Bardel Entertainment

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Bardel Entertainment, Inc.
FoundedJune 19, 1987
FounderBarry Ward
Delna Bhesania
Key people
Rick Mischel (CEO)[1]
ProductsRick and Morty, "Teen Titans Go!" "44 Cats" "Puss in Boots" "All Hail King Julien" "Dinotrux" VeggieTales series
OwnerRainbow S.p.A
(Viacom [30%])
ParentRainbow S.p.A.

Bardel Entertainment, Inc. is a Canadian animation studio founded in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada in 1987. The word "Bardel" comes from the names of its founders, Barry Ward and Delna Bhesania, who are a married couple.[2] It is involved in the acquisition, development, production and distribution of animated programming.[3] For 30 years, Bardel has been the leading animation service provider in North America due to its stellar reputation built on three core values: quality, creativity and innovation. Led by CEO, Rick Mischel, previously a producer at Sony Pictures Animation, Bardel is recognized as one of the most trusted names in the industry.

Bardel is a full-service animation studio concurrently providing animation services for a diverse slate of U.S. blue-chip partners: Nickelodeon, DreamWorks, Warner Bros., Funrise and Cartoon Network Adult Swim. Bardel has a rolling slate of projects in production. The current roster includes the new Netflix Original Series, The Dragon Prince (Wonderstorm), Teen Titans Go! (Warner Bros.), 44 Cats (Rainbow S.p.A) and Rainbow, Butterfly, Unicorn, Kitty (Funrise).

Later recent work includes award-winning series such as Angry Birds Blues, King Julien, Puss in Boots, Dinotrux, Rick and Morty, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Harmon Quest and Teen Titans Go! In 2015, Bardel won an Emmy Award for King Julien for Outstanding Children’s Animated Program, and in 2016, Bardel won an Emmy Award for Dinotrux for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Animation (Juried Award). In 2018, Rick and Morty received the Critics' Choice award for animation and was nominated for an Emmy Award. Older animation projects include the Viva Piñata television series, Mack & Moxy,[4] Chaotic, Edgar & Ellen and ¡Mucha Lucha!.[5] , a thirteen-part series based on Silverwing and two direct-to-video films based on Mega Bloks Dragons. Another Bardel-produced show, Zeke's Pad,[6] which has been broadcast in countries such as Australia and Germany, made its Canadian premiere on YTV on January 9, 2010.[7]

Bardel has 500 employees, with a studio in Vancouver and Kelowna. The entertainment company has done animation for many organizations such as the Fox Broadcasting Company, DreamWorks, Warner Bros., Nickelodeon, Disney and Cartoon Network.[8]

On October 5, 2015, Italian animation studio Rainbow S.r.l. acquired Bardel Entertainment.[9] Rainbow Group is one of the largest animation studios and licensors in the world, employing over 1000 people. Headquartered in Italy, with subsidiaries in Moscow, Hong Kong and Singapore. 

Bardel History[edit]

The Beginning - Bardel opened its doors in 1987. From its inception, Bardel gained a reputation for high-quality animation production. This was the gateway to developing relationships with some of the world’s largest studios such as DreamWorks Animation, Warner Bros, Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network Adult Swim, Rovio and Mattel.

1987 - Bardel Animation Colouring House is founded. Bardel quickly gains the reputation for delivering high-quality “ink and paint” due to the successful animated-shorts provided to Spike & Mike’s Animation Festival, as well as commercials for Marv NewLand’s International Rocketship.

In the early 90s, the Company broke into feature films by working on titles such as Space Jam for Warner Bros, Anastasia for Fox, and Prince of Egypt for DreamWorks Animation. Bardel’s relationship with DreamWorks continued to grow with work on the film Joseph, King of Dreams. In the late 90s, Bardel completed work on DreamWorks last 2D hand drawn feature entitled Sinbad.

1989 - 1995 - Bardel re-brands to become Bardel Animation Ltd. and begins providing full-service animation (pre-production to camera) for Shamu, the Beginning, a half hour television special for the Sea World Theme Parks. This becomes the gateway to developing relationships with some of the largest studios in North America, such as Nelvana and MGM. During this time, Bardel provides animation services on such as titles as Fievel Goes West, The Pink Panther and The Magic School  Bus.

1996 - 1998 - The Company breaks-out of the television mold and into the feature film arena by working on well-known titles such as Space Jam for Warner Bros, Anastasia for Fox, and Prince of Egypt for DreamWorks.

1999 - Bardel’s relationship with DreamWorks continues with work on the direct-to-video film Joseph, King of Dreams. While this is still “hand-drawn” (paper and pencil),Bardel and DreamWorks together develop a hybrid feature and television pipeline with digital scene planning. The result: feature quality animation for a direct-to-video feature budget.

2001, Bardel started training its 2D feature artists with 3D techniques to combine the “hand-drawn” quality with state-of-the-art technology. Bardel continued to work on 3D feature films completing work for the feature Hoodwinked and Happy Never After. Bardel’s work on Nickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles set a new standard for TV series 3D animation production. The company climbed to new heights with the feature film Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet, which was released at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).

2002 - Bardel completes work on the DreamWorks feature Sinbad, which is to be the final “hand-drawn” production at Bardel and the Company fully embraces the digital era. Later that same year, through experimenting with computer painting techniques, Bardel delivers its first proprietary television special, The Christmas Orange, for which the company received its first Leo Award accolade and Gemini nomination.

2003 - A quantum leap forward – Bardel begins training 2D artists with 3D techniques to combine the “hand-drawn” quality of the past with state-of-the-art technology and goes on to create the game, Buzz Light Year for Disney’s Interactive division. This will lead the way to Bardel creating its own proprietary 3D / 2D animated series, Silverwing. That same year, Bardel set the new standard in 2D animation when it produced the first fully Flash animated series for the US network, Warner Bros., entitled Mucha Lucha.

2004 - Another year and another first for Bardel. Bardel makes the strategic decision to grow 3D feature production in-house. This decision leads to the production and release of Bardel’s first acclaimed direct-to-video feature entitled Dragons: Fire & Ice. Due to the success of Warner Bros.’ 2D animated series, Mucha Lucha, Bardel gathers momentum and begins work on Disney’s Flash animated series, The Buzz about Maggie.

2005 - With a new 3D division gaining with a reputation for excellence, Bardel is hired to create assets and animation for the feature film, Happily N’Ever After. In the same year, Bardel also produces the second DVD installment of Dragons: Metal Ages.

2006 - Another innovation at Bardel. The Company creates “squish and squash” TV series animation techniques when co-producing the 3D television series, Viva Pinata. Bardel then goes onto expand its 2D Flash animation repertoire with “action adventure” style movement for the television series, Chaotic.

2008 - Bardel produces the 3D animated series, Zeke's Pad, a Canada and Australia treaty co-production.

2009 - Another industry first – Bardel produces the first harmony prime-time animated series, Neighbors from Hell, for DreamWorks. Later that same year, Bardel explores the virtual world with the development of its own virtual property, Toki World.

2011 - 2012 - Bardel’s reputation for high-quality, leading-edge animation earns the Company work on one of most recognized television series on the air, Nickelodeon’s hit series, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, for which Bardel sets a new standard for TV series 3D animation production. With the company’s growing reputation, Nickelodeon then entrusts Bardel with another of its signature 3D animated series, Monsters VS Aliens. That same year, Starburn's Industries produce the hit primetime animated series, Rick and Morty, for Cartoon Network-Adult Swim with Bardel to do the animation. Bardel continues to team up with Warner Bros., producing their hit animated series, Teen Titans Go!

2013 -Bardel explores the world of live-action. Bardel produces its first live-action / animated series with Stella Projects in Australia, providing live-action compositing (green screen integration) for the children’s pre-school series, Lah Lah’s Adventures. At the same time providing the animation in the Fairly Odd Parents live-action movie, Fairly Odd Summer with Pacific Bay Entertainment, for Nickelodeon. Bardel begins work on another co-production with its prime-time series, Mother Up!, starring Eva Longoria, as well as delivering 3D animated DVD’s for the children’s educational brand, Leap Frog.

2013 - Bardel’s work on Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet deserves a stand-alone mention. The feature was envisioned to be traditional “hand-drawn” animation. Using its own proprietary digital pipeline, the Company created a 3D pipeline that emulated a 2D appearance of traditional “hand-drawn” animation, which combined 3D animation and 2D finaling, which was hailed as a landmark achievement in animation. The feature is released at the 2014 Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).

2014, DreamWorks approached Bardel with an extraordinary deal to animate four hit direct-release Netflix series' Dinotrux, King Julien, Puss in Boots and Veggie Tales.

2015 - Bardel was a Winner of Daytime Emmy Award for King Julien for Outstanding Children’s Animated Program and in 2016 Bardel won an Emmy Award or Dinotrux for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Animation (Winner – Juried Award).

2015 - Bardel entered into a new phase of its thirty-year history and was acquired by Rainbow Group, one of the largest animation studios and licensors in the world. Bardel & Rainbow artists collaborate across continents between their Rome, Loreto, Vancouver and Kelowna studios!

2017 -  Global conglomerates Rovio Entertainment & Mattel joined Bardel's roster with hit shows Angry Birds Blues  and Monster High.

2017 - Bardel forged a new relationship with Funrise to animate the 2D toon Rainbow, Butterfly, Unicorn, Kitty, which targets kids 6 -11yrs. Rainbow is on-board as a co-producer and will represent the property in Italy, along with a number of additional European territories.

2017 - Bardel began animation on their parent company, Rainbow's IP, 44 Cats.

Today, Bardel offers a bigger breadth of production services than ever before, bringing the world's most celebrated animation brands to the screen like Puss and Boots Teen Titans Go and Rick and Morty to name a few! As one of the most sought-after studios to work for, Bardel attracts top animation and technical talent from around the world, and has a capacity for up to 12 productions simultaneously.

Produced works[edit]


Show Year(s) Co-production(s) Notes
The Raccoons 1990 Evergreen Raccoons Television Production "Black Belt Bentley!" (camera, xeroxing, and opaquing)
The Ren & Stimpy Show Nickelodeon "Big House Blues"
Britannica's Tales Around the World 1991 Encyclopædia Britannica "The Maiden, the Frog, and the Chief's Son" (xeroxing)
Fish Police 1992 Hanna-Barbera
Fievel's American Tails Universal Cartoon Studios additional production facility
The Pink Panther 1993 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Animation additional pre-production
Tales from the Cryptkeeper 1993–1994 Nelvana production facility
Dog City 1993 The Jim Henson Company additional production facility
Problem Child 1994 Universal Cartoon Studios storyboards (season 2)
The Magic School Bus 1994–1997 Scholastic pre-production
Phantom 2040 Hearst Entertainment pre-production
Aaahh!!! Real Monsters 1995–1997 Klasky Csupo storyboards
The Savage Dragon 1995 Universal Cartoon Studios
Stickin' Around 1996–1997 Nelvana storyboards (season 1), animation (season 2)
Flash Gordon Hearst Entertainment storyboards and sheet direction
The Magical Adventures of Quasimodo 1996 pre-production
The Oz Kids Hyperion Pictures storyboards
Bruno the Kid 1996–1997 Film Roman pre-production
Jumanji: The Series 1996–1999 Adelaide Productions
Project G.e.e.K.e.R. 1996
Prince of Atlantis 1997 Pixibox
Ivanhoe The King's Knight CINAR
Rugrats Klasky Csupo storyboards
Cartoon Sushi MTV Animation "Howl", "Man's Best Friend"
Flying Rhino Junior High 1998–2000 Nelvana additional production facility
George and Martha 1999–2000
Milo's Bug Quest 2000 Sunwoo Entertainment pre-production
Marsupilami Marathon Media storyboards
Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law Williams Street
Zoog Disney 2001–2002 Disney Channel
Seven Little Monsters Nelvana additional production facility
¡Mucha Lucha! 2002–2005 Warner Bros. Animation
The Mr. Dink Show 2002
Silverwing 2003
The Buzz on Maggie 2005 Walt Disney Television Animation
El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera 2006 Nickelodeon Animation Studios pilot
Viva Piñata 2006–2009 4Kids Entertainment
Wow! Wow! Wubbzy! 2006–2010 Starz Media
Where My Dogs At? 2006 MTV/MTV2 Music Group
Chaotic 2006–2008 4Kids Entertainment season 1
Edgar & Ellen 2007–2008 Star Farm Productions
Zeke's Pad 2008–2009 Flying Bark Productions
Pearlie 2009–2010 Nelvana
Neighbors from Hell 2010 MoonBoy Animation
Planet Sheen 2010–2011 Nickelodeon Animation Studios additional animation
Fanboy & Chum Chum 2011–2012 season 2
Bob's Burgers 2011 Bento Box Entertainment season 1
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2012–2017 Nickelodeon Animation Studios
Monsters vs. Aliens 2013–2014 Nickelodeon
Teen Titans Go! 2013–present Warner Bros. Animation
Mother Up! 2013–2014 Breakthrough Entertainment
Rick and Morty 2013–present Williams Street
Lah-Lah's Adventures 2014 Stella Projects
VeggieTales in the House 2014–2016 DreamWorks Animation
All Hail King Julien 2014–2017
The Adventures of Puss in Boots 2015–2018
The Simpsons 2015 20th Century Fox Television "Mathlete's Feat" (couch gag)
Captain Jake and the Never Land Pirates 2015–2016 Walt Disney Television Animation season 4
Dinotrux 2015–present DreamWorks Animation
DC Super Hero Girls Warner Bros. Animation
Dawn of the Croods 2015 DreamWorks Animation "The Mean Warts", "School of Hard Rocks", "Garden of Eaten"
Mack & Moxy 2016 Georgia Public Broadcasting
HarmonQuest 2016–present Starburns Industries
VeggieTales in the City 2017 DreamWorks Animation
Angry Birds Blues 2017–present Rovio Entertainment
44 Cats Rainbow S.r.l.
Rainbow Butterfly Unicorn Kitty 2018 Saban Brands
The Dragon Prince Wonderstorm
Kung Fu Panda: The Paws of Destiny Dreamworks Animation


Show Year(s) Co-production(s) Notes
The Nutcracker Prince 1990 Lacewood Productions additional opaquing services
Rover Dangerfield 1991 Hyperion Pictures additional animation services
Bébé's Kids 1992
The New Adventures of Little Toot Strand Home Video pre-production art services
Once Upon a Forest 1993 Hanna-Barbera
Balto 1995 Amblimation animation, uncredited
Space Jam 1996 Warner Bros. Animation
Anastasia 1997 Fox Animation Studios animation
The Prince of Egypt 1998 DreamWorks Animation animation services
The Road to El Dorado 2000 special effects
Joseph: King of Dreams animation
Marco Polo: Return to Xanadu 2001 The Tooniversal Company additional animation production
Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron 2002 DreamWorks Animation additional final line services
Eight Crazy Nights Columbia Pictures additional animation
Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas 2003 DreamWorks Animation additional final line services
Dragons: Fire and Ice 2004 Mega Bloks
¡Mucha Lucha!: The Return of El Maléfico 2005 Warner Bros. Animation
Dragons II: The Metal Ages Mega Bloks
Happily N'Ever After 2006 Vanguard Animation
Wubbzy's Big Movie! 2008 Starz Media
The Prophet 2014 Participant Media CGI animation


Show Year(s) Co-production(s) Notes
The Wish That Changed Christmas 1991 McDonald's assistant animation
Itsy Bitsy Spider 1992 Hyperion Pictures additional animation services
Wanna Be a Dino Finder 1995 Cloud 9 Interactive video game; animation
But Where Does It Come From? 1996 Playhouse Pictures
Gregory and Me Kideo
The Christmas Orange 2002
Def Jam Vendetta 2003 EA Canada video game; additional animation
SuperFuckers 2012–2013 Frederator Studios
Nickelodeon Animated Shorts Program 2013–2016 Nickelodeon "Earmouse and Bottle", "Space Mission: Danger"
Albert 2016 Nickelodeon Animation Studios animation
Rick and Morty: Rick and Morty Exquisite Corpse 2017 Titmouse, Inc./Williams Street
Monster High: The Adventures of The Ghoul Squad Mattel Creations


  1. ^
  2. ^ AWN | Animation World Network. "Bardel Entertainment: Success Painted in Broad Strokes | AWN | Animation World Network". AWN. Retrieved 2013-10-07.
  3. ^ "Company - Bardel Entertainment". Archived from the original on 2013-10-01. Retrieved 2013-10-07.
  4. ^ Group, Evoda. "Bardel Entertainment Inc. Animates "Mack & Moxy" - Bardel Entertainment". Bardel Entertainment. Retrieved 2016-04-04.
  5. ^ "CREATIVE SERVICES - Bardel Entertainment". Archived from the original on 2013-10-05. Retrieved 2013-10-07.
  6. ^ "Properties - Bardel Entertainment". Archived from the original on 2013-10-01. Retrieved 2013-10-07.
  7. ^ "Press Release - CORUS KIDS JANUARY 2010 HIGHLIGHTS". 2009-12-07. Retrieved 2013-10-07.
  8. ^ Mercedes Milligan (2013-02-05). "Bardel Collaborating with Frank Saperstein". Animation Magazine. Retrieved 2013-10-07.
  9. ^ "Rainbow buys Canadian animation studio Bardel". October 5, 2015. Retrieved October 6, 2015.

External links[edit]