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Cartoon Network unveiled a slate of originals designed to appeal to the Turner-owned channel’s core audience of boys 6-11, including a sketch comedy show headlined by Nick Cannon, a series based on YouTube sensation Annoying Orange set for this summer and a spinoff of DreamWorks’ Oscar-nominated How to Train Your Dragon (with the movie’s principals on board) debuting this fall.
Cartoon Network is having its best first quarter in five years (up 28 percent year-over-year) in primetime. The network, which marks its 20th anniversary this year, ranks No. 1 in all of television among boys 6-11 p.m. in early prime (7-9 p.m.).
Taking aim at kid’s space incumbents, executive vp ad sales Joe Hogan told advertisers gathered Wednesday at New York’s Roseland Ballroom for the upfront pitch, “It’s time to reasses your media plans and attach more of your messages to Cartoon Network.”
Additional new series include Ben 10: Omniverse — a second series in the network’s successful Ben 10 franchise — and a new CG-animated series from Warner Bros. Animation, Beware the Batman.
Returning fare includes animated series Adventure Time, Regular Show, The Amazing World of Gumball, MAD and The Looney Tunes as well as live-action series Level Up, a fifth season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars and a new iteration of game show Total Drama: Back to the Island, which is set for this summer.
Cartoon Network also will expand its partnership with toy-maker Lego, greenlighting a second Lego series for 2013.
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