LazyTown

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This article is about the series. For the soundtrack, see LazyTown (soundtrack).
LazyTown
LazyTown logo.png
Genre Children's television series
Musical comedy
Puppetry
Live action
Animation
CGI
Created by Magnús Scheving
Starring Magnús Scheving,
Dyri Kristjansson,
Shelby Young,
Julianna Rose Mauriello,
Chloe Lang,
Stefán Karl,
Ronald Binion,
Guðmundur Þór Kárason,
Jodi Eichelberger,
Amanda Maddock,
Heather Asch,
Sarah Burgess,
Aymee Garcia,
David Matthew Feldman,
Julie Westwood
Opening theme "Welcome to LazyTown"
Ending theme "Bing Bang (Time to Dance)" (Instrumental)
Composer(s) Máni Svavarsson
Country of origin Iceland
United Kingdom
United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 4
No. of episodes 105 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s) Magnus Scheving
Raymond P. Le Gue
Mark Read
Ragnheidur Melsted
Running time 24 minutes
Production company(s) LazyTown Entertainment
Distributor Turner Broadcasting System
(Europe)
Viacom International Media Networks
(US/International)
BBC
(UK)
Release
Original network RÚV, Stöð 2 (Iceland)
Nick Jr. (US)
CBeebies (UK)
Boomerang (Europe)
Picture format HDTV
Original release 15 August 2004 (2004-08-15) – 15 October 2007 (2007-10-15)
(Original run)
13 March 2013 (2013-03-13) – 13 October 2014 (2014-10-13)
(Revived series)
Chronology
Followed by LazyTown Extra
External links
Website

LazyTown (Icelandic: Latibær) is an Icelandic-British-American educational musical children's television program with a cast and crew from Iceland, the United Kingdom, and the United States. It was created by Magnús Scheving, a gymnastics champion and CEO of LazyTown Entertainment, who also stars in the show. Originally performed in English, the show has been dubbed into more than a dozen languages (including Icelandic) and aired in over 100 countries.[1]

Fifty-three episodes were produced from 2004 to 2007, for the first and second seasons. It originally aired on Nickelodeon and Nick Jr. in the United States and CBeebies in the UK. Turner Broadcasting System Europe acquired LazyTown Entertainment in 2011[2] and commissioned a third season[3] consisting of 13 episodes, which premiered on 6 April 2013 in the United Kingdom on Cartoonito. A fourth season, also consisting of 13 episodes, premiered in the UK in 2014.[4]

It has generated spin-off projects including stage productions and a television program for younger children called LazyTown Extra.

TV production[edit]

LazyTown was created by Magnús Scheving, who also directed many of the TV program's episodes. The show is part live-action, part puppetry and part CGI animation. It was filmed and produced at 380 Studios, a purpose-built studio near Reykjavík equipped with high-end HDTV production facilities and one of the biggest green screens in the world. The production floor area is 1,800 square meters (almost 20,000 square feet).[5][6] The budget for each episode was approximately ISK 70,000,000 (US$1 million), about five times the average cost for a children's television programme at the time, making it "the most expensive children's show in the world", according to Scheving.[7][8]

Its virtual sets were generated with an Unreal Engine 3-based framework, created by Raymond P. Le Gué, known as XRGen4. According to Le Gué, "We start with the live actors and puppets on a physical set with a green screen behind them as a backdrop. The green screen is replaced in real time with the sets created in XRGen4 using UE3. As we move the camera and actors around the physical set, the backdrop scene also moves in real time in complete synchronization with the movements of the real camera. All of this is recorded, and the director can watch the resulting composition in real time."[9]

Seasons 3 and 4 of LazyTown were filmed as usual in the LazyTown Studios in Iceland, but the special effects were created this time round by Turner Studios in Atlanta.[10]

In most episodes, Stephanie, Sportacus, and Robbie are the only characters played by live actors. The rest of the characters are depicted as puppets, made by the Neal Scanlan Studio and Wit Puppets.

Cast[edit]

  • Magnus Scheving as Sportacus (1st time)
  • Shelby Young as Stephanie Meanswell (1st time)
  • Stefán Karl as Robbie Rotten
  • Ronald Binion as Pixel (1st time)
  • Guðmundur Þór Kárason as Ziggy
  • Jodi Eichelberger as Stingy
  • Amanda Maddock as Trixie (1st time)
  • David Matthew Feldman as Milford Meanswell, Newscaster Voices (1st time)
  • Julie Westwood as Bessie Busybody, Pixel (2nd time)
  • Julianna Rose Mauriello as Stephanie Meanswell (2nd time)
  • Kobie Powell as Pixel's Voice, Newscaster Voices (2nd time)
  • Sarah Burgess as Trixie's Voice, Trixie (3rd time)
  • Heather Asch as Trixie (2nd time)
  • Adam Pagdon as News Man's Voice
  • Thora Clausen as TV Narrator's Voice, AirShip's Voice (1st time)
  • Gudmunour Euas Knudsen as Soccerbot (1st time)
  • Stefan Gudjonsson as Soccerbot (2nd time)
  • Kristjana Saunn Olafsoottir as Rottenella
  • David Kristjan Olafsson as Little Sportacus
  • Thordis Elva Thorvaldsdottir as Little Sportacus' Voice
  • Emily Decola as Baby Bird
  • Darren Foreman as Newscaster Voices (3rd time)
  • Orn Arnason as Genie, Johnny B. Badd
  • Sam A. Mowry as Nararator's Voice
  • Kristjana T. Brynjolfsdottir as AirShip's Voice (2nd time)
  • Fridjon Olafsson as French Painter
  • Brynjolfur Haukur Ingolfsson as International Children (1st time)
  • Kristjan Thorlacius Finnsson as International Children (2nd time)
  • Xiao Li as International Children (3rd time)
  • Yanan Li as International Children (4th time)
  • Matthias Matthiasson as Sportacus' Singing Voice
  • Chloe Lang as Stephanie Meanswell (3rd time), The Opposite Stephanie
  • Asgeir Helgi Magnusson as Roboticus
  • Aymee Garcia as Trixie (4th Time)
  • Brynhildur Gudjonsdottir as SportShip's Voice (3rd time)
  • Johannes Haukur Johannesson as Chef Pablo Fantastico
  • Olafur S.K. Dorvaldz as Santa Claus, Teddicus' Voice
  • Johann G. Johannsson as Johnny SportsCandyseed
  • Sigurdur Por Oskarsson as Pinocchio
  • Hilmar Gudjonsson as Lulu Troll
  • Llmur Kristjansdottir as Lulu Troll's Voice
  • Bjorn Thors as Bobby Rotten
  • Snorri Engilbertsson as Tobby Rotten, Mummy
  • Bergur Por Ingolfsson as Flobby Rotten
  • Dyri Kristjansson as Sportacus (2nd time)

Main Characters[edit]

Sportacus (played by Magnus Scheving/Dyri Kristjansson) is the local athletic superhero. He resides in a blue airship above LazyTown, and is alerted to impending danger in LazyTown by a beeping crystal on the chest of his costume. Understanding, courageous, and helpful, he is devoted to exercise and physical activity and encourages others to follow his example. He has a rivalry with Robbie Rotten, who opposes all forms of athleticism and yearns for LazyTown to return to a sluggish, silent state. Sportacus lives on a diet of vegetables and fruit, which he refers to as "sports candy". Eating junk food makes him immediately lose all his strength and athletic abilities, which can only be restored by eating healthier foods.

Stephanie Meanswell (played by Julianna Rose Mauriello/Chloe Lang) is an energetic, active, enthusiastic, and sweet newcomer to town. She resides with her uncle, Mayor Milford Meanswell. Recognizable by her all-pink attire, Stephanie is initially disappointed by the inactive lifestyles of her new friends and coaxes them to partake in more athletic pastimes. Her attempts are often nearly thwarted by Robbie Rotten, who prefers to lead a sluggish, lazy lifestyle in an underground lair located beneath the town and is agitated by the sudden boom of physical activity. Nonetheless, Stephanie is eternally optimistic and hopeful, and always manages to triumph over any challenges in the end.

Robbie Rotten (played by Stefán Karl Stefánsson) is desiring silence and peace, continuously formulates feckless schemes that often feature him masquerading in various disguises as a means of hoodwinking or tempting residents away from an active lifestyle. He passionately abhors the influence of Sportacus and Stephanie, and a number of these schemes are intended either to do away with them or lure the people of town away from a fit lifestyle. Ironically, his attempts to promote physical inactivity often require considerable effort and force him to become more active.

Ziggy (played by Gudmundur Thor Karason) is the youngest resident. He loves to eat candy and sweets—particularly lollipops. After Stephanie came along he found that there is more to childhood than sugary treats. He is now active and participates in any sport the gang plays, but still enjoys candy. He can usually be seen holding a lollipop.

Trixie (played by Amanda Maddock/Heather Asch/Sarah Burgess/Aymee Garcia) is a troublemaker, though she does like to play with everyone else. Trixie refers to Stephanie as "Pinky" when trying to get her attention. She also likes to draw moustaches on the mayor's posters.

Pixel (played by Ronald Binion/Julie Westwood) is a 10-year-old who loves computers, technology and gadgets. He fixes up all sorts of gadgets to help him avoid doing something himself, such as a machine to tie his shoes or a remote that "does everything for you". Pixel represents the disadvantages of technology replacing outdoor activity and exercise.

Stingy (played by Jodi Eichelberger) is a selfish and possessive child. He still plays with the gang, but he will always care about his stuff, especially his car and his prized piggy bank. He often says "It's mine!" and has his own song by that name (which names everything in LazyTown as his; he even names "this instrumental break" within the song as his). He can also play the harmonica and recorder. His toy car is a 1978 Mini Cooper. In later seasons, he is often seen wearing rectangular glasses.

Mayor Meanswell (played by David Matthew Feldman) is a nervous wreck who has a crush on Miss Busybody. He loves his niece Stephanie very much and calls Sportacus if she feels sad or depressed. He is also famous for saying "Oh my!" all the time if something is wrong. In the episode "LazyTown Goes Digital", the Mayor is seen to be continually perplexed by modern technological terms and has to be corrected when foolishly trying to send a "b-mail" using a recently installed computer system.

Bessie Busybody (played by Julie Westwood) is an adult resident. Although patronizing, she tries her best to be motherly with the children. She is aware of every new trend, and is pompous but fashionable; she loves to talk on her cell phone.

Episodes[edit]

Fifty-three episodes were produced for the first two seasons of LazyTown between 2004 and 2007. A third season, consisting of 13 episodes, first aired in 2013. A fourth season consisting of another 13 episodes began airing in 2014.

Broadcast[edit]

The show first appeared on 16 August 2004 in the United States on Nick Jr., when it was a children's block on the Nickelodeon channel.[11] The second season debuted in the United States on Nick Jr. in 2006.[12][13] It also aired in the United States on CBS as part of the Nickelodeon on CBS Saturday morning block from 17 September 2005 to 9 September 2006. The series would continue to air daily on the Nick Jr. channel until late 2010.[14]

The series arrived in the UK in September 2005, initially appearing on CBeebies on BBC Two and then on the CBeebies channel from 2006.[15][16]

In 2008, a Spanish-dubbed version of LazyTown debuted on V-me, a television network created for the Hispanic market in the US.[17] NBC began airing it every Saturday on 7 July 2012, as part of the new Saturday morning NBC Kids pre-school block until early-2016.[citation needed] The Spanish-dubbed version also airs on Telemundo (a sister station to NBC) as part of the new weekend pre-school morning block MiTelemundo.[citation needed]

As of October 2013, ten episodes from season two were available for streaming on Netflix.[citation needed]

LazyTown Extra[edit]

On 15 September 2008, a spin-off television series called LazyTown Extra debuted in the United Kingdom on CBeebies. A "magazine format style show" for 3- to 6-year-olds, it features characters from LazyTown in an assortment of short sketches.[18] 26 episodes of LazyTown Extra have been produced, each between 11 and 15 minutes in duration.[19][20] Several characters are voiced by different actors from those who performed in LazyTown. Ziggy was on a move visiting places and meeting children.

Live shows[edit]

Prior to producing LazyTown, Magnús Scheving created two theatrical shows in Iceland. Áfram Latibær! ("Onward LazyTown!"/"Go Lazytown!", produced in 1996) had Scheving as an energetic elf who encouraged the townspeople to exercise and lead healthier lives. The show had a Stephanie-like character who was an out-of-shape dancer, but the Robbie Rotten character did not yet exist. Most of the secondary characters (puppets) seen in the television series also appeared in this show, although in human form. The second show, Glanni Glæpur í Latabæ ("Robbie Rotten in LazyTown", produced in 1999), introduced Stefán Karl Stefánsson playing his Robbie Rotten character, while Scheving's role changed from elf to hero in an airship.

The 2007–08 LazyTown Live show at the Alexandra Theatre, Birmingham

A LazyTown Live! stage production toured the United Kingdom and Ireland between October 2007 and August 2008. It introduced a new cast to the United Kingdom, including Julian Essex-Spurrier as Sportacus.[7][21][22]

A Spanish-speaking version of the live show premiered in Mexico in 2008, followed by Argentina, Costa Rica, Guatemala and Panama. As of 2009 it was scheduled to tour the United States in 2010.[23][24]

From 28 January to 29 November 2009, a live stage production entitled LazyTown Live! The Pirate Adventure toured the United Kingdom and Ireland. It featured characters and songs from LazyTown, performed by a new cast.[25][26]

New productions of LazyTown Live had their premières in November 2009 in Portugal and in March 2010 in Spain by producers Lemon Entertainment.

A live show LazyTown in Schools premièred in Australia in 2012, touring schools to promote healthy eating and fitness for children.[27] A live show lazy town as a Cartoon Network Live In dubai img worlds of adventure premiered in 2016

References[edit]

  1. ^ "LazyTown on air in 103 countries". LazyTown Entertainment. Archived from the original on 13 January 2010. Retrieved 25 November 2009. 
  2. ^ Turner, Mimi (8 September 2011). "'LazyTown' Founder Sells To Turner Broadcasting For $25 Million". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  3. ^ "C21Media". C21Media. 
  4. ^ "Turner's 'LazyTown' Returns for Season 4". Animation World Network. 30 January 2013. Retrieved 7 September 2015. 
  5. ^ "380 Studios – About Us". 380studios.com. 
  6. ^ "Icelandic Eurovision song‘s video 'Is it true' filmed in the LazyTown studios". Lazytown.com. 18 May 2009. Retrieved 29 August 2010.
  7. ^ a b "Action man: The world of Sportacus". London: The Independent. 3 July 2007. Archived from the original on 19 January 2008. Retrieved 19 April 2009. 
  8. ^ Moran, Caitlin (4 November 2006). "Mr Motivator". London: Times Online. Retrieved 19 April 2009. 
  9. ^ "Unreal Engine 3 Powers Critical and Commercial Success LazyTown". Unreal.com. Retrieved 8 February 2011.
  10. ^ Season 3 Press Release. Lazytownworld.com.
  11. ^ "LazyTown wows the US as it debuts on Nick Jr. to very healthy ratings". 20 September 2004. Archived from the original on 27 December 2010. 
  12. ^ "Join Sportacus and Stephanie for a week of new, high-energy adventures on Nick Jr's hit series LazyTown, beginning Monday, September 25 at 12:00 p.m.". lazytown.com. 14 September 2006. Archived from the original on 14 January 2010. 
  13. ^ Bryson, Carey (14 May 2006). "LazyTown Premieres New Second Season on Monday, May 15". About.com. Archived from the original on 13 April 2014. 
  14. ^ "Watch LazyTown every day on Nick Jr.". nickjr.com. Archived from the original on 29 March 2010. 
  15. ^ "LazyTown set to spur kids across Britain into action on BBC and Nick UK". lazytown.com. 28 September 2006. Archived from the original on 27 December 2010. 
  16. ^ Mills, Simon (24 November 2006). "I Am Sportacus". The Guardian. Retrieved 18 September 2015. 
  17. ^ "LazyTown Arrives on V-me". lazytown.com. 3 October 2008. Archived from the original on 27 December 2010. 
  18. ^ "CBeebies out and about with LazyTown Extra". BBC Press Office. 21 May 2008. Retrieved 19 April 2009. 
  19. ^ "LazyTown Entertainment Gives You Extra". Lazytown.com. 9 June 2008. Retrieved 19 April 2009. 
  20. ^ "BBC – CBeebies Programmes – LazyTown Extra". Retrieved 25 November 2009. 
  21. ^ Fletcher, Damien. "Suffering with Sportacus". Mirror.co.uk. Retrieved 19 April 2009. 
  22. ^ Dyball, Richard (14 July 2007). "Yes, I'm the real Sportacus". London: Times Online. Retrieved 19 April 2009. 
  23. ^ "LazyTown Live! En Español Coming to U.S."
  24. ^ Roberts, Katie. "US: Lazytown Live to hit the stage" Licensing.biz. 23 June 2009. Retrieved 25 November 2009.
  25. ^ "LazyTown Live". LazyTown Entertainment. Retrieved 9 January 2009. 
  26. ^ "Facebook – LazyTown Live! The Pirate Adventure". Retrieved 19 April 2009. 
  27. ^ "LazyTown Live in Schools 2015". lazytowninschools.com. 

External links[edit]