CN, Del Ray Manga Team for Bakugan, Ben 10 Manga

Cartoon Network, Del Ray Manga Team

Press Release

Del Rey Manga, an imprint of Ballantine Books at the Random House Publishing Group, in collaboration with Cartoon Network Enterprises, today announced a new manga publishing partnership that will launch with original manga based on two of Cartoon Network’s most successful series: Bakugan Battle Brawlers and Ben 10 Alien Force. This announcement marks the first partnership between Cartoon Network and the Random House Publishing Group’s manga imprint.

Christina Miller, vice president, Cartoon Network Enterprises says, “Cartoon Network is the home to many of the leading brands, and manga and film-comics are natural extensions of our rich and immersive content. As one of the category’s best publishers, Del Rey Manga will bring these stories to life, starting with the incredibly successful Bakugan later this year.”

The first book published under the new partnership will be released in December 2008. Bakugan Battle Brawlers: The Battle Begins, incorporates full-color stills from the animated show in a manga-style graphic novel format. A second volume will follow in March 2009. As one of the hottest boys properties currently in the market, Bakugan, has been a hit in the US since it first aired on Cartoon Network in February of this year. A character-rich animated series aimed at boys 6-11, Bakugan follows the adventures of Dan and his fellow Battle Brawlers as they use strategy and skill to unleash their Bakugan power and save Vestroia and Earth from destruction.

Ben 10 Alien Force: Ben 10 Returns, the first title for the hit Cartoon Network franchise, will be published in April 2009 and follows the same format, drawing art directly from the cartoon itself. The top-rated Ben 10 Alien Force show chronicles the adventures of everyone’s favorite hero, Ben Tennyson. Armed with the Omnitrix, which gives him the ability to transform into different alien superheroes, Ben , his cousin Gwen and former foe-now-friend Kevin Levin are on a mission to defeat the evil DNALIENS and save the Earth.

Original black-and-white, manga-style graphic novels based on Bakugan and Ben 10 Alien Force will release in Summer 2009 and Fall 2009, respectively.

“We’re thrilled to join forces with Cartoon Network. Fan favorites Bakugan and Ben 10 Alien Force are beautifully crafted animated series that lend themselves well to this unique artistic form of manga,” says Mutsumi Miyazaki, director of licensing and acquisitions for Del Rey Manga. “Our partnership with Cartoon Network will provide a new and exciting opportunity for Del Rey Manga as we further expand our publishing program.”

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