Chris Nee (Doc McStuffins, Vampirina) has revealed the first slate of upcoming Netflix animated series under her overall deal.
Ridley Jones is an action-adventure preschool series following the eponymous 6-year-old, who, alongside her mother and grandmother, is a protector of the museum she calls home. Brown Bag Films is the animation studio behind the project.
Nee said: “This is the first show I brought to Netflix. I really wanted to do a series where a girl was the action-adventure star I always wanted to see (or be) when I was growing up. Like so many of my shows, this world is a perfect canvas upon which to create a community of oddball characters and model what it means to take care of each other, even if you aren’t from the same era of time or wing of the museum. With music, comedy, heart and a true heroine’s story, Ridley Jones is a worthy successor to Doc McStuffins and Vampirina. Can’t wait for you to meet her!”
Superprod Animation is working on Spirit Rangers. Created by Chumash tribal member Karissa Valencia, Spirit Rangers is a fantasy-adventure preschool series following Native American sibling trio Kodiak, Summer and Eddy Skycedar, who have a shared secret—they’re “Spirit Rangers.”
Valencia said: “I am so proud that Spirit Rangers has found its home at Laughing Wild. I’ve had the opportunity to learn from Chris Nee since I was a coordinator on Vampirina. Looking back, I now realize I was in an unofficial showrunner boot camp the whole time. From coordinator to staff writer, to showrunner, she’s been my mentor from day one. I was able to witness firsthand the groundbreaking preschool shows she would lead, and now I strive to do the same. Spirit Rangers is Native-led with a team of Native writers, Native artists, Native actors and Native composers. As a Native storyteller, I’ve rarely come across the opportunity to tell my own story. I am forever grateful to be given the chance at Laughing Wild and can’t wait for everyone to meet our funny modern native family in Spirit Rangers.”
Jeff King (Vampirina) is behind Dino Daycare, set in a nursery for baby Dinos of all shapes and sizes. In a world where the dinosaurs never went extinct and now live alongside humans, the show follows a 6-year-old human boy named Cole as he helps out at the daycare.
Said King: “As with most of the defining moments of my life, as soon as I came up with Dino Daycare, I spilled hot coffee all over my desk. I knew this idea could be something special, and I knew the only person to pitch it to was my friend and mentor, Chris Nee. Chris immediately embraced my vision for a show that was about both dinosaurs and emotions in equal measure. It’s a show that celebrates that there are different ways to be the boy who becomes the man. We want to show that boys can be vulnerable and show feelings, and that strength isn’t just a physical marker… all while giving everyone what they want, mainly dinosaurs. Really, really cute dinosaurs. I’m thrilled to be a part of the Laughing Wild lineup and can’t wait to introduce the world to a non-traditional boy lead and a daycare full of adorable baby dinos.”
Nee commented: “I am so excited to finally get to talk about the work I’m doing at Netflix. As a writer and creator, I have so many stories I want to tell. I could easily fill my slate with my own voice. But one of the reasons I chose Netflix is that they afford me the opportunity to not only tell my stories but shine a spotlight on other talented creators and help them tell theirs. I know what it’s like to grow up not seeing myself represented in the shows I loved. I know that it matters not only who is on screen, but who is behind it. The mix of shows announced today perfectly represents what matters to me. I want to reach the next generation of kids, yes, but I also want to embolden and teach the next generation of diverse and underrepresented creators. At Laughing Wild, I’m able to build a company that reflects my values and work at every turn to change the ‘who and how’ of making content for kids.”
Melissa Cobb, VP of original animation at Netflix, said: “In the realm of children’s television, Chris and her team are pioneers. Their upcoming projects certainly reflect that—they’re designing worlds that kids and families can escape to, creating characters that reflect diverse cultures and backgrounds and redefining the possibilities of what children can be inspired by on-screen.”
These three new projects follow on from the previously announced Ada Twist, Scientist, which follows a pint-sized scientist with a giant-sized curiosity who aspires to discover the truth about absolutely everything.