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Kathy Bates Lends Voice to Upcoming CG Popeye Special

King Features Syndicate announced that Academy Award-winner Kathy Bates (MISERY, TITANIC) has joined the cast of the 3D animated POPEYES VOYAGE: THE QUEST FOR PAPPY. Bates will take on the role of Popeyes nemesis, the Sea Hag/Siren. She joins voice over veteran Billy West (REN & STIMPY), who will bring the 'arrgh!' to Popeye. In addition, Devo frontman Mark Mothersbaugh (PEE-WEE'S PLAYHOUSE, RUGRATS, GROOVEIANS), has been brought on to provide the project's score and to produce an updated version of the classic Popeye the Sailor Man theme song.

This the first new POPEYE show in 15 years will first debut on DVD Nov. 9, 2004 from Lions Gate Family Home Entertainment. Originally it was announced that Artisan would release the video, but since then Lion Gate has acquired Artisan and will released the DVD under its home entertainment moniker. The DVD version will feature additional footage not seen on the TV special, which airs in primetime on FOX during the holiday 2004 season.

Actor/comedian Paul Reiser (MAD ABOUT YOU) and Jim Hardison (GARY AND MIKE) co-wrote the project with Reiser, along with King Features Syndicates Rick Karo and Frank Caruso, serving as exec producer. Mainframe Entertainment is animating the project and holds some of the distribution rights outside the U.S.

The story will center on Popeye's journey to his long lost father, Pappy, in time for the holidays. Joined by Bluto, Olive Oyl, SweePea and Wimpy, he sets sail through the treacherous Seas of Mystery in search of Pappys Island, but the evil Sea Hag, who sets her sights on Popeye, threatens the success of the adventure.

King Features Syndicate is a member of Hearst Entertainment and Syndication Group, which combines The Hearst Corp.'s cable network partnerships, television programming and distribution activities and syndication companies. King Features is a leading distributor of comics, columns, editorial cartoons, puzzles and games, distributing some 150 features to nearly 5,000 newspapers around the globe. Among its most beloved and successful classic characters are Popeye and Betty Boop.

With the recent acquisition of Artisan Family Home Entertainment, Lions Gate Family Home Entertainment represents a roster of children's and family franchises that includes some of the most widely-recognized brands in the marketplace, including BARBIE, CLIFFORD THE BIG RED DOG, CARE BEARS, RESCUE HEROES, HOT WHEELS and the JONAH: A VEGGIE TALES MOVIE.

Mainframe Ent. is best known as a pioneer of computer-animated television series for the groundbreaking REBOOT and the award-winning BARBIE AS RAPUNZEL direct-to-video feature, and is producing 13 episodes of SPIDER-MAN for Sony Pictures Television.

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