Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Cartoon Network’s Ben 10

Cartoon Network announced the start of production on Ben 10: Alien Swarm, an all-new, live-action movie based on the hit animated series Ben 10 Alien Force that will premiere on the network in fall 2009. The original movie will commence principal photography in Atlanta, Ga. Alex Winter returns to direct and executive-produce the latest installment in the Ben 10 franchise from a script penned by screenwriter John Turman (Fantastic Four 2: Rise of the Silver Surfer and The Hulk). Winter directed Cartoon Network’s first Ben 10 live-action movie, Ben 10: Race Against Time, which scored over 13 million viewers during its Thanksgiving weekend premiere in 2007.

For those readers who have been on another planet, or don’t come into contact with pre-tween boys, Ben 10 is Cartoon Network’s widely successful animated action-adventure series featuring Ben Tennyson, a 10-year-old boy with the ability to morph into different aliens using a strange alien device called the Omnitrix. A global phenomenon, Ben 10 is now being aired in more than 160 countries around the world; in Asia Pacific, the show is seen in 118 million households in 23 countries.

In Australia, after premiering on 16 April, 2007, BEN 10 went on to be Cartoon Network’s strongest launch for 2007, achieving the channel’s highest rating for 2007 and 2008. The premiere of Ben 10: Secret of the Omnitrix premiere on 1 September, 2007 proved Cartoon Network’s most watched show on record (kids 5-12) in Australia. In the Philippines, cumulative reach of Ben 10 was over 2.7 million total individuals 2+ since launch on 1 October, 2006 (Cartoon Network has 1,236,000 households in the Philippines - source: CN distribution report 2008 Q2).

Cartoon Network works closely with global toy partner Bandai for Ben 10 and, following successful toy launches in United States, United Kingdom and Australia, India and Southeast Asia, the character is poised to become the hottest brand for boys in the Asia Pacific region. Cartoon Network Enterprises has an overall licensing program focusing on toys and games, apparel, stationery, bags, gifts and novelties, footwear, publishing and other products.

Ben 10: Race Against Time is the first live-action made-for-TV CGI movie based on Cartoon Network’s hit animated action-adventure series BEN 10. It was the most watched telecast in the history of Cartoon Network in the US, as well as the number 1 show of the day on all television among boys,.

The movie had its television premiere on Cartoon Network’s Australia/New Zealand feed on 20 September, and on the Southeast Asia and Philippines feeds on 26 September. The movie is anticipated to set similar records (as in the US) in these markets, where BEN 10 is among Cartoon Network’s highest rating shows. The television premiere of Ben 10: Race Against Time in Malaysia also marks the launch of Cartoon Network’s first Bahasa Malay block, allowing the audience to watch Cartoon Network shows in Bahasa, in addition to English and Mandarin languages, via their Astro service.

Before the movie airs on the channel, Cartoon Network rolled out the BEN 10-green carpet with special by-invitation-only Ben 10: Race Against Time cinema premieres in Sydney, Gold Coast and Melbourne in Australia, Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, and Manila in the Philippines. TV legend Lee Majors, who plays the key role of Grandpa Max in the movie, flew to these countries to help paint the town green. Best known worldwide for his starring roles in The Six Million Dollar Man and The Fall Guy, in Ben 10: Race Against Time, Lee as Grandpa Max uses his past experiences with the paranormal to guide and protect his grandchildren, Ben and Gwen, through their many adventures in fighting evil.

Cartoon Network will soon launch the next BEN 10 series, Alien Force, in Asia Pacific.
Ben 10: Alien Force begins the next chapter in the continuing BEN 10 saga five years later when 15-year-old Ben Tennyson chooses to once again put on the OMNITRIX and discovers that it has reconfigured his DNA and can now transform him into 10 brand new aliens. Joined by his super-powered cousin Gwen Tennyson and his equally powerful former enemy Kevin Levin, Ben is on a mission to find his missing Grandpa Max. In order to save his Grandpa, Ben must defeat the evil DNALIENS, a powerful alien race intent on destroying the galaxy, starting with planet Earth.
In the US, the show set all-new records as the most-watched original series premiere (18 April, 2008) in Cartoon Network history among kids 6-11, boys 6-11, boys 2-11 and households, according to data from Nielsen Media Research. The one-hour premiere also scored as the number 1 telecast of the day on all television - both cable and broadcast - with kids 9-14, boys 6-11 and boys 2-11. The premiere of Ben 10: Alien Force out-performed the original Ben 10 series premiere (13 Jan, 2006) across all kids and boys demos, ranging from 40 percent to 70 percent.

Cartoon Network has also launched the official Ben 10 website (www.ben10.net) for Asia Pacific fans. Features include the latest Ben 10 games; videos on demand (including behind-the-scenes from Ben 10: Race Against Time) in the Screening Room; Grandpa’s Workshop, where users can create and share their own content using Ben 10 video clips, audio, flash animation, static art and text; and Ben 10 emoticons, wallpapers, desktop icons and even coloring sheets that can be downloaded. Ben 10 fans can enjoy all the interactive features by Going Hero and becoming a registered user. Aside from being an engaging online destination, www.ben10.net is as safe as Cartoon Network’s websites, requiring parental consent for registration and employing 24-hour monitoring of kids’ online behavior and interaction.