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Janice Burgess Death: An Animation Icon’s Final Chapter!

Janice Burgess, an esteemed American animator, writer, and producer who established the cherished children’s television series The Backyardigans, expired at the age of 72 on March 4, 2024. Her departure leaves behind a legacy of creativity, happiness, and drive that has impacted the lives of a great number of young viewers all around the world.

Janice Burgess dead: 'The Backyardigans' creator, 72, dies of cancer

Janice Burgess Death

Janice Burgess, the genius of The Backyardigans, died on March 4, 2024, at the age of 72. The tragic news was verified on social media by her colleague writer Fracaswell Hyman, however, the facts of her demise have not been published at this time. The continuing memory of Burgess was honored by Hyman via the sharing of a heartfelt tribute that was accompanied by a photograph of Burgess from the early 1990s.

“I met Janice Burgess early on in my career when I was the head writer on Gullah Gullah Island, and she was assigned to be our Executive in Charge of Production,” he said. “It was then that I became acquainted with her.” According to Hyman, the Executive in Charge of Production is supposed to be “the person the network sends on the set to make sure that the money is not going to waste.”

“Janice swept in with her acid-tongued wit, flowing Hermes scarves, and omnipresent cigarettes,” he added. “Janice was everywhere.” Her role shifted from that of a supervisor to that of a friend. She was the one who noticed my magic before I did, and she made sure that I was there and being considered for a number of the programs that came my way, including Little Bill and Tania. It was Janice who was responsible for the creation of The Backyardigans, as well as many additional series for Nickelodeon, Sesame Workshop, Disney, and Apple TV.

Janice Burgess Death News

Brown Johnson, a longstanding acquaintance of Burgess, informed The New York Times that she passed away on Saturday from breast cancer while receiving hospice care.

The revelation was also verified to PEOPLE by Fracaswell Hyman, who is another acquaintance of Burgess. He recalled her as someone who “recognized my magic before I did and made sure I was in the room and under consideration for many of the shows that came my way including LITTLE BILL and TAINA,” as he said in a heartfelt statement on Instagram. He also mentioned that she was the one who made sure he was in the room.

In a statement that was made available to PEOPLE, Nickelodeon referred to her as “one of the greats.”

Janice Burgess Dies: Nickelodeon Executive Who Oversaw 'Blues Clues'  Development, Created 'The Backyardigans' Was 72 - Yahoo Sports

It is with great regret that we have learned of the loss of one of the most influential creators of Nick Jr. and the creator of the series The Backyardigans, which is cherished all around the world. According to the statement, “Janice was one of the greats; she was inherently creative and kind, and she was dedicated to the preschool audience everywhere.”

In the span of four seasons, from 2004 to 2013, The Backyardigans was on the air. The Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Special Class Animated Program was bestowed for the series in the year 2008. In 2004, Burgess was again awarded an Emmy for his work on Little Bill.

According to an interview that Burgess gave to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette in 2006, before working as a creator for Nick Jr., he worked as an executive in the preschool division.

In an interview with the publication in October 2006, Burgess said that Die Hard and Star Wars were the sources of inspiration for her to develop the series.

“I’m really quite a refined person, but there’s nothing I like more than cops and robbers and gun fights and crazy driving and fast and furiousness,” Burgess told reporters at the time. It is important to remember that when you are thinking about young children, you do not want to frighten them, and I am not in favor of displaying any type of violence or hostility. However, it is possible to have a significant experience even if you are only three years old. Taking the children on that huge excursion seemed like it would be a lot of fun to me.

Janice Burgess, Creator of 'The Backyardigans' Has Passed Away At 72

A user on X said, “Backyardigans meant a lot to me and many others, sad to hear the creator Janice Burgess has passed away, thank you for being a wonderful part of many people’s childhood.”

“I am unable to comprehend the fact that Janice Burgess, who had such a significant place in my life, has died away. One of the most significant symbols of my youth. Another user of X remarked that she would be missed for all of eternity.

According to the Times, Burgess is survived by both her mother and her brother, as well as by her mother’s mother.

Janice Burgess Career

Janice Burgess began her television career unexpectedly when she was offered a position at WQED, a public television station. When Janice was younger, she had a natural talent for drawing, but she eventually found herself fascinated by the world of television production. Her remarkable abilities and unwavering dedication immediately drew notice, which ultimately led to her being appointed to the critical position of executive-in-charge of production at Nickelodeon in the year 1995.

Janice’s stay at the network resulted in the creation of new programs that attracted viewers all around the world, leaving an indelible mark on the organization long after she departed.

It is one of her most remarkable successes that she was able to create the popular Nick Jr. series The Backyardigans, which is recognized for its inventive stories and colorful characters. The creative vision and narrative skills that Janice has have established new standards in the field of children’s programming, which has garnered her considerable accolades within the industry.

In addition to her work on The Backyardigans, she was an integral element of the resurrection of Winx Club on Nickelodeon, where she contributed as a writer and creative director alongside her other roles. The treasured brand was given a new lease of life as a result of her dedication to the creation of fascinating tales and appealing material, which solidified her position as a visionary talent in the field of children’s entertainment.

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