Portland cartoonist’s ‘Big Nate’ to debut on television next month


Big Nate is finally making his screen debut.

The animated television series “Big Nate,” based on the longtime Lincoln Peirce comic book from Portland, will debut Feb. 17 on Paramount Plus, the streaming service announced Tuesday.

A preview of the show will air Sunday on the Nickelodeon cable network during halftime of the NFL playoff football game between the Dallas Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers, which begins at 4:30 p.m.

Nickelodeon, which produces the series, first announced plans to do a “Big Nate” series in February 2020. Peirce said on Tuesday that he was delighted that the tape he started 31 years ago – and which is published in 400 newspapers – will finally make it to TV.

Pierce said that over the years, movie studios have expressed interest in “Big Nate,” but have often talked about doing a live version. Pierce said he was happy he was able to hold on for Nickelodeon, so Big Nate and his friends could watch and act on screen like in his comic book.

“I always thought ‘Big Nate’ could be a really fun TV show, but I never wanted to do live action. He’s a cartoon character, ”said Peirce, 58.

“Big Nate” premieres February 17 on Paramount + and is based on the Lincoln Peirce comic book from Portland. Photo courtesy of Nickelodeon

Prior to this show, Peirce had already converted the strip into a bestselling book series, and it is also the basis of a traveling musical show.

Peirce serves as a consultant for the series. He said on Tuesday that he got to see all of the scripts for the episodes and was able to “uncover” some of them, in an effort to make the characters look like those in comics and books.

Like the comics, the series will focus on an 11-year-old sixth-grader named Nate, along with his family and friends. The Paramount Plus press release describes Nate as “a sixth grader who has an endless need to prove his greatness to the world.” The show’s first eight episodes will be available to stream February 17 on Paramount Plus, with more episodes announced at a later date.

In the “Big Nate” series premiere, Nate meets a new child who wants to become his prank partner, voiced by Jack Black. Announcing the series debut on Tuesday, Paramount Plus also released a official trailer of the show, which can be found on YouTube.com.

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