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JLA Answers Cartoon's Call

The fans have been demanding it ever since Batman: The Animated Series hit television. Now, this fall, Warner Bros. Animation will debut Justice League, though on its cable channel, Cartoon Network, not WB TV, as was expected. Bruce Timm, an Emmy winner for the Batman series, will oversee production of the 26 half-hour episodes, which will air as part of the "Toonami" animated action/adventure block of programs. The series will feature Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, The Flash, Hawkgirl and Martian Manhunter.

"I can think of no one more appropriate or qualified to bring the JLA superheroes to life than Bruce Timm," said Jean MacCurdy, president of Warner Bros. Animation. "As he so brilliantly demonstrated with Batman and Superman, he is passionate about creating an entertaining and dynamic series that will thrill the legions of JLA fans everywhere, as well as introduce a whole new generation of fans to these classic characters as they come together in a brand new series."

The Justice League as an organization within the DC Universe was created 1940 when DC Comics introduced the first superhero group, the Justice Society of America, in All-Star Comics, which ran until 1951.  DC revived the idea in 1960 as Justice League of America. Its current incarnation, JLA, is a bestseller for DC, regularly ranking in the top ten bestselling comic books. The Justice League was featured in an animated television series before, produced by Hanna-Barbera Studios for ABC from 1973 to 1985, though the title was softened to Super Friends or some variation thereof (The All-New Super Friends, Challenge of the Super Friends, The World's Greatest Super Friends and The Super Friends Hour). 

"We know from our experience of airing Super Friends for years on Cartoon Network here in the U.S. and around the world, that Justice League will have a vast, built-in audience hungry for an exciting new look at these classic characters," said Betty Cohen, president of Cartoon Network Worldwide. "We've built a powerful action-adventure block ... that will serve as a showcase for the new series. With Justice League, we're strategically positioning Cartoon Network to attract an even broader audience of tweens, teens and adults who are drawn to the powerful DC Comics brand and are seeking smart, exciting, action-packed animation at its very best."