Davey and Goliath, the Wallace & Gromit equivalent of Christian media, entered into a new agreement with Scholastic to secure its return to the public eye, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA) announced on July 27.
Scholastic, the world’s largest publisher and distributor of children’s books, is working to publish two storybooks and two coloring/activity books based on the classic stop-motion animated television series starring Davey Hansen and his talking dog, Goliath.
The ELCA-owned Davey and Goliath aired on commercial television in the 1960s and 1970s with the effort to “bring moral and religious faith-based values to a new generation of children in lively and engaging ways.
"The ELCA's agreement with Scholastic is another step in our renewed effort to bring Davey and Goliath's message of God's love for children to 21st-century children and families. We are excited that Davey and Goliath's first major publishing agreement is with such a premier children's publishing company as Scholastic," said the Rev. Eric C. Shafer, director of the ELCA Department for Communication.
Scholastic is a "wonderful partner, and with their commitment to quality, family-friendly content, they share our vision and will play a significant role in the current re-launch plans for the ELCA's Davey and Goliath property," said Mark Bannon, president and CEO, Animation Content, LLC., East Granby, Conn.
The ELCA, which owns Davey and Goliath, entered into an agreement earlier this year with Animation Content to increase “visibility” for Davey and Goliath. The Scholastic venture follows along the same venture.
Walker. "The storybooks are what we call 'paper-over-board' books, which
"We are delighted with this development in conjunction with several other initiatives that are currently under way for the re-release of the classic animated episodes, and the release of the new modern-day Davey and Goliath animated holiday special, 'Davey and Goliath's Snowboard Christmas.' These important developments, along with other licensing and merchandising efforts, will help ensure that children and families today have the opportunity to be exposed to these lovable characters and timeless value-based messages," Bannon said to the ELCA news service.
Craig Walker, vice president and editorial director for Scholastic Children’s books, also expressed his joy for the partnership.
"Scholastic is thrilled to be bringing Davey and Goliath storybooks and color/activity books to a new generation of young readers," said Walker "The stories and themes of the television shows are very positive and the emphasis on good family and community values makes them perfect for Scholastic.”
Walker explained the specifics on the coloring and storybooks.
"The storybooks are what we call 'paper-over-board' books, which means hardcover without jackets. The coloring/activity books have line-drawing coloring pages, each with an additional bound-in feature. Right now we are thinking that one coloring book will have an iron-on image for use on T-shirts and more. Another will have either four-color stickers or a decorative magnet," Walker said.
Davey and Goliath was a childrens' television series produced by the Lutheran Church in the 1950s and 1960s and televised widely across the United States, the Caribbean and around the world. Although Davey has not appeared on broadcast television for nearly 35 years, it still is remembered as a pop culture "icon" with continued television and film mentions.
For more information on Davey and Goliath, please visit www.daveyandgoliath.org