Nickelodeon Adds Sports Stars Gronk, Melo And Skateboard Champ Eaton To Lineup – Upfronts

Jeremy Gerard

Launching the 2016 Upfronts sellathon, Nickelodeon today added two new sports-themed series from Rob Dyrdek and Shane Nickerson of Superjacket Productions (Fantasy Factory, Ridiculousness): Crashletes, a new viral sports clip show hosted by the New England Patriots’ telegenic tight end Rob Gronkowski, and Jagger Eaton’s Mega Life (working title), a docuseries that follows 15-year-old skateboarding phenom Eaton around the world. Nick has ordered 20 episodes of each and plans to present them later this year.

“Nick has a long history in kid reality, beginning with game shows like Double Dare and Legends Of The Hidden Temple,” said Cyma Zarghami, President of Viacom Kids and Family Group. “Crashletes and Jagger Eaton allow us to connect the audience via real and authentic people and a different kind of storytelling that is fresh and exciting.”

“With Gronk’s fun, big personality and Jagger’s relatable, youthful insight, Crashletes and Mega Life will resonate with sports fans and kids alike,” said Dyrdek.

Crashletes will feature guest personalities from the worlds of sports and entertainment, along with “the funniest, craziest viral sports clips and user-generated content from around the world,” per the Nick announcement at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall. As host, Gronkowski will offer funny commentary on the clips, alongside his co-hosts and guest stars. Jagger Eaton’s Mega Life follows the adventures of teen skateboarder Eaton as he shows viewers what it’s like to spend a day in the shoes of people who are pushing boundaries, living their lives without limits and inspiring others to do the same.

Crashletes and Jagger Eaton’s Mega Life are the latest Dyrdek-produced series to join Nickelodeon’s lineup. Dyrdek and production partner Nickerson also created and executive produced the hit animated show Wild Grinders, inspired by Dyrdek’s real-life experiences, currently airing in the NickSports TV block on Nicktoons.

Flo RidaCarmelo Anthony and Cam Newton were on hand to help pitch their respective projects — the Knicks star to promote this summer’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles crash-and-crunch film Out Of The Shadows and his branded “TMNT x Melo” line of clothing that will be sold at Macy’s (“We’re all Turtleheads,” he said of his family) and Newton for Crashletes, which looks like the Olympics of America’s Funniest Home Videos.

Nick EVP Research told the potential ad buyers that “in preschool we’re killing it” and that Nickelodeon products — from schoolyard backpacks to a new luxury resort in the Dominican Republic, are a $5 billion-a-year business.

Closing out the presentation, rapper Flo Rida was joined on the stage — more typically used for chamber music concerts — for a group rap-along of his “My House.”

Nickelodeon announced more than 650 episodes of new and returning series at the event. Here’s the complete lineup:

Joining Nick’s preschool lineup are the following new series announced today:

Rusty Rivets, picked up for 26 episodes, follows the animated adventures of Rusty as he invents his way out of jams by repurposing parts and objects into the wildest, coolest contraptions ever. Rusty Rivets is created and co-produced by Spin Master Entertainment (PAW Patrol), and slated to premiere later this year.

Sunny Day, picked up for 40 episodes, follows Sunny, the best hairstylist in her town and a natural leader who believes that every problem can be solved with determination and a little creativity. Created and produced by Silvergate Media (Peter Rabbit).

Nick will also air new episodes of returning hit preschool series Shimmer and Shine, Blaze And The Monster Machines, Mutt & Stuff, PAW Patrol, Wallykazam! and Dora And Friends: Into the City!

Nickelodeon announced the renewals of SpongeBob SquarePants for seasons 10 and 11; and the second season pickups of Harvey Beaks and Pig Goat Banana Cricket.

New animated series on deck are:
The Loud House, picked up for 26 episodes, is inspired by first-time creator Chris Savino’s (Rocko’s Modern Life, The Powerpuff Girls) chaotic life growing up in a huge household.

Bunsen Is A Beast!, picked up for 20 episodes, is an original animated comedy created and executive produced by animation veteran Butch Hartman (The Fairly OddParents). The series follows the adventures of Bunsen, the first beast to attend a human grade school, and his best friend and classmate Mikey, who guides Bunsen through the ups and downs of life as a human.

Mysticons, picked up for 40 episodes, is a half-hour action series about four girls who transform into legendary warriors and band together to save their realm from an evil queen, Necrafa. Mysticons is licensed by Nelvana.

Welcome To The Wayne, picked up for 20 episodes, marks Nick’s first digital short-form series to be greenlit for television. It follows the comedic adventures of two 10-year-old boys exploring the crazy, unpredictable world of their New York City apartment building The Wayne. Welcome to the Wayne is created and written by Emmy Award-winning writer and composer Billy Lopez (The Wonder Pets!, Phineas And Ferb).

Pinky Malinky, picked up for 20 episodes, is a mockumentary series following the everyday life of Pinky Malinky, an infectiously positive hot dog living in a human world. Pinky’s experiences will be shared across social media and Nick’s digital platforms. The series is co-created and co-executive produced by Chris Garbutt and Rikke Asbjoern (The Amazing World of Gumball), and executive produced by Scott Kreamer (Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness).

Nick will also air new episodes of returning animated series Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, The Fairly OddParents and ALVINNN!!! and The Chipmunks.

Live Action
The net announced today the renewal of the two series from hitmaker Dan Schneider: Henry Danger, for season three; and Game Shakers, for season two. Additionally, Nick has picked up another live-action hit The Thundermans for season four. Joining Nick’s live-action lineup along with the two mentioned earlier are the following new series announced today:

Ride, picked up for 20 episodes, follows the adventures of Katherine “Kit” Bridges who relocates to England with her dad who is joining the faculty at Covington Academy, an elite equestrian boarding school. Shot in Canada and Ireland, Ride will be produced by Canada’s Breakthrough Entertainment and Buccaneer Media in the United Kingdom.

The Other Kingdom, picked up for 20 episodes, follows fairy Princess Astral who takes human form and enters the mortal world for 90 days. The series is created and executive produced by Thomas W. Lynch and produced by DHX Media. Steven DeNure and Anne Loi of DHX Media also serve as executive producers.

As previously announced, Nickelodeon’s slate of new live-action series on deck are:

School of Rock, picked up for 12 episodes and produced with Paramount Television, is developed by Jim and Steve Armogida (Crash & Bernstein, Grounded For Life), who also serve as executive producers with Jay Kogen (The Simpsons, Henry Danger). The 2003 movie of the same name was written by Mike White. Its director Richard Linklater and producer Scott Rudin serve as series executive producers, along with Eli Bush (The Newsroom, Ex Machina).

All In With Cam Newton (formerly announced as working title I Wanna Be), picked up for 20 episodes and hosted by Carolina Panthers quarterback and 2016 NFL MVP Cam Newton, takes real kids on the ride of their lives to help make their dreams come true. It is produced by Magical Elves with Dan Cutforth, Jane Lipsitz and Newton serving as executive producers.

The Dudas (working title, formerly announced as Homeroom), picked up for six episodes, follows brothers Sam and Tyler Duda -– polar opposites whose worlds are turned upside down after Sam skips a grade and joins his brother in 7th grade homeroom. The show is created and executive produced by Kevin Jakubowski. Sharla Sumpter Bridgett also serves as an executive producer.

The Ludwigs follows the adventures of five foster children on a quest to find out what happened to their foster parents after they mysteriously disappear. This new project will yield two new series: an English-language, globally commissioned production titled The Ludwigs (20 episodes); and De Ludwigs (20 episodes), a Dutch-language production commissioned by Nickelodeon Netherlands. Both series are produced by Blooming Media and are filmed in Amsterdam.

I Am Frankie (working title), picked up for 20 episodes, follows the comedic and dramatic adventures of teenager Frankie, who has a very big secret -– she’s actually an experimental android who must hide her true identity or risk being powered down forever. Produced in partnership with Nickelodeon Latin America and shot at the new Viacom International Studios in Miami, Fla.

Nickelodeon will also air new episodes of returning live-action series Bella And The Bulldogs and Nicky, Ricky, Dicky & Dawn.

TV movies, Live Events and Specials
Lost In The West is a three-part original TV movie that follows two teenage stepbrothers, Chip and Dave, who get transported back in time to 1885 after one of them accidentally invents a time machine. Produced by Galdo Media and directed by Carlos Gonzalez (Big Time Rush).

Albert, Nickelodeon’s first original animated TV movie, is the sweet story of a tiny Douglas fir tree named Albert who loves Christmas more than anyone, but whose miniature size has kept him inside the plant nursery year after year. Created and written by Aaron & Will Eisenberg, the series is directed by Max Lang (The Gruffalo), with Chris Viscardi and Will McRobb (The Adventures of Pete & Pete) executive producing.

Hey Arnold!, a two-part animated TV movie written and executive produced by the series’ original creator Craig Bartlett, will pick up where the original series ended and resolve unanswered questions and plotlines, including Arnold finally getting answers about the whereabouts of his missing parents.

Legends of the Hidden Temple is a new action-adventure movie drawing from the iconic game show’s premise of kids competing to retrieve artifacts from a mysterious Mayan temple. Executive produced by Scott McAboy and Jessica Rhoades, and produced by Amy Sydorick. The TV movie is directed by Joe Menendez (From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series) and written by Jonny Umansky & Zach Hyatt and Alex Reid.

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