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Delaney & Friends was incorporated by Christopher Delaney in Vancouver in 1984. Delaney was joined by his brother, animation designer and comic book artist John Delaney, in 1992. Throughout the 1980s and early 1990s, the company produced several television commercials for such clients as 711, Purex and the Vancouver Province, and they garnered a number of awards for these (including two TVB Awards, three Bessie Awards, and an IBA Award).
In 1993, Delaney & Friends produced an animated Christmas special, Christopher the Christmas Tree (the special was based on a record album of the same name, produced by George T. Bowers in 1969). The program premiered on the FOX Kids network in the United States and YTV in Canada. Over the years, several stations around the world have picked up the broadcasting rights to the special, and as of 2007 Christopher the Christmas Tree had been shown in over 35 countries while the commercially released DVD had sold over 50,000 copies.
Beginning in 1995, Delaney produced the first of two full seasons of the animated series Nilus the Sandman. Created by Michael Fawkes, each season consisted of 13 episodes; these were all either written or edited by Michael Mercer and employed the voices of Donny Osmond and Holly Cole. The first season was co-produced with Cambium Entertainment of Toronto at a studio in Manila. The studio (Typhoon Toons) employed a staff of 400 animators, though it failed due to interference from customs agents and the difficulty of managing such a large operation from afar. When production of the second season began in 1998, Delaney subcontracted production work to Morning Sun Animation studio in Shanghai. The Nilus series was recognized with numerous nominations and awards, including two Geminis, three Worldfest awards, two U.S. International Film and Video Festival awards and a Golden Sheaf Award from the Yorkton Short Film Festival.
In 1996, Delaney & Friends produced The Littlest Angel, based on the children’s book originally published in 1940. In addition to the material produced through Delaney & Friends, Chris Delaney has created such well-known animation programs as The Care Bears, Detective Dog, Tales of the Mouse Hockey League, Leonard Lemming’s Lament, The Legend of the Candy Cane and Phish and Chip.
In 2003, Vancouver videogame developer Radical Entertainment agreed to purchase the assets of Delaney & Company, which was no longer operational. Two years later, Radical was acquired by Vivendi Universal Games, a global games publisher.
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Morgan, Joanne. “Traditional, handmade animation drawing attention: Vancouver’s burgeoning celbased studios are getting plenty of work from international production companies.” The Vancouver Sun, March 27, 1998, D1.
Morton, Brian. “Opportunity with Radical ends in court battle.” The Vancouver Sun,
March 28, 2005, D1.