Up to date information about children's entertainment – film, TV, DVD and more…. from founder and president of KIDS FIRST! Ranny Levy

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KIDS FIRST! Partners with Xerb.tv to Launch Family Streaming Service

Tuesday, April 2nd, 2019

KIDS FIRST! and Xerb.tv launched a new, ad-free digital streaming service for high quality children’s programming earlier this spring. The content is curated from filmmakers from all around the world and the bulk of the revenue from the channel will go directly to the filmmakers. The rapidly growing Xerb.tb is providing KIDS FIRST! a platform to deliver a collection of family-friendly content that is inspirational, enriching and motivational.

“What the KIDS FIRST! Digital Channel (https://xerb.tv/channel/kidsfirst) offers families is engaging, informative and fun content with pro-social values that both kids and parents love,” comments Ranny Levy, founder and president of KIDS FIRST! “It’s not so easy to find programming like this in the jungle of digital channels, but KIDS FIRST! has 28 years experience in doing just that.”

The partnership came about when Levy met Xerb.tv founder, Eric Streeper, at a film event in Santa Fe, NM, where both companies are headquartered. Streeper, a Santa Fe native, spent eight years working in tech/entertainment in Los Angeles. The idea to create Xerb.tv came after working for a wildly popular YouTube star who, despite having a very large audience, wasn’t generating very much revenue from the platform. Streeper saw an opportunity to help filmmakers take control of their work and develop an audience to support it. While visiting his hometown two years ago, the creative and entrepreneurial energy there impressed Streeper and he realized it was the ideal place to launch his new media company. “Our goal is to level the playing field for creators,” Streeper proclaims, “and help them access the same resources that the big entertainment companies have.” When he met Levy he thought, “What a great way to give families access to programming that has been vetted by parents and kids reviewers alike through their extensive review process.”

KIDS FIRST! has a team of more than 100 kids and adults that review and recommend films with no algorithms involved. The KIDS FIRST! reviewers go through extensive training to assure continuity in film selection. The films on the channel represent the diversity of the filmmakers who made them –  from a documentary following the first Roma/Gipsy youth soccer team in Italy to one about educating girls in India. A high school student has created an animated series about the Mars Rovers. A Spanish film follows a 9-year-old boy dealing with loss. Another short is about a girl and her pet pig. A music video tells what it’s like to be an engineer. A feature film explores a changing mother/son dynamic and another one reveals the true story of an 11-year-old foster child with brittle bone disease who overcame his problems and directs his first musical. For a quick overview of the channel, check out the trailer at https://bit.ly/2T5LL1fLinks

KIDS FIRST! Channel: https://xerb.tv/channel/kidsfirst
KIDS FIRST! website: https://www.kidsfirst.org
Xerb website: https://xerb.tv
KIDS FIRST! and Xerb assets: https://landing.xerb.tv/assets

Stats
Number of films: 129
Number of filmmakers: 50
Number of countries: 17
Number of languages: 13
Price: $5.99/month

ABOUT KIDS FIRST! KIDS FIRST! Digital Channel is project of the 28-year-old national nonprofit (501-c-3) Coalition for Quality Children’s Media whose mission is to teach children critical viewing skills and to increase the visibility and availability of quality children’s media. KIDS FIRST! Digital Channel is an online space where kids and families can watch movies that both inspire and teach – and where parents don’t have to worry about what their kids are watching. A former educator, Levy created an award-winning PBS show, produced an ACE-nominated television show and managed an independent film production and distribution company in the mid 80s. In 1991, Levy founded the Coalition for Quality Children’s Media and its KIDS FIRST! program. The KIDS FIRST! Digital Channel features original animated programming, music videos, feature length films and international programming from 17 different countries, teaching about people and cultures world-wide. You can access the channel at https://xerb.tv/channel/kidsfirst

About Xerb.tv Xerb.tv is a streaming service, similar to Netflix, but different. Xerb.tv allows independent filmmakers and organizations to create tailored subscription channels and share them with a devoted fan-base. Xerb.tv is  changing how creators get paid online, how they build their audience, and how they collaborate with each other — all in an incredibly simple way. The future of content is independent. Are you a content creator, or want to run a channel? If you want to engage directly with an audience that loves your work and build a sustainable business around what you’re passionate about, we want to hear from you! Send us a message and come join our beta partner program. Xerb.tv is built for you.



Submit to KIDS FIRST! Film Festival Now! It’s like submitting to 50 festivals all at once!

Tuesday, April 2nd, 2019

We are accepting submissions for KIDS FIRST! Film Festival. If you have a great film for kids and families that you wish to get played at venues all across the country, this is your opportunity to submit it. We have more than 50 venue affiliates who use the KIDS FIRST! vetted programming for their youth and family programs. Each KIDS FIRST! venue partner offers awards and prizes, and may cover your travel expense to attend. There is a plethora of potential awards awaiting you. Just think, for one entry fee, you have 50 venues considering your film. That makes our application fee dirt cheap! Upcoming deadlines are:

April 6, 2019: Early Bird Deadline
May 18, 2019: Regular Deadline
June 89, 2019 : Late Deadline

The KIDS FIRST! Film Festival showcases new and classic children’s films, TV programs and DVDs from studios, independent producers and youth producers. Please read our festival description carefully and do not submit if your film does meet our baseline criteria. This is a great way to spread your promotional budget by submitting once to KIDS FIRST!, you reach 50 venues. That does not mean all 50 festivals will play yours, but it will be considered.

Please be sure to note that KIDS FIRST! Film Festival partners do not pay licensing fees. The films that are played at their events are offered for FREE. There is no individual admission charged, although there may be an overall festival admission fee.

Each KIDS FIRST! venue partner offers their own awards and prizes. KIDS FIRST! does not award prizes or awards. Accepted feature films will get a First Look opportunity for distribution by Engine 15 Media Group and Soundview Media Partners. We are looking for indie and student productions, short, features and documentaries. We have special categories for Faith Based programs, Spanish language programs, environmental programs and episodic titles.

  • NO gratuitous violence or abuse
  • NO inappropriate sexual behavior
  • NO bias in terms of race, gender, culture or religion
  • NO condescension toward children
  • NO replicable unsafe behavior

To enter, go here.

For more information, go to http://www.kidsfirst.org/submit-a-title/

To see the latest films added to our festival, go here: https://www.kidsfirst.org/filmfestival/selections.html

Calling All Miami Based Youth Film Buffs! June 18-22 @ Doral Academy

Monday, March 26th, 2018

There are still a few spots left for KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Boot Camp Miami – June 18-22. If you are a a youth, age 12-16 who

Loves, really love films…

Loves talking about the latest films…

Would love to interview celebrities on the Red Carpet…

We have a camp for you! Register now to attend camps in the following cities at the dates listed below.

2018 CAMP SCHEDULE

KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Boot Camp teaches critical thinking and viewing skills. On a daily basis, campers watch and review the latest films, in written and video format. Kids  work collaboratively in small teams as they learn on-camera and behind the camera skills. They develop and practice interviewing skills and talk with media professionals, in person and on Skype. The camp prepares kids to join the national KIDS FIRST! Film Critics team, if they so wish. Whether or not they select to do join the team, their take away is a week filled with learning experiences that prepare them for college and will last a lifetime. Here’s story by ABC Eyewitness News Entertainment Reporter Sandy Kenyon about our 2017 New York City camp. http://abc7ny.com/entertainment/movie-critics-of-the-future-learn-craft-in-brooklyn/2264053/

Note: Some partial scholarships are available. Please note application deadlines. Apply here: https://goo.gl/forms/DN4iDFURen28dkLZ2

For more details, go to http://www.kidsfirst.org/become-a-juror/2018.BootCamp.html

Take a look at our 2017 Camp!

LIMITED ENROLLMENT. CAMPS ARE FILLED ON A FIRST-COME, FIRST-SERVED BASIS.

 

Call for Film Critics – Deadline Jan. 15, 2018

Friday, June 16th, 2017

KFFC.BootCamp.2015.jpgIf you have a child between the age of 8 and 18 who is interested in joining our KIDS FIRST! Film Critics team, please have them enter our national search. Visit our application site, read the instructions and send in your application along with your child’s written and videotaped review of a film, rated G, PG or PG-13, that has been released in the last 6 months. For more info and to enter go to: http://2013critic.kidsfirst.org/

Our last deadline to apply for a position as one of our KIDS FIRST! Film Critics is October 15. We are looking for kids in major cities but, other cities will be considered as well. The difference is that they kids will most likely not be attending press screenings or other live events. They will review films from online screeners or DVDS. We will be accepting no more than 10 new reporters during this application process and your application will be reviewed on a first come, first served basis. There is no charge to participate in this program but there is a $65 fee for the training program and you are expected to provide your own equipment (camera, tripod, microphone, computer) as well as transportation to events.

For more information about our KIDS FIRST! Film Critics program, please take a look at our deck here:
Target Cities: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York City, Philadelphia, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Santa Fe, Vancouver, Nashville, Honolulu, Miami and Washington DC.

Here’s your chance to…

  • Watch and review the latest films!
  • Meet and interview celebrities!
  • Report from the red carpet and premieres!
  • Talk on our weekly radio show about films you have seen and interview celebrities.

For more info and to enter go to: http://2013critic.kidsfirst.org/

Or, call our office. 505.989.8076.

Check out some of our coverage of our 2016 Film Critics Boot Camp in New York.

http://abc7ny.com/entertainment/young-film-critics-learning-their-craft-at-boot-camp-in-brooklyn/1464473/
http://abc7ny.com/entertainment/bryce-dallas-howard-talks-role-in-disneys-petes-dragon/1467351/

 

More Holiday DVD Recommendations from Granny Ranny

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2015

holiday_gift_guide.jpgIn case missed our holiday gift guide we posted Thanksgiving week, here’s a link for it. It’s a great list of DVDs, videogames, EBooks and theatrical releases that are perfect for your holiday gift giving. And, here are a few more…

TheSnowmanDoubld.jpgThe Snowman & The Snowman and the Snowdog Double Feature (ages 2-18)
Description: Enjoy twice the magical enchantment in this double feature of The Snowman and The Snowman & the Snowdog!
One crisp, winter morning, a young boy wakes up to find a thick blanket of snow has covered the ground as far as the eye can see.  Filled with excitement, the boy decides to build a snowman using a tangerine for his nose, coal for his buttons and eyes, and tops him off with a hat and scarf.  Later that night, at the stroke of midnight, the snowman comes to life! Then, embark on a new adventure in the charming sequel!  When a young boy and his mother move to a new house, the boy discovers a secret box hidden under the floorboards of his bedroom. In the box, he finds a hat, scarf, some lumps of coal and a shriveled tangerine – a snowman-making kit! Later that day the boy builds a Snowman and with the little spare snow leftover, a Snowdog. That night they come to life and take him on a wonderful adventure. MSRP: $14.99

Naya.jpgNaya’s Arctic Adventures: Meet Naya (ages 2-6)
Description: Meet Naya!  Join Naya and her friends as they embrace numerous quests in the Arctic.  One might think that a young girl would get bored living in the Arctic but not Naya! Every day is an adventure with her and her friends.  Each story starts with the sea washing ashore an item and then throughout the story, Naya and friends learn the purpose of the item.  Your little one is sure to enjoy these heart-warming adventures that teach children fundamental human values all while enjoying a good laugh! MSRP: $9.99.

Gumby.Artic.jpgThe Gumby Show: Gumby’s Arctic Antics (ages 4-18)
Description: Gumby and Pokey, television’s legendary clay characters, live one great fantasy after another in a timeless world of magic and wonder.  Join this duo as they dive into one book after another in this assortment of 50’s, 60’s and 80’s episodes!  First, Santa gets sick right before Christmas.  Will Christmas be ruined or can a wicked witch save the day and deliver the gifts with the help of a certain someone?  Then, Scrooge escapes from his book and sets out to wreck all the toys in the toyshop but luckily Gumby is there at the right time.  Both children and adults will enjoy these classic stop motion adventures with Gumby and Pokey and friends. MSRP: $9.99

MiketheKnight.jpgMike the Knight: Mike’s Bravest Mission (ages 2-8)
Description: For many years, generations of the best and bravest knights have attempted to solve the legendary “Knight’s Puzzle” and now it is Mike’s turn!
However, Mike’s mission heads in an unexpected direction when his arch rival, Edward, steals the puzzle.  With the safety of the kingdom in his hands, Mike sets off on a brave journey. Join Mike on a thrilling, edge-of-the-seat adventure to retrieve the stolen Puzzle and protect the Kingdom of Glendragon! MSRP: $9.99

Sid.jpgObserve & Explore with Sid the Science Kid (ages 3-7)
Description: Sid the Science KidTM is an inquisitive little boy who uses comedy to tackle
questions kids have about basic scientific principles.  Why do things work the way they do? He tries to answer each question and solve problems with the help of Teacher Susie, Sid’s family as well as his classmates, May, Gerald and Gabriela.  In this second volume, Sid and his friends learn all about the five senses, brushing your teeth, eating healthy, keeping germs away, exercising and more!  So come on scientists, let’s observe and explore with Sid the Science Kid! MSRP: $14.99

Doozers.Ginger_1.jpgDoozers: Giant Gingerbread House (ages 2-7)
Description: Welcome to Doozer Creek where the Doozers live!  They’re green.  They’re cute.  They’re three inches tall and they’re full of energy, ideas, and enthusiasm! The Pod Squad want to build a Doozer-sized Gingerbread House that will take some clever construction to create.  Will they be able to DO it?  Find out and then enjoy 8 more family fun-tastic adventures! MSRP: $9.99

ABCMonsters.EFGH.jpgABC Monsters: Starring EFGH (ages 2-6)
Description: Meet the ABC Monsters!  They are big, hairy and not very scary.  On this DVD, embark on adventures to find the letters E, F, G, and H!  First, join the brainy gang as there’s an eagle exhibition taking place at the Alphabet Gardens!  However, disaster strikes when Emma the eagle escapes and flies into Capital Town!  Alice, Brian, and Cherry Berry must set out to find the eagle but after assembling the alphabet they soon release that E-Monster is missing too!  Can they find Emma the eagle and E-monster before the sun sets?  Continue the fun and join Alice, Brian, and Cherry Berry as they look for F-Monster, G-Monster, and H-Monster in the next three episodes! MSRP: $9.99

ThomasEdison.2D.jpgThomas Edison’s Secret Lab: Secret Lab Meeting (ages 5-11)
Description: Unknown to the world, Thomas Edison had a secret lab where he invented a virtual version of himself and a nearly-completed robot to guide and inspire future generation of young scientists.
The secret lab, Edison’s virtual alter ego, and his prototype robot remained hidden until a 12-year-old prodigy cracked the secret coded message that Edison left behind.  This young genius named Angie and her science club friends move into the lab and the fun begins!  Each episode covers fun scientific topics from dinosaur fossils to minerals to gravity and so much more!  Join Angie, JD, Kent and Nicky as they work with the robot, Von Bolt, and Thomas Edison’s virtual alter ego in this wacky world of scientific discovery! MSRP: $9.99

Last Week to Enter XPRIZE Competition for “Miles from Tomorrowland: Space Missions”

Thursday, August 20th, 2015

MilesfromTomorrow_1.jpgHurry! Only one week left to submit an entry for the Miles from Tomorrowland: Space Missions, a nationwide program based on the hit animated series that invites kids ages 3 to 8 and their families to develop their own “out-of-this-world” creations within three themed categories – technology, vehicles and planets. After completing the design, take a picture of it and upload it to the Miles From Tomorrowland website.

All the entries will have a chance to win incredible prizes, such as a 3D printer from 3D Systems and the Grand Prize of a VIP trip to Cape Canaveral to experience the past, present and future of space exploration firsthand, including a behind-the-scenes tour of Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex and have lunch with an astronaut; a tour of Moon Express (one of the teams competing for the $30M Google Lunar XPRIZE); and a chance to see a SpaceX rocket launch from a VIP vantage point. More info here: http://partners.disney.com/space-missions/submissions. This is a blastastic opportunity to do some fun, creative activities with your kids while teaching them about space at the same time. Submission deadline is Aug 31.

Check out our interviews by KIDS FIRST! Reporter Tre’ana H. with some of the key players from this project with Bill Nye the Science Guy, Bob Weiss (CEO of XPrize), Adrien Grenier, Ginger Zee (GMA Weather Anchor) and Yvonne Cagle (NASA Astronaut).

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