via press release:
iCarly Duo Jerry Trainor and Jennette McCurdy Star as Brilliant Gamers Set to Compete in the Ultimate Virtual Showdown in Nickelodeon Original TV Movie Best Player, Premiering Saturday, March 12, at 8 P.M. (ET/PT)
SANTA MONICA, Calif., Feb. 23, 2011 — Jerry Trainor and Jennette McCurdy, stars of the mega-hit comedy series iCarly, go head-to-head as video game rivals in Nickelodeon’s brand-new original TV movie, Best Player, premiering Saturday, March 12, at 8 p.m. (ET/PT). The two-hour, primetime movie follows Quincy (Jerry Trainor) and Chris (Jennette McCurdy), two online video game junkies who inadvertently learn that the real world can be just as exciting and rewarding as the virtual one.
“Jennette and Jerry bring the same great comedic sensibility to this movie that has endeared them to leagues of iCarly fans,” said Marjorie Cohn, President, Original Programming and Development, Nickelodeon. “Both are hugely talented and versatile actors and we think audiences will enjoy seeing them bring these new characters to life.”
In Best Player, Quincy is a thirty-something Chinese food delivery man by day and online video game master by night. Simply known as “Q” by fellow gaming enthusiasts, Quincy has dedicated his life to being the best cyber multi-player athlete online. Perfectly happy to live in a tricked-out basement in his parents’ home, Quincy’s world gets turned upside down when his parents decide to sell their house and move to Florida – without him. His only chance to maintain his “perfect” life is to enter a tournament introducing a brand-new video game, Black Hole, and win the prize money to buy his parents’ house. As the current multi-player champion, Quincy thinks it’s a done deal…until he encounters “Prodigy,” who threatens to annihilate him.
With help from his friend and fellow game enthusiast, Wendell (Amir Talai, Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay), Quincy sets out to find and stop Prodigy from qualifying for the Black Hole tournament. They are surprised to discover that Q’s fierce online rival is not at all what they expected. Prodigy is a smart, shy teenage girl named Chris who is more comfortable destroying competitors in the virtual world than navigating through the perils of high school. With prodding from Wendell, Quincy takes a job as Chris’ home economics teacher and unwittingly begins dating her mother, Tracy (Janet Varney, Dinner and a Movie), so that he may better “know thy enemy.” But Quincy’s plan to beat out his nemesis gets complicated when his relationship with Chris and her mother takes an unforeseen turn.
Best Player is executive produced by Lauren Levine, Marjorie Cohn and Jessica Rhoades. Also serving as executive producers are Sandy Climan and Christine Foy. The primetime movie is directed by Damon Santostefano and written by Rich Amberg. Best Player is produced by Pacific Bay Entertainment.
A leader in digital effects, Zoic Studios delivers the visually striking CG animation for Black Hole, the fictional multi-player video game featured in Best Player. A wide array of effects, including 3-D animation and compositing, digital modeling, texturing and rigging and motion capture technology are used throughout the movie. Specializing in visual effects for film, television, commercials and video games, Zoic Studios’ award-winning visual effects can be seen in feature films including District 9 and Zombieland; the television series Fringe, Battlestar Galactica and Buffy the Vampire Slayer and critically-acclaimed video games such as Dead Space 2, Medal of Honor, Medal of Honor: Precision, Twisted Metal and Guitar Hero “Warriors of Rock.”
Nickelodeon’s multi-platform offerings for Best Player include a special sneak peek and promotional clips on Nick.com and Nick’s wireless partners. Following the premiere, Best Player will be available for purchase on iTunes, Amazon.com, Xbox and Sony Playstation.
Best Player will be supported by a new site at www.Nick.com/Player and will serve as a first-look location for fans to see the latest trailers, promos clips and exclusive footage. New content will be added to the site regularly leading up to the movie premiere and will feature exclusive behind-the-scenes footage, video diaries from the set, trailers, photo galleries, quizzes and more.
Beginning Saturday, March 5, Nick.com will feature a brand-new game inspired by the fictional multi-player video game featured in the movie, “Black Hole,” where players will be able to compete as the characters from the movie, for a chance to win 175,500 club points in the Best Player competition.
On iCarly, Jerry Trainor plays Carly’s older brother Spencer Shay and Jennette McCurdy plays Sam Puckett, Carly’s best friend. In 2010, the series was the number-one show on television among K6-11 and T9-14 and was the number-one live-action series with kids 2-11. Last year, more than 28 million total viewers tuned in to watch the hit series each week, including 10.2 million adults.
Jerry Trainor’s portrayal of Spencer garnered a 2009 Teen Choice nomination for Choice TV Actor: Comedy and a nomination for Big Kid Award at the 2010 Australia Kids’ Choice Awards, which Trainor also co-hosted. Trainor also stars as Dudley Puppy, a gung-ho, dim-witted dog who is recruited as a secret agent by the crime-fighting organization, T.U.F.F. (Turbo Undercover Fighting Force), in Nickelodeon’s animated series T.U.F.F. Puppy. Quarter-to-date, T.U.F.F. Puppy ranks as the number-two animated series with kids 2-11 on all TV (behind only SpongeBob SquarePants).
Jennette McCurdy starred opposite internet sensation Lucas Cruikshank in the 2010 smash hit Nickelodeon original TV movie Fred: The Movie as Bertha, Fred Figglehorn’s snarky and bluntly honest “frenemy.” The movie drew 8.7 million total viewers and was the number-one TV cable movie with kids 6-11 and kids 2-11 and the year’s number-two entertainment telecast (behind iCarly‘s “iSaved Your Life”) with kids 6-11 and kids 2-11 on all TV. A singer/songwriter, McCurdy is currently working on her debut country album which features several tracks co-written by the performer. Her next single, “Generation Love”, will be released to country radio this spring with her first album to follow this fall. AOL Music recently listed the talented artist as one of the “21 Hottest Music Stars Under 21.”
Nickelodeon, now in its 31st year, is the number-one entertainment brand for kids. It has built a diverse global business by putting kids first in everything it does. The company includes television programming and production in the United States and around the world, plus consumer products, online, recreation, books and feature films. Nickelodeon’s U.S. television network is seen in more than 100 million households and has been the number-one-rated basic cable network for 16 consecutive years. Nickelodeon and all related titles, characters and logos are trademarks of Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA – News, VIA .B – News).