'R' rated ani pic to be released in 2002

HOLLYWOOD — Bernie Mac, Jennifer Tilly, William Shatner and Carmen Electra have signed on to voice Revolution Studio’s upcoming animated pic “Lil’ Pimp,” which is skedded to hit theaters in 2002.

Pic centers on the escapades of a nine-year-old freckled face kid and his pimp buddies Fruitjuice and Nagchampa, and Weathers, a gerbil with Tourette’s Syndrome. It will most likely receive an “R” rating for its bawdy “South Park”-style humor.

Revolution purchased the project, which originally appeared as a Web-based series on the studio’s online affiliate site MediaTrip.com, from creators Mark Brooks and Peter Gilstrap last year.

Aside from being one of the few projects snatched off the Internet and developed into a feature film, “Lil’ Pimp” also holds the distinction of becoming the first theatrically released pic animated with Macromedia’s Flash Animated software, which is usually used in creating Web-based shows viewed on computers.

Brooks and Gilstrap are helming, producing and voicing in the pic, which went into production in March with 10 animators at Lil’ Pimp Prods. in Santa Monica and budgeted around $1 million. Bonnie Arnold (“Toy Story”) is also producing.

Brooks and Gilstrap are also co-writing songs for the soundtrack with music producers John King and Mike Simpson, also known as the Dust Brothers, who have produced albums with the Beastie Boys, Beck and others.

Comedian Eddie Griffin, who appears in Revolution’s upcoming teen laffer “The New Guy” and reportedly planned to lend his voice to “Pimp,” has since bowed out.

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