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Stan Lee, NHL Creating Hockey Superhero Franchise

Sure, Spiderman can shoot webs out of hands, but can he body check the bad guys? Well, there may be some new superheroes in town that do just that.

The National Hockey League and comic-book legend Stan Lee announced today that they are creating a media company which will launch a new superhero franchise targeting tween boys, The Guardian Project.

The Guardian Project will feature 30 “guardians,” each representing an NHL team. The NHL says the content will “organically and authentically incorporates various NHL elements but is not set in the world of hockey.”

Guardian Media Entertainment is the new company which will oversee the project, which is slated launch in January 2011.

“I’ve always believed that every great plan starts with a great story,¨said Lee in a statement.” In the creation of GME and its unique and unprecedented relationship with the NHL, I truly believe we have the perfect combination from which to launch 30 new superheroes and excite young fans around the globe.”

The 30 “Guardian” characters will be revealed during the 2011 NHL All Star Game January 30.

More information is in the press release after the jump.

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE AND SLG ENTERTAINMENT, LLC LED BY STAN LEE

(CHAIRMAN, POW! ENTERTAINMENT) PARTNER TO FORM GUARDIAN MEDIA ENTERTAINMENT

THE GUARDIAN PROJECT SCHEDULED TO LAUNCH JANUARY 2011

LOS ANGELES, CA (October 7, 2010) ¨The National Hockey League (NHL) and SLG Entertainment, LLC, led by Stan Lee (Chairman, POW! Entertainment, LLC), today announced their unprecedented partnership to form Guardian Media Entertainment, LLC (GME). This partnership creates the platform from which to launch Stan Leeħ vision for his latest superhero franchise, The Guardian Project, which will encompass the creation of 30 Guardians (one to represent each NHL® team) as a new series of superheroes, with a creative concept that organically and authentically incorporates various NHL elements but is not set in the world of hockey.

“I have always believed that every great plan starts with a great story,¨says Mr. Lee. “In the creation of GME and its unique and unprecedented relationship with the NHL, I truly believe we have the perfect combination from which to launch 30 new superheroes and excite young fans around the globe.”

Created and developed by Stan Lee and Tony Chargin, EVP of GME Creative Affairs, and Jake Shapiro, each Guardian has been derived from its corresponding hockey team, complete with special powers representative of each team and city. These 30 Guardians will be unveiled together in a special presentation during the 2011 NHL All-Star Game on January 30 in Raleigh, NC.

“To be in business with Stan Lee and to be able to bring his latest superheroes to our fans is incredibly exciting to all of us at the NHL, explained Brian Jennings, EVP, Marketing for National Hockey League, L.P. “We are in constant pursuit of new ways to engage our fans and to introduce new fans to hockey, and the business of GME does exactly that.”

Gill Champion, Stanħ producing partner and President and COO of POW! Entertainment said, “This is a wonderful opportunity to expand Stan Leeħ POW! Entertainment brand into the sports arena.”

With an initial plan to reach tween boys, GME hopes to bring a new audience to the NHL, while engaging the existing, established hockey fan base through a compelling tale of good vs. evil.

“The NHL not only brings enormous brand equity to the partnership, but also their built-in audience of more than 70 million fans worldwide and their marketing and distribution channels,¨commented Mark Terry, Chief Operating Officer of Guardian Media Entertainment. “To have the machine of the NHL, Stan Lee as an equity partner and the combined vision of all is the ultimate power play,¨added Adam Baratta, GME Chief Creative Officer.

The most cutting-edge, motion-capture technology is being utilized to bring the project to life by Vicon House of Moves (IRONMAN 2). A special teaser package will be unveiled during the October 8, 2010 panel presentation of The Guardian Project at New Yorkħ Comic Con (4:45-5:45 pm in room 1A08 of the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center).

The near-term rollout plan for the Guardian Project will include an online presence, mobile applications, publishing, gaming, in-arena, broadcast, merchandise, promotional and sponsorship activities.

For more information on Guardian Media Entertainment and The Guardian Project, log on towww.guardianproject30.com.

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