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Понитред Добру и враг и друг ответствуют добром,
И эта доброта не знается со злом.
Врага получишь ты, злом отвративши друга,
И друга обретёшь, став ласковым с вpагом.
My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic is an animated television series produced by Hasbro Studios in the United States (for scripts) and at DHX Media's studio located in Vancouver (for animation; formerly known as Studio B Productions). The series, which is based on Hasbro's My Little Pony line of toys and animated works, is intended for girls age 2 to 11 and is considered to be the fourth generation (G4) of the My Little Pony franchise, following earlier lines and television show tie-ins in the 1980s and 1990s. The series premiered on October 10, 2010, on The Hub, now known as Hub Network, an American pay television channel partly owned by Hasbro. As of February 2013, the show has completed its third season with a fourth season set to air on November 23, 2013, and is broadcasting internationally in dozens of countries in more than twenty languages. A feature film, My Little Pony: Equestria Girls, was released in movie theaters on June 16, 2013; then was broadcast on the Hub Network on September 1, 2013. In addition to toys and home media releases, Hasbro has licensed clothing, comic books, and video games based on Friendship Is Magic.
Hasbro selected animator Lauren Faust as the creative director and executive producer for the show. Faust sought to challenge the established nature of the existing My Little Pony line, creating more in-depth characters and adventurous settings, incorporating Hasbro's suggestions for E/I ("educational and informational") content and marketing of the toy line. Faust left the show during the production of the second season, and she is credited as consulting producer. Jayson Thiessen, the show's supervising director, became the showrunner starting with season two.
The show follows a studious unicorn pony named Twilight Sparkle as her mentor Princess Celestia guides her to learn about friendship in the town of Ponyville. Twilight becomes close friends with five other ponies: Applejack, Rarity, Fluttershy, Rainbow Dash, and Pinkie Pie. Each represents a different face of friendship, and Twilight discovers herself to be a key part of the magical artifacts, the "Elements of Harmony". The ponies share adventures and help out other residents of Ponyville, while working out the troublesome moments in their own friendships.
Hasbro, Inc. has produced several generations of toys and entertainment related to the My Little Pony franchise, often labeled by collectors as Generations 1 through 3. The animated series My Little Pony Tales, premiered in 1992, was the toy line's most recent television series before Friendship Is Magic, and it featured the pony designs of the first generation. It was followed by various direct-to-video releases, which featured later designs up to the third generation. Just as Michael Bay's film had helped to boost the new Transformers toy line, Hasbro wanted to retool the My Little Pony franchise and update it to better suit the current generation of young girls. According to Margaret Loesch, CEO of The Hub, revisiting properties that had worked in the past was an important programming decision, influenced to an extent by the opinions of the network's programming executives, a number of whom were once fans of such shows. Senior Vice President Linda Steiner also stated that they "intended to have the show appeal to a larger demographic", with the concept of "co-viewing" of parents with their children a central theme of the Hub's programming.
Lauren Faust, developer and initial showrunner of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic
Animator and writer Lauren Faust approached Hasbro, seeking to develop her girls' toys property "Galaxy Girls" into an animated series. Faust, who had previously worked on The Powerpuff Girls and Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends, had been pitching original animation aimed at girls for years, but was always rejected by studios and networks because cartoons for girls were considered unsuccessful. When she pitched to Lisa Licht of Hasbro Studios, Licht showed Faust one of their recent My Little Pony animated works, Princess Promenade, "completely on the fly". Licht considered that Faust's style was well suited to that line, and asked her to consider "some ideas where to take a new version of the franchise".
Faust was initially hired by Hasbro to create a pitch bible for the show, allowing her to get additional help with conceptualization. Faust said she was "extremely skeptical" about taking the job at first because she had always found shows based on girls' toys to be boring and unrelatable. My Little Pony was one of her favorite childhood toys,  but she was disappointed that her imagination at the time was nothing like the animated shows, in which the characters, according to Faust, had "endless tea parties, giggled over nothing and defeated villains by either sharing with them or crying". With the chance to work on My Little Pony, she hoped to prove that "cartoons for girls don't have to be a puddle of smooshy, cutesy-wootsy, goody-two-shoeness". To do this, she incorporated into the design of the characters and the show many elements that contradicted idealized stereotypes of girls, such as
and can get into arguments but still be friends, and the idea that girls should not be limited by what others say they can or can not do. Elements of the characters' personalities and the show's settings were based on her own childhood imagination of the ponies' adventures, in part inspired by the animated shows that her brothers would watch while growing up, such as Transformers and G.I. Joe. Faust still aimed for the characters to be "relatable" characters, using stereotypical "icons of girliness" (such as the waif or the bookworm), as to broaden the appeal of the characters for the young female audience.
Faust stated that as she provided Hasbro with more of her ideas for the show, she was inspired by their positive response to the non-traditional elements. Faust had initially pitched the show to include "adventure stories" in a similar proportion to "relationship stories", but recognizing the younger target audience, as well as the difficulty of writing complex plots around the adventure elements, she trimmed back this content, focusing more on exchanges between the characters. The show still incorporates episodic creatures intended to be frightening to children, such as dragons and hydras, but it places more emphasis on the friendships among the characters, displayed with a comedic tone. By the time the show was approved, Faust had developed three full scripts for the series.
Faust began to work out concept sketches, several of which appeared on her deviantArt page, including ponies from the first generation (Twilight, Applejack, Firefly, Surprise, Posey and Sparkler), which would later build on the core for the main cast of the show. Hasbro approved the show with Faust as Executive Producer and asked her to complete the pitch bible. In order to do so, Faust brought in Martin Ansolobehere and Paul Rudish, who had worked on other animated shows with her. Faust credits Rudish for the inspiration of the pegasus ponies controlling the weather in Equestria, as well as the character of Nightmare Moon during this period. Faust also consulted her husband, Craig McCracken, a fellow animator and creator of The Powerpuff Girls and Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends. After seeing the initial version of the pitch bible, Hasbro requested more character designs from Faust's team; subsequently, Faust brought aboard Dave Dunnet and Lynne Naylor to further refine the background and character styles.
On completion of the pitch bible, Hasbro and Faust began looking at studios for the animation. Studio B Productions (renamed to DHX Media on September 8, 2010 after its parent company, along with DHX's other subsidiaries) had previously worked on Adobe Flash-based animations and on shows that featured a large number of animals, and Faust felt they would be a good selection. Studio B requested that Jayson Thiessen be the director, a choice Faust agreed with. She, Thiessen, and James Wootton led the completion of a two-minute short to pitch the final product to Hasbro, resulting in the company's sanctioning the full production. Faust estimates that from being initially asked to develop the show until this point took roughly one year.
The show is developed at Hasbro Studios in Los Ange
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A sample storyboard from the episode "Call of the Cutie", containing pencil sketches of the main characters, rendered backgrounds to establish settings, and instructions for the Adobe Flash animators, such as the panning shot shown in the second panel
Faust's initial writing staff at Hasbro Studios included several writers who had worked with her on her previous shows and were approved by Hasbro. These included Amy Keating Rogers, Cindy Morrow, Meghan McCarthy, Chris Savino, Charlotte Fullerton, M. A. Larson, and Dave Polsky. The writing process began with Faust and Renzetti coming up with broad plots for each show. The two would then hold a brainstorming session with each episode's writer, allowing the writer to script out scenes and dialog. Faust and Renzetti then worked with the writer to finalize the scripts and assign some basic storyboard instructions. Hasbro was involved throughout this process and laid down some of the concepts to be incorporated into the show. Examples of Hasbro's influence include having Celestia be a princess rather than a queen, making one of the ponies focused on fashion, and portraying toy sets in relevant places within the story, such as Rarity's boutique. In some cases, Hasbro requested that the show include a setting, but allowed Faust and her team to create its visual style, and Hasbro then based the toy set on it; an example is the Ponyville schoolhouse. Faust also had to write to the E/I ("educational and informational") standards that Hasbro required of the show, making the crafting of some of the situations she would have normally done on other animated shows more difficult; for example, Faust cited having one character call another an "egghead" as "treading a very delicate line", and having one character cheat in a competition as "worrisome to some". Each show also generally includes a moral or life lesson, but these were chosen to "cross a broad spectrum of personal experiences", and not just to suit children. Because intellectual property issues had caused Hasbro to lose some of the rights on the original pony names, the show includes a mix of original characters from the toy line and new characters developed for the show.
Jayson Thiessen, supervising director (left), and Shaun Scotellaro ("Sethisto"), the founder of the fansite Equestria Daily, at BroNYCon 2011
Completed scripts were sent to Studio B for pre-production and animation using Adobe Flash. Thiessen's production team was also allowed to select key personnel subject to Hasbro's approval; one of those so selected was art director Ridd Sorenson. The Studio B team would storyboard the provided scripts,
suggestions on visuals, body language, and characterization. Faust estimates that the time to complete one episode was one year; at one point, the team was simultaneously working on various stages of all 26 episodes of the first season, and when the second season was approved, that number rose temporarily to 32. Episodes then aired about a month after completion. Thiessen explained that they had pushed to start work on the second season as soon as the first was completed, to prevent staff turnover.
After the airing of the first season's finale, Faust announced that she had left the show, and will be credited in the future as Consulting Producer. Her involvement in the second season consists mainly of story conception and scripts, and the involvement ceased after the second season. Despite leaving, she still has high hopes for the staff members, stating that "the gaps I have left are being filled by the same amazing artists, writers, and directors who brought you Season 1. I'm certain the show will be as entertaining as ever". According to her husband McCraken, Faust's departure was due to the fact that as a toy company-driven show, "there were things she wanted to do with that series that she just wasn't able to do", and that there is "still some frustration with" not being able to bring some of her ideas to screen.
Friendship Is Magic takes place in the land of Equestria, populated by varieties of ponies (including variants of Pegasus and unicorn), along with numbers of other sentient and non-sentient creatures. The central character is Twilight Sparkle, a unicorn mare sent by her mentor Princess Celestia, ruler of Equestria, to the town of Ponyville to study the magic of friendship. In the show's opening episodes, Twi
ilight resents this assignment, as she is more concerned about the foretold appearance of Nightmare Moon. When Nightmare Moon does appear, vowing everlasting night and causing Celestia to disappear, Twilight sets off with five other ponies—Applejack, Fluttershy, Pinkie Pie, Rainbow Dash, and Rarity—to obtain the Elements of Harmony and defeat Nightmare Moon. Before Twilight can activate the Elements, Nightmare Moon appears and shatters them. In a flash of inspiration, Twilight realizes that each of her new friends represents one of the Elements of Harmony, and that she herself is the final piece, Magic. The magical power of the ponies' friendship reverts Nightmare Moon to a repentant Princess Luna. Celestia reappears, reunites with her sister Princess Luna, and decrees that Twilight shall stay in Ponyville to continue studying the magic of friendship, much to the happiness of Twilight and her new friends.
Later episodes follow Twilight and her friends dealing with various problems around Ponyville, including interpersonal problems between friends and family, as well as more adventurous stories involving creatures like dragons and hydras. At the end of each episode, Twilight sends a report back to Celestia explaining what she learned about friendship from these adventures. This part of the formula was abandoned in "Lesson Zero", the second season episode in which Twilight was convinced to be less rigid in her perceived duties; after this, all the principals contribute reports, although the formality is disregarded when appropriate. There is a loose continuity in these episodes; a theme throughout the first season, for example, is the ponies' preparation for the Grand Galloping Gala that occurs in the final episode of that season. In the third season, Twilight Sparkle is shown to be tasked on a journey to test her abilities, ultimately ending up being crowned Princess Twilight and transformed into an "alicorn" — a winged unicorn. Episodes are otherwise designed to stand alone, though callbacks to previous episodes are included to reward those that have followed the show, according to Thiessen. The show is developed to give a "timeless" feel, limiting the world's technology to simpler devices, such as record players and filmstrip projectors.
A central theme of the show is "cutie marks", iconic symbols that magically appear on a pony's flank once they have discovered their special talent in life. While physically young adults, the six main characters are envisioned as similar in maturity to humans between twelve and eighteen years old. One episode, "The Cutie Mark Chronicles", highlights how each main character received her cutie mark as a younger filly. Several episodes focus on the exploits of a much younger trio of pony characters, related to the main cast, that call themselves the "Cutie Mark Crusaders", who have yet to receive their cutie marks and are teased by other young ponies as "blank flanks". In response, they desperately hurry to try to discover their talents and receive their own cutie marks, often doing so in comical fashions.
Main article: List of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic characters
The cast of Friendship Is Magic, presented as a poster at the 2011 San Diego Comic-Con. Major characters include (mid-front row, starting sixth from left) Rainbow Dash, Pinkie Pie, Applejack, Twilight Sparkle, Fluttershy, Spike and Rarity. The poster also includes minor characters and those named by the fandom, including "Derpy Hooves", "DJ PON-3", and "Doctor Whooves".
The show revolves around the adventures and daily life of the unicorn pony Twilight Sparkle (voiced by Tara Strong, singing voice by Rebecca Shoichet), her baby dragon assistant Spike (voiced by Cathy Weseluck), and her friends in Ponyville:
Rainbow Dash, a tomboyish pegasus pony who helps control the weather (voiced by Ashleigh Ball);
Rarity, a glamorous unicorn with a flair for fashion design (voiced by Tabitha St. Germain, singing voice by Kazumi Evans);
Fluttershy, a shy and timid pegasus pony who is fond of animals (voiced by Andrea Libman);
Pinkie Pie, a hyperactive pony who loves throwing parties (voiced by Andrea Libman, singing voice by Shannon Chan-Kent for most songs and Andrea Libman on occasion);
Applejack, a hard-working pony on her apple farm at the outskirts of Ponyville (voiced by Ashleigh Ball).
The younger Cutie Mark Crusaders include Apple Bloom, Applejack's younger sister (voiced by Michelle Creber); Sweetie Belle, Rarity's younger sister (voiced by Claire Corlett, singing voice by Michelle Creber); and Scootaloo, a pegasus filly that idolizes Rainbow Dash (voiced by Madeleine Peters).
The show takes place in the fictional land of Equestria, which is ruled by Twilight's teacher Princess Celestia (voiced by Nicole Oliver) and her sister Princess Luna (voiced by St. Germain). Another princess, Princess Cadance (voiced by Britt McKillip), is introduced within season two, who is wed to Twilight's older brother, Shining A
oversee the nearby Crystal Empire.
Many friends, family members, and other residents of Ponyville appear frequently, including the local schoolteacher Cheerilee (Oliver), Applejack's older brother Big Macintosh (Peter New), and the eccentric zebra Zecora (Brenda Crichlow), who lives in the nearby Everfree Forest and dabbles in herbal medicine. Antagonists include the corrupted form of Princess Luna, Nightmare Moon (St. Germain) from "Friendship Is Magic" (the first two episodes), the draconequus Discord (John de Lancie) from "The Return of Harmony", the Changeling Queen Chrysalis (Kathleen Barr) from "A Canterlot Wedding", and King Sombra ('Big' Jim Miller) from The Crystal Empire.
Main article: List of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic episodes
In total, 65 episodes have been produced and broadcast. The third season, aired in North America between November 10, 2012 and February 16, 2013. The fourth season is scheduled to premiere on November 23, 2013.
My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic series overview
Season Episodes Originally aired Season DVD release date
Season premiere Season finale Region 1 Region 2 Region 3
1 26 October 10, 2010 May 6, 2011 December 4, 2012 TBA TBA
2 26 September 17, 2011 April 21, 2012 May 14, 2013 TBA TBA
3 13 November 10, 2012 February 16, 2013 February 4, 2014 TBA TBA
4 TBA November 23, 2013 TBA TBA TBA TBA
United States broadcast
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