Josie and the Pussycats purring again

Tue Dec 15, 2009 12:36am EST
 
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By Nellie Andreeva

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Who wants to be a comic-book pop star?

Actor Nick Cannon and Atlantic Records are launching a worldwide search for three girls to resurrect Josie and the Pussycats, a band based on the Archie Comics characters.

Cannon, who dubbed them "the first rock 'n' roll girls group," hopes the search will yield a reality competition series and a scripted comedy-drama, both to air on Nickelodeon's TeenNick channel where he serves as chairman.

The characters inspired two cartoon series in the 1970s and a 2001 live-action feature film starring Rachael Leigh Cook, Tara Reid and Rosario Dawson.

The "Josie" project is one of many in the works at Cannon's recently launched production company NCredible Entertainment. Its slate includes a comedic year-in-review special that will air on New Year's Day on MTV, and a hip-hop puppet show for Cartoon Network's Adult Swim programing block.

NCredible also is venturing into publishing, signing a deal with Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing Division to produce a multimedia book series to coincide with the upcoming premiere of the Cannon-written and -directed Nickelodeon movie "The School Gyrls."

The film features the NCredible-signed three-girl singing group whose debut album will be released by Island Records. Cannon penned the first book, a movie novelization, and plans to be involved in the writing of the six original novels under the pact. There also are plans for potential second movie and a possible TV series.

Cannon also is making his foray into radio with a daily morning drive show on CBS Radio's WXRK-FM New York (92.3 Now). He debuts on the top-40 station January 19.   Continued...