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CST: 19/07/2019 16:27:01   

Genius Brands International’s “Rainbow Rangers” Expands Into Europe Via Deal With Leading Children’s Italian Channel, Cartoonito

71 Days ago

Currently Airing in the U.S. on Nick Jr. with an Upcoming Launch Across Latin America on Nickelodeon and NOGGIN, “Rainbow Rangers” will Debut this Summer on Cartoonito in Italy

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif., May 09, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Following Genius Brands International’s “Genius Brands” (Nasdaq:GNUS) recent news announcing the greenlight of season two of Rainbow Rangers, and the launch of the hit preschool series into Latin America with Nickelodeon and NOGGIN, the Company signs its first key European broadcast deal for season one (52 x 11’) of the series with Italy’s leading children’s network, Cartoonito, the preschooler channel realized by the joint venture between Turner (WarnerMedia company) and RTI Mediaset. In 2018, Cartoonito was first among commercial children’s channels that target the 4-7 year demographic with a share of over 9%.

Rainbow Rangers, which is being dubbed in Italian for Cartoonito, is a rescue-based series following the adventures of seven girls who are Earth’s first responders, protecting people, animals, resources, and the natural beauty of our world.  Since premiering on Nickelodeon’s Nick Jr. in the U.S. in November 2018, the series, which airs Monday through Friday in the afternoon, and on Sunday mornings, has consistently garnered top ratings, especially with kids ages 2 – 5, and retained its audience and grown from its lead-in shows across a variety of different time periods in which it has been placed for broadcast.  In addition to Nick Jr. in the U.S., Nickelodeon, and NOGGIN in Latin America and Cartoonito in Italy, Genius Brands is currently in negotiations with other leading broadcasters around the world, which will be announced shortly.

“With broadcasters around the world recognizing the potential of Rainbow Rangers as the next preschool mega-hit, we are excited to kick-off the charge in one of Europe's major territories through this new deal with Turner's Cartoonito,” commented Andy Heyward, Chairman & CEO of Genius Brands. “Through its free-to-air and digital platforms, Cartoonito’s footprint reaches virtually every child in Italy, and we look forward to introducing this magical series in the coming year, as well as a robust retail program.”

“There is so much excitement for Rainbow Rangers already following its successful launch in the U.S., and we are thrilled to be among the first in the international marketplace to add this engaging and empowering preschool series to our Cartoonito programming schedule,” stated Alice Fedele, Content Director of Turner Italy.  

Rainbow Rangers boasts a unique and highly-accomplished team of creators from the animated motion picture and television worlds, including Rob Minkoff (Disney’s The Lion King director), Shane Morris (Disney’s Frozen co-writer), Tim Mansfield, and New York Times Bestselling author and Emmy Award-nominated writer Elise Allen (Dinosaur Train, Lion Guard, Barbie specials), who serves as head writer and co-creator. Legendary Disney alum Ruben Aquino--responsible for the design and animation of many of Disney’s most iconic characters from award-winning films such as The Lion KingBeauty and the Beast, The Little MermaidMulan, and Frozen—created key designs.  Multiple Emmy Award-winning director Michael Maliani directs the series, and Genius Brands' Chairman and CEO and multiple Emmy Award-winning producer, Andy Heyward, serves as executive producer.

About Genius Brands International
Headquartered in Beverly Hills, Genius Brands International, Inc. (NASDAQ:GNUS) is a leading global kids media company developing, producing, marketing and licensing branded children’s entertainment properties and consumer products for media and retail distribution. The Company’s “content with a purpose” brand portfolio, which is led by award-winning creators and producers, includes preschool properties Rainbow Rangers for Nick Jr. and Llama Llama for Netflix; award-winning toddler brand, Baby Genius; adventure comedy STEM series, Thomas Edison's Secret Lab; and financial literacy and entrepreneurship series, Warren Buffett's Secret Millionaires Club. The Company’s content catalog also includes the animated series, Stan Lee's Cosmic Crusaders, created with Stan Lee's Pow! Entertainment. Seeing the need to provide kids and parents with a safe viewing environment that offers premium enriching and engaging programming, Genius Brands launched the Genius Brands Network – comprised of Kid Genius Cartoon Channel and Baby Genius TV, as well as an exclusive Kid Genius Cartoons Plus subscription channel on Amazon Prime. The Network channels are available in approximately 80 million U.S. households via a variety of distribution platforms, such as OTT, set-top box, internet, and mobile. Through licensing agreements with category leading partners, characters from the Company’s properties also appear on a wide range of consumer products for retail. For additional information, please visit www.gnusbrands.com.

Turner Italy
Turner Italy, a WarnerMedia Company, is an innovative and well-established multimedia organisation. Turner Italy, leader in the kids’ TV business, operates Pay TV channels on Sky Italy - Cartoon Network, Boomerang and CNN - and two free-to-air kids’ brands in a joint venture with RTI Mediaset - Boing and Cartoonito. Cartoon Network and Boomerang are distributed on linear and non-linear channels on Sky and Timvision® and are available anytime, anywhere. The brands also have a strong presence online and through a range of apps.

About Cartoonito
Cartoonito, a thematic channel for preschoolers and their parents with 24 hour dedicated scheduling, was launched on Italian digital terrestrial television in August 2011. The channel is part of the Boing S.p.A. joint-venture between RTI Mediaset and Turner (WarnerMedia Company) and immediately established itself as the leading digital terrestrial television channel for preschoolers. Cartoonito airs high quality international and local programs such as Paw Patrol, Super Wings, Robocar Poli, Kid-E-Cats, etc. On the website Cartoonito.it, kids and their parents can find news about programming, games and many creative activities. 

Forward-Looking Statements:
Certain statements in this notice constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the federal securities laws. Words such as "may," "might," "will," "should," "believe," "expect," "anticipate," "estimate," "continue," "predict," "forecast," "project," "plan," "intend" or similar expressions, or statements regarding intent, belief, or current expectations, are forward-looking statements. While the Company believes these forward-looking statements are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on any such forward-looking statements, which are based on information available to us on the date of this release. These forward-looking statements are based upon current estimates and assumptions and are subject to various risks and uncertainties, including without limitation those set forth in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC"), not limited to Risk Factors relating to its patent business contained therein. Thus, actual results could be materially different. The Company expressly disclaims any obligation to update or alter statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.

Genius Brands International Media Contact: Investor Relations Contact:
Michelle Orsi Michael Porter 
Three.Sixty Marketing & Communications PLR Investor Relations 
(310) 418-6430;  michelle@360-comm.com 212.564.7000; mike@plrinvest.com

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/ab808ab7-f8bb-4f9e-a687-54709154b0e7

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