Nielsen to topline animated series for Amberwood

TORONTO — Sheldon Wiseman, forced to give up control of his Lacewood Group of companies to Paragon Entertainment Corp. last month, is developing a new TV series utilizing the talents of Leslie Nielsen through a new company, Amberwood Entertainment Corp.

Wiseman told Daily Variety Tuesday that Amberwood is producing a 13-episode half-hour animated action-adventure comedy series called “Zeroman,” featuring Nielsen’s voice and caricature.

“Zeroman” was created by Cloud 9 Filmed Entertainment of Los Angeles and will share certain rights with Amberwood.

Toronto-based Paragon took over Lacewood last month after Lacewood failed to pay off its debt to Paragon in time to meet a court-set deadline. Amberwood and Lacewood are both based in Ottawa.

Although he founded the company, Wiseman is not an officer. He has recruited Lacewood’s former head of business affairs, Mark Edwards, to serve as president; and Gerald Tripp (“Flash Gordon”) as VP production.

Rather than a board of directors, Amberwood has a five-member advisory council chaired by Arthur Weinthal, the former programming chief for CTV, to help map out the company’s strategy.

Wiseman said Amberwood is amply financed by an Ottawa investment company.

“Senior animators start work Tuesday on nine projects in development,” he added, declining to elaborate.