The Walt Disney Studios' distribution arm, Buena Vista Pictures Distribution (BVPD), and Access Integrated Technologies' (AccessIT) Christie/AIX unit have entered into a groundbreaking non-exclusive agreement to supply feature films from Walt Disney Pictures and Touchstone Pictures to DCI-compliant digital projection systems to be deployed by Christie/AIX. Christie/AIX will install between 2,500 and 4,000 systems throughout the United States and Canada over the next two years.
Animation production company Soup2Nuts, is launching a new state-of-the-art division, Condensed Soup, dedicated to producing commercials, animated shorts, webisodes and network branding.
Best known for cable hits HOME MOVIES (Adult Swim), OGRADY (Noggin/ The N) and DR. KATZ: PROFESSIONAL THERAPIST (Comedy Central), Soup2Nuts decided it was timely to take the studios unique humor and animation style into the world of animated shorts and commercials.
In many respects, Quiet Man functions much as it sounds. The New York visual effects company is decidedly low-key and casual, reflecting the comfortable confidence with which they ply their craft. However, Since opening their doors a decade ago, the creative studio has enjoyed a, for the most part uninterrupted, growth in status and reputation in the advertising industry, in which they are renowned for the high level of aesthetic and technical finesse they bring to their visual effects work.
The School of Art at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, through the offices of NASAD The National Association of Schools of Art and Design, an organization that accredits art and design programs, has issued a call for art supplies to help the children and artists affected by Hurricane Katrina.
Following the first China International Animation Festival held this past June in Hangzhou, capital of east China's Zhejiang province, the government has released 15 new measures to help build the area into an "animation capital," reports PEOPLE'S DAILY ONLINE. The incentives call for developing animation industry in Hangzhou over a five-year plan period.
UTV Software Communications Ltd. of India has announced a joint venture with the Malaysia-based Astro, a DTH and pay TV operator, to create two new channels in the region, reports the BUSINESS STANDARD. UTV will handle the content, marketing and brand building with the capital investment coming entirely from Astro. UTV will receive nearly $1 million a year as well as an option to invest up to 20% equity in the channel at par over three years.
Vancouver and Boston-based production company Global has created a new TV series division anchored by three new animation projects: 20 episodes of a new series for PBS and WGBH called FETCH!; three childrens books for the next season of the award-winning PBS series, BETWEEN THE LIONS, produced by WGBH Boston, Sirius Thinking Ltd. and Mississippi Public Broadcasting; and a five-episode original series created by Lincoln Pierce for a new programming block on Cartoon Network.
Paramount Pictures has delivered the biggest summer at the domestic box office in the studio's history, with $503,031,989, besting the previous record of $412M, set in 1994, when the studio released FORREST GUMP.
News Corp. announced today that it had signed a definitive agreement to acquire IGN Ent. Inc, a leading community-based Internet media and services company for videogames and other forms of digital entertainment, for approximately $650 million in cash. IGN and its network of sites would then be folded into News Corp.s Fox Interactive Media unit.
Marvel Enterprises Inc. announced the completion of a $525 million non-recourse debt facility, which will finance Marvel's production of up to 10 films based on characters from its stable of comicbook characters, including Captain America, Nick Fury and The Avengers. Paramount will distribute the film slate, with the first theatrical release expected for summer 2008. This arrangement gives Marvel complete creative control, the ability to build a film library and greater profit potential than it has received from films licensed to other studios.
We at AWN were relieved to hear at last from Beau Perschall, vp of publishing for Turbo Squid, who reports the New Orleans-based 3D software company has weathered hurricane Katrina. He shared that the company is slowly reconnecting its many tentacles while the site has remained alive through the ordeal.
He was able to evacuate his family to stay with friends in North Carolina and is hearing that his house and others are intact for the most part.
Zoic Studios recently added a 5,000 square-foot stage to its facilities. The stage, located adjacent to the NOHO Arts District in North Hollywood, California, features a motion control rig with camera, a full grip and lighting package, greenscreen stage, green room and hair and make up room. It also has a parking lot and an outdoor area for pyrotechnical shoots.
To date, Zoic has utilized the stage for commercial projects for HP and Samsung, as well as shoots for the television episodic CSI: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION.
Li Ka-shing, one of the worlds richest men, will invest more than RMB 2 billion to create a company for online games animation, reports CHINA KNOWLEDGE. Experts believe that the main investors of the development project will be Li Ka-shings Cheung Kong Holdings, and Hutchison Whampoa (60% stake) as well as some local enterprises in Guangzhou (40% stake). The facility will be located near the Guangzhou International Toy and Gift Centre.
Mainframe Ent. Inc. has launched a full service Creative Services division that will specialize in all areas of graphic design, motion graphics, titling, opening sequences and branding. The first project of the newly-expanded division will be an alliance with McLean Mashingaidze-Greaves to design the new website for the popular TV Series PINK PLANET, which airs on CityTV, Vancouver. Pinkplanet.tv will feature e-commerce, video blogs and wi-fi based social networking. In addition, the division is working with IDT Ent.
Earlier this month, Saul Zaentz and New Line reached a settlement on a $20 million lawsuit in regards to royalties on the LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy, reports VARIETY. Zaentzs company, who purchased the rights to the books in 1976, has made nearly $168 million from the film series without having actually served as a producer on the film. The additional money earned via the suit was not released by either party. The case was set to go to trial on July 19, but the two parties went into negotiations instead.
Yohan Inc. of Tokyo has purchased Stone Bridge Press, an English-language publisher based in Berkeley, California, specializing in books about Japan and Asia. Founded in 1989 by publisher and editor-in-chief Peter Goodman, the company has more than 85 titles in print and has received numerous awards for publishing excellence.
Atari Inc., a leader in interactive entertainment, has sold its Humongous Entertainment studio to Infogrames Ent. SA, the company's majority stockholder, for approximately $10.3 million.
About $2 million of the purchase price represents pre-payment of future costs Atari will incur related to platform royalty advances, manufacturing costs and milestone payments. Atari will have exclusive distribution rights for Humongous products in the U.S., Canada and Mexico through at least March 31, 2006.
Pixar shares dropped after the WALL STREET JOURNAL reported the company is being investigated by regulators over its home entertainment release of THE INCREDIBLES. The informal Securities and Exchange Commission probe is looking to the facts behind Pixar cutting its second-quarter profit forecast in June, stating slower than expected sales of the DVDs.
Lions Gate Entertainment, in Toronto, and Crest Animation Studio's U.S.-based subsidiary, RichCrest Animation (RCA), have struck a co-production and co-financing deal to produce three animated feature films.
The first film under the new agreement will be the previously announced SYLVESTER AND THE MAGIC PEBBLE. A second, currently untitled feature project is in development, and the third project is yet to be identified. Lions Gate will distribute the three films worldwide, except in India where Crest is headquartered.
Septagon Studios will directly move toward the publishing market of comicbooks, graphic novels and soon expand into other formats. The objective of Septagon Studios is to add to the diversity of the comicbook market with a wide variety of titles in a wide range of different genres. Septagon Studios will not limit itself by targeting a specific audience.
According to Ziff Davis Media's annual "Digital Gaming in America" survey of more than 1,500 randomly selected U.S. households, cell phone gaming continued its meteoric rise in 2005. The number of households engaged in cell phone gaming nearly doubled again, jumping from 16.3 million last year to 27.9 million this year.
Five years in the making leading U.K. commercial broadcaster ITV is now set to launch of a kids network, reports VARIETY.
The digital channel will be available on all platforms including Freeview, the free-to-air digital service backed by the BBC and BSkyB. Debuting within the next six months, the channel will offer a combination of existing programming, new commissions and acquisitions.
Cairo-based AK Comics has established a Los Angeles area office to promote in the U.S. market its line of Middle East-themed superhero comic books, animated series based on the comic titles and extensive licensing program surrounding the companys array of brands.
Jordan L. Udko will head the office in Santa Monica, California, as vp business development for AK Comics. Udko was a distribution account exec Paramount Pictures.
FISHEGGS, a motion graphics and design company, has launched in Venice, California. Heading the company is founder/exec director Chris Roe, an award-winning filmmaker and designer who has worked in all visual mediums including film, television, interactive and web.
FISHEGGS comes from Roes last name, which by definition means fish eggs. The company uses its experience and creativity to effectively interpret, visualize and communicate clients ideas to their fullest.
Lions Gate Ent. Toronto announced that it has closed its asset purchase agreement to acquire substantially all of the Modern Ent. Ltd. library, effective today, Aug. 17, 2005. The acquisition had been previously announced.
The acquisition includes the rights held by Modern to leading titles from Vestron, Dino DeLaurentiis and other libraries within the Modern Ent. family, including CONAN THE BARBARIAN, HALLOWEEN II and III, RAGTIME, DEAD ZONE, AND GOD CREATED WOMAN, AMITYVILLE II, EIGHT MILLION WAYS TO DIE, HERCULES IN NEW YORK and EARTH GIRLS ARE EASY.