Todd Brian, a longtime production and development executive known for his work on a wide array of children’s programming — including HBO Max’s Daytime Emmy-nominated animated series Esme & Roy — died December 28 in Toronto on “after a very brief but brave battle with ALS,” according to his family. He was 59.
The veteran of the Canadian entertainment industry, most recently serving as Director of Development, Animation, at WildBrain, is remembered by his family as “a very charismatic soul who would light up a room with his energy and humour.”
“Todd was not just my colleague but one of my dearest friends, we shared so much through our 17-year friendship,” remarked WildBrain’s Chief Content Officer, Stephanie Betts. “He made everyone he met feel appreciated and seen. I’ll miss seeing his bright smile and hearing his playful laugh every day.”
Born on December 3, 1963, Brian was a graduate of institutions including Ryerson University and the Canadian Film Centre who worked over the course of his career in both the animation and live-action spaces, holding roles before WildBrain as a production executive at Corus Kids and as a development executive at marblemedia. He also served as a senior writer for CBC Television, a story editor and writer for eOne TV, and a development coordinator for Barna-Alper Productions.
In addition to Esme & Roy, Brian’s production exec credits include the live-action Nickelodeon series Star Falls and Ride, and multiple TV movies based on L.M. Montgomery’s classic novel Anne of Green Gables for PBS, among others.
The multihyphenate’s credits as a writer included such series as Caillou, Captain Flamingo, Jimmy Two-Shoes, Turbo Dogs and My Big Big Friend, to name a few.
Brian is survived by his mother Judy Jacobs and her husband Peter; his brother, Troy Brian; sister-in-law Susan; their children Chelsea, Megan and Brock; his sister, Tara Brian, and her son Gavin. The family requests that donations be sent to the ALS Society of Canada in lieu of flowers.
A memorial service will take place in Windsor, Ontario in February, but details were not announced.
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