×

Mediatrip shows ‘Rat’ stuff

Grammer aims for humor, staying current

“Frasier’s” Kelsey Grammer, who has already lent his voice to “The Simpsons,” has decided to become a little more animated, inking an exclusive deal with MediaTrip.com to create “Gary the Rat,” as well as a series of other animated comedy strips for the Netcaster.

In his first project for the Web, Grammer will produce the series, as well as future dot-com content through his Paramount Studios-based production company Grammnet.

Thirteen episodes, each about three minutes, have been produced. More will be created should the series take off among Netizens.

Paramount Network Television receives a first look at “Rat” after its bow in the fall to potentially turn the Web strip into a traditional TV show.

“The goal is to make the episodes as funny as we can and get the next order,” Grammer told Daily Variety. “We also want it to be a step up from what’s out there now and try to broaden the Internet viewing audience.”

“Gary the Rat” follows the life of high-powered Manhattan attorney, Gary (voiced by Grammer), who wakes up one day as a six-foot rat and finds he has become even more appealing to his clients.

It also features “Johnny Bugz,” Gary’s nemesis exterminator, as well as other supporting roles currently being cast.

MediaTrip — which serves as the official online partner for Joe Roth’s Revolution Studios — will also create an interactive arena for the show called “The Bug Cave,” built around the characters and plotlines, featuring games, contests and other content. A feline character named Boots will host the area, providing acerbic commentary on Johnny’s weekly foiled assassination attempts on Gary.

“Gary the Rat” was created by writer-producers Mark and Rob Cullen.

MediaTrip will produce, with Grammnet and the Cullen brothers exec producing.

Joanne Weiss, veep of production for Grammnet, who brought the project to MediaTrip , will co-produce.

Grammer said “Rat” had been shopped to a number of dot coms before inking with MediaTrip.

It’s an honor

“We are honored to work with Kelsey as a content development partner and look forward to creating compelling comedy content on the Internet,” MediaTrip.com CEO Austin Harrison said. “I know Kelsey’s phenomenal track record for creating enduring characters that people follow will transcend to the Internet audience.”

MediaTrip receives first-look rights on future Grammnet and Cullen brothers Web projects to partner for offline opportunities.

“I’m very excited about ‘The Rat,'” Grammer said. “It’s one of the best characters I’ve come across in years, and I think he has a very fruitful future.”

Grammer said that while he doesn’t consider himself a Web head, creating “Gary the Rat” was a way to entertain in a new medium.

“The idea of staying current in my mind is very important to me as an artist,” Grammer said. “I’m not a dinosaur anymore but I’m certainly not fluent with a lot of what’s going on. I’m thrilled about working on the cutting edge of entertainment.”

Grammer recently completed work on New Line’s “Fifteen Minutes,” starring Robert De Niro and Edward Burns. He recently received his 10th Emmy nomination for his role in “Frasier.”

More Digital

  • Alibaba Buys 8% Stake in Chinese

    Alibaba Buys 8% Stake in Chinese Video Platform Bilibili

    Alibaba has purchased an 8% stake in the Chinese online video platform Bilibili, the official Xinhua news agency reported. Bilibili is one of China’s top video streaming and entertainment platforms, with about 92 million monthly active users and 450 million page-views per day. Founded in 2009, it was listed on the NASDAQ last March. Alibaba’s [...]

  • Clevver-Logo

    Hearst Magazines Buys Clevver's Pop-Culture YouTube Channels After Defy's Demise

    Hearst Magazines has snapped up Clevver, a network of female-skewing lifestyle and pop-culture news YouTube channels that had been owned by now-defunct Defy Media. Clevver was left homeless after Defy’s sudden shutdown in November; its principals said at the time they were looking for a new home. Hearst Magazines sees a digital fit with Clevver’s [...]

  • "Brother" -- Episode 201-- Pictured (l-r):

    CBS Interactive's Marc DeBevoise on Streaming Boom, Content Strategy, and Apple

    Not everyone wants or needs to be Netflix to succeed in the streaming space. And not everyone sees Apple’s enigmatic new service as a threat. Even as rival streaming services offer gobs of content, CBS Interactive’s president and COO Marc DeBevoise sees the company’s targeted original programming strategy continuing to attract viewers to its All [...]

  • Rhett-Link-Good-Mythical-Morning

    Rhett & Link's Mythical Entertainment in Talks to Acquire Smosh (EXCLUSIVE)

    Smosh, the YouTube comedy brand left stranded after parent company Defy Media went belly-up, may be about to get a new business partner. Mythical Entertainment, the entertainment company founded by top YouTube comedy duo Rhett & Link, has been in talks about acquiring the Smosh brand, sources told Variety. Multiple potential buyers came forward to [...]

  • Pokemon Go

    Proposed 'Pokémon Go' Lawsuit Settlement May Remove Poké Stops, Gyms

    A proposed settlement in the class action lawsuit against “Pokémon Go” developer Niantic could remove or change a number of Poké Stops and Gyms in the popular augmented reality game. The proposed settlement was filed in a California court on Thursday and applies to anyone in the U.S. who owns or leases property within 100 meters [...]

  • Skyline of Doha at night with

    Qatar's beIN Rallies Support From U.S. Companies Against Pirate Broadcaster beoutQ

    Qatari powerhouse beIN Media Group has rallied support from American sports and entertainment entities, including Discovery and Fox, behind its request that the U.S. government place Saudi Arabia on its watch list of top intellectual property offenders. The Doha-based broadcaster, a state-owned spinoff of Al Jazeera news network, accuses the Saudi government of harboring pirate broadcaster [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content