The upfront season has started with Cartoon Network first out of the toon gate as it unveiled its substantial new programming slate for 2003 in New York City. All the networks are embarking upon the annual dog and pony show (upfronts) to attract potential advertisers and sponsors to support their season slates. Highlights include three new series, 20 shorts with Lucasfilm Ltd. and new episodes of returning series that will provide more than 400 new half-hours of programming. CN execs on hand included VP/GM Jim Samples, SVP/creative director Michael Ouweleen, and SVPs of original animation Linda Simensky and Sam Register. Major announcements included:
NEW SERIES: DUCK DODGERS, a new series starring Daffy Duck as an inept space hero, produced by Warner Bros. Animation, premiering in July 2003. TEEN TITANS, an action-adventure series about a group of teenage superheroes led by Robin The Boy Wonder, premiering in August 2003. LOWBROW, an action-comedy series in which a 20-something slacker with a customized 80-foot robot from the future must defend all of humanity from evil aliens, debuting in December 2003.
NEW SHORTS: STAR WARS: CLONE WARS, 20 two- to three-minute shorts continuing the saga of the Clone Wars from the feature film STAR WARS: EPISODE II ATTACK OF THE CLONES, to begin airing this fall, produced by Cartoon Network Studio's team led by Genndy Tartakovsky, in partnership with Lucasfilm.
ALL NEW EPISODES ORIGINALS: 20 new half-hour episodes of SAMURAI JACK, starting in May. (CN Studios) 26 new half-hour episodes of JUSTICE LEAGUE begin in October. (WBA) 19 episodes of CODENAME: KIDS NEXT DOOR, starting in October 2003 (Curious Pictures) 4 new episodes of THE POWERPUFF GIRLS, starting in September, plus an all-new one-hour holiday special. (CN Studios) 5 new episodes of ED, EDD N EDDY, beginning in November. (aka Cartoons) 11 new episodes of DEXTERS LABORATORY, beginning in April. (CN Studios) 5 new episodes of TIME SQUAD, debuting in March. (CN Studios) 10 new episodes of GRIM & EVIL, debuting in June. (CN Studios)
11 new half-hour episodes of WHATEVER HAPPENED TO ROBOT JONES? starting in September. (CN Studios)
WHATS NEW SCOOBY-DOO?, a 21st century update of the classic comedy/mystery series starring the crime-solving Great Dane and pals, debuting on March 28, 2003. (WBA) 15 new episodes of DRAGONBALL Z, starting on March 17, 2003 on CN's TOONAMI. (FUNimation) The U.S. debut of ROROUNI KENSHIN, 95 episodes of the Japanese series will premiere on TOONAMI, beginning in March 2003. 52 new episodes of DRAGON BALL, to air on TOONAMI this year. (FUNimation) 26 episodes of SD GUNDAM. (Bandai Entertainment) 13 new episodes of HE-MAN AND THE MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE. (Mike Young Prods.) 26 new episodes of TRANSFORMERS: ARMADA. 26 episodes of .hack/SIGN. (Asatsu) 12 episodes of KIKAIDER. 26 episodes of BLUE GENDER. 52 additional episodes of HAMTARO. (ShoPro Entertainment) 13 new episodes of BIG O. 50 episodes of YU-GI-OH!. (FUNimation) 52 episodes of JACKIE CHAN ADVENTURES. (Sony Pictures Entertainment) 43 episodes of X-MEN: EVOLUTION. (Sony Pictures Entertainment, Film Roman) 100 episodes of POKÉMON (ShoPro)
ADULT SWIM: 26 new episodes of AQUA TEEN HUNGER FORCE, airing in 2003. (CN Prods) 13 new episodes of THE BRAK SHOW will air in 2003. (CN Prods) 13 new episodes of SEALAB 2021 will debut in 2003. (70/30 Production) 26 episodes of TRIGUN will debut, starting in March 2003. (Pioneer Entertainment) New episodes of HARVEY BIRDMAN, ATTORNEY-AT-LAW debut in April 2003. (CN Prods) 13 new episodes of HOME MOVIES, created for Cartoon Network, will debut in fall 2003. (Soup2Nuts)
Launched in 1992, Cartoon Network is Turner Broadcasting Systems, Inc.s 24-hour, ad-supported cable service offering animated entertainment seen in 82.1 million U.S. homes and 145 countries around the world. For more check out http://CartoonNetwork.com (AOL Keyword: Cartoon Network).