BabyLit and Little Leonardo book series land animated series adaptations in latest global push

The best-selling BabyLit and Little Leonardo children’s book series are to undergo an animated series adaptation, thanks to a new partnership between Gibbs Smith Publishing, ThinkTank Emporium, and the story editor and writer, Katherine Sandford.

A veteran writer and story developer for animated programmes in the three to five age range, Sandford was most recently an executive story editor for Elinor Wonders Why (PBS Kids), The Book Hungry Bears, and co-executive producer and executive story editor for The Adventures of Napkin Man I-II-III.

The BabyLit brand is an established book series with more than 50 titles in print and more than 2 million copies sold domestically and internationally. The brand includes board books and story books for kids aged two to five and spans several different categories.

Its Little Poets titles celebrate poetry from Emily Dickinson and Edgar Allan Poe, while the Little Naturalists highlight mini biographies of popular nature advocates such as John Muir and John James Audubon.

Meanwhile, the Little Leonardo Series introduces STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) concepts to ages four to eight, focusing on how STEAM affects everyday life and highlights STEAM heroes. It has become a favorite of librarians and teachers, as well as the international market. 

“We have had studio interest in our BabyLit brand, and we are thrilled to take the next steps with veteran writer Katherine Sandford to create a vision for what an animated series will look like,” said Suzanne Gibbs Taylor, creator of the BabyLit brand and Group Publisher/Chief Creative Officer at Gibbs Smith.

“This series continues to garner attention and find new audiences as we strategically continue to craft fresh content.”

The ThinkTank Emporium’s David Wollos, added: “We are pleased to be working with Katherine to bring the wonderful world of BabyLit to a global audience via various media platforms and additional licensed product opportunities. The sheer potential in all these areas for BabyLit is a wonderful asset for Gibbs Smith and its strategic relationship with Katherine.”

Speaking with Licensing.biz, Wollos confirmed that plans will be on an international level, tapping into the 30 strong international markets for the BabyLit series as it marks its tenth anniversary this year.

“Our intent is to create a global animated concept that will be embraced by viewers worldwide,” said Wollos.

Sandford concluded: “The BabyLit brand is a very special property. Gorgeous, thoughtful and inspiring, they are beautifully designed and intelligently written. I am excited and honored to be working with Think Tank and Gibbs Smith as we explore the future of BabyLit.”

About Robert Hutchins

Robert Hutchins is the editor of Licensing.biz and ToyNews. Hutchins has worked his way up from Staff Writer to the position of Editor across the two titles, having spent almost eight years with both ToyNews and Licensing.biz, and what now seems like a lifetime surrounded by toys. You can contact him by emailing robert.hutchins@biz-media.co.uk or calling him on 0203 143 8780 You can even follow him on Twitter @RobGHutchins if ranting is your thing...

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