9 Story Media Group has reached an agreement with Little Critter, LLC to produce a new animated series based on the beloved Little Critter children’s books by Mercer Mayer. 9 Story will also handle worldwide distribution and merchandising rights for the new animated show, with the exception of publishing and digital media content, which remains with Little Critter, LLC.
“Little Critter is an extraordinary brand,” said Vince Commisso, President & CEO for 9 Story Media Group. “There are very few book-based series as well loved, and with such a long history of success. Mercer Mayer has developed an incredible world, built around endearing characters and relatable stories.”
The deal was negotiated by Stuart Snyder (former President & CEO of Turner’s animation and kids’ media division). Little Critter had tapped Snyder Media Group LLC to build the brand globally, and evaluate strategic partners and opportunities. Little Critter, LLC is spearheaded by longtime producer, creative director and writer John R. Sansevere, with partners Sword, Rowe & Company and real estate developer Richard Dreher.
“I am thrilled to welcome 9 Story to the Little Critter team,” said Snyder. “When John and I first discussed potential partners, I knew from first-hand experience that 9 Story would be a tremendous partner. With their capabilities across CG and 2D animation, commitment to quality storytelling and long-standing track record in international distribution, 9 Story has the passion and know-how to make a Little Critter series a hit show around the world.”
The planned 80 x 11 series will feature a diverse cast of animal characters living in Critterville, with a focus on neighborhood adventures and the challenges of growing up, and a narrative promoting social-emotional learning. Author-illustrator Mayer’s Little Critter franchise has sold over 200 million books globally in the past 40 years, with translations in eight languages. Recently, the books have found success in Asia, with over 100 titles released in China in 2016.