Nickelodeon Caps SpongeBob SquarePants' 10th Anniversary Celebration with New Season Pick Up Order
LOS ANGELES � Dec. 15, 2009 � Punctuating the celebration of the series' 10th anniversary, Nickelodeon has green-lit 26 new, original episodes of the hit series SpongeBob SquarePants, it was announced today by Brown Johnson, President, Animation, Nickelodeon/MTVN Kids & Family Group. The new order will bring the total number of episodes for the series to 178, and will feature the original voice cast including Tom Kenny as SpongeBob, Bill Fagerbakke as Patrick, Rodger Bumpass as Squidward, Clancy Brown as Mr. Krabs and Carolyn Lawrence as Sandy Cheeks.
"After a decade on our air, SpongeBob has emerged as one of the most beloved and popular characters in television history," said Johnson. "Audiences of all ages have fallen in love with this show and we're delighted to be serving up additional original episodes to our viewers for many years."
The announcement comes on the heels of the star-studded SpongeBob "Truth or Square" 10th anniversary special that drew 7.7 million total viewers on Nov. 6, ranking as basic cable's number-one entertainment show for the week. In 2009, SpongeBob SquarePants drew more than 75 million viewers monthly and currently ranks as the number-one animated series with kids 2-11 as it has for more than seven consecutive years. The show is seen in 171 markets in 26 languages and is the most widely distributed property in MTV Networks' history.
This holiday season, SpongeBob will continue to spread his cheer with "Don't Be a Jerk (It's Christmas!)," a new holiday song that is symbolic of the optimism and kindness he has represented for the past 10 years. Available now on Nick Records' SpongeBob's Greatest Hits CD, the song is performed by Tom Kenny (the voice of SpongeBob) who co-wrote the song with music veteran Andy Paley.
SpongeBob is now on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/spongebob) and Twitter (http://twitter.com/happysquared). SpongeBob on Facebook includes videos, fine art images, fan-posted pics and SpongeBob posters. SpongeBob's best pal, Patrick is also on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Patrick-Star/50403195950). SpongeBob on Twitter features daily affirmations from the absorbent one such as "bubble blowing is all in the technique."
SpongeBob SquarePants is executive produced by creator Stephen Hillenburg, who previously worked as a writer, director and creative director on Nickelodeon's animated series Rocko's Modern Life. Hillenburg graduated from the California Institute of the Arts with a master's degree in experimental animation and studied marine biology and art as an undergraduate.
Paul Tibbitt served as a director and writer on SpongeBob SquarePants for its first three seasons and is currently executive producer. He wrote some of the show's most memorable episodes, such as "Ripped Pants" and "Mermaid Man & Barnacle Boy." Tibbitt was one of the co-writers and storyboard artists on The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie.
SpongeBob SquarePants is a Nicktoons Production and is produced at the Nickelodeon Animation Studios in Burbank, Calif.
Nickelodeon, now in its 30th year, is the number-one entertainment brand for kids. It has built a diverse, global business by putting kids first in everything it does. The company includes television programming and production in the United States and around the world, plus consumer products, online, recreation, books, magazines and feature films. Nickelodeon's U.S. television network is seen in almost 100 million households and has been the number-one-rated basic cable network for 15 consecutive years. For more information or artwork, visit http://www.nickpress.com. Nickelodeon and all related titles, characters and logos are trademarks of Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA, VIA.B).