Mattel Television (formerly Mattel Creations) is the television production banner/division of Mattel. Originally created by Mattel as an American-English content production division to centralize its media production output on March 10, 2016, it was active for two years before the film franchise's hiatus and its revival in between the TV series, "Barbie: Dreamhouse Adventures", simply from 2016 to 2019. On launch, it absorbed Mattel Playground Productions and HiT Entertainment.
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Beginnings as Mattel Creations
Mattel Creations was formed on March 30, 2016 to bring all three of Mattel's content production units, including the American Girl creative team in Middleton, Wisconsin, under its aegis. Mattel's then chief content officer Catherine Balsam-Schwaber was named to head the unit. While, Christopher Keenan was moved up out of the now-defunct HiT Entertainment to be the division's Senior Vice President of content development & production. Two pacts with DHX Media (now WildBrain) and 9 Story Media Group were placed into Mattel Creations. The DHX partnership with Mattel included HiT properties (Bob the Builder and Fireman Sam) and direct Mattel properties (Little People and Polly Pocket). The partnership included new multi-platform content development and production and distribution of the new and existing content. 9 Story deal was directly with HiT for 2017 revivals of Barney & Friends and Angelina Ballerina, there were originally reboots on either revival, but the plans were scrapped..
Mattel Creations and Universal Pictures home video content group had agreed to an exclusive worldwide SVOD rights agreement for the Barbie movie library. This deal started in October, 2016 for the next seven years and includes the next two releases: Barbie: Star Light Adventure and Barbie:Video Game Hero. This only lasted until the released of Barbie: Dolphin Magic as newer Barbie content would move to Netflix starting with that film.
With Balsam-Schwaber taking the general manager position at Craftsy, Mattel president and chief operating officer, Richard Dickson, took over the responsibility for Mattel Creations and was not planning to fill the chief creative officer post However, between the failure of the Max Steel film/movie and the announcement of Mattel Films on September 9 2018, Playground Productions was absorbed into Mattel Creations.
Reorganized as Mattel Television
Mattel hired former Disney Channels Worldwide (now Disney Branded Television) programming executive Adam Bonnett as executive producer and head of a reorganized division named Mattel Television on February 8, 2019. On February 15, 2019, Mattel TV announced a slate of 22 animated and live-action TV programs. This division works with the franchise management division's senior vice president of content distribution and business development Frederic Soulie.
On September 7, 2021, former NBC executive Phil Breman was hired to be Vice President of Live Action Development, where he will oversee development across both scripted and unscripted shows; he reports to Soulie, who also doubles as the division's General Manager.