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WildBrain Entertainment

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

WildBrain Entertainment
FormerlyWild Brain (1994–2007)
TypeSubsidiary
IndustryFilm industry, animation
PredecessorBIG Pictures (unit of Colossal Pictures existing from 1986–1994)
FoundedAugust 1994; 27 years ago (1994-08)
FoundersJohn Hays (director)
Phil Robinson (director)
Jeff Fino
DefunctJuly 3, 2016; 5 years ago (2016-07-03)
FateAcquired by DHX Media
Successor
Headquarters,
United States
Area served
Worldwide
Productstelevision series, special, television commercials, licensed merchandise
ParentDHX Media (2010–2016)
DivisionsWildBrain Animation
Kidrobot collectables
Ghostbot
Websitewww.wildbrain.com

WildBrain Entertainment, Inc. (stylized as W!LDBRAIN) was an American animation studio that developed and produced television programming, motion pictures, commercial content and licensed merchandise. Established in 1994, it maintained offices in Los Angeles and New York City.

Its film productions included the Annie Award-winning CGI short Hubert's Brain, while its television work included the Nick Jr. series Bubble Guppies and Yo Gabba Gabba!, and Disney Channel series Higglytown Heroes. WildBrain also produced earlier animated shorts and television specials of Monster High for Mattel.

They have produced national commercials for clients like Esurance,[1] Chiclets, Target, Nike, Honda, Kraft, the Wall Street Journal and Lamisil, (featuring Digger the Dermatophyte). Their ad work has won Clio Awards, Addy Awards, BDA Awards, and Annie Awards. A subsidiary, Kidrobot, creates limited edition toys, clothing, artwork, and books. It had stores in New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Miami.

History

In October 1994, John Hays, Phil Robinson, and Jeff Fino started the WildBrain animation studio in San Francisco's Castro district. The new company bootstrapped with contract work from local game companies such as Broderbund, LucasArts, and Living Books. In 1996 WildBrain moved to a 17,000 square foot warehouse at the corner of 18th and York St. in the Mission District spearheading the growth of what came to be known in San Francisco as Multimedia Gulch. In 1999, Austin based Interfase Capital invested almost $17 million in Wild Brain.

Over the next few years, WildBrain's staff ballooned from a staff of about 20 to about 250. It struck deals with Yahoo! and the Cartoon Network to produce animated shorts for the Web. It launched WildBrain.com, creating animated web shorts such as Groove Monkey, Mantalope, and numerous web series including Joe Paradise, Glue, Graveyard, and Space Is Dum.

After legendary studio Colossal Pictures closed down in 1999, and with the financial backing of the Interfase companies, WildBrain expanded further, providing employment for former Colossal directors and staff. Around this period they produced the series Higglytown Heroes and Poochini.

In 2004, Charles Rivkin, former CEO of The Jim Henson Company, joined WildBrain as president and CEO. Rivkin oversaw the creation and development of the Yo Gabba Gabba series for Nick Jr.

In 2007, former founder Jeff Fino left to start Nuvana, an educational web-based company with former Colossal Pictures Producer, Joe Kwong.

In 2008, Rivkin left WildBrain after being named U.S. ambassador to France and Monaco. Michael Polis, the marketing director of WildBrain, then became the new CEO.

Around this time John Hays left WildBrain to work on indie features (La Mission and Howl, which opened the 2010 Sundance Film Festival).

By 2009, the original founders of the company had all left WildBrain. The company expanded its animation studios to Sherman Oaks in March, then closed its San Francisco office in June. It had been an independent company until DHX Media purchased WildBrain in 2010. The same year, Phil Robinson, and Amy Capen, exec producer of WildBrain's San Francisco studio started an independent company called Special Agent Productions. Robinson died in 2015 after a short battle with pancreatic cancer.[2][3][4]

In 2016, DHX Media announced the formation of a new London-based multi-channel network under the WildBrain name, focusing primarily on YouTube channels aimed towards children (such as content and original series from DHX's properties, as well as other forms of educational and toy-oriented content).[5] In September 2019, DHX Media announced that it would change its name to WildBrain outright (with the MCN unit being renamed WildBrain Spark).[6]

Filmography

Television series

Films

Short films

  • Out In Space (1997)
  • Humanstein (1998)
  • A Dog Cartoon (1998)
  • El Kabong Rides Again (2000)
  • Hubert's Brain (2001)
  • Anita Bomba (2001)
  • Erin Esurance in "Carbon Copy" (2007)
  • Disrespectoids (2010)

Video games

Staff

Executives

  • Michael Polis
  • Marge Dean
  • David Graber
  • Bob Higgins

Directors

  • George Evelyn
  • Paul Fierlinger
  • Denis Morella
  • Scott Schultz
  • Phil Robinson
  • John Hays
  • Ed Bell
  • Robin Steele
  • Dave Marshall

References

  1. ^ Alex Miller, "Cross-Media Case Study: Secret Agent of Change", OMMA, March 2006.
  2. ^ "Phil Robinson". FALLOUT: JaMie BaKeR's BLOG. Retrieved 2017-03-19.
  3. ^ "Wild Brain Co-Founder Phil Robinson, RIP". Cartoon Brew. 2015-01-29. Retrieved 2017-03-19.
  4. ^ "Director and Studio Co-Founder Phil Robinson Dies". Animation Magazine. 2015-01-29. Retrieved 2017-03-19.
  5. ^ "DHX Media unveils online kids net WildBrain". Kidscreen. April 25, 2016. Retrieved 2019-09-23.
  6. ^ "DHX rebrands as WildBrain". Kidscreen. September 23, 2019. Retrieved 2019-09-23.

External links

This page was last edited on 8 October 2021, at 17:12
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