Award-winning CBBC unveils Winter/Spring line-up of distinctive original British programmes for TV & online
Newsround specials on bullying and internet dangers and two new faces join team
New Comedy with Johnny Vegas and The Choir for children to launch
Award-winning CBBC today, Monday 28 September, unveils its new season of distinctive and unique British programming across television and online.
Damian Kavanagh, Controller, CBBC says: "CBBC has had an incredible year so far – not only were we voted children's channel of the year at Bafta and Broadcast but we're reaching more six- to 12-year-olds than any other children's channel in the UK. Also the launch of CBBC's iPlayer has meant our audience can watch their favourite programmes whenever they want.
"Last week Jana Bennett announced that more funding – at least £25million over three years – has been indentified for children's programming, which is in response to the BBC Trust review earlier this year. We'll be discussing this with them in the near future."
"In light of the broader pressures children's programming is facing this is fantastic news and we hope it'll help us continue making distinctive, original and home-grown programmes that empower, excite and enthral the nation's six- to 12-year-olds."
Dead Puppets Society with Johnny Vegas
Along with its new season of programmes, CBBC also announces it is working with award-winning comedian Johnny Vegas to develop a brand new off-the-wall comedy series Dead Puppets Society set for transmission in 2011. The series will see Johnny juggle his day-to-day showbiz career with his secret life as a puppet hunter.
Johnny Vegas says: "It's a really exciting prospect helping co-create this project for CBBC. The Double Z team have a great track record for puppet characters that are edgy, funny, and appeal to both children and adults alike. I relish the opportunity to bring my own sense of the anarchic to where I think it may well best be appreciated. I know we're all mad keen to let our collective imaginations run riot, in what I hope will be a show that continues the BBC's commitment to innovative, and highly original children's entertainment.”
Along with his sidekicks Rory and puppet Fleabag, the Dead Puppets Society needs to save Britain from the wrath of out of control puppets from beyond the grave. Their puppets should be buried with owners but when this rule is broken it sets off a chain of events where the puppets rise from the grave. Johnny embarks on a quest to track them down.
The 13x28-minute series is set for transmission in 2011 and BBC Executive Producer is Melissa Hardinge. The series is being made by Woolyback and Double Z in Dublin, the executive producers are Beverley Dixon and Ronan McCabe. It was commissioned by former CBBC Controller, Anne Gilchrist.
The Singing Coach presented by Gareth Malone
And next summer, TV's favourite choirmaster Gareth Malone (The Choir) gathers a lucky group of completely novice singers who will get the chance of a lifetime to perform in front of an audience of thousands.
Over the 12 episodes Gareth's singers will have to tackle increasingly difficult performance challenges, all building to the final show. Will they have the confidence to perform in front of thousands of people when, at the start of their journey, even performing in front of their friends and family seemed impossible? The 12x28-minute series made by Twenty Twenty, produced by Helen Soden for CBBC, will transmit in 2010 and the BBC executive producer is Melissa Hardinge. It was commissioned by former CBBC Controller, Anne Gilchrist.
Newsround Specials and new faces
This Winter, the UK's only daily news programme for children, Newsround is to screen two one-off programmes about bullying and the dangers of the internet as part of a series of specials which cover difficult subjects in a sensitive and accessible way.
Owenna Griffiths, Editor of Newsround, says: "The Newsround specials give us the chance to explore the stories and issues that we encounter on our daily programmes but in greater depth, using the most creative film-making techniques and talent available to CBBC."
Newsround also introduces two new faces to the team – Leah Gooding from Radio 1 Newsbeat and 1Xtra, and Hayley Cutts, who has two RTS awards for her work on Panorama.
CBBC gets children cooking as MasterChef judge John Torode and Nadia Sawalha are announced as presenters for Junior MasterChef. Based on the successful MasterChef, and the junior version seen on Children In Need, Junior MasterChef will give some of Britain's best young cooks the chance to become the Junior MasterChef 2010. The competition aims to find and encourage talented young cooks who have a flair for making exceptional food from scratch.
Drama on CBBC
This Winter/Spring season also sees the launch of eight dramas including the return of Tracy Beaker (Dani Harmer) in a brand new original series, and Elisabeth Sladen starring in a third series of the Sarah Jane Adventures with a guest appearance from the Doctor (David Tennant) himself.
Rufus Hound in Hounded…
Six- to 12-year-olds will also delight in a raft of new entertainment programmes including an eccentric new comedy, Hounded… with comedian Rufus Hound as he journeys into a fantastic parallel universe of special effects.
Roboidz (working title)
In Roboidz (working title), a new gameshow set in 2110, the Roboidz have taken over the Earth and turned against their human creators. The only thing can save the human race are children...