Paramount and Nickelodeon president of animation Ramsey Naito announced two new creative leadership positions across both animation film and series divisions. Entertainment industry veteran Latifa Ouaou has been appointed to executive VP, movies and global franchises, Paramount Animation and Nickelodeon Animation, overseeing theatricals and streaming film content across both the Paramount Animation banner and the Nickelodeon Animation Studio. Eryk Casemiro, who formerly served as Nickelodeon’s SVP of Preschool, will now assume the role of EVP Nickelodeon Animation, global series content, leading animation series content for preschool and kids six to eleven across all formats and platforms for the Nickelodeon Animation Studio. Both Ouaou and Casemiro report to Naito and are based in Los Angeles.
Naito said, “Latifa and Eryk each have outstanding track records for developing and producing some of the most beloved and recognizable animated content for kids and families, and I am excited to have them take on these new key roles. Under their leadership, Paramount and Nickelodeon are building the next chapter of ground-breaking storytelling.”
Upcoming theatrical titles under Ouaou’s purview include Paramount’s next animated feature The Tiger’s Apprentice (10 February 2023), starring Henry Golding and directed by Raman Hui and co-directed by Paul Watling and YongDuk Jhun; Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Next Chapter (4 August 2023), produced in partnership with award-winning Point Grey Pictures’ Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg, and James Weaver and directed by Jeff Rowe; the theatrical sequel PAW Patrol: The Mighty Movie (13 October 2023), in partnership with Spin Master Entertainment and directed by Cal Brunker; and the movie strategy for Avatar Studios.
Under Casemiro, Claudia Spinelli, formerly SVP, animation development, will now assume the title of SVP, series animation for big kids, overseeing all kids six to eleven animation development and current series for Nickelodeon with both creative teams reporting to her. Nickelodeon preschool will continue to report to Casemiro.
Casemiro’s creativity and leadership has helped grow Nickelodeon’s animation division, translating into the ongoing success of some of Nick’s biggest preschool hits including Baby Shark’s Big Show!, Blue’s Clues & You!, PAW Patrol and Santiago of the Seas, as well as Rugrats. Series highlights for 2022 under Casemiro’s team include Big Nate slated for Paramount+, Tiny Chef, Monster High, Transformers, Star Trek: Prodigy season two, Rugrats season two, SpongeBob SquarePants, Kamp Koral: SpongeBob’s Under Years, Hamsterdale, Zokie Sparkle by, Rock, Paper, Scissors from the Intergalactic Shorts Program, Max and the Midknights and the series strategy for Avatar Studios.
Ouaou joins Paramount and Nickelodeon from Illumination, where she served as executive producer on such films as The Grinch and the upcoming Minions: The Rise of Gru. Prior to that, she was a producer at DreamWorks Animation working on one of their biggest franchises, Shrek. She also produced the Academy Award-nominated Puss in Boots and co-produced Monsters vs. Aliens, with an eye toward building both franchises into specials and series.
Casemiro is an Emmy Award-winning producer who most recently served as an executive producer for Nickelodeon’s reboot of the iconic kids’ series, Rugrats. He also worked on the original series as SVP of creative affairs at Klasky-Csupo Productions. While at Klasky-Csupo Productions, Casemiro was also responsible for the development and production of beloved Nickelodeon shows such as The Wild Thornberrys, Rocket Power, As Told By Ginger, and All Grown Up!, earning the studio three Ark Trust Awards, four Humanitas Awards, 10 Emmy nominations, and an Emmy Award. He also led the development and production of feature films for Paramount Pictures including Rugrats Go Wild, The Wild Thornberrys Movie, which earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Song, Rugrats in Paris: The Movie, and The Rugrats Movie.
Casemiro began his career with Lorne Michaels’ Broadway Video, where he produced Sharon, Lois and Bram’s Candles, Snow and Mistletoe for CBC, Lassie’s 40th Special, and the long-running hit Frosty Returns, now in its 29th year on CBS.