DIC Entertainment and Saban Entertainment, once partners on various series but now bitter rivals, have extended their bickering to the former’s new live-action firstrun series.
DIC has renamed the show, formerly titled “PowerBoy,” as “Superhuman Samurai Syber-Squad” to avoid confusion with Saban’s Fox Children’s Network hit “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers.”
The name of the title character, Zack Jason — which combines the monikers of two of the Power Rangers — also has been changed to prevent confusion.
Still, DIC stressed in a statement that the changes were made “solely at” the request of Fox, “contrary to a recent release circulated by Saban Entertainment.”
Saban issued a statement last week at the National Assn. of Television Program Executives confab asserting that DIC had agreed to change the name of “PowerBoy” and the main characters, and to put a disclaimer on all marketing materials disavowing any relationship between the two series.
The feud between the companies heated up at NATPE when DIC took out a large front-page “PowerBoy” ad in Variety’s show daily that contained a disclaimer in 2-point type, which was so small that readers needed a magnifying glass to see it.
A Saban rep said the company would not comment on DIC’s latest claims.
“Syber-Squad” will star Matthew Lawrence (“Mrs. Doubtfire”) and has been cleared in over 60% of the U.S.