Disney XD in the United States premieres a new series today: Atomic Puppet. In the series, the superhero Captain Atomic is transformed into a powerless puppet who is only effective when placed on the hands of his biggest fan, 12-year-old Joey Felt.

Despite airing on Disney XD, it’s not a Disney show. The quirky concept was developed and produced as an international co-production between Technicolor, Canada’s Mercury Filmworks, and France’s Gaumont Animation. The series is also being aired on international Disney XD channels, including France, U.K., and Spain, while Teletoon will air the series later this year in Canada.

Poster by Jeff Barker and colored by Megan Harries.
Poster by Jeff Barker and colored by Megan Harries.

Atomic Puppet took a long road to series. The idea was conceived by TV animation writer Mark Drop (Recess, Jake and the Never Land Pirates, The 7D) and writer/creator Jerry Leibowitz (The Mouse and the Monster).  In Canada, the series was developed by John Derevlany (Lego’s Legends of Chima) and Brad Birch (Johnny Test), and overseen by Mercury Filmworks’ director of development Travis Williams (Total Drama), as well as Technicolor’s Creative Development team.  Development in France was led by Heath Kenny, creative director for Gaumont Animation.

Steve Lambe (Breadwinners, Fanboy & Chum Chum, Jimmy Two-Shoes, El Tigre) was the lead character designer and Andy Coyle art directed. The series directors were Jeff Barker, Andy Coyle, Kyle Marshall, and Khalil Ben Naamane.

The series marks the second original project that Technicolor Creative Development, a young division under the Technicolor Animation & Games umbrella, has brought to broadcast in the last couple months. Their first major release was the CG action-adventure series The Deep, currently available on Netflix.

The series is also a notable project for Ottawa-based Mercury Filmworks, which is better known as one of Disney Television Animation’s key service providers, creating animation for shows like The Lion Guard, Penn Zero: Part-Time Hero, the Mickey Mouse shorts, and the upcoming Tangled series. While the company has an excellent reputation for quality, they’ve had little chance to promote their brand of fun cartoony animation due to their role as a service studio for other companies; Atomic Puppet finally allows Mercury to step out from under Disney’s shadow and claim credit for a project that they co-developed and co-produced.

Starting today, Atomic Puppet airs daily on Disney XD in the U.S.

Below are examples of development and pre-production artwork created for the show:

Poster by Andy Coyle and colored by Megan Harries.
Poster by Andy Coyle and colored by Megan Harries.
Atomic Puppet. Atomic Puppet. Atomic Puppet. Atomic Puppet. Atomic Puppet. Atomic Puppet.

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