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Speed Racer Goes Back to Animation on Nicktoons

Lionsgate has announced that its first animated TV series will be an updated version of SPEED RACER, reports the trades. Nicktoons has already inked a deal to air the first 26 episodes. The launch of the animated series will coincide with the debut of Warner Bros. live-action SPEED RACER feature, which is being directed by the Wachowski brothers.

"It seemed like the right time to do a revival," said Ken Katsumoto, evp of family entertainment at Lionsgate. "When this opportunity arose to revive such a classic property, we jumped."

Animation Collective will handle the animation for the series. Animation Collective ceo Larry Schwarz is the exec producer along side Speed Racer Enterprise principals John and James Rocknowski.

The new series will follow a young Speed Racer as he joins a racing academy where he discovers that he is the son of the legendary Speed Racer from the original TV series as well as learning he has a brother -- the new Racer X -- which he never knew existed. Speed Racer and Racer X eventually team up and race their Mach 6 (a supped up version of the original Mach 5) to find out what really happened to their father. The original series' Spritle, the original Speed Racer's younger brother, is now the headmaster of the school and Chim-Chim is a robot chimpanzee.

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