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Show of the week: Mr Magoo

Mr Magoo is a 2D animation series for 6-to-11-year-olds, based around a classic character that first saw the light of day in 1949.

The character is owned by Dreamworks Animation, but this new show is being made under licence by Xilam Animation for France 3. Cartoon Network Asia is also on board the show, and the first full episodes debuted at MIPCOM.

The original Mr Magoo focused on a stubborn old man who would constantly get himself in scrapes because of his refusal to accept his shortsightedness. “In the new version, we have created a richer world for Magoo,” says Xilam founder Marc du Pontavice.

“In the classic 3-4 minute cartoons, it was all about the chaos he caused. Now there is also a clever, lunatic hamster that wants to take over the world. In each episode, Magoo prevents the hamster from achieving his plans without realising he has done so. He also has a dog called Mr Cat.”

Du Pontavice says the decision to go 2D was because “it works very well with slapstick, physical comedy”. As for the decision to revive Magoo, he says: “Some people believe adult characters are difficult for a kid audience, but there are great successes like Inspector Gadget and Mr Bean. One thing we have done is make him look ageless rather than an old man.”

Du Pontavice is not expecting kids to be aware of the Magoo heritage, “but their parents will know the brand, and that will help with building awareness around the new show”.

The show: Mr Magoo
The producer: Xilam Animation
The distributor: Xilam Animation
The broadcaster: France Televisions, Cartoon Network Asia
The concept: A 2D 78x7mins animated comedy which revives classic character Mr Magoo and gives him a hamster nemesis