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‘Galaxy’ on Cartoon Network team

Cabler buys up Marathon skein

PARIS — Cartoon Network has pre-bought animated kids series “Team Galaxy” from Marathon, Gallic producer of hit children’s show “Totally Spies.”

The two-season package of 52 26-minute episodes is budgeted at $16 million-$17 million, making this animation project one of the most ambitious in production outside a major studio.

Skein, which will bow in fall, has also been nabbed by pubcaster France 3, Italian pubcaster RAI, Jetix and Canada’s YTV.

“It is a huge sign of confidence in us that Cartoon Network has chosen the project without having seen a single episode,” said Marathon animation topper Vincent Chalvon Demersay.

A mix of CGI and 2-D animation, “Team Galaxy” comes from the same creative team as “Totally Spies.” It follows a group of kids attending Galaxy High, where they train to become space marshals. Lessons in subjects such as alien languages and galactic geography are interspersed with dangerous space missions.

Marathon has sold 250 animation episodes to American TV channels in the past three years.

“Totally Spies,” featuring three schoolgirl secret agents, is one of the top four kids shows on Cartoon Network and has been on air every day — up to three times a day — since it bowed 2½ years ago. Season four begins in April.

Another Marathon series, “Martin Mystery,” was purchased by Nickelodeon. Season two of the show is airing on Nicktoons.

Marathon, which also produces and distributes fiction and documentaries, is finalizing its merger with former rival Tele Images, creating France’s biggest production powerhouse.

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