(October 3, 2000 - Cannes, France) - China Central Television’s (CCTV) epic miniseries “Saga of Taiping Kingdom” will be offered for the first time to the international marketplace at MIPCOM 2000 by Warner Bros International Television Distribution (WBITD). The announcement was made today by Jeffrey R. Schlesinger, President, Warner Bros. International Television, and Mr. Li Peisen, President, China International Television Corporation (CITV), which is the program distribution arm of CCTV. A distribution agreement between the companies was initially announced in January, 1999 and marks the first time CITV has granted the rights for another company to distribute one of its properties. “Granting our company distribution rights to this prestigious, high-profile miniseries is a significant step forward in the already excellent relationship between CCTV and Warner Bros.,” said Schlesinger. “We are honored to bring this historically significant project to the international marketplace on behalf of CCTV and look forward to a mutually beneficial ongoing relationship with them.” “We are so pleased to have Warner Bros. International Television distributing our project internationally,” said Li. “We think this is most significant and timely in light of the recent development in Sino-US relations.” “Saga of Taiping Kingdom” is a sweeping, historical drama that follows a peasant uprising in China, marking the beginning of a new era in that country. The original series, which was produced by CCTV, runs 50 hours and was filmed over 10 months throughout, China at a final budget of $20 million (US dollars). The international version that WBITD is distributing has been edited to 10 hours. This distribution agreement continues the relationship between WBIT and CCTV, which has seen CCTV airing Warner Bros.’ classic “Looney Tunes” animated programming in China. Warner Bros. International Television is one of the world’s largest distributors of television programming, licensing more than 39,000 hours of television programming and movies dubbed or subtitled in more than 40 languages to broadcasters in more than 175 countries. China Central Television, also known as CCTV, is the national TV network of the People’s Republic of China. CCTV currently runs nine channels, broadcasting 150 hours of programs daily. As China’s largest and most influential TV station, CCTV has become a bridge for contacts and exchanges between China and the rest of the world.
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