Nickelodeon is branching into longform programming with a slate of original telefilms based primarily on existing Nick properties.

The cable network for kids announced Friday that it is committed to producing six to eight original made-fors per year. The new slate will launch Dec. 4 with “Alien Vacation,” based on the live-action adventure series “The Journey of Allen Strange.”

“Some of our films will be based on popular Nick characters in new, extraordinary situations, and some will reinterpret classic stories in a modern way,” said Albie Hecht, Nick’s president of film and television.

The movie slate for 2000 includes:

  • “Two Heads Are Better Than None,” starring Nick’s Kenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell;

  • “New Kid on the Planet,” based on the “Cousin Skeeter” series;

  • “Caitlin’s Way,” which will launch a new live action series of the same name in January;

  • “Globehunters: An Around the World in Eighty Days Adventure,” an animated rock musical; and

  • “The Electric Piper: A Pied Piper Adventure,” an animated rock musical.

Also in development are “Maniac Magee,” adapted from the book of the same name, and “Are You Afraid of the Dark?,” “Hey Arnold!” and “CatDog,” based on the Nick series.