ABC O&Os and others sign for educational kiddie shows


Litton Entertainment announced that Litton Studios will produce six, all-new, original half-hour series which meet the FCC standards for educational/informational programming (E/I) under the Children’s Programming rules. The series are being created exclusively for ABC affiliates, including the ABC O&O stations.

In addition to the ABC O&Os, station groups committed to the line-up of programs include Cox, McGraw-Hill, Newport and Post Newsweek. Litton said it will continue to distribute its previous line-up of E/I programming, including Jack Hanna’s Animal Adventures, Jack Hanna’s Into the Wild, and Animal Exploration with Jarod Miller, separately.

“Producing programming that protects a broadcaster’s license, educates children and entertains entire families is a privilege and a Litton tradition. Our company’s twenty year history of E/I quality programming began with Litton’s iconic leader in this category, Jack Hanna, whose series we launched in 1990, the same year the FCC first enforced the children’s television bill,” said Dave Morgan, President and CEO of Litton Entertainment.

“Litton has garnered a reputation for developing E/I content that not only educates but entertains. We know Litton will produce quality programs which will appeal to a family audience,” said Emily Barr, President and General Manager of ABC owned WLS-TV Chicago.

“The ABC Affiliate Association’s Board has recommended Litton’s lineup of E/I programs as the best programming and financial option for ABC affiliates. The combined footprint of the ABC Affiliates and the ABC owned stations delivering a consistent, high quality E/I programming block provides viewers, advertisers, and stations the best possible solution,” said Darrell Brown, President of McGraw-Hill Broadcasting and Chairman of the ABC Affiliate Board.

“We are enthusiastic about this lineup of programming, which we know will resonate in the heart of the country,” said Ray Cole, President and COO of Citadel Communications, which has ABC affiliates in Des Moines, Lincoln and Sioux City.

Litton’s original three-hour programming block – all shot in HD – focuses on high-impact subjects like ocean and land animals, health and wellness, and the digital connections between global cultures. Litton Entertainment noted that it offers complete station support for both D1 and D2 programs, including an FCC booklet for the public file that aids station attorneys during license renewals, synopses of every episode, reviews from an independent panel of nationally recognized experts/educators who have vetted each series, psychologists findings on each show’s E/I impact, and a letter from the Creator/ Executive Producer stating the program’s intentional demographic target of each series.