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HIT Entertainment (styled "HiT") is a British—American entertainment company owned by Mattel and originally established in 1989 from Henson International Television, the international distribution arm of Jim Henson Productions.

In 2001, HiT took over distribution of Lyrick Studios' video portfolio, including Barney, Bob the Builder, Kipper, The Wiggles, and VeggieTales. During this period, they released five VeggieTales VHS' and re-designed their web-store under their name, and renamed the store hitstoreusa.com. However, the original Lyrick Studios web address is still valid under the Internet Archive Wayback Machine.

Phil Vischer heard of HiT upon hearing that Lyrick was going to be sold to it, and knew that because HiT was British and Lyrick was American, Christian media, which was more American than HiT's own brands, would sell (and be known to them) weak. One of HiT's executives said that the company was no longer interested with working with brands they did not own anymore, and they would be buying, building, and managing the properties they did own worldwide.

Dick Leach's death further concerned Big Idea's thought of letting HiT distribute VeggieTales videos. According to Vischer, fueled by his death and HiT now losing interest with working with companies that they did not own, "Bob & Larry were destined to become unloved stepchildren at HiT, picking up whatever table scraps were left after the "true children" had eaten their fill" (this, however, did not stop Fraggle Rock videos to be distributed by HiT after this event happened, said show being owned by the Jim Henson Company, who, unlike Big Idea, sold the home video rights to most of their remaining works to them after selling the Muppets to Disney). Big Idea had noticed this dynamic being done before with Lyrick staff letting them accompany their sales calls; regardless of whether each video got more sales, Barney would still get more attention, and VeggieTales would get even less attention. This, to them, would worsen had they let HiT distribute their videos. They eventually let WEA distribute their brands' videos for the mass market instead of HiT, the former company having no children's properties. As a result of this, HiT filed a lawsuit against Big Idea in court, claiming breach of contract.

By the end of 2002, HiT's lawsuit had cost Big Idea $2 million in legal fees, with more money on the way. Settling their unresolved lawsuit against the now-defunct Lyrick and its buyer became the company's highest priority, and as they tried their hardest to preserve money, many of their projects were either cancelled or postponed indefinitely. Big Idea's eventual changes were able to save them some money, but HiT would still not budge, and when they explained to the company's CEO as a last resort, they offered them this money as a last ditch settlement offer. They eventually confessed that if the suit went to court and HiT won, Big Idea would be forced into bankruptcy and Lyrick would have to "get in line with the other creditors". They were losing money quick, and HiT, still not wanting to settle the lawsuit, scheduled the case for April of 2003.

In April, Vischer went to Dallas and went to federal court to settle their unresolved suit immediately. Two women, identifying themselves as fans of VeggieTales, confessed that Big Idea wouldn't have done anything wrong and were thrown out of the room. Vischer's job was to look interested during the trial, and by next week, he would be told not to act bored and not do what he did when he arrived. The court proceedings themselves vacillated between painful and aggravating, and Lyrick's lawyer made him furious enough to scream back at him until realizing that he had to do what he was told.

In the end, Lyrick's argument boiled down to, even though a contract between HiT and Big Idea hadn't been signed or fully agreed on, acknowledging that copyright law precludes the transfer of any rights without a signed document, insisting there was a binding agreement between them and Big Idea based on the original offer letter that bore their president's signature and a return correspondence from one of Vischer's employees that carried his signature on a fax cover sheet. Despite what the letter said, Lyrick argued that their letter and fax cover sheet consituted their binding relationship.

Furthermore, according to them, even though the unsigned draft agreement said that they were permitted to leave hadn't they approved of a replacement for Dick Leach or a new owner, the lawyer pointed out that the words "approval which Big Idea will not unreasonably withhold". Big Idea noted that they didn't agree to a phrase this vague (which was one of many reasons why the agreement wasn't signed and was under negotiation), causing Lyrick to go for broke; they said that Big Idea didn't walk away because of their hatred for HiT, they being a perfectly acceptable partner, or that Peter Orton, HiT's chairman, was not an acceptable Dick Leach replacement -- they walked away just so they could earn more money. They could have accepted HiT's purchase of Lyrick, but "unreasonably withheld that approval". Recognizing that VHS sales were declining quickly and damages from lost VHS sales would be minimal, Lyrick argued that Big Idea had given them the rights to release their VHS' on DVD, though the draft contract stated otherwise. They eventually pulled out the DVD(s) they had released in order to test audience interest in the new format, and highlighting their logo on the back cover, said that they were given the DVD rights to VeggieTales. After four more questions determining the fate of what Vischer had done for the last 14 years leading up to the trial, Big Idea returned to court to hear the responses. As a result, the gavel awarded Lyrick with $11 million in damages, promising them they would make Big Idea DVDs from now on, flabbergasting Big Idea's lawyers and disappointing the lead lawyer, who was horrified by the loss. As a result of this, Big Idea nearly went defunct and was close to becoming history before being purchased by Classic Media (now a part of DreamWorks Animation SKG).

Videos Edit

  • The Toy That Saved Christmas (August 21, 2001)
  • The Ultimate Silly Song Countdown (September 18, 2001)
  • 3-2-1 Penguins!: The Amazing Carnival of Complaining (November 20, 2001)
  • Classics from the Crisper! (November 20, 2001)
  • Heroes of the Bible!: Lions, Shepherds and Queens Oh, My! (March 5, 2002)
  • Heroes of the Bible!: Stand Up, Stand Tall, Stand Strong! (March 5, 2002)
  • Larry-Boy Power Pack (March 19, 2002; contains Larry-Boy! And the Fib from Outer Space!, Larry-Boy and the Rumor Weed, and Larry-Boy the Soundtrack)
  • Larry-Boy and the Angry Eyebrows (March 19, 2002)
  • Rack, Shack & Benny (April 16, 2002)
  • Josh and the Big Wall! (April 16, 2002)
  • Where's God When I'm S-Scared? (June 18, 2002)
  • Dave and the Giant Pickle (June 18, 2002)
  • Very Silly Songs! (June 18, 2002)
  • Larry-Boy! And the Fib from Outer Space! (June 18, 2002)
  • Madame Blueberry (June 18, 2002)
  • The End of Silliness? (June 18, 2002)
  • King George and the Ducky (June 18, 2002)
  • Esther: The Girl Who Became Queen (June 18, 2002)
  • Lyle the Kindly Viking (June 18, 2002)

Album Edit

  • Silly Songs with Larry (September 15, 2001)
  • Bob and Larry's Sunday Morning Songs (May 21, 2002)
  • Junior's Bedtime Songs (May 21, 2002)

Trivia Edit

Its currently distributor is Universal Pictures Home Entertainment which had also previously distributed the second Veggietales movie The Pirates who don't do anything movie in 2008.