Nickelodeon has unveiled its 2020-2021 programming slate, its second under ViacomCBS Kids & Family president Brian Robbins, ahead of ViacomCBS’ earnings call later this week. Newly greenlighted series include The Astronauts, the network’s first co-production with Imagine Kids+Family, due for summer 2020 bow; a live-action The Loud House: A Very Loud Christmas! original movie based on Nick’s animated hit for Q4; and Big Nate, a new animated series based on Lincoln Peirce’s bestselling HarperCollins children’s books.
In addition, Nick is working on a spinoff of staple Henry Danger. Titled Danger Force, it stars the flagship series’ Cooper Barnes (Ray/Captain Man) and Michael D. Cohen (Schwoz) and introduces four new superheroes-in-training as they team to fight crime in their town of Swellview. The offshoot will premiere Saturday, March 28 at 8 PM.
The newly ordered series join the previously announced CG-Animated SpongeBob SquarePants prequel series Kamp Koral and Tyler Perry’s Young Dylan, the live-series executive produced, directed and written by Perry that bows February 29. The story follows a family whose world is turned upside down when their nephew, Young Dylan (Dylan Gilmer), an aspiring hip-hop star, moves in unannounced.
Kamp Koral: SpongeBob’s Under Years features the animated series’ original voice cast reprising their roles in an CG-animated prequel following a 10-year-old SpongeBob during his summer at sleepaway camp. The 13-episode season premieres in July.
“This is the most wide-raging slate in the history of the network,” Robbins told Deadline. “These are many different categories: animated, live-action single-camera and multi-camera, tentpole movies, reality. We finally have a well rounded portfolio.”
Last year, Robbins’ first slate included Are You Afraid of the Dark?, All That, Blue’s Clues & You! and The Casagrandes, all of which scored renewals on Wednesday along with long-time series like PAW Patrol and Bubble Guppies.
Starting “from scratch” last year, Robbins said he pursued several top programming goals. Putting on programs that would attract co-viewing was a main priority. Are You Afraid Of the Dark? launched as the No.1 co-viewing series, with Top Elf also scoring high co-viewing marks, Robbins said. Another major goal was adding diversity to Nick’s slate so the shows’ casts better reflect the network’s audience. Among the series launched as part of that initiative were the All That reboot and The Casagrandes, the most popular show among Latinx kids, both of which were renewed today.
Other priorities included bringing back iconic franchises, like Blue’s Clues, also renewed today, expanding existing ones with spinoffs like Harry Danger and Kemp Coral, and creating new ones, which the network is hoping for with Big Nate.
Here are Nick’s descriptions of the new projects:
The Astronauts (working title; 10 episodes) – Marking Nickelodeon’s first co-production with Imagine Kids+Family, this single-camera action-adventure series follows a group of kids who embark on the adventure of a lifetime when they are mistakenly launched into space. The Astronauts is executive produced by Imagine Entertainment chairmen Brian Grazer and Ron Howard, Imagine Kids+Family President Stephanie Sperber and Daniel Knauf (Carnivàle, The Blacklist), who also serves as writer and showrunner. The series is slated to premiere this summer.
The Loud House: A Very Loud Christmas! (working title) – The popular animated characters from Nickelodeon’s Emmy Award-winning The Loud House will literally come to life in an original live action, feature-length TV movie. Casting is currently underway for the holiday movie, which will begin production this summer and premiere in the fourth quarter of this year.
Big Nate (26 episodes) – The misadventures of Big Nate will go from page to screen in an all-new animated series based on HarperCollins’ best-selling children’s book title, penned by acclaimed author and cartoonist Lincoln Peirce.
Danger Force (13 episodes) – The brand-new spinoff of the number-one kids’ series Henry Danger stars two of its most beloved characters, “Ray/Captain Man” (Cooper Barnes) and “Schwoz” (Michael D. Cohen), and introduces four new superheroes-in-training as they team up to fight crime in their town of Swellview. Danger Force premieres Saturday, March 28, at 8 p.m. (ET/PT).
Kamp Koral: SpongeBob’s Under Years (13 episodes) – The original SpongeBob SquarePants voice cast has been tapped to reprise their roles in this brand-new CG-animated prequel of the beloved hit series. Premiering July, Kamp Koral: SpongeBob’s Under Years follows a 10-year-old SpongeBob during his summer at sleepaway camp.
Tyler Perry’s Young Dylan (14 episodes) – Executive produced, directed and written by Perry, the live-action series follows a family whose world is turned upside down when their nephew, Young Dylan (Dylan Gilmer), an aspiring hip-hop star, moves in unannounced. The series is currently in production at Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta, Ga., and will premiere Saturday, Feb. 29, at 8:30 (ET/PT).