fbpx

Entertainment

KARTOON STUDIOS TO LAUNCH ‘WINNIE-THE-POOH’ MEGABRAND ON AMAZON PRIME VIDEO

25 Jun - 2024

Kartoon Studios has announced its most ambitious project in the history of the company, Kartoon Studios’ Winnie-the-Pooh.

Plans include an animated holiday movie, five holiday specials, and a four year/104 episode series, to premiere on Amazon Prime Video, via Kartoon Channel!’s subscription service on the platform. Concurrently, Alliance Entertainment (NASDAQ:AENT), a leading distributor of physical entertainment that supports major nationwide retailers, including Walmart, Target, Amazon and Barnes & Noble, will debut new merchandise through a nationwide retail programin conjunction with Kartoon Studios rollout of a global consumer products campaign.

Kartoon Studios’ Winnie-the-Pooh is based on the designs and stories of one of the most successful brands of all time, A.A. Milne’s Winnie-the-Pooh, a property that has generated over $80 billion in sales over the last four decades and is estimated to currently generate $3-$6 billion per year for The Walt Disney Company. The total lifetime revenues exceed those of Barbie, Harry Potter, Star Wars, Mickey Mouse, Peanuts, Ninja Turtles, Power Rangers, Marvel, and almost every major brand in the world.

Disney created an iconic and tremendously successful global brand with ‘Winnie-the-Pooh’ that we have all admired so much over many decades.  When the property went into the public domain, we knew we could only undertake creating Pooh for a new generation if we could bring a completely new, different and unique look that was contemporary, protectable, and gave voice to the characters and stories created by A.A. Milne, as has never been done,” said Kartoon Studios’ Chairman & CEO Andy Heyward. We are thrilled to launch with Amazon Prime Video and Alliance Entertainment to deliver unique and  exceptional content, as we build out a new iteration of this entertainment brand and ‘Winnie-the-Pooh’-branded consumer products to the global marketplace.

Pre-production has already begun on the animated holiday movie, set to premiere December 24, 2025, on Amazon Prime Video, through Kartoon Channel!’s $3.99/month subscription distribution agreement with them. Concurrently, the global retail program will kick off with the debut of products featuring an array of special features, distributed through Alliance Entertainment Corporation.

Kartoon Studios’ “Winnie-the-Pooh” animated content is being developed with a unique ‘yarn- based’ design and palette for the characters and backgrounds, along with original modern stories inspired by Milne’s beloved classic books. The beautifully imagined yarn gives the characters a depth and warmth.  Additionally, the stories will be told in a ‘Seussian style’ rhyme to provide an enriched dimension to the stories.

In designing Kartoon Studios’ ‘Winnie-The-Pooh,’ we combined the best of both AI and human creativity to arrive at the unique look of the characters and backgrounds that could not have been imaginable prior to the advent of AI in our industry,” commented Heyward.

Our use of our AI platform will enable us to bring a level of efficiency, speed-to-market, and creativity, to the production heretofore not possible,” said Heyward. “At a time when our world can be confusing for children, Pooh is an oasis of goodness, grounded in family, friendship, kindness, and love.  Those are the exact values our version of Pooh will showcase as we focus on building Kartoon Studios’ “Winnie-The-Pooh” into a long-term global megabrand, through which the simple and comforting values A.A. Milne originally imagined, will endure forever.

Heyward added: “We think this is a generational opportunity to capitalize on one of the greatest properties ever created, with a proven track record.  Audiences around the world are demanding healthy, positive, family-friendly stories that will inspire and entertain kids, alongside a new line of products, from toys to books, videos to apparel, and more, that are steeped in these enriching values.

The series is being financed through Joint Venture Production financing of $30 million provided by WTP SPV 1, a subsidiary of Catalyst Venture Partners.  It is non-dilutive, production financing.

Steven A. Horowitz, Sr. Managing Director  of WTP SPV and its parent company, Catalyst Venture Partners, stated: “We have committed to provide $30 million to the Special Purpose Joint Venture for this exciting new version of A.A. Milne’s ‘Winnie the Pooh’ from Kartoon Studios, which is non-dilutive to any of TOON’s existing stakeholders.  Being able to participate in a timeless and proven children’s classic such as Milne’s ‘Winnie-The-Pooh,’ through the production of original animated content and the licensing of consumer products from those proprietary character designs and stories, is a unique opportunity we are very excited about. 

Andy Heyward and the team at Kartoon Studios have a long history of producing hit properties for children.  An all-star array of award-winning talent across development, production, marketing, consumer products, and distribution has been assembled to manage the brand launch, and we are excited to be a part of what we are confident will be a hugely profitable and enduring business.

“Capitalizing on the enormous equity inherent in A.A. Milne’s ‘Winnie-The-Pooh,’ the unique designs and storytelling, as well as the production efficiency by harnessing AI, Kartoon Studios’ new iteration of the timeless brand will have an exceptional array of attributes that we believe can lead to extraordinary profitability for the company,” stated Heyward.   


Subscribe to our newsletter


Read our last issue


Our Youtube Channel!