Paramount+, the streaming platform from Paramount (formally ViacomCBS) later this year!

Since the still was first release, fans have been comparing it to Spider-Man: No Way Home.


Matt Stawski (Side Effects) is onboard as director of the film, with writing by Angela C. Santomero (Blue’s Clues franchise, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood) and Liz Maccie (Siren, Foxglove). Darlene Caamaรฑo Loquet, Senior Vice President of Nickelodeon Movies, oversees the production on the film. Nickelodeon Animation Studio commenced production on the movie last summer. Nickelodeon first announced "Blue's Big City Adventure" in July 2021 as part of the ground-breaking franchise's 25th anniversary celebrations.


Blue’s Clues is hands down one of the most successful and critically acclaimed preschool TV shows in history, and we’re so proud that Nickelodeon has been its home for the last 25 years,” said Ramsey Naito, President of Animation for Paramount Animation and Nickelodeon Animation. “The series’ creativity, interactivity and inclusivity has stood the test of time and we are continuing to empower, challenge, and build the self-esteem of a new generation of preschoolers with a brand-new Blue’s Clues & You! movie and multiple upcoming seasons of the series in our Animation Studio pipeline.”

Stream Blue's Clues, Blue's Room, Blue's Clues & You! and Bubble Guppies on Paramount+ and Noggin! Try Paramount+ for FREE at ParamountPlus.com!

Subscribe to the official Blue’s Clues & You! YouTube channel! Subscribe today at https://at.nick.com/BCYSubscribe!


Originally published: February 17, 2022.

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Nickelodeon’s Beloved ‘90s Mascot Face Returns in Brand-New Nick Jr. Music Variety Show: Face’s Music Party

“Hi There, Face Here!” Nickelodeon’s Beloved ‘90s Mascot Face Returns in Brand-New Nick Jr. Music Variety Show: Face’s Music Party

Interactive Preschool Series Combining Animation and Live Action Set to Premiere this Summer


Share it: @Nickelodeon @NickJr #FacesMusicParty

BURBANK, Calif.--March 24, 2022--Nickelodeon is bringing back Face, its beloved ‘90s Nick Jr. mascot, for a new generation of preschoolers with Face’s Music Party, a brand-new music variety show that combines animation and live action. The interactive series (13 episodes) will feature a reimagined Face (voiced by Cedric Williams, Hunter x Hunter, The Promised Neverland) as host and VJ, playing modern pop hits and revamped nursery school classics to create the ultimate music party. Face’s Music Party will premiere this summer on Nickelodeon’s preschool platforms in the U.S. The news was announced today by Brian Robbins, President & Chief Executive Officer, Paramount Pictures & Nickelodeon, and Chief Content Officer, Movies and Kids & Family, Paramount+, at Nickelodeon’s annual upfront presentation held at New York City’s Palladium Times Square.

Said Ramsey Naito, President, Paramount Animation and Nickelodeon Animation: “Face is the OG emoji, and has always embodied positivity, inclusivity and music appreciation, engaging with kids in a uniquely personal way. With Face’s Music Party, Nickelodeon will continue to carry on its legacy of generation-defining entertainment and introduce the iconic Face to a whole new audience of preschoolers.”


Each episode of Face’s Music Party will center around themes--such as friendship, confidence, pirates and transportation--that inform the song playlist and consist of four segments: a kid-friendly music video from popular contemporary artists; remixed sing-alongs of iconic nursery rhymes; exploration time in Face’s music box, where kids can play and learn about an instrument, sound or musical concept; and a high energy dance-along finale, with kid dancers demonstrating moves to viewers at home.

Face first debuted on Nick Jr. on Sept. 5, 1994 and served as the animated host and mascot of Nickelodeon’s preschool programming block for over a decade. A good friend to all preschoolers, Face greeted Nick Jr. viewers daily in interstitials, musical shorts, show intros and bumpers. With endless color changes, funny voices and silly expressions, Face could also appear in almost any location, use props to play dress up and play with other characters on screen. Face’s playful voice and sound effects, such as the signature imitation three-note “brr brr brrr” trumpet, were a mainstay on Nickelodeon until Sept. 10, 2004.


Face’s Music Party is produced by Nickelodeon Animation in Burbank, Calif., in partnership with Jonas and Company, Inc. David Kleiler serves as showrunner and executive producer along with executive producer Hema Mulchandani and executive producer Jonas Morganstein. Production for Nickelodeon is overseen by Eryk Casemiro, Executive Vice President, Nickelodeon Animation, Global Series Content. Niki Williams serves as Nickelodeon’s Executive in Charge of Production for the series.

Nickelodeon, now in its 42nd year, is the number-one entertainment brand for kids. It has built a diverse, global business by putting kids first in everything it does. The brand includes television programming and production in the United States and around the world, plus consumer products, digital, location-based experiences, publishing and feature films. For more information or artwork, visit http://www.nickpress.com. Nickelodeon is a part of Paramount’s (Nasdaq: PARA, PARAA) global portfolio of multimedia entertainment brands.

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Stream your favorite Nick Jr. shows on Paramount+ and Noggin! Try Paramount+ for FREE at ParamountPlus.com!

Subscribe to the official Blue’s Clues & You! YouTube channel! Subscribe today at https://at.nick.com/BCYSubscribe!


Originally published: March 24, 2022.

Press release via Business Wire.

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Nickelodeon Begins Production on 'Are You Afraid of the Dark?: Ghost Island', Third Chapter of Beloved Horror Anthology Miniseries

Nickelodeon Begins Production on Are You Afraid of the Dark?: Ghost Island, Third Chapter of Beloved Horror Anthology Miniseries

All-New Cast Members of the Midnight Society Revealed


Share it: @Nickelodeon #AreYouAfraidOfTheDark

HOLLYWOOD, Calif.--March 24, 2022--Nickelodeon’s beloved horror anthology miniseries Are You Afraid of the Dark? will return for a third chapter with all-new members of the Midnight Society, as they gather around the campfire to share another spooky story. Titled Are You Afraid of the Dark?: Ghost Island (four hour-long episodes), season three will follow this new group of kids as they go on what they thought would be a fun summer vacation on a resort island, until they learn about something sinister haunting the guests. Produced by ACE Entertainment, Are You Afraid of the Dark?: Ghost Island has begun production in the Dominican Republic and is slated to premiere later this year on Nickelodeon. The news was announced today by Brian Robbins, President & Chief Executive Officer, Paramount Pictures & Nickelodeon, and Chief Content Officer, Movies and Kids & Family, Paramount+, at Nickelodeon’s annual upfront presentation held at New York City’s Palladium Times Square.

Are You Afraid of the Dark? is a show that we love to make just as much as the fans love to watch it,” said Shauna Phelan, Co-Head of Nickelodeon & Awesomeness Live-Action. “With this incredibly creative, elevated and award-winning team, we’re thrilled to introduce a new Midnight Society navigating a haunted tropical island mystery.”

The new members of the Midnight Society are: Kayla, played by Telci Huynh (Modern Love, Drama Club); Max, played by Conor Sherry (The Terminal List, The Devil You Know); Leo, played by Luca Padovan (You, “School of Rock the Musical” on Broadway); Summer, played by Dior Goodjohn (Head of the Class); and Ferris, played by Chance Hurstfield (A Million Little Things, Good Boys). Julian Curtis (Wish Man) also stars as Stanley Crane, the hotel manager at the island resort.

Are You Afraid of the Dark?: Ghost Island follows last year’s six-part season, Are You Afraid of the Dark?: Curse of the Shadows, which aired during 1Q21 and was cable TV’s number-three live-action show with Kids 6-11 (behind #1 Danger Force and #2 Side Hustle). The second season of the anthology series saw a different Midnight Society group of kids tell a terrifying tale about a curse that had been cast over their small seaside town, haunted by a villain named the Shadowman. The series has recently received a Writers Guild Award and nominations from the Directors Guild Awards and Artios Awards.

Are You Afraid of the Dark?: Ghost Island is produced by ACE Entertainment (To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before franchise, The Perfect Date) with ACE founder Matt Kaplan and Chris Foss serving as executive producers and Paul Kim as co-executive producer. JT Billings (Are You Afraid of the Dark?: Curse of the Shadows, Panic) serves as executive producer and showrunner. Dean Israelite (Power Rangers, Project Almanac) also serves as executive producer and director for the series.

Production of Are You Afraid of the Dark?: Ghost Island for Nickelodeon is overseen by Shauna Phelan and Zack Olin, Co-Heads of Nickelodeon & Awesomeness Live-Action. Brian Banks serves as Nickelodeon’s Executive in Charge of Production for the series.

One of the Nickelodeon’s most iconic series from the ‘90s, the original Are You Afraid of the Dark? delivered riveting stories of horror to young audiences, all from a kid’s perspective. The original Are You Afraid of the Dark? is owned by DHX and was created by D.J. MacHale and Ned Kandel, who are also executive producers on the current project.

About ACE Entertainment

ACE Entertainment, which was founded by producer Matt Kaplan in 2017, has been behind some of today’s most relevant millennial content including all three films in the hit To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before feature franchise, The Perfect Date also starring Noah Centineo, the Netflix romantic drama Irreplaceable You and the upcoming feature Hello, Goodbye and Everything in Between which will debut in 2022 on Netflix. ACE most recently wrapped production on Loveboat Taipei based on the New York Times bestselling novel of the same name by Abigail Hing Wen, starring Ross Butler, Nico Hiraga, and Ashley Liao. They also wrapped production on the teen slasher, Time Cut, starring Madison Bailey and Antonia Gentry. The company is currently developing features A Cuban Girl’s Guide to Tea and Tomorrow based on the best-selling YA novel of the same name by Laura Taylor Namey and the Spanish-based thriller and 2021 Blacklist script Mercury. ACE Entertainment’s television division has projects in development with almost every available streaming platform including Netflix, Disney + and Peacock and is behind the upcoming To All the Boys spinoff series, XO, Kitty.

About Nickelodeon

Nickelodeon, now in its 42nd year, is the number-one entertainment brand for kids. It has built a diverse, global business by putting kids first in everything it does. The brand includes television programming and production in the United States and around the world, plus consumer products, digital, location-based experiences, publishing and feature films. For more information or artwork, visit http://www.nickpress.com. Nickelodeon is a part of Paramount’s (Nasdaq: PARA, PARAA) global portfolio of multimedia entertainment brands.

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Stream all your favorite Nickelodeon shows old and new on Paramount+. Try it FREE at ParamountPlus.com!


Originally published: March 24, 2022.

Press release via Business Wire.

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Nickelodeon Orders 'HexVet', Brand-New Animated Preschool Series Based on BOOM! Studios Graphic Novels

Nickelodeon Orders HexVet, Brand-New Animated Preschool Series Based on BOOM! Studios Graphic Novels

Paramount Consumer Products to Lead Licensing Worldwide for HexVet Property


Share it: @NickJr #HexVet

BURBANK, Calif.--March 24, 2022--Nickelodeon is bringing the magical world of Willows Whisper to life with the greenlight of HexVet, a brand-new animated preschool series based on the eponymous BOOM! Studios graphic novels by Sam Davies. The CG and 2D-hybrid adventure-comedy series (20 episodes) follows unlikely best friends Nan and Clarion as they navigate life's weird and wacky challenges, while apprenticing to be magical veterinarians for fantastical creatures. Paramount Consumer Products will lead consumer products cross-category licensing worldwide for the HexVet property. HexVet will launch 2023 in the U.S. and continue to roll out internationally. The news was announced today by Brian Robbins, President & Chief Executive Officer, Paramount Pictures & Nickelodeon, and Chief Content Officer, Movies and Kids & Family, Paramount+.

“The high-stakes adventures, wild antics and heartfelt camaraderie Nan and Clarion have in the HexVet graphic novels are all great qualities we look for in an animated series,” said Ramsey Naito, President, Paramount Animation and Nickelodeon Animation. “It’s incredibly exciting to expand the HexVet world with an original series that will deepen the connection young readers have with the novels and capture the imagination of new fans of all ages.”

“The vibrant world of HexVet gives our creative team an incredible opportunity to translate the enchantment of the series into products across multiple categories,” said Pam Kaufman, President, Paramount Consumer Products. “We strategically approach each new IP in a unique way and look forward to developing items that highlight the show’s core themes of magic, teamwork and compassion for animals, allowing kids to continue their adventures with Nan and Clarion.”

As HexVets in training, Nan and Clarion are ready to tackle medical maladies in beasts magical or mundane, find their familiars, and earn their wands and pointy hats--all while dodging covens of animal smugglers and dragons with heartburn. Under the tutelage of the talented Dr. Talon, these young HexVets in training will learn how to cure any animal, from a pygmy phoenix with bird flu to a unicorn with a broken horn.

HexVet is an all-ages original graphic novels series written by beloved cartoonist Sam Davies and published by BOOM! Studios through their award-winning KaBOOM! imprint, home to R.L. Stine’s Just Beyond and more. The graphic novel series debuted in 2018 with HexVet: Witches-in-Training to much critical acclaim, then released the second book, HexVet: The Flying Surgery, in 2019. HexVet was a Scholastic Book Fair selection in 2019, and has since sold over 60,000 copies and is distributed internationally in over 132 countries. BOOM! Studios is slated to release additional volumes in the series.

HexVet is developed for television by Nicole Dubuc (My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, The Rocketeer), who also serves as showrunner and executive producer. Frank Molieri (Transformers: Rescue Bots, The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie) serves as co-executive producer and Kendall Michele Haney as story editor. The series is also executive produced by Stephen Christy (Just Beyond) and Ross Richie (2 Guns), with Mette Norkjaer serving as co-producer, for BOOM! Studios. Production of HexVet for Nickelodeon Animation is overseen by Eryk Casemiro, Executive Vice President, Nickelodeon Animation, Global Series Content. Kate Crownover serves as Nickelodeon’s Executive in Charge of Production for the series.

About BOOM! Studios

BOOM! Studios was founded by Ross Richie in 2005 with the singular focus of creating world-class comic book and graphic novel storytelling for all audiences. Through four distinct imprints—BOOM! Studios, BOOM! Box, KaBOOM!, and Archaia—the company has produced bestselling, award-winning original work, including Keanu Reeves' BRZRKR, Something is Killing the Children, and Lumberjanes, while also breaking new ground with established licenses such as Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Dune, Magic: The Gathering, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and The Jim Henson Company properties. R.L. Stine's Just Beyond, based on bestselling BOOM! graphic novel series, is currently streaming on Disney+. BOOM! will also bring their original series to life through a first-look relationship with Netflix including the upcoming animated TV series Mech Cadets in 2023. Please visit www.boom-studios.com for more information.

About Paramount Consumer Products

Paramount Consumer Products oversees all licensing and merchandising for Paramount (Nasdaq: PARA, PARAA), a leading global media and entertainment company that creates premium content and experiences for audiences worldwide. Driven by iconic consumer brands, Paramount Consumer Products’ portfolio includes a diverse slate of brands and content from BET, CBS (including CBS Television Studios and CBS Television Distribution), Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, Paramount Pictures and Showtime. With properties spanning animation, live-action, preschool, youth and adult, Paramount Consumer Products is committed to creating the highest quality product for some of the world’s most beloved, iconic franchises. Additionally, Paramount Consumer Products oversees the online direct-to-consumer business for CBS and Showtime programming merchandise, as well as standalone branded ecommerce websites for Star Trek, SpongeBob, South Park, and MTV.

About Nickelodeon

Nickelodeon, now in its 42nd year, is the number-one entertainment brand for kids. It has built a diverse, global business by putting kids first in everything it does. The brand includes television programming and production in the United States and around the world, plus consumer products, digital, location-based experiences, publishing and feature films. For more information or artwork, visit http://www.nickpress.com. Nickelodeon is a part of Paramount’s (Nasdaq: PARA, PARAA) global portfolio of multimedia entertainment brands.

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Stream your favorite Nick Jr. shows on Paramount+ and Noggin! Try Paramount+ for FREE at ParamountPlus.com!


Originally published: March 24, 2022.

Press release via Business Wire.

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Nickelodeon to Begin Production on Live-Action the Loud House Series for Paramount Plus

Nickelodeon to Begin Production on Live-Action the Loud House Series for Paramount+

Series to Star Cast Members from Hit Live-Action Movie, A Loud House Christmas, Including Wolfgang Schaeffer, Jahzir Bruno and Brian Stepanek


Share it: @Nickelodeon @NickTheLoudHouse @ParamountPlus #TheLoudHouse

HOLLYWOOD, Calif.--March 24, 2022--Nickelodeon Studios is set to begin production on a brand-new original live-action series based on the Emmy Award-winning animated show, The Loud House, for Paramount+. The as-yet-untitled series follows the success of the live-action movie, A Loud House Christmas, which became TV’s top kids’ entertainment telecast of 2021 when it premiered on Nickelodeon in November. The 10-episode series will begin filming in June in Albuquerque, N.M., with a premiere slated for later this year on the streaming service. The news was announced today by Brian Robbins, President & Chief Executive Officer, Paramount Pictures & Nickelodeon, and Chief Content Officer, Movies and Kids & Family, Paramount+, at Nickelodeon’s annual upfront presentation held at New York City’s Palladium Times Square.

“As one of Nick’s most beloved animated franchises, The Loud House has made its way into the hearts of millions of fans across the globe,” said Shauna Phelan, Co-Head of Nickelodeon & Awesomeness Live-Action. “When we brought the animated world of Royal Woods to life with A Loud House Christmas, it instantly became a holiday favorite for both new and loyal fans alike, and I just know that they will love what our amazing creative team is preparing for this new live-action series.”

The live-action The Loud House series will follow Lincoln Loud, an 11 year-old boy with 10 sisters, as he navigates everyday life while living with such a large family. Known as the “Man with a Plan,” Lincoln enlists the help of his best friend Clyde McBride to tackle the obstacles and mayhem that they encounter during their daily adventures.

The Loud House live-action series will see the real-life versions of the beloved Loud family from A Loud House Christmas return to reprise their roles: Wolfgang Schaeffer, as Lincoln Loud; Jahzir Bruno, as Clyde McBride; Brian Stepanek, as Lynn Loud Sr.; Sophia Woodward, as Luna Loud; Catherine Ashmore Bradley, as Luan Loud; Aubin Bradley, as Lucy Loud; Ella Allan, as Lola Loud; Mia Allan, as Lana Loud; and Lexi Janicek, as Lisa Loud. Additional casting news will be announced at a later date.

When A Loud House Christmas premiered on Friday, Nov. 26, 2021, it became the top kids’ entertainment telecast with kids 6-11 across all TV for the year, drawing 3.1 million total viewers over the holiday weekend. A Loud House Christmas is currently streaming here on Paramount+. The live-action The Loud House series for Paramount+ is executive produced by Tim Hobert (The Middle, Scrubs, Community), Jonathan Judge (A Loud House Christmas, Warped!, All That) and Michael Rubiner (The Loud House). Hobert also serves as showrunner and the pilot is directed by Judge. Production of the series for Nickelodeon Studios is overseen by Shauna Phelan and Zack Olin, Co-Heads of Nickelodeon & Awesomeness Live-Action. Jessica Brown serves as Nickelodeon’s Executive in Charge of Production for the series.

The Loud House animated series debuted on Nickelodeon in May 2016 and centers on 11-year-old Lincoln Loud and his 10 sisters as he gives an inside look at what it takes to survive the chaos of a huge family. Greenlit for a seventh season, it is one of the longest-running animated series on Nickelodeon with 176 episodes. The property has also been translated into: a comic book series, which continues to roll out new stories; chapter books; a digital album; and a podcast, Listen Out Loud. The series is executive produced by Michael Rubiner. Kyle Marshall serves as co-executive producer and Ashley Kliment-Baker is art director.

About Paramount+
Paramount+, a direct-to-consumer digital subscription video on-demand and live streaming service, combines live sports, breaking news and a mountain of entertainment. The premium streaming service features an expansive library of original series, hit shows and popular movies across every genre from world-renowned brands and production studios, including BET, CBS, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, Paramount Pictures and the Smithsonian Channel. The service is also the streaming home to unmatched sports programming, including every CBS Sports event, from golf to football to basketball and more, plus exclusive streaming rights for major sports properties, including some of the world’s biggest and most popular soccer leagues. Paramount+ also enables subscribers to stream local CBS stations live across the U.S. in addition to the ability to stream CBSN for 24/7 news, CBS Sports HQ for sports news and analysis, and ET Live for entertainment coverage.

For more information about Paramount+, please visit www.paramountplus.com and follow @ParamountPlus on social platforms.

About Nickelodeon
Nickelodeon, now in its 42nd year, is the number-one entertainment brand for kids. It has built a diverse, global business by putting kids first in everything it does. The brand includes television programming and production in the United States and around the world, plus consumer products, digital, location-based experiences, publishing and feature films. For more information or artwork, visit http://www.nickpress.com. Nickelodeon is a part of Paramount’s (Nasdaq: PARA, PARAA) global portfolio of multimedia entertainment brands.

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Watch The Loud House & The Casagrandes on Nickelodeon and Paramount+!

Watch A Loud House Christmas on Paramount+!

Watch The Loud House Movie on Netflix!

Subscribe to the official The Loud House & The Casagrandes YouTube channel!: https://at.nick.com/LoudCasaSubscribe


Press release via Business Wire; H/T: Variety.

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Nickelodeon Launches 'Nickverse' Virtual World on Roblox

Welcome to the Nickverse!


Paramount Game Studios has launched Nickverse, a brand new Nickelodeon virtual world on Roblox!

Nickverse features characters from beloved Nickelodeon franchises such as SpongeBob SquarePants, Avatar: The Last Airbender, The Loud House, Danny Phantom, The Fairly OddParents, Henry Danger, Jimmy Neutron and more, and features plenty of Nickelodeon's iconic green slime.

Nickverse feels like a modern-day version of Nickelodeon's MMO, Nicktropolis, which helps with the nostalgia value.

Nickverse is currently in BETA, and can be played at https://www.roblox.com/games/9101252514/Nickverse.

Below is the official description of Nickverse:

Welcome to the Nickverse BETA Launch, for players and fans of all things Nickelodeon! Hang with your favorite characters in iconic locations from SpongeBob SquarePants and the world of Avatar! Visit shops to trade coins for a selection of vehicles, accessories, and more!

๐Ÿ˜ Customize your own house in the Nick Neighborhood!
✳️ Slime your friends with your Slime Blaster!
๐ŸŽ Test your speed in a world-crossing racetrack!
๐ŸGrab your net and go jellyfishing in Bikini Bottom’s Jellyfish Fields!
๐Ÿช‚ Track down Aang and try to beat the clock in a glider race!





Stream all your favorite Nickelodeon shows old and new on Paramount+. Try it FREE at ParamountPlus.com!


Originally published: March 23, 2022 at 23:55 GMT.


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All-New Full Sized What Do You Meme? SpongeBob SquarePants Family Edition Game Now Available

All-New Full Sized What Do You Meme? SpongeBob SquarePants Family Edition Game Now Available

What Do You Meme?®, the leading manufacturer of adult party games, continues to expand its licensing agreement with Paramount Global for Nickelodeon’s SpongeBob SquarePants by now offering the full-sized SpongeBob SquarePants Family Edition Game


NEW YORK, MARCH 23, 2022 -- What Do You Meme?®, the leading manufacturer of adult party games, continues to expand its licensing agreement with Paramount Global for Nickelodeon’s SpongeBob SquarePants by now offering the full-sized SpongeBob SquarePants Family Edition Game. The full-sized SpongeBob themed meme-making game that's F.U.N for the whole family features 300 Caption Cards, 65 Image Cards, 1 Easel, and Instructions. Gather your friends, family, and all your goofy goobers and get playing as you can play this game with as few as 3 players and upwards of 20.

“From floats to expansion packs and now our full-sized game, we have something in our lineup for all SpongeBob fans of today,” Tom Emelo, Vice President, What Do You Meme? “Pro tip for everyone though: if you want to win in this game, pick your caption card to match the judge’s sense of humor!”

Intended for kids 8 and up, players simply match one of their dealt caption cards to the photo card in play. A rotating judge picks their favorite combo each round, the judge then chooses the funniest caption and that player gets to keep the meme card from the round as a trophy.

Over the last several years, What Do You Meme? has successfully launched several fan-favorite licensed products and the company is excited to continue offering SpongeBob, Patrick Star, and their under-the-sea friends as part of the What Do You Meme? catalog.

With a suggested retail price of $19.99, the full-sized What Do You Meme? SpongeBob SquarePants Family Edition is now available at Amazon, Target and Walmart.

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Watch SpongeBob SquarePants and The Patrick Star Show on Nickelodeon, and 200 episodes of SpongeBobThe SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The RunKamp Koral: SpongeBob's Under Years and The SpongeBob Musical on Paramount+! Try it FREE at ParamountPlus.com.


Listen to The SpongeBob Musical here!

CALLING ALL GOOFY GOOBERS! (ROCK!) Are ya ready for a deep dive into the world of SpongeBob SquarePants? The SpongeBob YouTube channel is THE PLACE for all fan-favorite SpongeBob moments! We’re serving up everything from legendary scenes to remixes of classic songs to deep dives into Bikini Bottom lore. Be sure to check back every week for Music Mondays, Wumbo Wednesdays, and Flashback Fridays! Subscribe now at https://www.youtube.com/SpongeBobOfficial!

Shop SpongeBob!: https://www.spongebobshop.com - SpongeBob face masks now available, with ALL proceeds going to charity!


Originally published: March 24, 2022 at 18:00 GMT.

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Nostalgic Nickelodeon Production Drawings Feature Doug & Porkchop

Created by Jim Jinkins, Doug is a animated series that premiered on Nickelodeon in August 1991 as one of the network's first Nicktoons. It is seen, along with Rugrats, Hey Arnold!, and Ren & Stimpy, as one of the classic Nickelodeon cartoons. Jinkins developed it as a means to depict kids as he saw them during the time, more mild-mannered and rather than empowered, tossed into bewildering decisions in which they have to learn to make the right choice. It is, making that good choice and finding their way toward being a good person that ends up giving them power. Fans of this nostalgic 90s classic can head over to Heritage Auctions to bid on a Doug group of drawings featuring the lead character and his dog, Porkchop.

Doug Porkchop, and Doug Layout Drawing Group of 4. Credit: Nickelodeon

Doug Drawing Group of 4. Credit: Nickelodeon


You can see the certificates of authenticity here.

Certificate of Authenticity. Credit: Nickelodeon


Now, let's take a look at the full listing.


"Dear journal, it's me, Doug…." The inventive Doug and his faithful dog, Porkchop, take the highlight in this great group of four layout drawings. [The series] featured an animation style with simple lines and down-to-earth themes mixed with [daydreams,] a combination that made this show iconic for its time and the favorite of many. The first drawing, numbered D19 in the bottom right corner, has Doug holding a glass measuring 4" x 5.25". [The lead character] is shown using kitchenware to defend himself in the drawing numbered D-12, with the character measuring 7" tall. In the next drawing we have… Doug? No, that's Jack Bandit! Doug disguises himself as this alter-ego during the episode "Doug Gets Busted" after a school project goes wrong in this layout drawing, numbered D11 in the bottom right corner, with Doug measuring 4.5" tall. Also presented is a fancy picture of Porkchop wearing a necktie, as seen during the episode "Doug's No Dummy," with the amicable dog measuring 3" tall on the drawing numbered PC-1 in the bottom right corner.

Heritage Auctions notes that the production drawings are all rendered in graphite with colored pencils and are all embossed with the Nickelodeon logo in the left corner. Four Nickelodeon COAs are included in this lot. Regarding the condition, Heritage notes that Drawing C11 shows some very light staining and that light handling wear from production can be expected from the lot, which is marked in "Very Good" condition. You can head over to Heritage Auctions today to bid on this nostalgic, behind-the-scenes lot.

Stream all your favorite Nickelodeon shows old and new on Paramount+. Try it FREE at ParamountPlus.com!


Originally published: March 24, 2022.

Original source: Bleeding Cool.

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Netflix's Live-Action 'Avatar: The Last Airbender' Season 1 Episode Count & Length, Revealed

Avatar: The Last Airbender star Paul Sun-Hyung Lee confirms Season 1 of Netflix's live-action adaptation will consist of eight episodes.


Avatar: The Last Airbender star Paul Sun-Hyung Lee has confirmed the official episode count for the first season of the upcoming live-action Netflix series.

During an interview on the Handsome Genius Club Radio Show podcast, Lee revealed that the first season of Netflix's live-action adaptation of Avatar would consist of eight hour-long episodes, contradicting previous reports that the season would run for 10 episodes.

With eight episodes running at 60 minutes each, Netflix's Avatar Season 1 will have a total runtime of 480 minutes. Interestingly, that is the exact same runtime as Book One: Water, the first season of Nickelodeon's original Avatar: The Last Airbender animated series, which ran for 20 episodes running at 24 minutes each.

Lee also revealed that the project will be one of the priciest shows in Hollywood to date, describing Avatar: The Last Airbender as a "hundred million dollar show". Avatar News got a hold of the interview, and the site now reports Netflix's live-action series has a budget of at least $120 million USD. In fact, each episode reportedly costs more than $15 million to make.

No firm numbers have been released by Netflix regarding this budget, but fans are impressed by this initial report. If everything checks out, Avatar: The Last Airbender will be one of the most expensive TV shows ever made when all is said and done. Series like The Morning Show, The Mandalorian, and Game of Thrones each budget about $15 million for its episodes. The only titles topping that budget are The Pacific, Amazon's Lord of the Rings, and all of the Marvel Cinematic Universe shows. But if the pricy gamble pays off, Netflix will have a sure-fire hit on its hands. 

In Netflix's Avatar, Lee is slated to portray the character of Uncle Iroh, who was famously voiced by the late, great Mako (Makoto Iwamatsu) in the first two seasons (Book One: Water and Book Two: Earth) of the original Nickelodeon animated series. Greg Baldwin later took over the role for the show's third and final season (Book Three: Fire).

Avatar: The Last Airbender originally aired on Nickelodeon for a total of 61 episodes from 2005 to 2008. The series was met with critical acclaim and maintains a strong fanbase to this very day. That said, a notoriously-maligned film adaptation, simply titled The Last Airbender, did release in theaters in 2010.

The original Avatar animated series was later followed up by a sequel series titled The Legend of Korra, which aired for 52 episodes across four seasons from 2012 to 2014. The first two seasons of Korra aired on Nickelodeon. Season 3 aired its first eight episodes on Nickelodeon before jumping to Nick.com for its final five. Nick.com was the home for the show's entire fourth and final season.

In 2018, Netflix announced a live-action series adaptation of the original Avatar: The Last Airbender. According to Avatar News, the series is currently in its fourth month of filming in Vancouver. Production is expected to last for a total of six months, meaning that the cast and crew have passed the halfway point.

In addition to Lee as Iroh, Netflix's live-action Avatar series stars Gordon Cormier as Aang, Kiawentiio Tarbell as Katara, Ian Ousley as Sokka, Dallas Liu as Zuko, Elizabeth Yu as Azula, Daniel Dae Kim as Fire Lord Ozai, Maria Zhang as Suki, Ken Leung as Commander Zhao, Lim Kay Siu as Gyatso, Yvonne Chapman as Avatar Kyoshi, Tamlyn Tomita as Yukari and Casey Camp-Horinek as Gran Gran. The first season will also reportedly feature the characters of Mai and Ty Lee, though no casting information regarding the two is currently available.

Netflix's Avatar: The Last Airbender Season 1 does not currently have a premiere date.

Stream Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra on Paramount+ and Netflix! Try Paramount+ for FREE at ParamountPlus.com

Listen to the brand new podcast, Avatar: Braving the Elements!




Originally published: March 23, 2022 at 02:37 GMT.

Original source: CBR.com, ComicBook.com.

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TMNT Co-Creator Kevin Eastman Talks NECA Haulathon Exclusive, The Last Ronin, and More

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are getting on NECA's first-ever Haulathon event! Haulathon is a four-week series that see NECA releasing brand new, exclusive items at Target stores and on Target.com. and will be available at Target and Target.com in the US and via Haulathon.com for international shoppers, with new items going on sale each Friday at 8 a.m. CST. ComicBook.com has revealed the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles item dropping as part of the Haulathon this Friday, March 18th: the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Cartoon) – 7" Scale Action Figure – Cartoon Series 2 – 4 Pack "Style Guide Colors" figure set. You can take a look at the set, which retails for $149.99, below.


To celebrate the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Haulathon release, ComicBook.com chatted with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles co-creator Kevin Eastman to talk about the figures. They also got some information on the upcoming final issue of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Last Ronin (NECA has a figure for that as well). Check out theur conversation, along with promotional images of the figures, below:

(Photo: NECA)

Could you tell me about your involvement with the design and production of these figures? Did you have input into how the figures came out?

Kevin Eastman: Man, it's just been such a wonderful journey and I have to go back to some of the toys that Peter [Laird] and I did when we worked with Playmates and with Fred Wolf Films back in the early days. That was really something, certainly for us as cartoonists, watching our comic books turn into fully animated figures and then to full 3D figures with some of the original toys. And I love the fact that we've been able to be part of that process all the way through. But then handing it off to the incredible and gifted and talented people at NECA who have brought them to life in such a fantastic way that is down to every single detail as we all grew up with them and saw them originally back in some of those original cartoons. So it's really been a joy to be part of the original process and then watch from afar while people, far more skilled than I am, bring it to life in another way, which is just wonderful. And of course, all the little bonuses and extras in the packages are just a hoot and a holler too.

There have been a lot of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles figures. NECA is putting out a lot of very cool ones themselves. What do you think makes these figures stand out?

I think it's all the way it's packaged and the way it's presented and the overall style, that look, as well. I'm standing here looking at it right now as it sits on my studio shelf -- and I'm going to have to get more shelves to make more room for some of this stuff -- but it's all those little extras that are just impossible to find, like the turtle communicators for example, or even things as goofy as the slices, the bits of pizza. Or just the stylization of some of their weapons, giving you the chance to choose a different face for each of the characters, a different expression, the interchangeability if you are brave enough to open them, and I'm very tempted to open them, but I still like the full display of how it sort of laid out in the package.

So I like the uniqueness of it, and being a collector, I still get some of my original GI Joes and other figures and stuff that I had in the earliest of days. So having some of this stuff as inspirations from some of your favorite cartoons in the way that they present it and make the uniqueness of the collectibility of it is something I think is super fun.

I know that you and Peter Larid were both incredibly busy at the time that the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles animated series, which these figures are based on, was in production. It was the height of Turtlemania. Does looking at these figures bring any particular memories or feelings from those days rushing back to your mind?

Totally. It's still like it replays like a video in my mind as fresh as something I watched yesterday. And that being when we were going through the process and it was very interesting. It was a very, very busy time, but that's because we wanted to be involved in every part of the process, whether it be working with, say, the original writers like David Wise and some of the many other people bringing to life some of these stories into this new iteration of the Turtles as the cartoon show, which then became part of the toy line. But we wanted say and involvement in all the scripts. We had final approval over the look of all the characters, how they were interpreted or new characters were brought into the Turtle universe at that time and have continued to be part of the universe.

So I can sit there and see myself looking at that first prototype of that first toy based on the animated show, and that's exactly what these figures bring back to me. I feel I've reached into my TV screen and pulled out one of the figures right out of the cartoon, because they're just wonderfully exact and right down again to the simplest and the coolest little accessory that's packaged with them. It's torn right off the TV screen into your living room. So that's it. I love it. It brings back a lot of exciting and fun memories of that time.

(Photo: NECA)

You mentioned how you and Peter both wanted the final say on creative decisions for the franchise. You've talked elsewhere, like in The Toys That Made Us episode about the franchise, about how Venus' introduction was the biggest test of that [and now Venus is back]. Do any other major issues stick in your mind? Either one that you and Peter had to put a firm foot down over, or that caused a similar disagreement or discussion between the two of you? Or was Venus really the one?

You know, it really was not really that much. Luckily we, as co-creators of the property and the ideas that we explored, were careful. We continued to maintain a level of respect for each other. Whether it be talking about a story that we were drawing together within the comic series, it was discussed, put on the table, pros and cons, points of view and then we find a middle ground. And that was very similar in a lot of the creative aspects of developing, whether it be some of the work on the movies, to some of the work on the cartoon shows, especially in the early days.

There were certain things that we wanted to see done differently, and nothing that we disagreed particularly on. It was just always reaching for fresh ideas or new ideas or new characters to bring into the cartoon series. We didn't want to be one of those rinse and repeat kind of things like every episode was sort of standardized. And there were times that we felt like it was so we would push hard with some of the creative people that we were working with at Fred Wolf and things to get more creative and bring in some fresh ideas.

But no, nothing in particular. I think Venus was one of those ideas that, if there was going to be a girl turtle, that wasn't the way Peter saw it happening, I felt it was a good idea, you know? Because we've always been attracted to strong female characters, whether it be Sarah Connor or with Ellen Ripley or many, many, many others. But it was just one of those things that was a good idea, but at the wrong time, certainly for him and I, but we got past it.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is still going strong today. Seth Rogen is working on a new movie. I know you've consulted on some things over the past few years. Are you consulting or at all involved in the Rogen project?

No, that's a good question. And I'm not directly involved in it for sure. It's funny that many things that I've been involved in creatively -- some a lot, some a little -- all stem from the original series that Peter and I created, co-created and built together. And to me, it is looking through these characters and looking through some of those concepts through fresh eyes, if you will, whether it be the evolution and what was built by IDW Turtle Universe that was built there; Nickelodeon's 2012 series, for example, one of my favorites in recent history of just a wonderfully creative and playful environment to tell stories from there. Some of the movies I like a little bit more than some of the others, but once you put your idea or the hands of an auteur, a creator or director, writer, certainly as it stands now where I don't have any say of what could be done or not be done, I've been asked to consult on different things at different times and I give my honest opinion. Whether they use it or not. It's really up to that particular artist.

In Seth Rogan's case, I'm not a big fan of him and his movies and I'm sure his team is given a lot of thought to something that I think he's personally a fan of. Whether he wants my two cents or not, that's totally up to him. But otherwise, I'll be in the theater when it comes out and we'll give my two cents then. But I'm excited. I've enjoyed so many different, I call them Turtle universes because they really are very unique and different varied turtle universes within a multiverse, if you will, which is always exciting, to see what other people see in these characters that Peter and I created almost 40 years ago.

(Photo: NECA)

Lastly, I know I am one of many fans eagerly awaiting the finale of The Last Ronin. I think it's fair to say the series has taken a little longer to come out than anyone was expecting or hoped. I checked before this interview and current the final issue is scheduled to release in April. Can you tell us whether that's a firm date at this point and enlighten us at all on what caused the delays over the past few months?

First and foremost, thanks a million, billion, trillion. It's been such an unexpected response to it. That really was the idea that was based on a concept that Pete and I had created back in 1987, and it came together. Tom [Waltz] and I built it into the story that it's become, and then it was unfortunate, even as it started in the earliest days, that creatively, our team that I brought in initially to help realize the concept didn't quite work out. So we were almost five months behind before it even started. So the slowness to it has all been my fault and uniquely my fault. And they're larger-sized stories like the original Mirage comics, 40 pages each. With the incredible amount of detail, it's almost like directing a movie in that each part of it has a script and a very basic script, but it evolves as I do the layouts. That's how the story comes together, the way it used to back in the earliest days when Pete and I worked together.

So the delays have been solely on my shoulders, but it's been a journey. That's been the toughest story I've told, but the most exciting personally, and satisfying, and we are just literally days away from wrapping up the last couple pages and it is going to press and I know that there's literally people standing by at the printer waiting for the PDF to arrive. Hopefully, the fans will think it's worth the wait. I think it is. This last issue is something that I just could not be more excited about for everybody to see. The way I'm ending it is the way I want to see it end and we'll leave it at that.

But yes, stand by, it is coming. We're days away from being wrapped and I appreciate everybody's patience, and again, I hope the thing is worth the wait when it finally arrives. If not, I'm sure I'll hear about it.

NECA's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Cartoon) – 7" Scale Action Figure – Cartoon Series 2 – 4 Pack "Style Guide Colors" figure set goes sale at Target, Target.com, and Haulathon.com at 8 a.m. CST on Friday, March 18th.

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From CBR.com:

TMNT's Kevin Eastman Teases Zany New Animated Series, Biz & Buzz


Kevin Eastman discusses his upcoming animated series Biz and Buzz with Simon Bisley and reflects on the finale of TMNT: The Last Ronin.

Currently, in development with the BAFTA-winning Factory studios, Biz and Buzz recreates the friendship between Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles co-creator Kevin Eastman and the iconic Heavy Metal artist Simon Bisley in animated form. The show puts the pair of comics creators in a world where their avatars are wannabee rockers who keep finding themselves in ridiculous circumstances. Stemming from their real-life friendship, the series has been a fresh source of laughs for Eastman, who also recently finished his work on the epic conclusion to the TMNT saga with TMNT: The Last Ronin.

During an exclusive interview with CBR, Eastman delved into his upcoming animated series Biz and Buzz and what it's like to see the iconic Bisley come to life in animated form. He also spoke about what it means to him as a creator to see TMNT: The Last Ronin come to a close over thirty years after first conceiving of the story with Peter Laird.

CBR: So much of Biz and Buzz seems to come from the relationship you share with Simon Bisley. What was that like to bring this to life in this kind of form?

Kevin Eastman: It was so much fun. To be honest, the creation of it was just one of those things that was very organic and very natural. Simon and I worked a lot together, and we were actually traveling to work on a video game in Japan. I just had this feeling. I said, "This could be the last big adventure of Biz and Buzz because they'd probably bring back public beheading and something. We'd embarrass ourselves, and our country, and it would be all over for us." Simon did this absolutely awesome doodle on the plane of Biz and Buzz. Everything from there was, "Well, what would Biz and Buzz do next?" It wrote itself, as Simon and I would start talking.

The concept of Biz and Buzz, [it's actually us coupled] with some of my favorite shows. I always loved Laurel and Hardy because they seemed very Biz and Buzz. They would go in for a work gig to move a piano, and they end up in a spaceship to the moon. It'd be some bizarrely nutty kind of place that they would end up. That would be a natural fit for Biz and Buzz, that they would be sent to do some menial task... They'd do their best at the worst jobs possible. They were always given the lowest, dirtiest jobs that nobody else wanted, and they would go in there like, "Yeah, we're going to do our best job ever," and then it would just completely go awry, which would probably be exactly what Simon Bisley and I would do. So that kind of coupled with one of my favorite TV shows of all time, The Young Ones -- I just love the mantic nuttiness of that whole concept.

You put Laurel and Hardy [and] The Young Ones in a setting where you get this whole group of characters, these lovable misfits that still live in this temporary halfway house and are given temporary jobs to fulfill the time and need and stuff. It centers around Biz and Buzz and those characters and their existence to pay rent and get the band back together. They don't want to be Bono and The Edge, they want to be the drummer and the bassist. They want to be the best backup band in the world, but the instruments are in the pawnshop. That was inspired because Bisley is actually a drummer and he's quite good at it. It's super manic, fun stories, with enough edge that we don't get kicked off TV, I think. We wanted to create a great foundation to tell some pretty zany stories.

I love the idea of these two wannabe rockers, who don't want to be the rockstars who are upfront, doing all the partying. Especially with Simon Bisley being a drummer, which I can't stop thinking about now.

Totally. He's crazy. That's the fun of Simon. Even when the incredible team at Factory Create, Phil Chalk and the designers... When they started breaking down the actual look of these characters, one of the things I felt they captured perfectly was Simon Bisley. I think if we get him to focus around his ADHD-isms -- his manic, lovely, creative, ADHD-isms -- we should try to get him to do the voice of the character. When it gets to the point where it goes into a writer's room, I think we just need to bring in Simon dressed like Hannibal Lecter. We bring him in and take that off, and then we can unleash him on the unsuspecting writers.

We've been having a lot of fun. My friend Robert Mandel and some of the original guys have been pulling the story together. I've written probably ideas for about 25, 30 different episodes. We're building out the world... I've already pretty much drawn everything, all the sets and all the designs from the halfway house, the location, the different places where some of the adventures would take place, a lot of the secondary characters that you find in the halfway house. One of their favorite partners in crime is a young lady named Misty Stormcloud, who owns the comic book store that also sells weed.

Factory Studios is helping bring the series to life. What has it been like to work with them on the project?

Dude, I don't think we could have stopped them if we tried. When Phil and when the gang over there saw the proposal, they really fell in love with it. From the first conversation, you could tell that they got it. The passion was there. You could see that little twinkle in their eye with like, "We know we can have a lot of fun with this." So when they went in, they went all in. They've been having a lot of fun, and that's what's beautiful about that part of the creation process.

To see Simon and I physically drawing it but then trying to bring it to life, certainly in 3D... The technological side of what they're doing, what they bring with their wonderful claymation look and feel to it, it's just been wonderful how excited they have been and what they brought to the table and how much it's evolved, as well as their commitment to try to keep it very much like the original drawing. They felt like that's what drew them to the characters in the first place. They still really wanted to embrace that and bring that to life -- and man, have they. I'm pretty tickled. I'm pretty thrilled at what they've done, and it definitely shows that they're having fun doing it.

Shifting gears slightly, I do want to bring up TMNT: Last Ronin. As someone who grew up with these characters, this is exactly the kind of story we've been wanting to see for them.

You hit the nail on the head, man. That was really... When I think back, a lot of the inspiration was Turtles Issue #1, which is really the beginning of the story obviously. That was the origin story at the beginning. That was a beginning, middle, and end, with the door open to go other places. When [TMNT co-creator Peter Laird] and I were looking further down the road, going back to an outline we wrote in 1987... that became Last Ronin. Tom Waltz and I adapted it into Last Ronin. We left 30 years down the road and then said, "This is where the characters would end," if we were so lucky to be working for 30 years on our characters.

When Tom Waltz and I worked through the first 100 issues at IDW, the incredible turtle universe we built over there, we were looking like, "Well, where do we go from here?" I pulled out this story that Pete and I wrote, and I said, "How about we do this? This is kind of like a Dark Knight Returns sort of final Turtles story, but the door's open to go other places depending on if people don't hate us after they see the ending."  Nickelodeon and IDW and everybody have been so supportive because I wanted the books to be 40 pages like the original ones that Peter and I did -- larger in format, larger in page count.

I got to pick [an] artist like the Escorza brothers to bring it to life. They just did an amazing job, [as did] Ben Bishop for the flashback sequences. We had this amazing colorist, Luis Antonio Delgado. It was sort of a perfect storm of coolness to bring it to life. Then we just ran late on everything. There was so much [that] went into it, I swear to goodness. It's been 32 years in the making, but the last three years I've been just all hands on deck. It's been quite a process -- very exciting but very exhausting [and] worth it to the end. Tom and I are really proud of the ending. We're proud of the series in general.

Was Mikey always going to be the last turtle standing?

Yes, he was. [In] the first drawing of the first Turtle, even before he was named Michelangelo, he had a mask on, he had nunchucks strapped to his arms. Mikey was kind of the firstborn, so it was never going to be any other Turtle. I wanted the firstborn to be, in my mind, the Last Ronin. Also as a storytelling device, the [format] that everybody knows Michelangelo from, which is mainly the cartoon series, he's kind of the funny guy, the humorous guy, the more laid-back one. As a storytelling device, it's a much further way to go... to wrap up everything that had been set up in Issue #1, and this final issue basically 30 years later.

I figured that, if you look at every version of the Turtles, it's all been based around the same elements, everything that Peter and I set up in Issue #1. Whether it's the cartoon show or the movies or the different iterations of the characters, it's all been built around that. This was my mission, the original concept that Tom and I adapted by Peter and I was to address that and answer that. So, here's your ending and it's done. The door's not closed, but it's got finality and it is an ending.

What does it mean to you as a creator that you've not only gotten to see something you co-created grow across the last thirty years but you also have the chance to put your own final word on it?

The first word that comes to mind is humbling, to be honest. Both Peter and I, we had this crazy dream to be following in the footsteps of Jack Kirby and Frank Miller and people that inspired us to work back then. To have not only one of your creations allow you to have that living to draw comic books... I mean, I was drawing before I came to chat with you, but I'm still drawing at the age of 60. I'm still drawing comics every day, so it really is a dream come true and has been a dream come true.

Then to have it work initially, as it did as a concept, not only in comic books and then cartoons and toys and movies domestically and then globally... Back in the early days, that's crazy. It just never should have happened. Then, to have it become generational is even more insane. I feel like we've been welcomed into a club of some of the Batmans and the Supermans and the Captain Americas -- the heroes that inspired us. We're sort of 30, almost 40 years in, and we're still finding fans that are willing to give me some money to draw Turtles. Thank you. It's been a spectacular gift. It's a dream come true for me personally... It's all your fault, thank you.

Biz and Buzz is currently in development.

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Watch Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on Paramount+! Try it FREE at ParamountPlus.com!


Originally published: March 16, 2022.

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