Franny Fantootsie entered the hearts of children across America last year with magical adventures that take viewers around the world to meet new people. Franny's Feet, produced by DECODE Entertainment in association with Thirteen/WNET New York, debuted in the U.S. on PBS KIDS last summer and has become a smash hit for four- to seven-year-olds. Franny's Feet will return with its second season of 13 half-hour shows premiering February 3, 2007 on PBS KIDS (check local listings).
Franny's enchanting adventures take her and her viewers to places around the world, where she meets new friends and tries to help them solve problems, sharing her feelings, fears and advice with the audience along the way. Global awareness, science and vocabulary development are woven together with delightful storytelling for a seamless, entertaining and interdisciplinary learning experience.
New Franny's Feet episodes once again take Franny to places near and far - sometimes even under the sea or back in time! In the new shows, Franny travels to India, where she learns how to make shadow puppets; to Quebec, where she helps a boy make maple syrup; to Mexico, where she helps a migrating goose find her flock;, to the Kalahari Desert, where she helps a shy meerkat and learns how these clever cats adapt; as well as some places closer to home, such as a dairy farm, a veterinarian's office, or a "fais do do" party in Louisiana.
During its first season in the U.S., Franny's Feet built on its international success by ranking No. 1 in the PBS weekend lineups in Seattle, St. Louis and New York, and also performed well in Philadelphia, Kansas City and Cincinnati. During the key November sweeps Franny's Feet continued delivering strong numbers, holding and/or building on its lead-in show as much as 50 percent in many markets. The series' popularity has already resulted in a major licensing deal with PLAYSKOOL, a division of Hasbro, Inc. PLAYSKOOL will be the worldwide master toy and game licensee for the critically acclaimed show, with the first Franny's Feet toys and games set to launch in 2008.
"Kids are really drawn to Franny - she's a spunky, adventurous girl who is a great role model for both boys and girls," said Sandra Sheppard, executive producer and director of children's and educational programming for Thirteen/WNET. "It's a wonderfully captivating and charming way for pre-schoolers to discover other worlds and cultures."
In every episode, while helping her grandpa in his shoe repair shop, Franny slips on a pair of shoes and says "Where will my feet take me today...?" From there, the adventures are limitless. Dancing shoes transport her to a Highland dance studio, and paint-splattered shoes to an island where an artist teaches her how to mix paint colors. In hiking boots, she travels to the Swiss Alps and goes camping with a new friend. Flippers take her under the sea. In sandals, she's transported to Africa, where she meets an ostrich. In cowboy boots, she's off to the rodeo. In knight's boots, she travels to a medieval feast, where she discovers that dragons need to learn a few things about manners.
Each 11-minute story is followed by "Franny's Treasures," an interactive segment in which Franny speaks directly to viewers. She asks for their help as she tries to figure out answers to game-like challenges. These segments, produced especially for the PBS KIDS GO! broadcast, expand on educational concepts explored in the previous story.
"Franny's Feet has enchanted kids across the world with its magical storytelling," said Beth Stevenson, executive vice-president, development and production at DECODE Entertainment and executive producer of "Franny's Feet." "We're looking forward to launching brand new episodes and interactive activities to US kids through Thirteen/WNET and PBS KIDS."
Viewers can go to Franny's Feet Online at pbskids.org/frannysfeet for fun Web-based features. By clicking on "Grandpa's Globe," kids can join Franny on adventures in locations around the world, including India, China, Hawaii, the Arctic, Canada, Africa, and South America. "Franny's Clips" offers short segments from the series and three sing-a-long music videos that highlight Franny's magical adventures and the many friends she meets along the way. In "Franny's Words," whimsical activities extend the content featured in the series and help build vocabulary. "Shoebox Adventures" features delightful, engaging and challenging interactive games that promote creativity and memory-building skills. And "Downloads" offers colorful wallpapers, adventure screensavers and coloring pages.
Franny's Feet is a proven international success commissioned by Five in the UK and Canada's Family Channel. It can be seen around the world on channels that include ABC Australia, France 5, Cartoon Network in Japan, Canada's TeleQuebec, RAI in Italy, TVP Poland, Cartoon Network Taiwan, TV2 Denmark, and TV12 Singapore.