Toonz will distribute the film to theatres in India while PHE will market the DVDs globally.

Our Bureau

Thiruvananthapuram, Dec. 8

Toonz Animation India has signed a contract with Paramount Home Entertainment (PHE) and Commotion Pictures to produce an animated feature film.

Titled `Dragonlance,' and being co-produced by Toonz, PHE and Commotion Pictures, the animated film is based on Hasbro's `Dungeons and Dragons' property.

It draws on `Dragons of Autumn Twilight,' the first novel in the best-selling Dragonlance fantasy franchise, published by Wizards of the Coast.

DISTRIBUTION

Toonz will distribute the film to theatres in India, while PHE will market the DVDs in the US and internationally (except for Asia), a spokesperson said here. Commotion Pictures' Mr Steve Stabler and former Paramount Pictures marketing president Mr Arthur Cohen will jointly produce the film.

Mr P. Jayakumar, CEO, said that Toonz Animation was thrilled to enter into an agreement with accomplished producers.

This had presented Toonz with a big opportunity to create an exciting film with global appeal and iconic characters.

VOICE TALENTS

`Dragonlance' will feature the voice talents of Keifer Sutherland (`24'); Lucy Lawless (`Xena: Warrior Princess'); Michael Rosenbaum (`Smallville'); and Michelle Trachtenberg (Ice Princess, `Buffy the Vampire Slayer'). "We're very excited to bring the wildly popular world of Dungeons and Dragons to the screen," said Mr Ellen Pittleman, Senior Vice President, Worldwide Acquisitions and DVD Premieres for PHE. "We are confident that Commotion Pictures and Toonz will do the property justice to the delight of fans around the world."

PARTNER PROFILES

As part of Paramount Pictures Corporation, PHE works on the sales, marketing and distribution of home entertainment products such as Paramount Pictures, DreamWorks SKG, Paramount Vantage, Paramount Classics, Nickelodeon, MTV, Comedy Central and CBS.Commotion Pictures is a two-year old Motion Picture company founded by Mr Steve Stabler and Mr Arthur Cohen with a goal of producing branded product of a commercial nature for all audiences.Toonz is a major provider of animation to the top US and European producers including Marvel, Hallmark, Paramount, Disney, BBC and Cartoon Network.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated December 9, 2006)
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