Cookie Jar kick-starts production of “Mudpit”

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Pro­duc­tion of the partly ani­mated Cookie Jar Enter­tain­ment series Mud­pit, set to air on Canada’s Tele­toon Eng­lish and Tele­toon French in the fall of 2011, is now under­way at down­town Toronto’s CBC Stu­dio 40 with a cast of musi­cally diverse, tal­ented teens.

With over 20 inter­na­tional awards, Canada’s Guru Stu­dio is brought onboard to pro­duce the CGI ani­ma­tion for the series, cur­rently being shot within the 13,000-square-foot “state of the art” stu­dio in Toronto.

I focus on pro­duc­ing shows that rein­vest in Cana­dian tal­ent and push the enve­lope with cutting-edge, cre­ative ideas that stim­u­late the tech­no­log­i­cally savvy imag­i­na­tions of our young audi­ences. I remain com­mit­ted to that,” says Cookie Jar CEO Michael Hirsh.

Mud­pit takes place at the nexus of the social and per­sonal power of music and the appeal of role-playing in a dig­i­tal world. This CGI animated/live-action series fol­lows four real-world teens and their rock band, Mud­pit, as they fol­low their dreams of fame and fortune.

The series takes place in a gam­ing café and a fan­tas­tic, vir­tual world known as Musika. Their online avatar rock band per­sonas bat­tle for a cov­eted record deal, while their real life selves engage in the daily com­edy and drama of teenage life.

Hirsh added: “We have part­nered with award-winning Cana­dian based gam­ing com­pany NDI Media and secured some of the best writ­ers and pro­duc­ers in the enter­tain­ment indus­try for this series. The Mud­pit cast mem­bers come from across Canada, with a num­ber of the leads cred­ited with indus­try nom­i­na­tions and pre­vi­ous lead­ing roles in other Cana­dian and U.S. major productions.”

The Mud­pit series was cre­ated by Jamie Waese. Waese recently spent two years as head of cur­rent pro­gram­ming for Cookie Jar Enter­tain­ment, where he over­saw all cre­ative aspects. He is the pro­ducer and co-director of Gotta Catch Santa Claus, a one-hour CGI Christ­mas movie with William Shat­ner as Santa.

Bruce Kalish is the series exec­u­tive producer-showrunner. Kalish began his career on the hit ABC com­edy series Mork & Mindy, and has since amassed numer­ous awards and cre­den­tials as a writer-producer.

Kalish cre­ated, wrote and exec­u­tive pro­duced Dis­ney XD’s first live-action series, Aaron Stone. He wrote and exec­u­tive pro­duced Strange Days at Blake Holsey High and the hit series The Fall Guy, and was writer-executive pro­ducer on Dis­ney Channel’s The Famous Jett Jack­son and The Famous Jett Jack­son Movie, for which he won a Gem­ini Award for Best Series.

Lead­ing cast mem­bers include Montreal’s own Jesse Rath as band leader Liam/Lamb. Rath’s recur­ring role on CBC’s 18 To Life recently earned him a nom­i­na­tion for a Gem­ini for Best Ensem­ble Per­for­mance in a Com­edy Pro­gram or Series. Car­leigh Bev­erly, who has appeared in Con­nor Under­cover, the ABC drama Rookie Blue and the Life­time Orig­i­nal Movie Who Is Clark Rock­e­feller?, backs the crew up as power drum­mer Geneva/G.

Adding to the Cana­dian cast is Vas Saranga as Reese/Dodge. Saranga is most well known for his recur­ring role on Dis­ney XD’s Aaron Stone as Vas and Car­toon Network’s Unnat­ural His­tory as Brox­ton Garko.

Round­ing out the cast is Daniel Magder as Mikey/Booch, best known as Edwin from Life with Derek. Magder began to learn his craft work­ing with Tim­o­thy Hut­ton. Daniel’s cred­its also include appear­ing with Shel­ley Long in Van­ished With­out A Trace (NBC), James Gar­ner and Julie Andrews in One Spe­cial Night (CBS), and with Jen­nifer Lopez in Angel Eyes.

The cast per­son­ally sing the orig­i­nal songs cre­ated for the show and per­form all their own voiceovers for their avatar personas.

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About Paul Anderson

Paul is an old-timer here at BCDB- his contributions go back to before the site! Paul is widely regarded as a Disney historian, and is also on staff at the Disney Museum in San Francisco. Paul is also a contributing historian for D23, the Disney Club. Paul has published several books and magazine articles on Disney history, too. You are welcome to drop Paul a line here.

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