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Genius Brands International Licenses Exclusive Rights to Gershwin Entertainment to Create Live Touring Shows Across North America for Hit Nick Jr. Preschool Series Rainbow Rangers

December 17, 2018

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif., Dec. 17, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Following on its strong November 5 premiere on Nick Jr., reaching #1 Kids 2 – 11 and Girls 2 – 5 in its third week on air, Genius Brands International’s “Genius Brands” (NASDAQ: GNUS) new animated adventure preschool series, Rainbow Rangers, will be heading to the live stage following a rights acquisition deal for live touring shows by diversified entertainment production and marketing agency Gershwin Entertainment, founded by industry veteran Todd Gershwin. The live theater production debut of Rainbow Rangers is timed to coincide with the preschool brand’s U.S. retail launch in 2019. The announcement was made jointly by Genius Brands’ SVP of Global Licensing Lloyd Mintz and Gershwin.

With Rainbow Rangers delivering impressive ratings on Nick Jr., and with the licensing program launching with over 300 product SKU’s at retail across the U.S. for back-to-school/holiday 2019, licensing industry insiders are forecasting that Rainbow Rangers will be among the top ‘must-have’ consumer products’ franchises for children of all ages throughout the latter half of next year and beyond.

“The consumer response to Nick Jr.’s introduction of Rainbow Rangers demonstrates that the brand’s plethora of licensing partners are on track to benefit from what promises to be one of 2019’s hottest new preschool entertainment properties,” said Mintz. “Todd Gershwin and his amazing team of live stage performance professionals share our vision for this dynamic property. As a longtime producer, Todd has developed and produced numerous successful theatrical productions, Broadway shows, concerts and tours for various iconic brands and we are all very excited to place Rainbow Rangers in his very capable hands.”

“Young children are already clamoring for all things Rainbow Rangers,” added Gershwin. “The colorful costumes, music and amazing adventures that provide the formidable foundation for the animated series lend themselves to live theater production, and we are honored the Genius Brands has entrusted us to develop another exciting platform for its young fans to engage with the Rainbow Rangers characters.”

Genius Brands has partnered with over 25 blue-chip industry-leading licensing partners for the retail launch of Rainbow Rangers, including Mattel Inc. (master toy), MacMillan Publishing (master publishing), Bentex (master apparel), A.M.E. (sleepwear), Berkshire Fashions (cold weather accessories), BioWorld (bags, backpacks), Ceaco (puzzles), Disguise (Halloween costumes), Handcraft Manufacturing (packaged underwear), H.E.R. Accessories (jewelry and hair accessories), Jay Franco (bedding and bath), Dynacraft (bicycles), Kid Galaxy (bubble toys), Kiddieland (foot-to-floor ride-ons), Planet Sox (hosiery), Spirit Halloween (direct-to-retail program), KIDdesigns (youth electronics line), and Basic Fun! (novelty toy line).

About Rainbow RangersThe Rainbow Rangers series follows the thrilling rescue-based adventures of seven 9-year-old girls who are Earth’s first responders, protecting people, animals, resources, and the natural beauty of our world. The Rainbow Rangers, who live in the magical land of Kaleidoscopia at the other side of the rainbow, have their distinctive personalities and superpowers. Whenever there’s trouble for the people or animals of Earth, our seven heroines zoom into action and ride their Spectra Scooters across the rainbow to save the day. Viewers will join them on exciting adventures but also see them at home having the same daily dramas and hilarities as every preschooler watching the show. And at its heart, Rainbow Rangers is about empowering and encouraging girls to take action and make a difference in their own homes and neighborhoods to improve and safeguard the planet. Every viewer—boys and girls alike—will see themselves in at least one of these strong, unique and empowered Rangers!

Boasting a unique and highly-accomplished team of creators from the animated motion picture world, Rainbow Rangers’ creative development and production team includes Rob Minkoff (Disney’s The Lion King director), Shane Morris (Disney’s Frozen co-writer), Tim Mansfield, and New York Times Bestselling author and Emmy-nominated writer Elise Allen (Dinosaur Train, Lion Guard, Barbie specials) who is serving as head writer and co-creator. Genius Brands’ Chairman and CEO and multiple Emmy Award-winning producer of more than 5,000 episodes of children’s programming, Andy Heyward, serves as executive producer, with legendary Disney alum Ruben Aquino creating key designs. Aquino is responsible for the design and animation of many of Disney’s most iconic characters from award-winning films including The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, Mulan and Frozen.

About Gershwin Entertainment Corporation Gershwin Entertainment is a diversified entertainment production and marketing agency founded by industry veteran Todd Gershwin. Gershwin Entertainment specializes in producing live events and theatrical tours, with a specialty in family entertainment. Gershwin has developed and produced successful theatrical productions, concerts, and tours for numerous iconic brands. Current North American touring projects include A Charlie Brown Christmas, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, PBS Kids Live, Rainbow Rangers, Tony Award-winning Broadway hit musical Million Dollar Quartet, American Rhapsody and A Night with Janis Joplin. Gershwin’s projects have played at leading venues throughout North America including Madison Square Garden, the Hollywood Bowl, Ravinia, Wolf Trap, Arena Stage, the Pasadena Playhouse and numerous Broadway theaters.

About Genius Brands InternationalHeadquartered in Beverly Hills, Genius Brands International, Inc. (NASDAQ:GNUS) is a leading global kids media company developing, producing, marketing and licensing branded children’s entertainment properties and consumer products for media and retail distribution. The Company’s “content with a purpose” brand portfolio, which is led by award-winning creators and producers, includes preschool properties Rainbow Rangers for Nick Jr. and Llama Llama for Netflix; award-winning toddler brand, Baby Genius; adventure comedy STEM series, Thomas Edison’s Secret Lab; and financial literacy and entrepreneurship series, Warren Buffett’s Secret Millionaires Club. The Company’s content catalog also includes the animated series, Stan Lee’s Cosmic Crusaders, created with Stan Lee’s Pow! Entertainment. Seeing the need to provide kids and parents with a safe viewing environment that offers premium enriching and engaging programming, Genius Brands launched the Genius Brands Network – comprised of Kid Genius Cartoon Channel and Baby Genius TV, as well as an exclusive Kid Genius Cartoons Plus subscription channel on Amazon Prime. The Network channels are available in approximately 80 million U.S. households via a variety of distribution platforms, such as OTT, set-top box, internet, and mobile. Through licensing agreements with category leading partners, characters from the Company’s properties also appear on a wide range of consumer products for retail. For additional information, please visit www.gnusbrands.com.Certain statements in this press release constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the federal securities laws. Words such as “may,” “might,” “will,” “should,” “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “estimate,” “continue,” “predict,” “forecast,” “project,” “plan,” “intend” or similar expressions, or statements regarding intent, belief, or current expectations, are forward-looking statements. While the Company believes these forward-looking statements are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on any such forward-looking statements, which are based on information available to us on the date of this release. These forward-looking statements are based upon current estimates and assumptions and are subject to various risks and uncertainties, including without limitation those set forth in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”), not limited to Risk Factors relating to its patent business contained therein. Thus, actual results could be materially different. The Company expressly disclaims any obligation to update or alter statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/5c59d9b6-c901-461a-8390-74f2ff9c189f

Genius Brands International Media Contact: Investor Relations Contact: Michelle Orsi Michael Porter Three.Sixty Marketing & Communications PLR Investor Relations (310) 418-6430 212.564.7000 michelle@360-comm.com mike@plrinvest.com

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