Animated Fantastic Four Back in Action

As Fantastic Four gets set to make its big-screen debut this summer, the classic Marvel comic-book property is also making a triumphant return to TV with a new animated action/comedy series. Moonscoop, the new umbrella banner for France Animation and Antefilms Production, today announced that it has entered into a co-production deal with Cartoon Network Europe, which has also acquired worldwide broadcast rights to the series outside of the U.S.

The new 26×26 Fantastic Four series will blend 2D character animation with 3D backgrounds, vehicles and other elements. Judging by character designs we’ve seen, Moonscoop has managed to update the superhero family while staying true to the spirit of the comics. A younger-looking Reed Richards still sports his grey temples and Ben Grim (a.k.a. The Thing) is as massive as ever.

Moonscoop VP and exec producer Nicolas Atlan tells us his company worked closely with Marvel to introduce the franchise to a new generation of toon viewers. And while the show bears more resemblance to the comic books than the upcoming 20th Century Fox pic, he says it was important to keep some continuity between the show and the movie, mainly the story of how the title quartet got their super powers.

Moonscoop and Cartoon Network Europe plan to have Fantastic Four ready to air by September of 2006. Also on the company’s plate is a second season of the hit series, Code Lyoko, which airs on Cartoon Network in the U.S. and can be seen around the world. The next round of shows will offer even more CG mixed in with the 2D animation and will introduce a fifth territory to the cyber world visited by its teen heroes.