There’s MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE when Cartoon Network premieres a 90-minute feature presentation of Transformers Animated Special: “Transform and Roll Out" on Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2007 at 8 p.m. (ET, PT). The adventure begins when OPTIMUS PRIME and his small crew of AUTOBOTS come into possession of the ALLSPARK, a powerful Cybertronian artifact that attracts the attention of their long-forgotten enemies, the DECEPTICONS, and sends them crashing to a strange and distant planet known as Earth.
The special kicks off the brand new series, Transformers Animated, set to premiere on Cartoon Network Saturday, Jan. 5, 2008 at 10:30 a.m. (ET, PT). Taking place on Earth in the near future in Detroit, the series begins when the alien TRANSFORMERS are thrust into a world populated by humans and automatons. As visitors to Earth, the TRANSFORMERS --OPTIMUS PRIME, BUMBLEBEE, PROWL, BULKHEAD and RATCHET-- work in the human world, interacting with the ‘natives’ in exciting and humorous ways. Following the AUTOBOTS across the galaxy to their new home is the megalomaniacal MEGATRON and his army of ruthless DECEPTICONS, a brutal race of war-mongering robots who seek to use the ALLSPARK as their ultimate weapon of destruction.
On their home planet of CYBERTRON, OPTIMUS PRIME and his crew AUTOBOTS are not heroes, they are loyal, dedicated, resourceful, hard-working, fun-loving “regular bots.”
OPTIMUS PRIME dreams of excitement, adventure and somehow making a difference in the galaxy. Given his first command in an unremarkable sector of CYBERTRONIAN space over a ragtag crew of misfits including: BULKHEAD a lovable, gentle-giant “strong-bot”; BUMBLEBEE a wise-cracking, over-eager “hyper-bot; PROWL an instinctual, intense “ninja-bot”; and RATCHET a crusty, battle-hardened “medi-bot.”
OPTIMUS PRIME gets more than he bargained for when the AUTOBOTS answer a routine distress call and suddenly find themselves in possession of CYBERTRON’s most precious and powerful artifact, the ALLSPARK. The ALLSPARK is being pursued across the galaxy by the megalomaniacal MEGATRON and his army of ruthless DECEPTICONS, a brutal race of war-mongering robots who seek to use the ALLSPARK as their ultimate weapon of destruction.
It’s a struggle for the plucky and unseasoned band of AUTOBOTS, but despite overwhelming odds, OPTIMUS PRIME and his crew manage to obliterate MEGATRON’s ship and save the ALLSPARK, only to have their own battle-damaged ship crash land on a remote backwater planet known as Earth.
Responding to an industrial disaster, the AUTOBOTS “blend-in” with their new surroundings by scanning and assuming the form of the local emergency vehicles. But it doesn’t take long before they’re changing back to robot mode and utilizing their unique individual powers: OPTIMUS PRIME’s versatile gadgetry, BULKHEAD’s strength, BUMBLEBEE’s energy stingers, PROWL’s stealth, and RATCHET’s magnetism to save the day.
The AUTOBOTS unlikely guide through human society is a brash, energetic 8-year-old girl named Sari Sumdac, the adopted daughter of a robotics magnate. Setting the AUTOBOTS up with their headquarters in an old abandoned auto plant on the outskirts of town, Sari not only becomes an “honorary AUTOBOT” by enlightening them on such mysteries of Earth life such as megamalls, holovision, hoverboards, junk food, and basic hanging out, but also becomes a vital component of the team in their adventures. For the ALLSPARK endows Sari with a very special power, one the DECEPTICONS would love to get their hands on, not to mention the ALLSPARK itself.
And before they know it, the AUTOBOTS are not just heroes in the eyes of the humans, they’re superheroes! Sworn to protect the ALLSPARK and their newly adopted home, the AUTOBOTS now have a huge responsibility to CYBERTRON and a super reputation to live up to on Earth.
VOICE TALENT & PRODUCTION
OPTIMUS PRIME: David Kaye BUMBLEBEE: Bumper Robinson BULKHEAD: Bill Fagerbakke PROWL: Jeff Bennett RATCHET: Corey Burton MEGATRON: Corey Burton Sari: Tara Strong Sumdac: Tom Kenny STARSCREAM: Tom Kenny Det. Fanzone: Jeff Bennett ULTRA MAGNUS: Jeff Bennett
Executive Producer: Sam Register Supervising Director: Matt Youngberg Head Writer: Marty Isenberg Character Designer: Derrick Wyatt
VOICE ACTOR BIOGRAPHIES
David Kaye (the voice of OPTIMUS PRIME)
David Kaye is a man of a thousand voices and has worked professionally in the industry since the age of 16. Over the years Kaye has supplied vocal personalities to cartoon characters on series like G.I. Joe, G.I. Joe Extreme, StreetFighter: The Animated Series, Kong: The Animated Series, Exosquad, Stroker and Hoop, Fantastic Four Animated, X-Men Evolution and Inayusha. Kaye played the infamous Megatron on Beast Wars: Transformers, Beast Machines, Beasties and Transformers Armada. Over the past six years, Kaye has had lead, co-starring and guest starring roles in The Outer Limits, So Weird, The Sentinel, Viper, Dead Man's Gun, The Twilight Zone; features such as Carpool, Prisoner Of Zenda Inc., Dead Like Me and the TV movies Murder In My Mind, Ladies and the Champs, MVP II: Most Valuable Primate, and Live From Baghdad. He performed the lead role in The Love Charm, a half-hour independent film that won the Best Short Film Award at the Leo Awards in Vancouver.
Bumper Robinson (the voice of BUMBLEBEE)
Shortly after arriving in Los Angeles at the age of 4, Robinson began his career in entertainment in a national commercial for Jello Pudding Pops with Bill Cosby. He went on to do many more commercials, and his on-camera career developed quickly with roles in The Jeffersons, Hill St. Blues, Night Court, A Different World and Star Trek, Sabrina the Teenage Witch and CSI: New York. His feature film credits include Enemy Mine with Louis Gossett Jr. and Dennis Quaid. Robinson also has quite an extensive background in voice work having begun with a role in Hanna-Barbera’s Flintstone Kids cartoon, for which a character was actually developed in his own likeness. He went on to lend his voice to characters in The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Pinky and the Brain, Saban Entertainment’s What’s With Andy and Static Shock as well as voice work in the animated feature Brother Bear.
Bill Fagerbakke (the voice of BULKHEAD)
William “Bill” Fagerbakke is best known for his work as Assistant Coach “Dauber” Dybinski on Coach and in movies such as Funny Farm. He had a role as the mentally handicapped Tom Cullen in the 1994 miniseries Stephen King’s The Stand. In 1999, he had a recurring role on HBO’s original series Oz. Currently, Fagerbakke is known as the voice of Patrick Star on the SpongeBob SquarePants animated series.
Jeff Bennett (the voices of PROWL, Det. Fanzone, ULTRA MAGNUS)
In addition to his multiple roles in Transformers Animated, Bennett voices the role of Raj in Cartoon Network’s Emmy Award-winning series Camp Lazlo. His voice credits include the title role on Cartoon Network’s original series Johnny Bravo, as well as recurring roles in Class of 3000, Dexter’s Laboratory, The Powerpuff Girls, Histeria! and Where’s Waldo? Bennett lent his voice and sense of humor to Captain Hook’s loyal first mate, Smee, in Return to Neverland, as well as Animaniacs, Pinky and the Brain and Batman: The Animated Series.
Corey Burton (the voices of RATCHET, MEGATRON)
Corey Burton began his voice-acting career over 30 years ago, studying the craft of Radio Drama with the legendary Daws Butler (Yogi Bear). The San Fernando Valley native has voiced sound-alikes and original characters for hundreds of entertainment and educational productions and can be heard in any number of characterizations across the U.S. and Canada every day. Additionally, Burton has been a promo announcer for each of the major TV networks and a narrator on an eclectic assortment of documentaries. His TV animation voice credits span several popular Cartoon Network and Nickelodeon series along with Disney and Warner Bros. series. Theatrical film work includes most of Disney Feature Animation’s releases over the past two decades, appearing in the main cast ensemble as Moliere in Atlantis, and Cap’n Hook in Return to Neverland. He is also known for precision A.D.R./looping work featured in many prominent movies, such as E.T., Total Recall and Poltergeist films among others.
Tara Strong (the voice of Sari)
Tara Strong has given life to numerous cartoon characters in more than 50 animated series including the voice of Ben in Cartoon Network’s hit series Ben 10, as well as The Powerpuff Girls, Teen Titans, The Fairly OddParents, The Proud Family, Jakers!, Rugrats and The Rugrats: All Grown Up.
Tom Kenny (the voice of Sumdac, STARSCREAM)
Tom Kenny has created countless memorable characters on television. Kenny is the voice of Eduardo in Cartoon Network’s original series Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends and the title character in SpongeBob SquarePants. His additional animated television credits include CatDog, The Powerpuff Girls, The Fairly OddParents, Futurama, Dexter’s Laboratory, Cow & Chicken, Johnny Bravo, Rocko’s Modern Life, Dilbert, What’s New Scooby Doo? and Xiolin Showdown. In addition, Kenny has lent his voice to the feature films Dr. Doolittle 2, Scary Movie 3, The Powerpuff Girls Movie and The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie.
Transformers Animated is jointly developed by Cartoon Network and Hasbro, Inc. and is co-produced by Cartoon Network Studios. Matt Youngberg (Teen Titans, The Batman) is supervising director, Derrick Wyatt (Teen Titans) is the character designer and Sam Register (Ben 10, Teen Titans) serves as executive producer of the series. Marty Isenberg (Danny Phantom., X-Men, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) acts as head writer.
Hasbro and HPG, its licensing division, will expand the action-packed Transformers Animated series through toys, games, licensed merchandise and promotions around the world.
Hasbro (NYSE:HAS) is a worldwide leader in children’s and family leisure time entertainment products and services, including the design, manufacture and marketing of games and toys ranging from traditional to high tech. Both internationally and in the U.S., its PLAYSKOOL, TONKA, MILTON BRADLEY, PARKER BROTHERS, TIGER and WIZARDS OF THE COAST brands and products provide the highest quality and most recognizable play experiences in the world.
Cartoon Network (CartoonNetwork.com), currently seen in more than 91 million U.S. homes and 160 countries around the world, is Turner Broadcasting System, Inc.’s ad-supported cable service offering the best in original, acquired and classic animated entertainment for kids and families. Overnight from 11 p.m.-6 a.m. (ET, PT) Sunday-Thursday, Cartoon Network shares its channel space with Adult Swim, a late-night destination showcasing original and acquired animation for young adults 18-34.
Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a Time Warner company, creates and programs branded news, entertainment, animation and young adult media environments on television and other platforms for consumers around the world.