Yu-Gi-Yo! ZEXAL heads to Italy, France

Michelle Clancy | 12-10-2012

Animated kids' fantasy adventure series Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL has two new broadcast carriage agreements, with K2 (Italy) and Lagardere TV (France) to air the initial season (49 half-hour episodes) this year.

The Italian broadcasts of Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL are already running, and the French broadcasts are scheduled to start airing in October Canal J. 4K Media also said that Gulli TV in France will premiere the series in the first quarter of '13.

The deal complements Yu-Gi-Oh!'s licencing in North America. Episodes of the new Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL series as well as classic Yu-Gi-Oh! Episodes air every Saturday morning on the CW's "Vortexx" programming block. In Canada, kids can watch episodes of Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL every Friday and Saturday on YTV.

To date, the Yu-Gi-Oh! Japanese anime franchise has been translated and broadcast in more than 90 countries.

"For more than 10 years, Yu-Gi-Oh! has remained one of the strongest and most viable youth anime brands in the world, and these important television deals are a testament to that fact," noted Shinichi Hanamoto, president of 4K Media. "Millions of Yu-Gi-Oh! fans throughout Italy and France will now be able to enjoy great new content and card-Dueling action with the fantastic animated adventures of Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL!"

The Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL series storyline sees aspiring Duelist Yuma meeting Astral, a mysterious visitor from another universe. Yuma needs Astral to teach him how to Duel like a champion, and Astral needs Yuma to help him regain his lost memories.

"Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL is highlighted by fresh monsters, and the latest powerful cards, Xyz Summons and VR-powered Duel Gazer technology," the company said.

4K Media, a subsidiary of Konami Digital Entertainment, was created to manage the Yu-Gi-Oh! franchise outside of Asia.