IDT Media's Digital Production Solutions (DPS, based in Newark, New Jersey) will boldly go where it's never gone before, as well as take works by Gene Roddenberry where they've never been before by acquiring the rights to unseen kids projects by the Startrek creator to turn them into 3D features. STARPOINT ACADEMY and CHAR, the first and only Gene Roddenberry projects that are specifically aimed at children, were optioned and bought by Morris Berger, VP of business development for DPS from a to-be-named production company recently launched by Camarillo, California-based Panacea Entertainment chairman Eric Gardner and former Tribune Entertainment SVP of programming and development Karen Corbin. They will produce the projects in association with DPS, along with Majel Roddenberry, Gene Roddenberry's widow, who helped develop the properties. "We're planning on taking Gene Roddenberry fans on a new trek through space with STARPOINT ACADEMY and CHAR," said Jim Courter, IDT's CEO. "Using superior texturing, lighting and visual effects, IDT Media's Global Animation Studio will create high-quality 3D animated productions that would even amaze Gene Roddenberry. The realistic scenery, landscape and special effects that can be created through 3D animation will make viewers feel like they are truly part of the story." He said the production costs should be significantly lower than other full 3D features, using its Global Animation Studio which utilizes IDT technologies affording efficiencies and cost savings to create the world's largest asset management-based production system. STARPOINT ACADEMY takes place on Starpoint Pharos, an artificial planet that houses emissaries of peace from every galaxy. In this cosmic United Nations, the problems of the universe are peacefully debated and resolved. Against this backdrop, the best and brightest galactic teens are recruited and trained. CHAR is the saga of an intergalactic princess, robbed of her birthright and raised as a normal all-American girl on 24th century Earth with no knowledge of her true identity. "Gene and I had often discussed the wonderful possibilities available in storytelling for these younger audiences," said Majel Roddenberry. "These projects will bring alive his positive vision of science, exploration and adventure to a new generation." IDT Media will keep Gene Roddenberry fans in the loop on production concepts and schedules through their Website www.starpointacademy.net
to be launched shortly. In addition, IDT Media acquired the rights to all audio and video content relating to the projects, including but not limited to licensing, game development and merchandising. DPS is working on a co-production with Jim Jinkins and David Campbell of Cartoon Pizza, the creators of DOUG, STANLEY and PB&J OTTER. In addition, the DPS studio has produced episodes of MONSTER BY MISTAKE for CCI Entertainment, Ltd. DPS recently made a series of 3D animations for the educational market, for Pearson Education's "Sing, Spell, Read & Write," program. DPS was formed by IDT Media in late 2002. IDT Media is the subsidiary of IDT Corp. (www.idt.net
) responsible for its initiatives in media, new video technologies and print media. IDT Corp., through its IDT Telecom subsidiary, is a multinational carrier, technology and telecommunications company.