Nickelodeon Movies has signed up Scarlett Johansson, Alec Baldwin and Jeffrey Tambor for voice work in its animated “The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie.”
Pic, due out Nov. 19 from Paramount, is being directed by Stephen Hillenburg, creator of the Nickelodeon cable series. Story centers on the irrepressible SpongeBob’s efforts to retrieve King Neptune’s stolen crown.
Hillenburg produced along with Nick Movies topper Albie Hecht and senior VP Julia Pistor with Gina Shay and Derek Drymon co-producing. Pic was written by Hillenburg, Drymon, Tim Hill, Kent Osborne, Aaron Springer and Paul Tibbitt.
“SpongeBob” represents the shingle’s latest effort to leverage the success of a Nickelodeon cable series. Previous efforts have included “Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius,” “Hey Arnold!” and three “Rugrats” pics, including last summer’s “Rugrats Go Wild,” which included the “Wild Thornberrys” characters. All the Nick pics have used traditional 2-D animation.
Nickelodeon also announced it has lined up an estimated $150 million in promo support from Mitsubishi, Burger King, the Cayman Islands, Holiday Inn and candy company Perfetti Can Melle USA. Kellogg began running spots in January; tie-ins include SpongeBob-themed Pop Tarts and breakfast cereal along with SpongeBob-imprinted Eggo waffles.
Mitsubishi, which previously used SpongeBob TV footage in an Endeavor SUV spot, will create a new spot tied to the movie while Burger King will stage a Kids Meal program in November. The Cayman Islands will use SpongeBob to target families planning vacations and for launching the Cayman Islands Sea School for children to learn about its marine environment.
Nick said the Holiday Inn program will start a relationship supporting the movie, the network and the Holiday Inn brand.
Nick Movies was formed in 1993 by the Viacom-owned cable channel to produce movies in association with its sister company, Paramount.