Welp. I’ve had it up to here with DreamWorks. And Pixar for that matter, but this is mostly about DreamWorks. CGI isn’t a stand-in for good writing, dammit!
DreamWorks has become a mighty media force to be reckoned with, only this one is coming after your kids. IT WANTS YOUR CHILD’S EYEBALLS.
Now it looks like 18 Shrek movies and a bevy of crappy TV shows just isn’t enough. DreamWorks is partnering with Fuhu, maker of the Nabi line of children’s tablet, to produce a specially made DreamWorks tablet called the DreamTab. The tablet will work like its own cable channel, with original content from DreamWorks. Fuhu has other branded Nabi tablets, including a Disney Nabi and a Nickelodeon Nabi, but unlike the DreamTab, they don’t come with original and exclusive content.
“We could push out a new character moment every day of the year,” said DreamWorks head of digital strategy and new business development Jim Mainard, to the New York Times.
That said, the DreamTab won’t force kids to watch DreamWorks content exclusively. They will still be able to stream content from Disney, Nickelodeon, and Cartoon Network.
The tablets will be revealed at CES next week in Las Vegas. A 12-inch version is also in the works. And naturally, parents will have the option of purchasing a number of DreamWorks-branded accessories, including headphones, carrying cases, bumpers, and so on.
Pricing is still yet to be determined, but the tablet will reportedly go for under $300.
The El Segundo-based company sold over two million Nabis in 2013, and its tablets now deliver more than 20 million video streams a week.
DreamWorks has found other ways to infiltrate the home. In addition to the slew of movies it puts out every year, DreamWorks has also created TV shows like “The Penguins of Madagascar,” “Kung Fu Panda,” “Monsters vs. Aliens,” and “Dragons: The Series”—based on the movie How to Train Your Dragon—all for Nickelodeon. But last month DreamWorks struck a deal with Netflix to create a 26-episode series based on Turbo, a movie about racing snails (buuuhhhhhh). “Turbo F.A.S.T.” debuted on December 24.
“Turbo F.A.S.T.” came as part of a multi-year deal that allows Netflix to license a number of characters from DreamWorks movies to create over 300 hours of original programming.
In 2011, Netflix and DreamWorks announced a deal that will bring DreamWorks movies to Netflix after they appear in theaters. Previously, DreamWorks had a similar deal with HBO. Recent DreamWorks hit The Croods will appear in Netflix’s catalogue next year. That will be followed by DreamWorks’ big screen adaptation of Mr. Peabody and Sherman in March 2014.