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Date: 03/10/2004
Author: Vanessa Amador
Subject: HarperCollins Children’s Books Launches Book Series Based on Sony Pictures Television’s Hit Animé Series Astro Boy™ on Cartoon Network

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Vanessa Amador
212.261.6735
Vanessa.Amador@HarperCollins.com

HarperCollins Children’s Books Launches Book Series
Based on Sony Pictures Television’s Hit Animé Series Astro Boy™ on Cartoon Network

[New York, NY]—March 10, 2004—HarperCollins Children’s Books is launching a book series based on the new hit animé television series, Astro Boy, produced by Sony Pictures Entertainment Japan and Tezuka Productions. The series airs Monday-Friday at 5:00 PM (ET/PT) on Cartoon Network's highly successful Toonami block. HarperKidsEntertainment has been granted North American English-language rights from Sony Pictures Consumer Products.

HarperCollins will launch the thirty book program in September 2004 with seven titles: one color and activity book, one color and sticker book, two beginning readers, two storybooks, and one chapter book.

“We are thrilled to be teaming up again with Sony Pictures Consumer Products on this very exciting property,” said Emily Brenner, Editorial Director of the HarperFestival imprint. “Astro Boy has all the elements of a great literary property for kids: terrific storylines, a strong central character, and amazing artwork that pops off the page!”

“We’re very excited to be partnering with HarperCollins, a worldwide leading publisher of children’s books, for ‘Astro Boy,” stated Al Ovadia, Executive Vice President, Sony Pictures Consumer Products. “We look forward to working with them to develop an out-of-this-world line of books that will capture the true essence of the new animé series.”

Based on the original character from the popular Japanese comic book series of the 1950s, Astro Boy tells the story of a jet-powered and fearless robot, who courageously fights to protect mankind from evil and defend his fellow robots from injustice. In a futuristic, robot-based world, a brilliant, but evil engineer, Dr. Tenma creates Astro to replace his lost son but soon abandons him. Rescued and adopted by the kindly Dr. O’Shay, Astro becomes a reluctant hero fighting evil with his incredible strength, laser weaponry, jet-rocket feet and telepathic computer brain. Mankind's only hope of surviving the attack of rebellious robots is a robot himself...the fearless, selfless, incorruptible champion known as Astro.

About Sony Pictures Consumer Products
Sony Pictures Consumer Products (SPCP), based in Los Angeles and London, handles the merchandising and branding efforts for some of the most recognized properties in film and television and, through Spider-Man Merchandising, L.P., a limited partnership with Marvel Enterprises, the upcoming motion picture Spider-Man 2™. SPCP properties include such titles as the Academy Award-winning short, “The ChubbChubbs™”, currently in development as an animated series and feature film, television properties such as “Astro Boy™”, “Jackie Chan Adventures™”, and classic favorites such as “Bewitchedä” and “I Dream of Jeannieä”, both in development for feature films.

SPCP is a division of Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE). SPE is a division of Sony Corporation of America (SCA), a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE's global operations encompass motion picture production and distribution; television production and distribution; digital content creation and distribution; worldwide channel investments; home entertainment acquisition and distribution; operation of studio facilities; development of new entertainment products, services and technologies; and distribution of filmed entertainment in 67 countries. Sony Pictures Entertainment can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.sonypictures.com.

HarperCollins Children’s Books (www.harperchildrens.com) is one of the leading publishers of children’s books. Respected worldwide for its tradition of publishing quality books for children, HarperCollins is home to many of the classics of children’s literature including Where the Wild Things Are, Goodnight Moon, The Giving Tree and The Chronicles of Narnia. HarperCollins Children’s Books is a division of HarperCollins Publishers, one of the leading English-language publishers in the world.

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