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Thunderbirds go to China for first time

Kids-logo-460_2Chinese state broadcaster CCTV has acquired ITV kids series Thunderbirds Are Go, bringing the iconic property into the Asian territory for the first time.

Thunderbirds will air on CCTV-14, a children’s-focused channel, after the deal for exclusive terrestrial rights.

The 50-year-old brand has not been present in China to this point, but 26 episodes of season one are now set to go.

“We are delighted to be the exclusive partner in China for this hit reinvention of a much-loved, classic series,” said Zhuang Dianjun, head of CCTV Kids. “It is a great addition to our portfolio and I’m sure will have huge appeal to our young viewers.”

Coproduced by ITV Studios and Pukeko Pictures from New Zealand, the show follows the adventures of an international rescue team.

Nany Wang, ITV Studios Global Entertainment’s senior sales manager China, Hong Kong and Taiwan closed the deal for the Gerry and Sylvia Anderson-created show.

Thunderbirds Are Go is proving to be a huge hit with children and families all over the world,” said ITVSGE executive VP, kids content and distribution Steve Green. “The series has already sold to more than 40 countries underlining the global appeal of timeless stories of bravery, friendship and rescue.

“Its state of the art, modern technology, brings it bang up to date, while retaining its core charm and values.  I am delighted to add such an important market as China to our burgeoning list of countries whose children can now enjoy this fantastic series.”