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TNN To Launch New Adult Primetime Animation Block In 2003

The National Network (TNN) has announced plans to launch an adult animation block of programming in the 2003 season. Headlining the block is GARY THE RAT, a half-hour original animated series starring Kelsey Grammer as the voice of the title character. Gary is a New York attorney who is so unscrupulous and immoral that he wakes up one morning to discover that he's turned into a rat. Rob and Mark Cullen are the writers and creators of the series and serve as co-executive producers, along with Grammer. The series is produced by Grammnet Productions. Also joining the block is the acquisition of John Kricfalusi's THE REN & STIMPY SHOW. "The broadcast networks have all but abandoned adult primetime animation, and we see this as an opportunity to build a new night of programming with innovative, edgy adult animated projects for a generation that grew up on animation," said Diane Robina, executive vice president and general manager for TNN. Other animated series in development are JOE DUFFY, a comedy featuring a "modern-day Archie Bunker" from writer/producer Ed Weinberger (THE COSBY SHOW, TAXI) and produced by Nelvana Productions, and STRIPPERELLA, a half-hour animated series from SPIDER-MAN creator Stan Lee starring Pamela Anderson as a stripper/super-heroine. Also in the works is THE IMMIGRANTS, produced by Klasky Csupo Productions. Set in the heart of Hollywood, the series tells the story of recent Russian immigrant Vlad Krashenko and his unlikely friendship with streetwise Mexican immigrant Flaco as they pursue the American dream. TNN joined the MTV Networks family in September 2000 and is currently seen in more than 85 million U.S. homes.