Adelaide-based multi-platform media group Imagination has bought the rights to Australian children’s character Humphrey B Bear.
Imagination has paid an undisclosed amount for the assets of bankrupt Humphrey producer Banksia Productions from liquidators.
This gives it all rights to the Humphrey character, who is best known for popular Nine Network preschool series Here’s Humphrey and was voted Australia’s Citizen of the Year in 1994.
Here’s Humphrey first broadcast on NWS-9 in 1965 and ran on Nine until it was dumped in 2004 amid falling ratings. Nine announced a new season in 2007 but Banksia went into administration two years later.
Imagination – which has offices in Australia, New Zealand, North America, Europe and the UK – is primarily a games producer but said a new TV series and a dedicated YouTube channel were among its options for the bear.
“Humphrey is a classic preschool property and with some hard work and a little bit of magic forest dust, he will be entertaining children for many more years to come,” said Imagination CEO Shane Yeend.
He added Imagination’s team worked with the likes of the BBC, Disney and Fox, which gave Humphrey an “obvious clear path to success.” Along with Nine, Here’s Humphrey previously broadcast in Latin and North America and Asia.