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France Televisions, Zodiak set ‘Ethan’

Series to combine live action and animation

ANNECY, France — French pubcaster France Televisions and Marathon Media, part of the Zodiak Media Group, have teamed to develop “Ethan’s Island,” a series combining live action and animation.

The half-hour sitcom centers on a little boy, Ethan, and his family who are propelled from the real live-action world onto an animated island, after Ethan draws it on a piece of paper. Show is built around the comical clash between the family and the island’s animal community, with its own codes and way of life. The series is in CGI 3D, with the actors filmed live.

France Televisions will co-produce and air the show on France 3.

“The intense competition in the area of digital entertainment means we always have to come up with fresh and original program concepts that stand out from the crowd,” said Julien Borde, head of youth programming at France Televisions.

Headed by CEO Vincent Chalvon Demersay and managing director David Michel, Marathon Media is developing an innovative tool that will be used for the series.

“Ethan’s Island” is a new challenge for Marathon Media, Europe’s leading purveyor of CGI 3D animated TV franchises, including “Monster Buster Club.”

The Paris-based outfit has a solid track record of selling its series to U.S. networks, notably Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon and Disney XD.

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