LOS ANGELES, March 27, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Nickelodeon brought its annual Upfront presentation to Los Angeles, where it announced the pickup of Scott Baio's Daddy's Home for Nick at Nite and the casting of James Franco for a multi-episode arc on Hollywood Heights, in addition to a robust 2012-13 programming slate detailed in its March 14 presentation in New York, including an unprecedented 650 new episodes of brand-new content and returning hits, including: the highly-anticipated animated series The Legend of Korra; a stop-motion SpongeBob SquarePants Christmas special; original primetime TV movies; an original animated series based on the Raving Rabbids video games; and new projects with UK pop sensation One Direction, iCarly/Victorious show creator Dan Schneider and iCarly star Jennette McCurdy.
Nickelodeon has ordered 20 episodes of Daddy's Home (working title), starring Scott Baio. Daddy's Home is a multi-camera half-hour comedy for Nick at Nite that follows David Hobbs (Baio), an actor who, after ten years of starring as America's favorite TV dad, becomes a stay-at-home father to honor the deal he made with his soap star wife so that she may return to the limelight. The series comes from creators/executive producers Tina Albanese and Patrick Labyorteaux and is helmed by executive producers Nat Bernstein and Mitchel Katlin who will show run. Eric Bischoff and Jason Hervey are also executive producing through their production company Bischoff Hervey Entertainment (BHE), along with Baio. The series begins production later this year in Los Angeles.
Actor James Franco will also be joining the cast of Hollywood Heights, a daily scripted series premiering on Nick at Nite this summer. Franco will star in a multi-episode arc, playing the role of Osborne "Oz" Silver - a passionate, intense eccentric movie mogul who lives life to the fullest, often outrageously. Funny, offbeat, seductive, ruthless when he has to be, Oz adores the moviemaking process and does whatever it takes to make the films he wants.
Held this morning at Avalon in Los Angeles, Nick's presentation featured special guest appearances and contributions from: Scott Baio; Keke Palmer; the cast of Hollywood Heights; and performances by Nick's own Big Time Rush, How to Rock's Cymphonique Miller and Gravity 5; and Nick's newest star, Rachel Crow of The X Factor fame, who capped the presentation with a performance of Cee Lo Green's "Forget You".
Details of Nickelodeon's new content slate include:
Nickelodeon, the top producer of television animation in the U.S., will roll out a new roster of over 300 new animated episodes in 2012 which includes:
- New episodes of returning hit series including SpongeBob SquarePants, T.U.F.F. Puppy, Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness, The Penguins of Madagascar, The Fairly OddParents and The Winx Club.
- The Legend of Korra, in which the mythology of the beloved animated franchise from Avatar: The Last Airbender creators Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko continues. The series centers around a new Avatar named Korra, a 17-year-old headstrong and rebellious girl who continually challenges and bucks tradition on her quest to become a fully realized Avatar in a world where benders are under attack. The half-hour series will debut on Saturday, April 14, at 11:00 a.m. (all times ET/PT), as part of Nickelodeon's Saturday morning block (8AM-Noon), which has been the number-one destination for Kids 2-11 for 12 consecutive years and currently delivers more than three million total viewers each week. The Legend of Korra will air regularly on Saturday at 11:00 a.m.
- Raving Rabbids, which will join the net's animation line-up in spring 2013, brings to television the hysterical physical comedy that has become so popular in Ubisoft's Raving Rabbids video games. Nickelodeon has secured global broadcast rights for 26 new CG episodes of Raving Rabbids, which will be produced by Ubisoft.
- Monsters vs. Aliens, the all-new animated television series marking the third partnership between Nickelodeon and DreamWorks Animation. Green-lit for 26 episodes and based on the popular characters from the 2009 blockbuster hit feature film ($383 million worldwide gross), the new series will continue to follow the funny escapades of the beloved, well-meaning monsters.
- Robot & Monster, which will also be hitting Nickelodeon's air for a 26-episode run for the 2012-2013 season. Created by Josh Sternin, Jeff Ventimilia and Dave Pressler, this CG-animated buddy comedy is set in a unique world where gangs of Howling Cyber Monkeys roam the streets at night, everybody loves bacon, and robots and monsters live side by side, but typically don't get along.
- It's A SpongeBob Christmas! - Nickelodeon's first full-length stop-motion animated special is inspired by the classic Rankin/Bass (Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Santa Claus is Comin' to Town) specials, and the popular SpongeBob song released in 2009, "Don't Be a Jerk, It's Christmas," written by Tom Kenny (voice of SpongeBob) and Andy Paley. In "It's A SpongeBob Christmas!," Plankton vows to get his Christmas wish -- the Krabby Patty formula -- by turning everyone in Bikini Bottom bad by feeding them his special jerktonium-laced fruitcake. The special features John Goodman as Santa Claus, and will air in December 2012.
- Seven new animation pilots picked up for the 2012-2013 season, including four pilots helmed by hit-maker Butch Hartman (The Fairly OddParents, T.U.F.F. Puppy).
As part of the overall 650 new episodes the network is rolling out this year, Nickelodeon's live-action slate will include:
- More new episodes of hit live-action hit series -- iCarly, Victorious, Big Time Rush and Supah Ninjas.
- A 26-episode pick-up of Marvin, Marvin, an original new series starring Internet sensation Lucas Cruikshank (AKA Fred). Executive Produced by Jeff Bushell and The Collective, the half-hour comedy follows the exploits of Marvin, an alien teen, living with a human family, while trying to fit into life on Earth.
- The third installment of the hit Fred movies -- Fred Goes to Camp, as well as a pick-up of 28 additional 11-minute episodes of FRED: THE SHOW.
- A development project for UK pop sensation One Direction, who will next collaborate with Nick when they perform live at Nickelodeon's 2012 Kids' Choice Awards in Los Angeles on March 31.
- Rags, a music-infused modern-day fairy tale debuting this spring. The two-hour original TV movie centers on Charlie Prince (Max Schneider), an orphan living with his acerbic and unloving stepfather and spoiled stepbrothers, whose dream of being a singer might come true once he meets pop star Kadee Worth (Keke Palmer). Rags is executive produced by Nick Cannon, directed by Billy Woodruff (Beauty Shop, Honey) and features original music by Rodney Jerkins and choreography by Rosero McCoy (America's Best Dance Crew).
- A Fairly Odd Christmas, a sequel to 2011's hit live-action TV movie, A Fairly OddMovie: Grow Up Timmy Turner, which will bow this holiday season. The original TV movie follows the exploits of Timmy Turner (Drake Bell), and his well meaning fairy godparents, as he tries to save Christmas, but first he's got to get himself off the naughty list.
- Figure it Out, a contemporary revival of the hit '90s family friendly game show. The show,which begins production in Los Angeles this April, will launch later this year with 40 brand-new episodes. Figure It Out features a panel of celebrities trying to guess kid contestants' unique talents and skills by asking 'yes' or 'no' questions while being bombarded by messy visual and tactile clues.
- Hollywood Heights (previously titled Reach for a Star), a daily scripted series based on the wildly popular Televisa telenovela, Alcanzar Una Estrella, will debut in primetime on Nick at Nite in June. The 80 one-hour episodes currently in production will star Brittany Underwood, Melissa Ordway, Cody Longo and Justin Wilczynski. Hollywood Heights is a co-production with Televisa and is being produced by Sony Television.
Nickelodeon President Cyma Zarghami also highlighted several live-action projects currently in development, including a pilot for Nick at Nite, Wendell & Vinnie, a comedy starring Jerry Trainor (iCarly) about a goofball uncle who becomes the guardian to his conservative 12-year-old genius nephew; a new Nickelodeon series from hit-maker Dan Schneider that will star Jennette McCurdy from iCarly; and a series starring The X Factor sensation Rachel Crow.
Nickelodeon, now in its 32nd 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 company includes television programming and production in the United States and around the world, plus consumer products, online, recreation, books and feature films. Nickelodeon's U.S. television network is seen in more than 100 million households and has been the number-one-rated basic cable network for 17 consecutive years. For more information or artwork, visit www.nickpress.com. Nickelodeon and all related titles, characters and logos are trademarks of Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIA, VIA.B).
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