Dr. Toon: Is Avatar Good for a LAFF?
First, as the cliché goes, science can be used for good or evil. Same goes for advanced 3D CGI FX. Just because you can adapt the anatomical structure and features of Butthead into a flesh-and-blood amalgam does not mean you should. As was pointed out earlier with The Simpsons Movie (and, I should add, the very successful The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie), one can make a very good and profitable 2D animated film with familiar characters not portrayed by live actors, mo-capped or otherwise. Second, as long as creative control of any animated property in any format is placed in the hands of unqualified and/or inexperienced personnel, there will be tears in executive offices and empty theaters in the communities.
It appears to me, no matter what marvelous innovations appear in the future, up to and including 3-D holography, the best way to address the future of live-action animated films is not to bother making them at all.
Martin "Dr. Toon" Goodman is a longtime student and fan of animation. He lives in Anderson, Indiana.