Chandigarh: It has turned 70 but is showing no signs of ageing. Popular cartoon TV show ‘Tom and Jerry’ - which features a cat and a mouse - appears set to entertain generations to come, surveys showing that almost half of its viewers are adults.
The show`s 70th birthday Thursday saw the famous cartoon characters making their maiden appearance in India, with models dressed as "Tom" and "Jerry" dancing to the tunes of latest Bollywood tunes and entertaining kids.
As "Tom" and "Jerry" danced to popular numbers from ‘Love Aaj Kal,’ kids jumped onto the dance floor and joined the party.
"Tom and Jerry is a piece of art. It is created just once. Even after 70 years, it is growing more popular than ever. Our surveys show that nearly half of TJ viewers are adults," Krishna Desai, director-programming, South Asia, Turner International, told reporters.
While Chandigarh was the first stop for Tom and Jerry to start off their birthday celebrations, their next destination is Mumbai where a full train will be painted in their colours, she said.
"In some cinema halls, we plan to give surprise gifts to people sitting in `T` (Tom) and `J` (Jerry) rows," Desai said.
Special shows will be aired March and April on popular Cartoon Network channel to mark the 70th year of the cartoon show.
The ‘Tom and Jerry’ show is a major hit on the Cartoon Network channel, which was launched in India in 1995. The show is beamed across the country in Hindi, English, Tamil and Telegu.
Despite competition from other cartoon channels, the "TJ" show stands tall. "The show has shown that if you want to entertain kids, you must keep TJ in mind. The show moves at the right pace and has enduring characters," Desai said.
"We have 160 titles (episodes) and six feature films on TJ. It is difficult to describe in words why it is so popular among all age groups. But it is working so beautifully," Desai said.
Even though the show has so many adult viewers, Turner International is guided by the principle - "target purely on kids". To cater to the Indian cartoon market, Cartoon Network has launched several "desi" shows like ‘Chhota Bheem’, ‘New Adventures of Hanuman’ and films like ‘My friend Ganesha’.