According to Variety, Global animation company BKN has signed an exclusive license agreement with Zorro Prods. to produce and distribute 26 animated TV episodes and a direct-to-DVD film based on the classic Zorro character.

BKN begins production immediately on the tentatively titled Zorro -- Generation Z, which will see the crusader contemporized considerably from his well-known early 1800s guise.

"Our Zorro will be a young man entering his first year of university. He'll fight for the underprivileged and the disadvantaged citizens of a mythical, modern-day city resembling Los Angeles, and he'll do it on a cool black motorcycle called the Tornado-Z. Zorro's crime-fighting tools will include a Z-Pod, a Z-phone and other surprises befitting a modern-day hero," said exec producer Rick Ungar.

Series and DVD film are budgeted at $8.4 million.