Sunday, April 14, 2019

Nick Jr. UK Premieres '44 Cats'

Nick Jr. UK and Ireland will premiere the brand-new CG-animated preschool series 44 Cats on Monday 4th March 2019 on Nick Jr. Too! Created and directed by Iginio Straffi, the founder of Italian content powerhouse Rainbow Group, the makers of Winx Club and Regal Academy, and produced by Rainbow in collaboration with Antoniano Bologna and Rai Ragazzi, Nick Jr. Too will air new episodes daily at 4:30pm, with each episode encoring the following morning at 4:30am on Nick Jr., and at 9:00am on Nick Jr. Too.


44 Cats

Set in the world of animals, 44 Cats (52 eps x c. 13') follows the daily adventures of Lampo, Milady, Pilou, and Meatball – four adorable kittens who are part of a music band named The Buffycats.

The protagonists live and play in the Clubhouse, a garage beside old Granny Pina’s house. Their adventures explore the themes of friendship and altruism: the four cats love helping others and always find creative solutions to everyday hitches and help other cats in need. The series promotes positive attitudes and conveys educational messages dealing with important themes such as tolerance, diversity and solidarity in a funny way.

This eagerly anticipated show made its world debut on Rai Yoyo in Italy on Monday 12th November 2018. Nickelodeon International acquired the broadcast rights to the series in May 2018, and will roll the animated series out on Nickelodeon channels and branded blocks around the world, excluding in the U.S. and Latin America, throughout 2019.

44 Cats is inspired by the very popular Italian kids song "44 Gatti", which, in 1968, won the 10th edition of the Zecchino d'Oro and has since entered the collective imagination of Italians.



44 Cats is the first Rainbow Group production jointly developed with Bardel Entertainment, the Canadian animation studio it acquired in 2015, and jointly produced in collaboration with Antoniano Bologna and Rai Ragazzi, and combines great music and edutainment with high quality animation. The series also marks Rainbow’s (Winx Club, Regal Academy, Mia and me, Maggie & Bianca Fashion Friends) inaugural foray into preschool programming.

Rainbow inked a licensing deal for 44 Cats with Thai Group’s Hong Kong-based company, Toy Plus in August 2018. Under the terms of the agreement, Toy Plus will develop a variety of products including interactive plush, figurines, play sets, musical toys and more based on the music, creative play patterns and collectability featured in the series. The line of merchandise debuted in Hong Kong in October, and is slated to become available for purchase around the world in fall 2019.

Rainbow has also secured a new licensing deal for 44 Cats with holistic lifestyle company Artsana Group. Under the agreement, the company will develop a range of licensed 44 Cats-themed infant educational toys for infants and a nursing line under its Chicco brand, the largest infant brand in Europe. The deal also includes apparel and accessories collections by Prenatal and Chicco. Products are expected to hit retail shelves later this year and will be supported by a dedicated, high-level marketing campaign delivered jointly by Rainbow and Artsana Group, which is also based in Italy.

Online at nickjr.co.uk and the Nick Jr. Play app, parents and preschoolers can find out more about the show and purr-tastic colouring in activities. Viewers can also visit the official 44 Cats show website at 44cats.tv to find out more about the show and its musical stars, as well as watch exclusive video clips, play pawesome games and download purr-tastic activities. Fans can like the official Nick Jr. UK & Ireland Twitter, Facebook and Instagram pages and sign up to the official Nick Jr. Fan Club for the latest Nick Jr. news, highlights, video clips, competitions and more.

About Nick Jr.

Where every day’s an adventure, Nick Jr. is a top-performing commercial pre-school entertainment brand in cable and satellite homes. Launched in 1999 as the world's first channel dedicated to pre-school children, Nick Jr.’s programming includes beloved shows PAW Patrol, Shimmer and Shine, Nella the Princess Knight and Peppa Pig. Kids and parents can find lots of video clips, games, exclusive activities and downloads featuring their favourite Nick Jr. friends online at nickjr.co.uk and on the Nick Jr. Play app. Viewers also have the opportunity to catch up with the schedule through Nick Jr. +1. Nick Jr. is available on Sky 615, Virgin 715, through BT Vision and TalkTalk channel 318.

About Nickelodeon

The Nickelodeon Network is a top-performing commercial kids’ TV network in the UK and Ireland with Nickelodeon channels available in over 13 million cable and satellite homes. Having launched in 1993 Nickelodeon UK comprises seven dedicated entertainment channels for kids aged 4-15 and their families, and is a joint venture between Viacom International Media Networks and BSkyB.

Update (14/4) - Following its UK launch on Nick Jr., Sony Pictures Television’s free-to-air (FTA) network Pop TV (UK) has also struck a deal with Rainbow to air the animated series 44 Cats!

Pop TV will launch the show this September. 44 Cats is a Rainbow production in collaboration with Antoniano Bologna and Rai Ragazzi. It follows four kittens who are part of a music band named The Buffycats and live in the Clubhouse, a garage inside Granny Pina’s house.

“We are absolutely thrilled with this new broadcast deal, as Pop TV have such a big presence and reputation in the U.K.,” said Andrea Graciotti, head of sales, TV series, movies and co-productions at Rainbow. “This adds to the buzz surrounding the brand, which is receiving a great response from across the international TV market!”

44 Cats is a perfect fit for Pop, with its blend of friendship and fun—and cute kitties!” added Sarah Muller, VP of children’s and youth entertainment programming at Pop TV parent company Sony Pictures Television.

The brand has also expanded into consumer products, with Rainbow inking a deal making Discovery Kids the exclusive licensing and merchandising partner in LatAm (excluding master toy) for the series. Hong Kong-based Toys Plus is also launching a range of toys, including figurines, playsets and musical offerings globally this fall.

More Nick: Channel 5's Milkshake! Monkey’s Musical Set to Tour the UK!

Originally published: Thursday, February 7, 2019.

Schedule Source: Digiguide.
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