Today, Netflix and Nickelodeon announced a deal for Nickelodeon to create and produce animated television series and feature films based on already existing characters of Nickelodeon’s. The network will also create original shows and characters for the streaming service. There are no specifics for how many shows or how many years this deal will last.
“Nickelodeon has generated scores of characters that kids love, and we look forward to telling wholly original stories that re-imagine and expand on the worlds they inhabit,” Melissa Cobb, President of Original Animation at Netflix, said in the official announcement. “We’re thrilled to continue collaborating with Brian Robbins, Ramsey Naito, and the creative team at Nickelodeon in new ways as we look to find fresh voices and bring bold stories to our global audience on Netflix.”
Netflix and Nickelodeon have had a relationship for a few years now. The streaming service used to hold the rights to SpongeBob SquarePants and Dora the Explorer back in 2009. Amazon now owns the streaming rights to both of those properties. Other classic Nickelodeon shows such as Rugrats, Drake & Josh, The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius, and Danny Phantom are currently licensed to Hulu. Netflix acquired Victorious, Sam & Cat, Invader Zim: Enter the Florpus before this deal being announced.
Nickelodeon’s president, Brian Robbins said in the news press release, “Nickelodeon’s next step forward is to keep expanding beyond linear platforms, and our broader content partnership with Netflix is a key path toward that goal.”
A SpongeBob Squarepants spinoff described as a ‘music-based project’ centered around Squidward, Spongebob’s octopus neighbor, is already in the works.
In 2018 Deadline reported that Netflix would be producing the Emmy winning Nickelodeon show Avatar: The Last Airbender. The show had already been made into a live-action film, but after negative reviews, nothing else came from it. Michael DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko, creators of the show, went onto make a successful comic series based on the characters and created a spinoff titled Legend of Korra. At that time, DiMartino and Konietzk commented in a release how pleased they were to be working with Netflix, “We can’t wait to realize Aang’s world as cinematically as we always imagined it to be, and with a culturally appropriate, non-whitewashed cast. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime chance to build upon everyone’s great work on the original animated series and go even deeper into the characters, story, action, and world-building. Netflix is wholly dedicated to manifesting our vision for this retelling, and we’re incredibly grateful to be partnering with them.”