Nickelodeon Marks 20 Years of SpongeBob SquarePants with the “Best Year Ever”

“Best Year Ever” Kicks Off July 12 with “SpongeBob’s Big Birthday
Blowout,” Mixed Live-Action/Animated Special Featuring Voice Cast
Playing Human Versions of Their Characters

Nick Commemorates Anniversary with New Digital Content and Innovative
Partnerships in Consumer Products, Fashion and Art

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PASADENA, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Nickelodeon is commemorating 20 years of SpongeBob SquarePants
with the “Best Year Ever”—a tribute to one of the most iconic TV series
and characters ever created. SpongeBob launched July 17, 1999,
and has reigned as the number-one kids’ animated series on TV for the
last 17 years, generating a universe of beloved characters, pop culture
catchphrases and memes, theatrical releases, consumer products, a Tony
award-winning Broadway musical and a global fan base.

The “Best Year Ever” kicks off Friday, July 12, with the premiere of
“SpongeBob’s Big Birthday Blowout,” an original mixed live-action and
animated special, and leads up to the Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon
Movies theatrical, The SpongeBob Movie: It’s a Wonderful Sponge,
coming summer 2020.

“The tiny residents of Bikini Bottom have held the world’s attention for
a remarkable 20 years and we owe it all to the monumental creator
Stephen Hillenburg,” said Ramsey Naito, EVP, Animation Production and
Development, Nickelodeon. “This anniversary special is a love letter to
everyone in the universe of SpongeBob, from the fans across the globe to
the incredible creative team, crew and talent who continue to bring
these great characters to life.”

It’s SpongeBob’s birthday in “SpongeBob’s Big Birthday Blowout,” which
features for the first time the celebrated voice talent behind
SpongeBob, Patrick, Mr. Krabs, Sandy, Squidward and Plankton playing
live-action doppelgänger versions of the animated characters they voice.
In the one-hour special, Patrick and SpongeBob journey to the surface
world, where they come across a few familiar characters during lunchtime
rush at The Trusty Slab restaurant. Meanwhile, the Bikini Bottom
residents set up a surprise party for SpongeBob.

Nickelodeon will also commemorate the series with: a new product line by
master toy partner Alpha Group, featuring figures that showcase
SpongeBob’s iconic meme moments; collaborations with lifestyle brand
Cynthia Rowley for a SpongeBob wetsuit and international mixed-media
artist Romero Britto; the launch of a dedicated YouTube channel and
mobile game; and more.

SpongeBob SquarePants has hit a wide variety of milestones in 20

  • Every four seconds, someone in the world is talking about SpongeBob on
    social media.
  • The franchise has garnered $13 billion in lifetime retail sales of
    consumer products.
  • The series is the recipient of multiple Emmy Awards: Outstanding
    Performer in an Animated Program for Tom Kenny (2018), Outstanding
    Children’s Animated Series (2018), Outstanding Achievement in Sound
    Editing (2014), and Outstanding Special Class Animated Program (2010),
    along with a special honor presented to Stephen Hillenburg at the 2018
    Daytime Emmy Awards for his contribution and impact in the animation
  • SpongeBob was the first square-shaped balloon in Macy’s Thanksgiving
    Day Parade history.
  • A new species of tulip was named after SpongeBob in Holland (2010).
  • San Francisco State University discovered a new mushroom species and
    named it after SpongeBob (2011).
  • United States Postal Service mailboxes across the country were wrapped
    in a custom SpongeBob design (2013).
  • SpongeBob SquarePants has “saved lives:” a Long Island girl
    saved her friend from choking because she learned the Heimlich from
    SpongeBob (2012); an Australian man lost at sea was found by a
    helicopter that spotted his yellow SpongeBob trunks (2012); and an
    entire family was saved from a sinking boat by plugging up the hole
    with a SpongeBob football (2007).

Highlights of Nickelodeon’s SpongeBob SquarePants “Best Year
Ever” include:


  • This summer, Nick will premiere some of the funniest new SpongeBob
    episodes ever, which will put the characters in situations they’ve
    never been in before: SpongeBob closes the gap in his teeth and his
    personality changes; his dream comes true when he becomes boss for the
    day at The Krusty Krab; and Plankton and Karen, somehow, have a baby.

Consumer Products

  • New global master toy partner Alpha Group will debut a brand-new line
    of toys, collectibles, plush and novelties. The imaginative range
    includes: a “Masterpiece Meme” line of vinyl figures, bringing to life
    fan-favorite viral memes like Mocking SpongeBob, Imaginaaation
    SpongeBob, Surprised Patrick, SpongeGar and Handsome Squidward; and
    for the first-time ever, SpongeBob toys that incorporate Nickelodeon
    Slime. Select toys are available now on Amazon and will roll out to
    other retailers worldwide.
  • New categories launching in consumer packaged goods and health and
    beauty, including the first-ever range of SpongeBob cosmetics, as well
    as special-edition product.


  • The debut of an official global SpongeBob
    SquarePants YouTube
    channel, featuring the most iconic SpongeBob
    moments, music from the show, brand-new content, including the
    short-form series “Bikini Bottom Mysteries,” which explores the
    secrets, scandals, and unsolved mysteries of SpongeBob SquarePants, and
    more. Themed content added weekly will include Tuesday Tunes,
    Throwback Thursdays and SpongeBob Saturdays.
  • Launch of a brand-new global mobile game, which will allow fans to
    share SpongeBob’s experience of being a fry cook in Bikini Bottom.
  • Brand-new short-form content across YouTube, Facebook, Facebook Watch,
    Instagram and Twitter, celebrating fans and their favorite episodes,
    cast moments and more.

Art and Fashion Partnerships

  • The lifestyle brand Cynthia Rowley will feature a SpongeBob
    SquarePants wetsuit in their New York Fashion Week runway show on
    Tuesday, Feb. 12.
  • International artist Romero Britto will reimagine SpongeBob
    SquarePants with his trademark vibrant, bold and colorful style in a
    mixed media art installation that will be exhibited at pop-up
    SpongeBob experiences across the U.S.

SpongeBob SquarePants is currently seen in 208 countries and
translated into more than 55 languages. The series is created by Stephen
Hillenburg. Marc Ceccarelli and Vincent Waller serve as co-executive
producers. SpongeBob SquarePants is produced by Nickelodeon in

Nickelodeon, now in its 39th 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, digital, recreation, books and
feature films. Nickelodeon’s U.S. television network is seen in more
than 90 million households and has been the number-one-rated kids’ basic
cable network for 22 consecutive years. For more information or artwork,
Nickelodeon and all related titles, characters and logos are trademarks
of Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIA, VIAB).


Katelyn Balach
(818) 736-3517

Sydney McCormick
(818) 736-3072

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