Indian female boxing champion to star as cartoon superhero

Indian female boxing champion to star as cartoon superhero
India's Mary Kom celebrates after winning the women's flyweight boxing final match during the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon.

MUMBAI - India's five-time world boxing champion and Olympic bronze medallist Mary Kom is to star in animated form as the country's first cartoon girl superhero, the series' production company said Tuesday.

The boxer has signed a deal with ScreenYug Creations, based in the western Indian state of Maharashtra, that will see a fictional childhood version of the national hero in "Mary Kom Jr".

"She's between eight and ten years old, and gets powers when she wears her boxing gloves," Ashish Kulkarni, CEO of ScreenYug Creations, told AFP.

"She does lots of good things like fighting villains," Kulkarni added, saying the television series will be aired sometime in 2016.

It is the second time recently that Kom's life has inspired a screen outing after the release last year of the Indian biopic "Mary Kom" starring Bollywood actress Priyanka Chopra.

Kom, 32, is one of India's most successful sports stars and won gold at last year's Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea.

She said the animated series would focus on educating children about useful self-defence moves, according to the Press Trust of India news agency.

"I want girls to be confident, strong," Kom said in quotes carried by PTI. "Parents are usually not keen on fighting games... but with all the crime going around, their eyes are now open and this will help," she added.

Kulkarni told PTI "Mary Kom Jr" would be "India's first girl superhero animated series".

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