Internationally renowned book and TV series character Franklin embarks on new adventures at SeaWorld parks
Orlando, Fla. – SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment and Corus Entertainment’s Nelvana announced today a multi-platform partnership that combines the appeal of the popular Franklin & Friends characters with the beloved SeaWorld® brand. Beginning January 2013, the company’s new SeaWorld Kids brand and Nelvana will team up to introduce kids and families to in-park Franklin characters, TV specials, books and merchandise.
Highlights of this multi-faceted partnership include:
- Franklin will take up residence at the three SeaWorld parks for the year, where guests will be able to meet this classic character, take photos and get autographs. The parks include:
o SeaWorld Florida beginning with the “Just for Kids” event January 2013
o SeaWorld Texas beginning with the “Just for Kids” event April 2013
o SeaWorld California beginning with the “Spring into Night” event March 2013
- Franklin and Friends’ specialty merchandise, much of it exclusive to SeaWorld, will be available in the parks
- SeaWorld and Nelvana are collaborating on two Franklin and Friends on-screen specials which will focus on the natural world
- The SeaWorld Kids brand will be reflected in select Franklin products, including co-branded books published by Corus Entertainment’s Kids Can Press
“Families throughout North America and from around the world look forward to their visits to SeaWorld parks in the U.S., and we are very excited to integrate the Franklin and Friends preschool brand into that experience,” said Colin Bohm, Managing Director, Nelvana. “The theme parks and the new SeaWorld Kids entertainment and merchandising opportunities provide ideal platforms for kids and families to connect with Franklin and Friends.”
“This partnership is a ‘natural’ for us to create fun, family experiences that connect young kids to animals and the world we share,” said Scott Helmstedter, Chief Creative Officer for SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment. “SeaWorld Kids is a brand dedicated to specifically connecting children with animals and nature, and Franklin is an enduring, much-loved animal character that brings adventure to kids. We look forward to working together to create unique opportunities for the Franklin and Friends’ characters to have outdoor adventures and also educate viewers along the way.”
Based on the best-selling children’s book series by Paulette Bourgeois and Brenda Clark, published by Kids Can Press, the new CGI-animated TV series, Franklin and Friends, follows Franklin the Turtle as he experiences adventures and milestones, learning lessons along the way with his pals Snail, Rabbit, Beaver, Fox, Goose and best friend Bear. The series airs on Nick Jr. in the U.S. and on Corus Entertainment’s preschool channel Treehouse in Canada. Franklin and Friends is a Canada-Singapore co-production from Nelvana Limited and Infinite Frameworks.
The new SeaWorld kids banner features entertainment and lifestyle products that connect children as old as 12 with the joy and wonder of animals. This new brand brings kids up-close to nature in fun new ways, allowing them to connect with the world we share at home, schools and on-the-go. SeaWorld Kids will represent both custom and library-driven content programming in animation, TV, film, gaming, publishing and music.
Nelvana is owned by Corus Entertainment Inc., a Canadian-based media and entertainment company. Corus is a market leader in specialty television and radio with additional assets in pay television, television broadcasting, children’s book publishing, children’s animation and animation software. The Company’s multimedia entertainment brands include YTV, Treehouse, Nickelodeon (Canada), ABC Spark, W Network, OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network (Canada), CosmoTV, Sundance Channel (Canada), Movie Central, HBO Canada, Nelvana, Kids Can Press, Toon Boom and 37 radio stations including CKNW AM 980, 99.3 The FOX, Country 105, 630 CHED, Q107 and 102.1 the Edge. Corus creates engaging branded entertainment experiences for its audiences across multiple platforms. A publicly traded company, Corus is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange (CJR.B). Experience Corus on the web at www.corusent.com.
SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment
For five decades SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment has inspired millions to celebrate, connect with and care for the natural world. The company is best known for its 11 U.S. theme parks, attractions that hosted more than 24 million guests in 2012 and include the beloved SeaWorld®, Busch Gardens® and Sesame Place® brands.
In 2011 the company began expanding its popular brands into media and entertainment platforms to connect people to nature and animals through movies, television and digital media; plus began developing new lines of licensed consumer products.
SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment also is one of the world’s foremost zoological organizations and a global leader in animal welfare, training, husbandry and veterinary care. The company cares for one of the largest collections of animals in the world, including more than 7,000 marine and terrestrial animals and 60,000 fish. The company has supported conservation programs on every continent and operates one of the world’s most respected wildlife rescue programs to rescue ill and injured marine animals, with the goal to rehabilitate and return them to the ocean. SeaWorld animal experts have helped more than 22,000 animals in need – ill, injured, orphaned and abandoned – over more than four decades.
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Corporate Director of Communications, SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment