Wednesday, December 23, 2009

New TV Animation Deal For Peter Rabbit
Penguin Press Release , Tuesday 22 Dec 2009

Frederick Warne & Co. Ltd, owner and guardian of the Beatrix Potter property and original publisher of Beatrix Potter's famous little white books, is delighted to announce a brilliant new chapter in the history of one of the world's longest running and largest international literature-based licensing programmes. Frederick Warne is part of Penguin, the consumer book division of Pearson Plc.

Frederick Warne has long enjoyed a close working relationship with The Copyrights Group, its licensing agent for over 25 years, which is now owned by Chorion, the London-based company that specialises in entertainment. Under a new agreement announced today, Frederick Warne and Chorion together will create new animation, based on Beatrix Potter's world-famous classic characters such as Peter Rabbit, Jemima Puddle-duck, Benjamin Bunny and Mr. Jeremy Fisher. This will be a brand new, ground-breaking animation that will develop Beatrix Potter's characters to delight and entertain new audiences of children around the world. The animation series will be designed for TV, for international distribution.

Together with Chorion, Frederick Warne will continue to develop the licensing and merchandise programme for Beatrix Potter's characters. Frederick Warne will retain all publishing rights to the Beatrix Potter works.

Peter Field, CEO Penguin Books UK, said:

"We are very pleased to be working with Chorion in a new global strategic relationship to further develop Beatrix Potter's legacy through this new animation project. Chorion knows our property so well and understands how to work with such a unique and iconic literary work. We are very excited about the possibilities for the future and are looking forward to developing this new opportunity."

Waheed Alli, Chairman of Chorion, said:

"We are looking forward to making a new TV series of Beatrix Potter's characters. Our aim will be to introduce Beatrix Potter to a new generation of children and make her characters as loved today as they have been in the past."

Beatrix Potter was a business pioneer. She initiated the development of a merchandise programme when she designed and patented a Peter Rabbit doll, making Peter Rabbit the world's oldest licensed character. She attended to every detail, as she wrote:

"I am cutting out calico patterns of Peter, I have not got it right yet, but the expression is going to be lovely; especially the whiskers."

Under Beatrix Potter's approval, the first range of licensed merchandise was created. This included a Peter Rabbit soft toy, puzzle, handkerchief and tea set, which was licensed by her publisher, Frederick Warne. Today there are 350 licensees worldwide within The World of Beatrix Potter™ brand.

Stephanie Barton, MD of Frederick Warne, said:

"The classic little white books are hugely popular and we will continue to publish and develop this range, through which one of the most iconic characters in children's literature was created. As Beatrix Potter's original publisher and guardian of Peter Rabbit and his friends, Frederick Warne, working with Chorion, will ensure that these timeless characters remain relevant and treasured by children in the future".

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