The Jim Henson Company has acquired rights to the children’s books Frog And Toad and is developing an animated feature film. Written and illustrated by Arnold Lobel in the 1970s each of the four Frog And Toad books include five short stories chronicling the exploits of a frog and his friend, a toad, simply named Frog and Toad.
“Frog And Toad has tremendous value with parents who read these charming stories when they were children and are now sharing them with their own kids,” said Lisa Henson, CEO of The Jim Henson Company. “With such high caliber talent on board, the delightful and funny adventures of these two great friends–with a nod to the classic ‘buddy movie’–will bring a whole new audience to their big screen debut.”
Lisa Henson will produce for The Jim Henson Company. Adam Lobel and Adrianne Lobel will executive produce. Craig Bartlett (“Dinosaur Train” and “Hey Arnold!”) will write the screenplay and Cory Edwards (“Hoodwinked”) is attached to direct.
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The Jim Henson Company has also signed a deal with HarperCollins Children’s Books to develop and implement the first-ever multi-category licensing and merchandising program in the U.S. and Canada for the classic literary property. The Company will be presenting Frog And Toad at the upcoming Licensing Expo in Las Vegas.
Melissa Segal, senior VP of Global Consumer Products at The Jim Henson Company said, “As the feature film develops we will be looking to grow awareness of the property with licensed products based on the wonderful body of art from the original classic books in primary categories like apparel, accessories, gifts, toys, home furnishings and room decor. The plan is to launch a program aimed at both kids and adults in department and specialty stores in 2013.”
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The Jim Henson Company is a leading company in family entertainment for over 50 years and is offering puppetry, animatronics and digital animation. Best known as creators of the Muppets, Henson has received over 50 Emmy Awards and nine Grammy Awards.
Recent credits include the Emmy nominated “Sid the Science Kid,” “Dinosaur Train,” “Wilson & Ditch: Digging America” and “Pajanimals.” Features include “The Dark Crystal,” “Labyrinth,” “MirrorMask,” and “Unstable Fables” and television productions include “Fraggle Rock” and the sci-fi cult series “Farscape.”
With additional locations in New York and London, The Jim Henson Company is headquartered in Los Angeles on the historic Charlie Chaplin lot, complete with soundstage and postproduction facilities.
Independently owned and operated by the five adult children of founder Jim Henson, the Company is also home to Jim Henson’s Creature Shop, a pre-eminent character-building and visual effects group with international film, television and advertising clients, as well as Henson Recording Studios, one of the music industry’s top recording facilities.
The Company’s Henson Alternative brand has recently launched the national tour of “Stuffed and Unstrung,” a live puppet improvisational show.
Photo courtesy: The Jim Henson Company