Noddy in American TV debut

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NODDY, loved by generations of British children, makes his American debut this weekend in a pounds 4 million bid for international stardom.

US television companies willshow a series based on Enid Blyton's creation which has been specially tailored for the American market, BBC Worldwide said. In a cross-cultural twist, the new Noddy with his Canadian accent and real-life child friends could even be re-exported back to Britain.

The 40-part series includes the same 10 minute animations of Noddy and Big Ears in Toyland that are shown by the BBC in Britain. But they have been re-dubbed using Canadian voices and some apparently impenetrable British phrases like: "I say!"have been axed.

The rest of each half-hour episode is set in an old-fashioned American curiosity shop and features specially created puppet characters like Bonita Flamingo, Johnny Crawfish and Gator Gerty.