Iconic Series is Back After 50 Years for a 2015 debut on CITV
ITV Studios is to re-invent Thunderbirds 50 years on from its first television debut.
ITV Studios and New Zealand based Pukeko Pictures, in collaboration with Weta Workshop (Avatar, King Kong, The Lord of the Rings) are to co-produce Thunderbirds are Go! (a working title), a 26 x 30’ major new children’s series set to debut on ITV and the CITV Channel in 2015.
The series will be produced using a unique mix of CGI animation and live-action model sets. Showcasing Pukeko Pictures’ and Weta Workshop’s creative and technical excellence, it promises to deliver a whole new level of action-adventure animation for today’s audience, whilst paying tribute to the legacy of original series.
Thunderbirds are Go! will be executive produced by Estelle Hughes for ITV Studios, Giles Ridge for ITV Studios Global Entertainment (ITVS GE) and Richard Taylor and Andrew Smith for Pukeko Pictures. The series head writer is Rob Hoegee (Generator Rex, Teen Titans, Ben 10, Slugterra.)
Thunderbirds are Go! is commissioned by Jamila Metran, Head of Programming for CITV, and is currently in pre-production.
Denise O Donoghue, Managing Director ITV Studios UK, comments: “Thunderbirds is a highly respected brand that continues to hold recognition around the world. This cult series is often credited as changing the history of animation and action-adventure, and we look forward to taking the show to another level while retaining the much-loved heritage that has endured over the past fifty years.”
Jamila Metran, Head of Programming for CITV, adds: “Thunderbirds Are Go! will be a hugely exciting new show for the CITV audience. We’re delighted to be working with ITV Studios and the talented teams at Pukeko Pictures and Weta Workshop, whose success and innovation is renowned across the film and television industry. Thunderbirds is a much-loved British institution with significant global recognition, and our audience will relish this timely opportunity to discover the new series fifty years on.”
Richard Taylor, co-owner of Pukeko Pictures and Weta Workshop, says: “Thunderbirds was a hugely influential television series in my childhood. Having watched it originally in black and white, it was only years later that I discovered the full and rich world that Gerry and Sylvia Anderson, Derek Meddings, Mike Trimm and their team created. It is thrilling therefore to think we have the opportunity to work with ITV on this new series inspired by this most wonderful of British shows. I personally, together with the teams here at Pukeko Pictures and Weta Workshop, look forward to designing and creating an inspirational world that will engage the imagination of a whole new generation as it did for us nearly half a century ago.”
Andrew Smith, CEO of Pukeko Pictures, adds: “Pukeko Pictures is focussed on high-quality value-based programming, and we are thrilled to be associated with such an iconic brand, one that brilliantly encompasses family values, heroism and generosity. We are very proud to partner with ITV Studios to create a new era of Thunderbirds.”
ITV Studios Global Entertainment retains worldwide rights to the Thunderbirds brand and is the global distributor for the Thunderbirds Are Go! television series and consumer products.