Disney EMEA today announced that it has started production in Ireland, on a new action-packed animated comedy, Randy Cunningham: Ninth Grade Ninja. Set to premiere on Disney XD from autumn 2012 and air in more than 129 countries worldwide, the series follows the fast-paced adventures of unlikely hero Randy Cunningham who, armed with his magic demon fibre suit, the teachings of the ‘Ninja-ing’ (an 800 year old Ninja guide for dummies) and his best buddy, finds himself as the one thing protecting his school and the world from certain destruction!
Disney’s London based production hub has commissioned BAFTA award-winning animation company Boulder Media in Ireland and Titmouse Inc in Los Angeles, USA to produce the animated 52 x 11 minute series for Disney XD. Dublin-based Boulder Media is handling the series from animation through to post-production and has already hired 50 additional artists and animators to work on the project for its two year duration. Emmy Award winning studio Titmouse Inc based in LA, USA is leading the pre-production creative for the series.
Each eleven minute episode follows Randy Cunningham and his best buddy Howard as they navigate everyday teenage life at High School while taking on monsters and madmen bent on freeing an evil 800 year old Sorcerer imprisoned beneath Norrisville High by the original ninja and guarded ever since by Randy’s predecessors.
Randy Cunningham: Ninth Grade Ninja stars Emmy Award-winning comedian and writer Ben Schwartz (Parks & Recreation, House of Lies, Everybody’s Fine) as the voice talent for Randy Cunningham; the voice of Tim Curry (The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Spamalot, Charlie’s Angels) as the evil Sorcerer; Megan Mullaly (Will & Grace, Parks & Recreation) as Mrs Driscoll, Randy’s science teacher; Emmy award-winning John Oliver (Smurfs, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart) as Coach Green and Andrew Caldwell (Transformers, My Name is Earl) as Howard. John DiMaggio (Futurama, Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Chowder) is McFist and Kevin Michael Richardson (Static Shock, Justice League, Powerpuff Girls) is Viceroy. The series is created and executive produced by Jed Elinoff and Scott Thomas whose previous credits include Scooby Doo and Paris Hilton’s My New BFF ; Emmy and Annie award-winning Shaun Cashman (Director: The Penguins of Madagascar, Chowder) is Supervising Director and Otto Tang (Metalocalypse) is Art Director. Guest voice talent includes: Andy Dick, Bobcat Goldthwait, John Weatherspoon, Andy Richter and Sterling Knight.
Tricia Wilber, Chief Marketing Officer, The Walt Disney Company, EMEA & General Manager, Disney Channels EMEA comments, ‘Randy Cunningham: Ninth Grade Ninja is our most global production yet. Driven by the team here in London, the series draws on talent from both sides of the Atlantic to help create a world class show. We are thrilled to be working with the outstanding teams at Boulder in Ireland and Titmouse in LA on this project.’
Marc Buhaj Senior Vice President, Original Programming, Disney Channels, EMEA said: ‘Randy Cunningham: Ninth Grade Ninja is one of an exciting new wave of global Disney XD series. This animated project combines a unique mix of full-on buddy comedy with awesome ninja action and is set to explode into the hearts and minds of Disney XD viewers around the world.’
Producer Anne Tweedy, Boulder Media adds, ‘We have recruited some of the best animators, BG artists and compositors from Finland, Italy, Poland, Denmark, England, Scotland, Spain and Portugal, though the majority of the crew is Irish. We are fortunate to have a highly skilled core crew and we have found the additional crew is adding to our company’s strength in creativity and production.’
Created in May 2007, Disney’s London based production hub drives the investment in and development of animation and live action content outside North America, for both European and global distribution. It has already achieved great success with series such as Jungle Junction (Disney Junior) and Rated A for Awesome (Disney XD) and has recently announced new animated productions for Disney Junior – Winnie The Pooh’s Tales of Friendship and The Happy Hugglemonsters.
Randy Cunningham: Ninth Grade Ninja will be broadcast on Disney XD globally from autumn 2012.