Sydney – Nine Network has bought out shares to children’s TV property Hi-5 from Kids Like Us, original producers of the series, and have formed a joint venture with production firm Southern Star to develop the property. In the partnership, Southern Star will produce the TV series and market the property internationally. To date 435 half-hour episodes have been produced, along with 25 DVDs, 80 books and 11 CDs already released Down Under. Internationally, Hi-5 airs in 118 countries and is available to more than five million viewers in Asia, UK, US and Latin America. The Hi-5 TV show currently features on Nick Jr and the tenth Hi-5 TV series is expected to launch on Nine on July 7, 2008. In Australia, Hi-5 is a three-time Logie Award winner for most outstanding children’s series, its music album took five ARIAS kudos for best children’s album, and its live show won the Helpmann award for best children’s presentation. Over 2 million tickets have been sold worldwide to Hi-5 concerts and there are four casts in live shows touring Latin America with licensing agents and DVD distributors set up in Argentina, Mexico and Brazil. The Hi-5 Party Street live show will tour Queensland and New South Wales in Australia through April 2008, following the launch of the Hi-5 Party Street DVD installment on April 2.
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