Rovio, the Finnish creator of the popular online game Angry Birds, will launch this weekend the TV cartoon version in a bid to widen its entertainment and merchandising reach.
The real deal:A character from the gaming phenomenon Angry Birds
Rovio announced its foray into TV at the developer's conference at SXSW 2014. It said the cartoon will be available through Comcast Xfinity service and on Samsung SmartTV starting March 16. The next day, Angry Birds, which has been downloaded 1.7 billion times across available platform, will be added to all related apps linking users to the cartoon.
The cartoon series will be aired on TV channels such as FOX8 in Australia, ANTV in Indonesia, Cartoon Network in India and MTV3 Junior and MTV3 in Finland. Angry Birds Toons could also be downloaded via on-demand services.
"Launching the channel and partnering up with some of the best video-on-demand providers and TV networks, is an important milestone for us on our journey toward becoming a fully fledged entertainment powerhouse," Rovio Chief Executive Mikael Hed said in a statement.
The first season has 52 completed episodes, and work has started on the second season.
The 1.7 billion downloads includes almost 500,000 subscribers in its YouTube channel that features animated promotional shorts and trailers, and over 1 billion views.
Besides the TV cartoons, Rovio would produce a 3D animated film schedule for release in 2016 with Hollywood executive David Maisel as executive producer of the project.
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