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Astro Boy for the GBA

by Steven Rodriguez - January 27, 2004, 8:11 am EST
Discuss in talkback! Source: Press Release

How can you pass up the chance to play a game based on a wacky Japanese comic book?

SEGA Propels ''Astro Boy'' to U.S. on Playstation 2 & GBA; Partners with Sony Pictures Consumer Products and Tezuka Productions; Yuji Naka to Supervise PS2 Development at Sonic Team

SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 27, 2004--SEGA(R) of America, Inc. today announced a partnership with Sony Pictures Consumer Products to bring Tezuka Productions' legendary Japanese comic Astro Boy(TM) to life on the PlayStation(R)2 computer entertainment system and Game Boy(R) Advance. Astro Boy, created by Osamu Tezuka in 1951, is one of the most recognized characters in Japanese animation and is poised to captivate television audiences as the star of a brand-new animated series on Kids' WB!

The console version of "Astro Boy(TM)," created exclusively for the PlayStation 2, is currently in development at Sonic Team under the direction of Yuji Naka, the creator of SEGA's world-famous Sonic The Hedgehog(R) series. The Game Boy Advance release, entitled "Astro Boy(TM): Omega Factor," is currently in development at SEGA's Hitmaker studios (in cooperation with legendary Japanese developer Treasure). "We plan to take full advantage of the powerful marketing rollout behind this license, led by the Astro Boy animated series," said Scott A. Steinberg, vice president of entertainment marketing, SEGA of America, Inc. "Bringing the Astro Boy franchise to the PS2 and GBA, in partnership with Sony Pictures Consumer Products and Tezuka Productions, underscores our ongoing commitment to publish exciting, revenue generating licensed content for the U.S. market."

"We're very excited to be partnering with Sega for 'Astro Boy'," said Al Ovadia, executive vice president, Sony Pictures Consumer Products. "Sega is a leader in the interactive entertainment category. We're sure they'll develop a video game that captures all the action packed adventure of the new anime series."

Tezuka, known as the pioneer of Japanese animation and "father of manga," created the Astro Boy character more than 50 years ago. Often compared in popularity to Mickey Mouse, Astro Boy was also the first Japanese animated television show shown in America and, during the 1960s, the highest rated show in syndication. Airing in more than 40 countries and selling more than 80 million comic books and $3 billion in merchandise, the beloved character has amassed a global following that borders on cult status.

Astro Boy Animated Series: Show Description

Astro Boy -- the classic icon of Japanese animation -- was introduced to a new generation on Kids' WB! with 25 exciting, all new episodes, which premiered Saturday, January 17, 2004. Based on the original manga character from the popular comic book series of the 1950s, Astro Boy tells the story of youthful, atomic-powered robot, Astro, who becomes a reluctant superhero fighting for justice and peace for humans and robots alike. Astro Boy is produced by Sony Pictures Entertainment Japan and Tezuka Productions, and distributed in the U.S. by Sony Pictures Television.

"Astro Boy" and "Astro Boy: Omega Factor" are slated for release in the U.S. in Summer 2004.

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