Viz Media and Cartoon Network announced on Tuesday that they have formed a joint venture, Toonami Jetstream, to provide streaming episodes of anime and action series, including Naruto and Samurai Jack.  The new service will launch on July 17th.  Viz and Cartoon Network will jointly manage acquisitions and programming. 


New episodes will be made available weekly, with an archive of past episodes also remaining on the Website for a time.  The free service will be ad-supported, via banners and streaming video ads. 


Programs offered through the service will include both series that have previously aired on television, as well as series that are not currently offered on either broadcast or cable TV in the U.S.  In addition to Naruto (currently being aired on Cartoon Network's Toonami block) and Samurai Jack, a Cartoon Network property that won the Best Animated Series Emmy in 2003, several Viz anime that are not currently being broadcast will be part of the initial offerings:  Hikaru No Go, MAR, and The Prince of Tennis. 


Two programs that will be added later have also been announced, the Cartoon Network series IGBX, and Viz Media's and the all-new Zoids Genesis. 


For information on the potential impact of this service on DVD sales, see 'Toonami Jetstream and DVD Sales.'