Endemol has partnered with Kuwait-based publishing group Teshkeel Media to bring to life a new animated series based on its popular superhero comic books, THE 99.
THE 99 comic book series launched in 2006 and is illustrated and scripted by former and current Marvel and DC Comics writers and artists whose credits include X-MEN, SPIDER-MAN, SUPERMAN, IRON MAN, BATMAN and POWER RANGERS.
It is regarded as a valuable initiative to promote positive and entertaining role models for young people. The comics are distributed widely throughout the Middle East, South Asia and Indonesia and THE 99 will soon make its debut on millions of water bottles licensed by Nestle Waters. Further, the first of six THE 99 Village theme parks is due to open in Kuwait in early 2009.
THE 99 animated series will follow the adventures of the comic's superhero characters who must work together to maximize their powers. Each member of THE 99 embody one of 99 global values such as wisdom, mercy, strength or faithfulness and hail from 99 different countries on seven continents. For example, Jabbar is a Hulk-like figure of enormous strength; Noora has power over light; and Darr is the inflictor (and reliever) of pain.
According to legend 99 gems of power, which were scattered across the earth hundreds of years ago, now empower a select few with superhuman abilities. These lost "Noor Stones" are storehouses for the knowledge of Dar Al-Hikma, the largest library in the great city of Baghdad. Dr. Ramzi Razem has made it his mission to search for these gems and those who bear them. If he succeeds, humanity may once again be able to usher in an age of peace and prosperity. His years of searching proved futile until now. Today the light begins to shine, bringing the promise and power of THE 99 to the children of the world.
Dr Naif Al Mutawa, Founder and CEO of Teshkeel Media and creator of THE 99, said, "It's rare that an idea born of a social premise can become even more successful as a business. But when THE 99 comics premiered to the acclaim of the worldwide media and the delight of the children they were created to entertain, that is just what happened.
Bringing THE 99 to homes around the world through its animated stories will fully implement the power of an idea whose time has come. And doing this in partnership with Endemol, a true world leader in worldwide syndicated television, will ensure our success."
Production for the series will be overseen by Endemol UK, with animation to be completed in India and post production in the U.K. Endemol International will have worldwide TV, online, mobile and DVD distribution rights to the original property.