Genius Brands International, Inc. (“Genius Brands” or the “Company”) (NASDAQ:GNUS) announced today an all-star production team to drive the development and production of the all-new animated comedy, action-adventure series for kids, Shaq’s Garage, starring Shaquille O'Neal, led by Academy Award nominated writer Joel Cohen (Toy Story, Garfield: The Movie, Evan Almighty, Cheaper by the Dozen, Daddy Day Camp).
Currently in pre-production, Shaq’s Garage will premiere on Kartoon Channel! in the U.S. in fall 2021, featuring 26 x 30’ animated episodes and starring O’Neal along with a fleet of some of the most amazing vehicles in the world. Cohen serves as head writer and executive producer for the series, with multi-Emmy Award-winning Michael Maliani (Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego?, The New Adventures of Madeline, Sherlock Holmes in the 22nd Century, Our Friend, Martin) directing and producing. The series will be executive produced by O’Neal, Cohen, Genius Brands, PRP, and ABG Entertainment.
Andy Heyward, Chairman & CEO of Genius Brands, stated: “At Genius Brands, we continue to believe that the only way to create mega hits, and ultimately build enduring mega businesses, is by hiring the most talented writers and producers that Hollywood has to offer. In Joel Cohen, the Academy Award-nominated co-writer of Pixar’s Toy Story, we knew we had found our talent. All of the great vehicles that were in Shaquille O’ Neal’s imagination, suddenly came to life as Joel told us who each one was, and precisely why we would care about them. Toy Story has become not only one of the single most successful movie franchises in history, but also a multi-billion dollar toy and licensing business. These phenomenon can only come forth from the absolute best that Hollywood has to offer, who can create characters that kids of all ages can relate to and become engaged with. When we pair the heart and humor from Joel, along with the directing brilliance of Mike Maliani, we are confident that Shaq’s Garage is going to become a major hit as well as a major entertainment franchise!”
“I always loved Shaq, both the man and the athlete—happy to be playing for his team,” commented Joel Cohen.
Shaq’s Garage will depict the secret adventures of O’Neal’s extraordinary collection of animated cars, trucks, and automobiles. All the vehicles in “Shaq’s Garage” have unique attributes, intellects, and skills ranging from musical stylings, Shaq Fu, and their mastery of the ultra-secret language of Shaqanese and the Shaqtionary. Whether in Sheijing on a secret mission or visiting an ancient shrine in the lost city of Shaqmandu, each story will be as special as the vehicles and Shaquille himself.