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Smarter Than The Average Ted

Up Front


So we've met the Flintstones. Again. Next year comes Yogi Bear, the picnic-basket-snatching bruin from Jellystone National Park. To Turner Broadcasting--which in 1991 bought Yogi, Fred, Barney, and the rest of the Hanna-Barbera clan--the characters are brands to be unleashed in yearly doses. Ted Turner's marketing staff has signed up more than 1,000 licensing partners, roughly double the number it inherited.

The Flintstones get 1994: Their prehistoric suburban comedy is a box-office hit from Universal Pictures. And 1995 belongs to the food-obsessed Yogi. Get ready for Yogi neckties, Yogi T-shirts, Yogi videos, Yogi-head bottletops on Log Cabin Syrup. Unlike the Flintstones, though, Yogi won't have a full-length feature. The next Hanna-Barbera big-screen release arrives in 1996, with a live-action film of the boy adventurer Jonny Quest (produced by Lethal Weapon's Richard Donner). Jonny also gets 65 new animated episodes that will update the old TV cartoon series.

The goal is to introduce the characters to a new generation of youngsters, bring back older fans, and create new revenue streams for Turner. Good marketing is clearly a must after the major disappointment of pre-Turner HB's Jetsons: The Movie (1990).Jonathan Berry By EDITED BY LARRY LIGHT AND JULIE TILSNER

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