TORONTO, March 25, 2015 /CNW/ - TVO announced today that it has partnered with DHX Media on the development of a new children's animated series based on the 'George Greenby' books by world-renowned theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking and his daughter, author Lucy Hawking.
The new series is geared towards school-aged kids and explores various aspects of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), including space exploration and physics. Each episode will turn big science concepts into bite-sized information for kids, with a whimsical take on how the universe works. DHX Media will produce the series, with Pure Grass Films as executive producers, co-financers and distributors for several territories outside of Canada.
The series will tell the story of 11-year-olds George Greenby and Annie Bellis. When George and Annie say their science tutor is out of this world, they really mean it. That's because their tutor is Cosmos, an astounding artificial intelligence app that can instantly transport them anywhere in the universe!
Cosmos was built by Annie's father, Eric Bellis, a member of the top-secret Order of Science, as a way to teach Annie about any scientific topic. But he built Cosmos a little too well…during one fateful physics lesson, Cosmos figures out a way to open a wormhole right in Annie's living room!
Now Annie and George can explore anywhere in time and space and learn all kinds of cool stuff! Like what does a space smell like? And do stars live forever? It also means they can secretly help Eric with the discoveries and missions he and his fellow super-scientists at the Order are working on back on Earth…just as long as the trio makes it back before Eric realizes they're missing!
Throughout the series, episodes will explore the wonders of physics, breaking down questions of cosmic proportions, and also looking at earthly phenomena, all while remaining grounded in the facts of cutting-edge science and their relevance to our lives.
"TVO is honoured to be working with Lucy and Stephen Hawking, and partnering with DHX Media, to teach kids about the universe," said Pat Ellingson, Creative Head of Children's and Parents' Media, TVO. "This series will help strengthen kids' essential STEM skills, demonstrating how to use and apply technology for learning, while teaching them about outer space through science, specifically physics."
"DHX Media is very excited to be starting development on this amazing science show with TVO – an industry leader in kids' educational media," said Ace Fipke, Chief Content Officer, Kids & Family, DHX Media. "This partnership allows us to turn George and Annie's story into a visually spectacular educational adventure for the small screen, introducing school-aged boys and girls to the science of the universe through imaginative adventures."
"We are delighted to be working with DHX and TVO to bring the wonder and joy of discovering the universe to kids through storytelling and animation," said the Hawkings in a joint statement. "It is very exciting to see our George book series transform into a visual medium, and we are thrilled about the potential to educate through entertainment."
"All of us at Pure Grass Films are looking forward to working with this great team of partners and fantastic media organization like TVO to bring this educational, entertaining series to children in Canada and around the world," said Ben Grass, CEO and Founder of Pure Grass Films.
The series is slated to have 39 half-hour episodes and will also include a robust interactive component for mobile and web. More news to follow.
As the technological extension of Ontario's public education system, TVO's vision is to create a better world through the power of learning. TVO provides learning opportunities for Ontarians through innovative educational products, in-depth current affairs, groundbreaking documentaries, and award-winning TVOKids resources both inside and outside the classroom. TVO is funded primarily by the Province of Ontario and is a registered charity supported by sponsors and thousands of donors. For more information, visit tvo.org.
Where to find TVO
Over-the-air (may vary in some areas)
Cable: channel 2 (may vary in some areas)
Rogers TV HD: channel 580
Bell Fibe TV HD: channel 1209
Bell Fibe TV SD: channel 209
Bell TV: channel 265
Shaw Direct HD: channel 39
Shaw Direct SD: channel 353
About DHX Media Ltd.
DHX Media Ltd. (www.dhxmedia.com), a key player internationally in the creation of content for families and children, is recognized globally for such brands as Yo Gabba Gabba!, Caillou, Teletubbies, In the Night Garden, Inspector Gadget, Slugterra, and the multi-award winning Degrassi franchise. DHX Media Ltd. is the owner of Family Channel, the most-viewed children's television channel in Canada, as well as the channels Disney Junior (English & French) and Disney XD in Canada. The Company markets and distributes its library of more than 11,000 half-hours of entertainment programming worldwide, and licenses its owned properties through its dedicated consumer products business. DHX Media Ltd.'s full-service international licensing agency, Copyright Promotions Licensing Group Ltd. (CPLG), represents numerous entertainment, sport and design brands. DHX Media Ltd. has offices in Toronto, Vancouver, Halifax, Los Angeles, London, Paris, Barcelona, Milan, Munich and Amsterdam, and is listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the ticker symbols DHX.A and DHX.B.
About Lucy Hawking
Lucy Hawking is a British author and creator of the original concept behind the 'George' series of books which aim to explain science through story telling. Lucy has worked with leading scientists from across the world to make science accessible and entertaining to a young readership. She gives talks all over the world to school and general audiences on science, storytelling and communication. The 'George' series is published in 40 languages.
About Stephen Hawking
Stephen Hawking is the director and founder of the Centre for Theoretical Cosmology at the University of Cambridge. He is widely regarded as one of the most brilliant theoretical physicists since Einstein with too many scientific awards and honours to list. His adult book A Brief History of Time has sold over 12 million copies worldwide. The recent Oscar-winning film The Theory of Everything has brought Stephen Hawking's inspirational personal story as well as the brilliance of his scientific work to an even wider audience.
About Pure Grass Films
Pure Grass Films is an award winning production company, run by Ben Grass and partly owned by international financier, Christophe Charlier, formerly Chairman of the Brooklyn Nets. Pure Grass create and produce entertainment properties that engage consumers on multiple platforms. Grass and Charlier are currently Executive Producers on RACE, a major feature film about the life of Jesse Owens directed by Stephen Hopkins and starring Stephan James, Jason Sudeikis, Jeremy Irons and William Hurt. Previous credits include Emmy nominated web series "Kirill" and "Beyond the Rave" starring Jamie Dornan. Visit www.puregrassfilms.com.
For further information: Media Contact: Nicole Morrison,TVO Public Relations Specialist, 416.484.2600 x2281, [email protected]