Shows boost Entertainment Rights

Firm signs new broadcast partners and licensees at Mipcom and Brand Licensing for key properties.
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Entertainment Rights has returned from its stint at Brand Licensing Europe and Mipcom with several new broadcast partners and licensees in its stable.

Starting with Postman Pat Special Delivery Service (SDS), the newly commissioned series generated some significant interest. A broadcast agreement is already secured with Super RTL in Germany and, following Mipcom, ER is in discussions with broadcasters in Denmark, Hong Kong, the Middle East and Malaysia.

Meanwhile, an extensive licensing programme for Rupert Bear is in place to support the TV series, currently airing on Five's Milkshake block. Several new licensees were signed up at Brand Licensing Europe, including William Lamb for footwear and H&A for toiletries.

New TV broadcast agreements sealed at Mipcom include TVP in Poland and MBC in the Middle East, further cementing the international roll out of Rupert Bear which already includes France 5, Super RTL (Germany), NRK (Norway) and TVO (Canada).

ER is also in negotiations with four major toy companies regarding newcomer Finley The Fire Engine. Paul Lamond has already been signed up for jigsaw puzzles and board games, which will be launching in spring 2008. Meanwhile, Titan has secured rights to produce a monthly magazine which is likely to launch at retail in April 2009.

Agreements have also been signed by international broadcasters including ABC (Australia), NRK (Norway) and C4U (South Korea), as well as negoitations with new partners in the Middle East, Thailand and Poland.

Harper Collins has signed a five-year deal for Basil Brush publishing rights, with the character's live events programme with Duo Entertainment also being extended. Basil will now appear in even more theatrical venues and cruise ships, with The Basil Brush Show now has a broadcast platform in over 85 territories.

In addition, magazines and books for Jim Jam and Sunny are now on shelves across the UK, with the DVD debuting in the Asda charts. New licensees signed at BLE include Gosh for plush product.

ER has also continued to receive a good response from broadcasters, retailers and new partners to its Classic Media properties. George of the Jungle, for example, secured further international broadcast agreements including ATV in Hong Kong and Cartoon Network in Italy.

Casper the Friendly Ghost and Lassie also went down well at Mipcom, along with 3-2-1 Penguins, the highest rated show on NBC.

Finally, ER has secured worldwide distribution rights (excluding North America) from Canadian-based Spectra Animation for Toopy and Binoo (pictured). The firm has acquired two series, as well as interactive TV segments which lend themselves to delivering multiplatform content and thematic/holiday specials.

"We have been delighted at the response to the enlarged group's portfolio, encompassing ER, Classic Media and Big Idea at the recent key trade events," said Jane Smith, chief commercial and creative director at ER.

"The TV and licensing and merchandising markets are extremely buoyant and there is strong demand for our high quality content and brands around the world."


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