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Genius Taps Discovery Kids DVDs

26 Oct, 2006 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Genius Products shows no signs of curtailing its burgeoning portfolio of DVD product.

The Santa Monica, Calif.-based distributor, which is 70% owned by The Weinstein Co., Oct. 26 announced its multiyear deal with Discovery Communications for U.S. distribution rights to the cable channel's kids programming.

Earlier this month, Image Entertainment secured DVD rights to non-children's fare from the Discovery Channel.

Genius plans an aggressive rollout of the Discovery Kids properties beginning in February 2007, delivering at least 16 titles annually.

DVD titles include Kenny the Shark, Tutenstein and Flight 29 Down, as seen on the Discovery Kids Channel, and PAZ and The Save-Ums! from “Ready Set Learn!,” the preschool block that airs on The Learning Channel and Discovery Kids.

Home video release dates for the Discovery Kids titles will be announced soon.

“Discovery is a well-respected brand whose channels and programming are synonymous with excellence,” said Genius president and CEO Trevor Drinkwater.

In October, Genius secured exclusive home entertainment distribution rights to the lucrative World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) line of DVDs.

In addition, Genius upped its horror/thriller profile with the acquisition of DVD rights to two independent movies from Toronto-based Peace Arch Entertainment Group's Archetype Films.

Separately, the distributor revealed in a regulatory filing that it had guaranteed ESPN Enterprises Inc. a minimum of $4.5 million annually over the course of its exclusive five-year North American DVD distribution deal with The Walt Disney Co. unit.

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