Bollywood, Here They Come! Emmy Award-Winning The Wonder Pets! Take Preschoolers on a Musical Adventure in ’Save The Bengal Tiger!’
A New Primetime Special Premiering Monday, Sept. 8, At 8:00 p.m. (ET/PT) on Nickelodeon
Nick Jr.’s The Wonder Pets!: Save The Bengal Tiger DVD, Created By Nickelodeon Home Entertainment and Distributed by Paramount Home Entertainment, to be Released Tuesday, Sept. 9
Acclaimed Indian Actress Nandita Das Featured as Voice of Bengal Tiger
NEW YORK.- Linny, Tuck and Ming-Ming will have preschoolers shimmying and singing along in an exciting Bollywood-themed half-hour The Wonder Pets! primetime special, “Save The Bengal Tiger!,” premiering Monday, Sept. 8, at 8:00 p.m. (ET/PT) on Nickelodeon. Capturing the passionate spirit of Hindi cinema, “Save The Bengal Tiger!” features critically acclaimed Indian actress Nandita Das as the voice of the Bengal Tiger and sibling duo Salim and Sulaiman Merchant as composers of the musical score. After debuting in 2006, The Wonder Pets! remains the number one-ranked preschool program in its regular weekday timeslot at 10:00 a.m. (ET/PT) and the number three-ranked preschool program on all of commercial television (as of 2Q08).
On Tuesday, Sept. 9, Nick Jr. will release a new DVD entitled The Wonder Pets!: Save The Bengal Tiger, created by Nickelodeon Home Entertainment and distributed by Paramount Home Entertainment. The DVD will feature the double-length title episode, in addition to two extra adventures from The Wonder Pets!. Bonus features on The Wonder Pets!: Save The Bengal Tiger DVD include the music video for “I Like Being Small” and a Teamwork Tips! photo gallery.
“We’re so thrilled to have three globally recognized talents contribute artistically to this primetime special,” said Brown Johnson, President, Animation, Nickelodeon/MTVN Kids and Family Group. “’Save The Bengal Tiger’ weaves together a classic tale of teamwork with beautiful Indian-inspired song and dance.”
In this Bollywood extravaganza, the Wonder Pets get a call from a young white Bengal Tiger in India who has a thorn stuck in her foot. After Linny, Tuck and Ming-Ming realize their hands are too big to pull out the thorn, they enlist the help of famous mouse, Raji, the Puller of Thorns. At first, the Bengal Tiger is resistant to having a small insignificant mouse help her, but the Wonder Pets show the snooty tiger that all living things are important -- big or small. In the end, the tiger consents and the Wonder Pets work together with Raji to remove the thorn. When they are done the new friends celebrate with curry celery and a big Bollywood musical number.
Nick Jr. will roll out content from “Save The Bengal Tiger!” across the following platforms:
-- Beginning Monday, Aug. 25, Comcast’s Video On Demand service will feature an exclusive advance screening of “Save The Bengal Tiger!” in its entirety. On Sept. 8, “Save The Bengal Tiger!,” shorts and song clips from the episode and additional The Wonder Pets! episodes will be available via Video On Demand on Time Warner Cable, Charter, Cablevision, Verizon FiOS and Cox.
-- Beginning Monday, Sept. 1, Nick Jr. Video, Nick Jr.’s broadband video service available on Nickjr.com, will begin streaming a two-minute ’sneak peek’ and song clips from “Save The Bengal Tiger!,” plus additional themed episodes from The Wonder Pets!.
-- Beginning Monday, Sept. 1, a two-minute ’sneak peek’ from “Save The Bengal Tiger!,” plus additional clips and songs from the episode will be available on wireless carriers.
-- The Wonder Pets! season two will be available for purchase on iTunes in early September.
Nick Jr.’s award-winning website (www.nickjr.com) will feature an interactive game and activities to complement the premiere of “Save The Bengal Tiger!” Kids can log on to NickJr.com to play the “The Bengal Tiger’s Bash” game and help the Wonder Pets get ready for a party that the Bengal Tiger is having. They can dress Linny, Tuck and Ming-Ming in addition to creating a song and dance which the Wonder Pets will perform for the Bengal Tiger. NickJr.com will also feature Bollywood-themed printables, crafts, activities and more.
Emmy award-winning The Wonder Pets!, from creator/executive producer Josh Selig of Little Airplane Productions, Inc., is TV’s first mini-operetta for preschoolers and the first preschool series to feature an extensive lineup of Tony award-winning and nominated Broadway composers, including the series’ lead composer Larry Hochman (orchestration for Monty Python’s Spamalot), Bobby Lopez (Avenue Q), and Jason Robert Brown (Parade). Grammy Award-winning producer and recording engineer Jeffrey Lesser serves as music producer/music supervisor for the series. All of the music on The Wonder Pets! is recorded with a live orchestra and much of the dialogue is sung in operetta style. The acclaimed series recently received a Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Achievement in Music Direction & Composition in 2008.
The Wonder Pets! chronicles the adventures of three funny, singing classroom pets: Linny the Guinea Pig (Sofie Zamchick), Ming-Ming Duckling (Danica Lee) and Turtle Tuck (Teala Dunn), who travel the world and use teamwork to save baby animals in distress. Every episode of The Wonder Pets! is an original mini-operetta filled with world music influences suited to the locale of the day’s adventure. At the end of each school day when the teachers and students have all gone home, the fearless trio become The Wonder Pets!. In every story, The Wonder Pets! receive a call on a tin-can phone from a baby animal who needs their help. The trio quickly assembles their Flyboat, made from a collection of classroom toys and travel together across oceans, into space, and even back in time to save animals in distress. Like real preschoolers, The Wonder Pets! have no actual super powers, but they work together as a team to overcome adversity and achieve great success.
A new, original style of animation called photo-puppetry animation was created at Little Airplane Productions by Jennifer Oxley for The Wonder Pets! The technique allows animators to manipulate photographs of real animals, creating a comical, realistic look that is striking and unique. The show’s curricular goals are based on developing appreciation and orientation towards teamwork and creative problem solving.
Little Airplane Productions specializes in quality film & television programming for young children. Founded by Josh Selig in 1999, Little Airplane Productions created and produced The Wonder Pets! for Nick Jr., Go, Baby! for Playhouse Disney, Oobi! for NOGGIN (winner of a 2001 Gold Parents’ Choice Award) and most recently, 3rd & Bird! for the BBC. Additionally, Josh Selig was the Head Writer for Little Bill on Nick Jr. He has received ten Emmy Awards for his writing on Sesame Street, and was the Resident Producer of the historic Israeli/Palestinian Sesame Street co-production (winner of the 1998 Japan Prize). For more information about Little Airplane Productions please visit www.littleairplane.com.
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