New York, NY and Philadelphia, PA - September 16, 2008 - HIT
Entertainment, a leading provider of quality preschool
entertainment, is moving full speed ahead with PBS KIDS Sprout, the
first 24-hour preschool destination available on TV, on demand and
online for kids ages 2-5 and their parents and caregivers, to bring
the latest sensation from Chapman Entertainment, Roary the Racing
Car, to the US.
Originated by David Jenkins and produced by Chapman
Entertainment, Roary the Racing Car will premiere on Sprout on
Monday, October 13, 2008. Roary™ will air daily during
Sprout's live morning show block, The Sunny Side Up Show (between
9am and 12pm EST), and on weekend mornings during the Let's Go
Show. Roary™-themed clips, games, printouts and crafts will
be available at SproutOnline.com starting in mid-September.
Roary the Racing Car will also be part of Sprout's VOD offerings in
a dedicated Roary folder, starting October 10.
Sam Hornish Jr., one of the most successful drivers in the
recent history of open-wheel racing, makes his animation and
preschool television debut as the voice of the narrator in the
"As a brand-new dad and a career race car driver, I was really
excited when I was approached by Chapman Entertainment to be a part
of this production," said Sam Hornish Jr. "Not only is Roary the
Racing Car a top-quality show that I am proud to be a part of, but
it perfectly marries my personal and professional life, and I can't
wait to share it with my daughter when she gets a bit older!"
"Sprout is the perfect television home for Roary the Racing Car,
and we are thrilled that Sam Hornish Jr. was able to lend his voice
talent to this production," said Claudia Scott-Hansen, Vice
President, US Content Distribution, HIT Entertainment. "This
series is fun, energetic and filled with positive messaging.
Through the characters and their adventures it encourages teamwork,
confidence and follow-through. We are sure that Roary will be
just as loved in the US as he is overseas."
"With the tremendous success of Bob the Builder™ and Fifi and
the Flowertots™ on Sprout, we are confident that our viewers will
embrace this new series from Chapman Entertainment, and are
thrilled to be the exclusive US broadcast home for Roary the Racing
Car," said Andrew Beecham, Senior Vice President of Programming for
Sprout. "We look forward to adding Roary to our line-up of
innovative Sprout originals and trusted preschool favorites."
"Fifi is entertaining millions of children and their parents
everyday on Sprout, and it's very exciting to be exclusively
launching Roary there, too. I wanted to involve Sam as the narrator
of the show, as he is one of the brightest young talents in
American car racing and it's a neat twist to be able to add an
authentic element to a preschool show in this manner," said Greg
Lynn, Managing Director and Executive Producer, Chapman
Roary the Racing Car is a turbo-charged preschool series that
follows the adventures of Roary™, a bright, loveable and energetic
single-seater, and his amazing and diverse group of race car
friends at the Silver Hatch race track. Roary's™ enthusiasm and
curiosity often leads him into trouble, but he's a novice with a
heart of chrome under his hood, always willing to make
Children join Roary™ on his journey through life, learning
lessons as they go: how to do the right thing, how to be positive
and helpful to others, road safety, the environment, ways to share
and communicate ideas, problem-solving, creativity, the importance
of exercise and healthy living.
The series uses a cutting edge combination of CGI, stop frame
animation and colorful sets to convey a real sense of speed with
all the thrills and spills of the race track.
About HIT Entertainment
HIT Entertainment, owned by private equity investment group Apax
Partners, is one of the world's leading independent children's
entertainment producers and rights-owners. HIT's portfolio includes
properties, such as Barney™, Bob the Builder™, Thomas &
Friends™, Pingu™, Fireman Sam™, Angelina Ballerina™ and Rainbow
Magic™. HIT represents Chapman Entertainment's Fifi and the
Flowertots™ and Roary the Racing Car™ in North America and Japan,
as well as Wallace & Gromit™, Shaun the Sheep™, Timmy Time™ and
Aardman Classics from Aardman Animations. HIT also acts as a
worldwide representative for The Jim Henson Company's library of
classic family brands and as representative for The Wiggles® in the
UK. Launched in 1989, HIT's lines of business span television and
video production, content distribution, publishing, consumer
products licensing and live events and has operations in the UK,
US, Canada, Hong Kong and Japan. HIT is a part-owner of
US-based preschool channel, PBS KIDS Sprout®, and international
preschool channel JimJam, (outside of the US, UK and China). For
more information, visit www.hitentertainment.com
PBS KIDS Sprout, the first 24-hour preschool destination available
on TV, on demand and online for kids ages 2-5 and their parents and
caregivers, was created as a partnership among Comcast Corporation,
HIT Entertainment, PBS and Sesame Workshop. Since debuting
its video on demand (VOD) service in April 2005, Sprout has become
the #1 On Demand service for younger children, generating over 450
million orders. The 24-hour digital channel, which launched
in September 2005 along with the website (SproutOnline.com), is the
only channel that follows the day of child from breakfast to
bedtime with its distinctive programming. Currently, Sprout
is available in 42 million unique households.
The network's program lineup of gold-standard, curriculum-based
children's shows includes: Sesame Street®, Bob the Builder™,
Barney & Friends™, Thomas & Friends™, Angelina Ballerina™,
Caillou®, The Berenstain Bears™, Jay Jay the Jet Plane®,
Teletubbies™, Dragon Tales™, Pingu™, Make Way For Noddy™, The
Hoobs™, Fifi and the Flowertots™ and more.
About Chapman Entertainment
Chapman Entertainment, founded by Greg Lynn, Keith Chapman and
Andrew Haydon, is an independent company specializing in the
creation, development, production, and IP management of children's
and family properties. Keith Chapman is the originator of Bob the
Builder and creator of Fifi and the Flowertots and is the first
person to have achieved global success with three pre-school TV
properties at the same time.
Fifi and the Flowertots has now been sold to over 162 countries
worldwide and is currently a leading pre-school license for girls
in the UK (Source NPD Pre-School Plush and Puzzles).
Roary the Racing Car is Chapman Entertainment's second property.
It launched in May 2007 and is already racing ahead to become a
winning license reaching the UK NPD top 10 pre-school licenses
after only a couple of months of toy sales. The TV series has been
sold to over 110 countries worldwide.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
For HIT Entertainment:
PBS KIDS Sprout
For Chapman Entertainment:
+ 44 7889 666594