Animated Shorts: Cartoon Network & Mattel Rev Up HOT WHEELS

CN & Mattel Rev Up Hot Wheels

At this week’s Licensing International Expo, Mattel Inc. announced its new Hot Wheels TV series will launch on Cartoon Network in late August.

Entitled Hot Wheels: Battle Force 5, it will air at an unspecified time on Saturday mornings and is produced by Canadian animation giant Nelvana as well as Nerd Corp (League of Super Evil). Featuring CGI animation, the series will “transport kids into a fantasy world where they will meet an elite team of drivers in five ultra-cool, ultra-fast vehicles. They're teens, they're turbo-charged and they must work together using their armored battle machines to save the Earth from the most outrageous galactic predators,” says the press release. According to informed sources, it is a spin-off of the series of Hot Wheels Acceleracers specials CN aired over the last year.

"Battle Force 5 features a new and exciting entertainment concept with plenty of crash and bash vehicular combat our fans have never seen before," said Tim Kilpin, General Manager, Mattel Brands' Girls, Boys & Games Division. "In addition to the toy line, Battle Force 5 gives us a unique opportunity to bring the excitement of the show to life for boys through a variety of dynamic licensees, offering a wide range of products, from apparel and role play to publishing and videogames."

You can bet there will be a ton of product out there to coincide with the series. Those will hit the market in the Fall.

According to Variety, Cartoon Network is hoping for the same kind of success with this new franchise as they had with Star Wars Clone Wars.

A YouTube site featuring the toys is already up at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53XZhlzV5MM

PIRATES SHUT DOWN ONE PIECE WEB CAST

Last Saturday, FUNimation cancelled its web streaming of a new episode of One Piece due to web piracy.

“As anime fans know, FUNimation Entertainment and Toei Animation had planned for the first ever online simulcast of the series One Piece tonight at 9:00 pm CDT,” a spokesperson announced shortly before the show’s airing, “just one hour after its premiere on Japan’s Fuji Television. Unfortunately, in the last 24 hours we have determined that the FUNimation servers were compromised, even though we employ strict security standards. An unknown individual accessed and posted episode 403 online and as a direct result of this illegal act, all U.S. and Canadian fans will be deprived of access to this great anime series for the immediate future. We will make every effort to locate and prosecute the perpetrator(s) to the fullest extent of the law and will provide updates regarding this most serious matter.”

FUNimation promises more news on this breaking event in the very near future.

BATMAN THIS MONTH’S BOOMEROYALTY

Boomerang announced that this month’s Boomeroyalty will be no less than the Caped Crusader.

As always, this means the blocks will air every Saturday and Sunday from 2:00 to 4:00 pm starting Saturday, June 6th. More than likely, it will focus on the Bruce Timm-produced Batman shows (TAS, New Adventures, Batman Beyond, etc.) and not much of the Filmation-produced shows.

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