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Toonami Broadens Appeal To Tweens, Adds Live-Action

In the U.K., Toonami has added live-action drama and comedy to its cartoon lineup to broaden the appeal of the channel.

Aimed at boys and girls 6 to 12 years old, Toonami is the first kids channel from Turner Broadcasting to include live-action series, which will be added to the channels popular cartoons including THE BATMAN, POKÉMON, JUSTICE LEAGUE, TEEN TITANS and STATIC SHOCK.

New shows include: the U.S. comedy, LIFE WITH DEREK; sun and surf based Aussie soap, BLUE WATER HIGH; and the ultimate pranksters guide to high-school life, PARKER LEWIS CANT LOSE. In addition, STENCIL is a daily sports show concentrating on surfing, skateboarding, BMXing and breakdancing and BACKYARD SCIENCE teaches kids simple experiments they can do at home.

Now that Toonami is well established and moving to its new position we are broadening its appeal. It will be the natural choice for pre-teen boys and girls looking for a general mix of entertainment from a channel that they can feel is their own, said Paul Cackett, Toonamis channel manager.

By broadening the mix of shows and moving to a prime location on the Sky EPG we are adding an extra dimension to our traditional core audience. This is crucial in a market characterized by increased competition. We have always been at the forefront of audience delivery for our clients and this move will further strengthen our position, said Simon Cox, vp of entertainment ad sales.

Turner Broadcasting has also launched Boomerang +1 as well as brand new channel Cartoon Network TOO later in the year.

In addition to the new shows the channel will have an entirely new on air look with a novel and unique presentation style and a brand new website. The in-house animators at Turner Broadcasting have created a team of cartoon characters to present the new look Toonami. Hard at work in the Toonami factory, the host of little workers strive relentlessly to put the shows on air and look after on air continuity in their own chaotic way. They appear holding up signs and sticking up posters to introduce the shows.

Producer is James Walpole with art direction and character design by Sonia Pang Washford, 3D and post-production by Lee Medcalf and the creative director is Jonny Potter.

The team also created an animated promo with the characters presenting the new shows voiced by Leslie Phillips.

Two television campaigns promoting the new look and live-action shows with both 30- and 60-second spots have been booked on childrens channels including Nickelodeon and Trouble in addition to substantial press advertising, online banners, competitions, e-mails and texts. The media was bought by Mediacom, with the creative prepared in partnership between Turners in-house design team and communications agency, Fold 7.

Toonami is available at: Sky Digital 602, ntl 903 and Telewest Broadband 732, Top Up TV 74 and Homechoice 326.

Turner Broadcasting System (TBS) Europe delivers some of the worlds most successful and well-known news and entertainment brands CNN, Cartoon Network, TCM (Turner Classic Movies), Toonami and Boomerang across approximately 100 countries in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. Alongside its TV channels TBS is at the forefront of developing its brands through the Internet, broadband, wireless, DVD, e-commerce, merchandising, cinema, publishing and every other available platform. Turner Broadcasting System Europe Ltd. is a Time Warner company.

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