The popular kid’s network announced that it would be creating its own version of the much-beloved Smurfs cartoon and introducing “a new generation of kids” to characters like Smurfette, Papa Smurf, Brainy, and more.
The Smurfs originated from a Belgian comic before developing into a Saturday morning cartoon that ran in the 1980s on NBC.
However, most kids these days recognize the blue-colored, forest-dwelling creatures from the animated features that started with the 2011 film. The most recent flick, Smurfs: The Lost Village, served as a reboot and was released in 2017.
The movies featured some big-name celebrities, such as Katy Perry famously providing the voice of Smurfette for the first two films.
No casting or story details have been announced yet for the upcoming Nickelodeon series, but it will be CG-animated.
Layla Lewis, the senior vice president at Global Acquisitions and Content Partnerships, made an official statement about the latest programming decision from Nickelodeon.
“The Smurfs have entertained generations of kids and families globally, and we are thrilled to bring these identifiable characters, their stories and universal themes of cooperation, sharing and caring for their community to Nickelodeon.”
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Nickelodeon has made a deal to acquire the global rights to the long-running series.
The network will attempt to launch the series in 2021.
Aside from the rights to the series, the deal also includes licensing for “a product line for the new series as well as items tied to the classic Smurfs brand.”
The Smurfs is among several popular animated franchises owned by the ViacomCBS channel, as the network also runs SpongeBob SquarePants, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and recently announced a new animated Garfield and Star Trek series.
Pam Kaufman, the president of ViacomCBS Consumer Products, said that by partnering with the original licensors of the franchise, LAFIG Belgium and IMPS, they will be able to unite their “creative forces to bring an all-new line of consumer products across multiple categories to consumers, along with a fresh and original animated series.”
Nickelodeon shared The Hollywood Reporter article on their official Twitter account.
Fans of the franchise quickly took to the comments section to express their excitement over the upcoming series.
“The Smurfs are awesome I can’t wait to see what u have in store for the new ‘Smurfs’ series,” tweeted one fan alongside a sunglasses emoji.
While the majority of commenters appeared happy about the news, there were a few who worried the new show might tarnish the original cartoon’s charm.