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 ATLANTA, Oct. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Emmy-award-winning animation studio Film Roman, Inc. has obtained the rights to be the exclusive animator for IZZY, the newly named children's character for the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games.
 The animation company plans to produce a series of pre-1996 holiday specials featuring IZZY and will provide IZZY animation for sponsors and others involved in creating the Centennial Olympic Games.
 The newest member of Film Roman's family of characters, IZZY joins the ranks of some of America's most popular cartoon personalities. Founded by noted animator Phil Roman, the 9-year-old Hollywood production company is the animation producer of such hits as "The Simpsons," a top 10-rated series; "Garfield and Friends," the highest- rated network children's series; "Bobby's World," the popular Saturday morning cartoon show featuring the voice of Howie Mandel; and "Tom and Jerry -- The Movie," a feature-length animated movie with music written by Henry Mancini. The company is also the animation producer for "Cro," a Saturday morning animated educational series premiering this fall.
 "We are very proud that the talented team at Film Roman is as excited about IZZY as children are," said Billy Payne, CEO of the Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games -- IZZY's creators. "IZZY is keeping good company and the expertise of Phil Roman ensures that IZZY's animation will always be Olympic caliber."
 IZZY's unusual appearance, his action-packed storyline and enthusiasm for the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games helped attract Roman to the character. "IZZY's got a lot going for him," Roman said. "Kids relate to characters that are different, and it is clear that they see IZZY as being a pal and a leader -- someone they want to hang around with. The fact that he morphs into other objects as he encounters each adventure adds to kids' fascination and offers us an exciting animation challenge."
 This summer, ACOG unveiled IZZY's true identity -- a storyline that was created with expert advice from kids around the country. IZZY is a teenager who lives in a fantastic world found only inside the Olympic Flame. Like other Whatizits in this Torch World, IZZY is captivated by the Olympic Games. But IZZY isn't content to be an observer any more -- he dreams of being part of the Olympics and embarks on a mission to join the Games. He is told that if he can find five magic rings hidden in the Torch World, he will gain the knowledge and power he needs to be part of the Olympic Games. He has to hurry, though, because the rings will only work in the year of the Olympic Games' centennial, and only when the torch is in the city whose greatness arose from the flames, the city of Atlanta.
 OCCUPATION: Hero of the Torch
 AGE: Teenager
 GOAL: On a quest against seemingly insurmountable obstacles
 to become the first representative of the Olympic
 Torch to participate in the Olympics Games.
 HOMETOWN: Athletes Villa, a neighborhood in the Torch.
 ACTIVITIES: Sports, helping children, hanging out and listening
 to music with friends.
 SKILLS: Transforming. Has the ability to turn into an
 endless variety of sports equipment and other
 objects. Can do things in hyper-speed that make him
 look like a blur.
 PERSONALITY: Warm, friendly, starry-eyed dreamer. Energetic,
 good-natured individualist.
 Mischievous?...Just a little. Like any teen, he can
 make well-meaning mistakes by jumping into situations
 before he fully understands them. But his enthusiasm
 and sense of humor see him through.
 GIVEAWAYS: Wears his heart on his tail. Friends say, "That
 tail's dragging when he's sad and thumping like a
 son-of-a-gun when he's up." Also, his lightning bolt
 eyebrows flash and rings spin when he gets excited.
 -0- 10/14/93
 /CONTACT: Laurie Olsen of the Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games, 404-224-1235, or Sarah Baisley of Film Roman, 818-761-2544/

CO: Film Roman, Inc.; Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games ST: Georgia IN: ENT SU:

TG-BN -- AT015 -- 2521 10/14/93 19:03 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 14, 1993

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