4Kids Licenses Ninja Turtles to Cartoon Network

4Kids Entertainment, Inc. announced today that it has licensed the U.S. cable television rights to the first 40 episodes of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to Cartoon Network. These episodes of the animated series will be part of Cartoon Network’s lineup beginning Spring 2004.

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series will continue all first-run broadcasts of new episodes on the Fox Box, 4Kids Entertainment’s weekend morning four-hour program block. 4Kids has already picked up the series for the 2004-2005 broadcast season. In addition, 4Kids will continue to be able to broadcast the first 40 episodes of the series on the Fox Box.

“The ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ have won the hearts of a whole new generation of fans,” said Al Kahn, Chairman and CEO of 4Kids Entertainment. “We’re pleased to be able to broadcast the series with Cartoon Network. Now that we’re adding the Cartoon Network audience, we’re certain that many more kids across the country will become part of the growing craze and get ‘Turtle-ized.’”

Now in its second season on the Fox Box, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which is produced by 4Kids Entertainment and Mirage Licensing, Inc., features the colorful characters, exciting ninja action and irreverent humor that sparked Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles mania more than a dozen years ago, but updated for today’s kids with an all-new edgier look and feel.

The legend of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles begins when four, ordinary pet store turtles are exposed to a mysterious green ooze. The turtles are rescued by a kind and intelligent rat named Splinter, the former pet of a ninja master, who adopts them, and takes them to live with him in his lair below the streets of New York City. After realizing they are all being mutated by their exposure to the mysterious ooze, Splinter teaches his charges the ninjitsu skills he has observed, and trains them in the honorable and heroic Bushido code. The four Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – Donatello, Michelangelo, Raphael and Leonardo – use their new skills to battle the evil Shredder and The Foot Clan, his formidable legion of ninja warriors, in the 30-minute action-adventure comedy series.

Source: 4Kids Entertainment, Inc.