After years of waiting, the Avatar: The Last Airbender franchise is getting a comeback of the best kind. Despite being overlooked for years, the series made a major comeback in entertainment this past year as Avatar shot up the charts on Netflix. Now, ViacomCBS has plans to bring the Nickelodeon franchise back to life with a slate of new content from its original creators. Avatar: The Last Airbender co-creators Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko will serve as co-chief creative officers of Avatar Studios, reporting to Ramsey Naito, president of Nickelodeon Animation, developing new animated shows and movies. The new studio's first project is an animated feature film entering production later this year with plans to show in theaters. Other projects will debut on Paramount+ and on Nickelodeon.
“Avatar: The Last Airbender and Korra have grown at least ten-fold in popularity since their original hit runs on Nickelodeon, and Ramsey Naito and I are incredibly excited to have Mike and Bryan’s genius talent on board to helm a studio devoted to expanding their characters and world into new content and formats for fans everywhere,” said Brian Robbins, President, ViacomCBS Kids & Family in a press release. “Creator-driven stories and characters have long been the hallmarks of Nickelodeon, and Avatar Studios is a way to give Mike and Bryan the resources and runway to open up their imaginations even more and dive deeper into the action and mythology of Avatar as we simultaneously expand upon that world and the world of content available on Paramount+ and Nickelodeon.”
“It’s hard to believe it’s been 19 years since we created Avatar: The Last Airbender. But even after all that time, there are still many stories and time periods in Aang’s world that we are eager to bring to life. We are fortunate to have an ever-growing community of passionate fans that enjoys exploring the Avatarverse as much as we do. And with this new Avatar Studios venture we have an unparalleled opportunity to develop our franchise and its storytelling on a vast scale, in myriad exciting ways and mediums. We are exceedingly grateful to Brian Robbins and Ramsey Naito for their enthusiasm and respect for the Avatar property and us as its stewards. From the start, they’ve supported our ambitious plans and created a positive, proactive environment for us. We’re excited to be back at Nickelodeon where Avatar began, doing what we do best in the biggest way possible. We can’t wait to build the great teams and productions to make all of this fantasy a reality,” said Bryan Konietzko and Michael DiMartino."
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