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DreamWorks and Netflix Chase Kids with Streaming Partnership

Thompson on Hollywood By Anne Thompson and Ryan Lattanzio | Thompson on Hollywood December 26, 2013 at 12:36PM

In a landmark deal, DreamWorks presents a new animated series, "Turbo FAST," now available to stream on Netflix. The children's series will be the first of 300 hours of programming the studio will create for the streaming service.
'Turbo FAST'
'Turbo FAST'

DreamWorks has taken one of its lowest-grossing films of all time to the small screen. That's because in today's transmedia universe, stretching brands across multiple platforms--and repurposing valuable R & D and labor--is the way to go. And for DreamWorks' new partner Netflix, building a kids audience is the ticket for a robust future.

In a landmark deal, the animation studio has unveiled a new series, "Turbo FAST," a spinoff of its 2013 snail-racing comedy "Turbo," on Netflix. The five-episode first season is now available to stream. Trailer below.

"Turbo FAST" is the first of 300 hours of animated programming DreamWorks will produce for Netflix, making this the streaming service's biggest foray yet into the realm of animated kids' series. Over the next three years, DreamWorks will continue to roll out original animated programming featuring characters from its films, and from a newly acquired library of classics including "Casper the Friendly Ghost," "Rocky and Bullwinkle" and "Lassie."

The LA Times writes that the series, which plays like a sequel to the film, "is more of a 'cartoon' cartoon than its parent film, able to do its work in 11 minutes, and easy to read, with old-fashioned musical cues and sound effects." NYT says the move from 3-D to 2-D animation is an improvement. Forbes writes that "creating original programming will only help bind kids to Netflix," which will benefit the company otherwise known for adult fare such as "Orange Is the New Black" and "House of Cards."

In the more expensive feature realm, DreamWorks is currently pushing animated Oscar contender "The Croods," which picked up a Golden Globe nom and 17 Annie nominations including Best Animated Feature.

This article is related to: Turbo, Netflix, DreamWorks, New On VOD, VOD, News, Animation

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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.