New venture across distribution, production and licensing reignites successful past collaboration between WildBrain CEO, Eric Ellenbogen, and the family of renowned animation producer Jay Ward
WildBrain, a global leader in kids’ and family entertainment, and Jay Ward Productions, Inc., have signed an agreement across distribution, production and licensing for the entire portfolio of classic Ward-owned IP that includes such legendary properties as George of the Jungle, Mr. Peabody & Sherman, Dudley Do-Right, Rocky & Bullwinkle, Super Chicken and more. Under the agreement, WildBrain will add 788 episodes of Jay Ward Productions’ classic animation to its distribution library, and the two companies will create brand-new content based on the Ward portfolio.
The new partnership reunites WildBrain’s CEO, Eric Ellenbogen, with Tiffany Ward, President of Jay Ward Productions and daughter of the late, acclaimed animation producer Jay Ward, who was the creator of some of the most iconic cartoons of the 1950s and 60s. Twenty years ago, Ellenbogen and Ward created Bullwinkle Studios through Ellenbogen’s former company, Classic Media, which was sold to DreamWorks in 2012 and ultimately became part of NBCUniversal.
“Everything old is new again,” said Ellenbogen. “I’m delighted to be reunited with Tiffany to bring new audiences the hilarious characters and shows created by her father, which are part of the canon of the world’s greatest animation. Never has there been a better time to refresh classic branded IP like this, just as we are doing with so many of our evergreen WildBrain brands.”
“I’m thrilled to be teaming up with Eric again,” said Tiffany Ward. “Our past partnership with Bullwinkle Studios was prolific and successful, and now that Eric is at the helm of a creative powerhouse like WildBrain, I’m excited to work with him and his fantastic team to broaden the legacy of my father’s work to new generations of kids and families.”
The prior collaboration between Ellenbogen and Ward resulted in such projects as DreamWorks’ 2014 animated feature film, Mr. Peabody & Sherman; as well as two new series animated by WildBrain (then called DHX Media), including 52 episodes of the Emmy-nominated The Mr. Peabody & Sherman Show, commissioned by Netflix from DreamWorks; and 26 episodes of the Emmy-nominated The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle, commissioned by Amazon Studios from DreamWorks. Also, 52 episodes of George of the Jungle were produced by Bullwinkle Studios and a further 52 episodes later produced by August Media.
In addition to various new production, licensing and merchandising rights on Ward’s portfolio of the classic IP, the new venture sees WildBrain grow its distribution library with such beloved classic Jay Ward series as The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle (326 x 3.5’), Peabody’s Improbable History (91 x 5’), Dudley Do-Right (38 x 4.5’), Hoppity Hooper (104 x 4.5’), Fractured Fairy Tales (91 x 5’), Aesop and Son (39 x 5’), Mr. Know-It All (60 x 1.5’) and Bullwinkle’s Corner (39 x 1’).