Many of you were excited to read our mid-Sept. news
about two Fat Albert
releases that are coming to stores on December 14th
. One's a low-end release: 1 DVD with "5 of the most sought-after episodes" for $14.99 SRP, running at 150 minutes. The other's more collector-oriented: a 4-DVD Deluxe, Limited-Edition box set with 20 classic episodes, bonus features, a custom embossed slip case, and an exclusive 12-page booklet. That one will go for $49.99 SRP for 720 minutes. The episode list for each release hasn't been revealed yet, but we do have the cover art for both, presented by Fat Albert himself:
Many of you wondered how these releases figure in to the deal we reported on
last March, where a U.K. company called Entertainment Rights purchased the Filmation library of TV properties from Hallmark. To answer the questions, here is a press release from Entertainment Rights, announcing the license of this property to UrbanWorks Entertainment, a division of Ventura Distribution (who will of course be distributing these offerings):
ENTERTAINMENT RIGHTS APPOINT NORTH AMERICAN VIDEO/DVD PARTNER FOR 'FAT ALBERT AND THE COSBY KIDS'
Entertainment Rights Plc ("ER") one of the UK's leading independent media groups specialising in the ownership of children's and family programming, characters and brands, announces the appointment of UrbanWorks Entertainment LLC, part of Ventura Entertainment Enterprises LLC, as its video and DVD partner in North America and Mexico for Bill Cosby's smash hit Fat Albert and the Cosby kids.
UrbanWorks Entertainment is a vertically integrated, full service studio and the leading supplier of urban content to the home entertainment market in the United States.
The agreement includes the payment of a $1.5 million advance against ongoing royalties to ER. The transaction gives ER access to the important US home entertainment market, where mass DVD penetration allows ER entry to a potential market of 80m homes.
Initial Fat Albert DVD titles are already planned for release in December 2004 to coincide with the marketing and advertising campaign by Twentieth Century Fox, for the US release of the first ever live-action major motion picture of Fat Albert, due to launch on 25th December this year.
The Emmy nominated Fat Albert and the Cosby kids was acquired by ER as part of the Filmation portfolio of classic characters. The series aired on CBS for 12 consecutive years and enjoyed one of the longest careers in Saturday morning cartoon history. Fat Albert will be available for the first time ever at retail in DVD format and this creates a platform for further Fat Albert home entertainment releases.
Mike Heap, Chief Executive Officer, Entertainment Rights, said: "We are delighted to partner with UrbanWorks. Fat Albert and the Cosby kids is already a hugely successful brand in America. The release of the DVD's in tandem with Twentieth Century Fox's feature film provides the perfect opportunity to introduce the show to a whole new generation of Americans."
Stay tuned, and we'll let you know about any further info we get on these titles!