|Also known as||Jim Henson's Dinosaur Train|
|Created by||Craig Bartlett|
|Directed by||Craig Bartlett|
|Presented by||Dr. Scott D. Sampson|
|Voices of||Phillip Corlett|
Alexander Matthew Marr
Ian James Corlett
|Opening theme||"Dinosaur Train"|
|Ending theme||"Dinosaur Train"|
|Country of origin||United States |
|No. of seasons||5|
|No. of episodes||100 (list of episodes)|
|Executive producers||Craig Bartlett|
|Producer||Sue Bea Montgomery|
|Running time||28 minutes|
|Production companies||Infocomm Media Development Authority|
The Jim Henson Company
Snee-Oosh, Inc. (uncredited)
Tail Waggin' Productions
|Distributor||The Jim Henson Company|
|Original network||PBS Kids|
|Audio format||Dolby Home Theater|
|Original release||September 7, 2009 –|
June 15, 2020
Dinosaur Train is a CGI-animated preschool musical television series aimed for preschoolers ages 3 to 6. Created by Craig Bartlett, who created Nickelodeon's Hey Arnold!, the series features a curious young Tyrannosaurus rex named Buddy who, together with his adopted Pteranodon family, takes the Dinosaur Train to explore his time period, and have adventures with a variety of dinosaurs. It is co-produced by The Jim Henson Company in association with the Infocomm Media Development Authority (formerly the Media Development Authority), Sparky Animation, FableVision, Snee-Oosh, Inc., Reel FX, and Sea to Sky Entertainment. As of September 2018,[update] PBS Kids had ordered 11 more episodes, taking the total number of episodes to 100. A film based on the series from Universal Pictures and Universal 1440 Entertainment titled, Dinosaur Train: Adventure Island premiered on April 12, 2021.
The show is set in a whimsical prehistoric world of jungles, swamps, active volcanoes and oceans, all filled with dinosaur and other animal life, and connected by a train line known eponymously as the Dinosaur Train. This steam-engine train can be customized for dinosaurs of all kinds: windows accommodate the long-necked sauropods, there's plenty of headroom in the Observation Car for the larger theropods, and the Aquacar is an aquarium for sea-going passengers. The train itself is run by Troodons, as the smartest dinosaurs in this fictional universe. The Dinosaur Train circles the whole world—it even crosses the oceans and inland seas, with stops to visit undersea prehistoric animals. It can travel through the entire Mesozoic Era, the "Age of Dinosaurs", passing through magical Time Tunnels to the Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous time periods.
The world of Dinosaur Train is seen through the eyes of Buddy the Tyrannosaurus. In the show's main title song, we learn that Buddy was adopted by Mr. and Mrs. Pteranodon. He hatched at the same time as his Pteranodon siblings Tiny, Shiny, and Don. By traveling in the Dinosaur Train around the Mesozoic, supplied with all dinosaur facts by the train's Troodon Conductor, Buddy learns that he is a Tyrannosaurus. As an adopted kid in a mixed-species family, Buddy is curious about the differences between species and vows to learn about all the dinosaurs he can by riding the Dinosaur Train. The dinosaur species featured in the show are actual dinosaurs discovered by paleontologists.
Dinosaur Train is co-produced and animated by Sparky Animation Studios in Singapore, with casting by Vidaspark and voice-overs recorded at Kozmic Sound in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. It premiered on Labor Day 2009 and airs daily on PBS Kids, and in various countries around the world. 40 half-hour episodes were ordered by PBS Kids for the 1st season. After that 49 additional episodes were made. Each episode is followed by a live-action segment featuring Dinosaur Train educational consultant and paleontologist Dr. Scott D. Sampson, who appears onscreen to explain the show's dinosaur curriculum in greater detail.
Main article: List of Dinosaur Train episodes
|First aired||Last aired|
|1||40||September 7, 2009||May 6, 2011|
|2||26||August 22, 2011||February 22, 2013|
|3||13||January 20, 2014||June 15, 2015|
|4||10||December 7, 2015||February 20, 2017|
|5||11||August 26, 2019||June 15, 2020|
Main article: List of Dinosaur Train characters
In early 2008, after the successful first run of Hey Arnold! on Nickelodeon, Craig Bartlett decided to create another children series, this one set during the era of the dinosaurs, including the Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous periods. Bartlett conceived the idea for the show, drew the main characters, and wrote a pilot script. Bartlett said he got the idea of the show after he saw one of his kids put a toy dinosaur in a toy train.
A live show, "Jim Henson's Dinosaur Train Live: Buddy's Big Adventure", toured the United States and Canada from October 2013 to March 2014.
DVDs of the series from PBS Distribution were produced from 2010 to 2019. It also became part of PBS Kids compilation DVDs until 2021, when Elinor Wonders Why took over.
StudioCanal UK and StudioCanal Germany released the series on DVD in their respective countries.
In July 2020, Craig Bartlett announced an 85-minute musical film based on the series on Instagram.
The film, titled Dinosaur Train: Adventure Island, premiered on April 12, 2021.