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Thomas & Friends gets new 2D look for TV

Mattel greenlights 104 11-minute episodes and two 60-minute specials for TV show over two seasons.

Mattel Television has revealed a new co-production partnership with Corus Entertainment’s Nelvana Studio, which will see Thomas & Friends given a new creative approach and reimagined for a new generation.

Mattel has given the greenlight to 104 11-minute episodes and two 60-minute specials for the Thomas & Friends television series over two seasons.

It has partnered with Corus Entertainment’s Nelvana Studio – a leading international producer and distributor of children’s animated and live-action content – to co-produce the series starting with Season 25, which will premiere beginning in autumn 2021, and will introduce a new creative approach to the show, contemporising the series for today’s families.

The new creative direction will see the series animated in 2D. It will also build upon the creative elements that have resonated with Thomas & friends fans over the years by featuring comedic, playful stories and lessons told from Thomas’ point of view.

“Thomas & Friends enduring legacy and focus on the importance on friendship continue to resonate with global audiences, and we look forward to unveiling our new content to consumers next year,” said Fred Soulie, svp and general manager at Mattel Television. “Nelvana is the ideal production partner for the series, understanding the importance of staying true to Thomas’ ethos and heritage while bringing the franchise to life creatively in new ways for today’s kids.”

Pam Westman, president of Nelvana, added: “As the exclusive broadcast partner and licensing agent of the treasured Thomas brand in Canada, we are delighted to deepen our relationship with Mattel by becoming their production partner on the re-imagined 2D series, which will introduce Thomas to a new generation of young audiences.

“With stunning animation and fresh new stories, the 2D series allows us to play up the humour in the show while honouring the legacy of the world’s most-adored blue tank engine.”

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