BBC News

1 February 2001

Animated heroes take to the web


_1148726_xena300.jpg (10862 bytes)British internet service provider Freeserve is offering animated short films on its website, including a version of fantasy TV series Xena: Warrior Princess.

Freeserve has signed a deal with American internet broadcaster Brilliant Digital Entertainment to offer a range of animated "webisodes" on the entertainment section of

Chief operating officer at Freeserve, Frank Keeling, said: "These latest additions to the ever expanding Freeserve portal further demonstrate our commitment to providing the best entertainment content on the web."

Each week on Freeserve a new animated 3D webisode is shown and viewers can interact with the story.

With Xena: Warrior Princess visitors can choose what happens next to the athletic royal.

Also on offer is Kiss Immortals, a series following the adventures of rock band Kiss.

Brilliant produces shows based on Superman and Ace Ventura as well as cartoon characters Dilbert and Garfield, and these will be added to the site in the coming months.

To view the "webisodes" users have to download a digital "projector", which looks like a TV screen. Last year Freeserve experimented with an interactive webshow called Online Caroline. It was an instant success, picking up a BAFTA award for best online drama and proving a big hit with audiences who attempted to contact the animated heroine.  Freeserve was launched in September 1998 as part of Dixons, the consumer electronics retailer.

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