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New preschool comedy Wildwoods to launch on RTÉjr

Date Posted: September 28, 2017

Wildwoods, the new live-action puppet comedy series for 4- to 7-year-olds chronicling the unlikely friendship between a gentle giant sasquatch and a feisty pint-sized sugarglider, premieres on Monday 9th October on RTÉjr.

The series, from Belfast-based studio Sixteen South, the BAFTA Independent Production Company of the Year, was made with funding support from Northern Ireland Screen supported by Invest NI and the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI). The first 26 x 11’ series of Wildwoods can be seen every day on RTÉjr – including weekends – at 8.30am and 4.00pm.

The show follows the comic adventures of odd couple Cooper, the laid-back giant sasquatch who moves to the woods from his home in the Big City, and his new forest friend Poppy, the small, nature-loving Sugar Glider with the big attitude who helps him learn about life a long way from the city. In each of the episodes, a simple task usually goes very wrong as Cooper’s sheltered indoor existence makes him ill-prepared for outdoor living. Filmed entirely in beautiful forest locations in Ireland, Wildwoods aims to encourage children to take a digital break, rediscover the great outdoors and appreciate the wonder of nature.

Wildwoods was mainly shot in the scenic grounds of the historic 2,000 acre Clandeboye Estate on the outskirts of Bangor, Co Down, home to the Marchioness of Dufferin and Ava, which boasts the largest area of broad-leaved woodland in Northern Ireland. Spectacular countryside in Co Antrim and Co Wicklow also features in the show.

While largely humorous and full of stunning scenery to tempt children away from their digital devices and into the open air, the series also tackles serious subjects ranging from sadness, jealousy, tolerance, the loss of a friend, trust and cheating to appreciating art and the dangers of eating too much sugar.

Colin Williams, Show Creator and Producer “I cannot wait for kids and grown-ups everywhere to meet and fall in love with Cooper and Poppy – they’re an incredibly funny odd couple on a genuinely funny emotional rollercoaster.  It’s the most challenging show we’ve ever made but quite possibly our finest work to date.”

Pauline MacNamara, Executive Producer, Animation and Independent Commissioning YPP, RTE “Watching Wildwoods is like a taking a breath of fresh air with your most entertaining friend. Sixteen South has brought together a fantastic team of writers and performers and placed them in the most breath-taking landscapes we have to create a truly funny comedy series about friendship. We are delighted to have supported Wildwoods from the start and look forward to the comedy splash it will make in the RTÉjr autumn schedule.”

In the first episode, Arrival, to be aired on Monday 9th October, Cooper arrives in Wildwoods for the first time to try to re-engage with his woodland roots. When he meets Poppy and her snail pal, Frederick, they get off on the wrong foot, but an unfortunate incident in the spooky Swampy Swamp causes them each to realise that the other isn’t so bad after all, and an unlikely friendship is born.

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