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Headline News Judge Tosses Out Million Dollar Judgment Against Todd McFarlane

By Rick DeMott | Wednesday, November 15, 2000 at 12:00am

On October 31, 2000, Missouri Circuit Court Judge Robert H. Dierker threw out the US$24.5 million judgment against Spawn creator Todd McFarlane, originally awarded to former hockey player Tony Twist in July. Twist had sued McFarlane for unauthorized use of his name in the comic book series SPAWN.

Headline News Canadian TVA Intl. Moves More Toward Toons

By Rick DeMott | Wednesday, November 15, 2000 at 12:00am

Montreal television producer TVA International has decided to decrease its production of primetime TV content and focus on animation and international distribution. As part of the move, the company cut 20 jobs and its head of longform production, Jacques Methe, resigned. The company said it would continue to distribute primetime productions worldwide, but would stop producing them. In addition, TVA Intl. announced its has signed a three-year pact with Studio Canal + to distribute the French production house's films in Canada. The deal is said to be worth several million dollars. TVA Intl.

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Tuesday, November 14, 2000

AWN's stock ticker features the most prominent publicly traded companies in the world of animation. AWN, Inc. makes available certain financial information from third party information providers. AWN does not give advice in any such fields, and has not reviewed, and in no way endorses the validity of such data. This information is provided solely as a means to keep our readers informed of the market performance and trends of certain companies. AWN strongly suggests that one seek advice from a competent professional regarding any investment or financial issues.

Headline News Sony Cuts UK PlayStation 2 Shipment

Sony Corp. has announced that it's cutting its initial U.K. shipment of PlayStation 2 gaming consoles from 200,000 to 165,000 units. The cut-back is due to a computer chip shortage, which also led to Sony halving its originally projected 1 million unit shipment to the U.S. Arriving in the U.S. on October 26, the next generation console made an estimated $165 million in its first 72 hours of release. In addition, PlayStation 2 has sold approximately 3.5 million units in Japan since its release there in March.

Headline News Renegade Animation Launches Animation Service For Web Ads

Burbank, California-based Renegade Animation, which specializes in producing cel-animated television commercials, has launched a new service to provide cel-style animation for advertising on the Internet. As the service's first job, FMT Advertising, New York, has contracted Renegade to create an animated Internet cartoon series for its client BulkRegister.com. The series, consisting of five 90-second episodes, parodies "dot com" culture, while promoting BulkRegister.com's ability to register large quantities of domain names.

Headline News Das Werk To Acquire London-based Glassworks

Das Werk, a leading German provider of digital processing services, announced that it has signed a Letter of Intent to acquire a majority stake in Glassworks, a London digital effects studio which combines 3D computer-generated imaging with high-end compositing and special effects. In purchasing a share of Glassworks, Das Werk will further expand its international portfolio of post-production facilities and gain a hold in the high-profile London advertising and music video market.

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Tuesday, November 7, 2000

AWN's stock ticker features the most prominent publicly traded companies in the world of animation. AWN, Inc. makes available certain financial information from third party information providers. AWN does not give advice in any such fields, and has not reviewed, and in no way endorses the validity of such data. This information is provided solely as a means to keep our readers informed of the market performance and trends of certain companies. AWN strongly suggests that one seek advice from a competent professional regarding any investment or financial issues.

Headline News TV Loonland Increased Earnings Estimates By Four Times

On Monday, November 6, 2000, German children's TV producer and rights buyer TV Loonland announced that it expects annual sales to top DM127 million (US$55.9 million) for 2000. This report is almost four times its original estimate of DM32.7 million ($14.4 million) when the German company went public in March. It's pretax profit is estimated to be DM25.5 million ($11.2 million), increased from DM18.6 million ($8.2 million). TV Loonland attributes the growth to its recent international acquisitions, including the purchase of France's Salsa Distribution and U.K. production studio Telemagination.

Headline News Psychic Files Lawsuit Against Pokemon

Uri Geller, world-renowned psychic entertainer and author, has filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles federal court against Nintendo for unauthorized use of his name on Pokemon cards and related materials. The lawsuit demands that the Koyto, Japan-based company stop using Geller as a character on its Pokemon cards and pay substantial general and punitive damages.

Headline News Nelvana Wins Licensing Lawsuit

Children's animation producer Nelvana has won its lawsuit against Paris-based Editions Mango for the use of Nelvana-owned properties after the two companies' licensing agreement was terminated. In 1994, Nelvana and New York creative consultancy Clifford Ross Co. signed a licensing deal with Editions Mango, allowing the French company to produce and sell books based on Nelvana and Ross-owned characters, including Babar, Celeste, Arthur, Cornelius, Flora and Alexandre.

Headline News UK Culture Secretary Strikes Out Against Trashy Cartoons

British Culture Secretary Chris Smith was quoted in the LONDON SUNDAY EXPRESS as saying he will issue orders to U.K. TV regulators to cut back on "trashy cartoons" which have flooded the airwaves and replace them with "high-quality educational shows." Broadcasting Minister Janet Anderson told the newspaper, "The government shares parents' concerns that violent and unsuitable material is being broadcast in ever earlier slots." However, some U.K. officials may be uninformed about where the illicit animation is actually coming from.

Headline News Mainframe & Studio B To Begin Co-Production

By Rick DeMott | Wednesday, November 1, 2000 at 12:00am

Mainframe Entertainment and Studio B Productions have announced that the two Vancouver animation studios are entering into a co-production agreement to develop an original series utilizing both traditional and computer animation. Mainframe CEO Ian Pearson said, "We've admired Studio B's work for some time and were looking for a partner in the traditional animation realm to co-produce projects that combine 2D and 3D animation techniques.

Headline News Oniria Opens Studio In Berlin

By Rick DeMott | Wednesday, November 1, 2000 at 12:00am

Luxembourgs audiovisual production group, Oniria, is continuing its expansion with a new subsidiary studio in Berlin. The studio will be called Oniria Film and will handle pre-production (graphic design, scripts, storyboards, etc.), production management and post-production for the company's TV series. Thierry Schiel and Sophia Kolokouri have set up the new arm and Oniria Production administrator Nina Kolokouri will serve as general manager. Currently, Oniria Film is working on 52 15-minute episodes of the TV series BOBS BEACH.

Headline News Classic Media Terminates Harvey Acquisition

By Rick DeMott | Wednesday, November 1, 2000 at 12:00am

On Tuesday, November 1, 2000, The Harvey Entertainment Company announced that the proposed preferred stock investment by Classic Media LLC has been terminated due to the companies' inability to reach a definitive agreement. On August 24, 2000, Harvey announced that it had signed a Letter of Intent with Classic Media for an investment of roughly US$30 million in exchange for a new issue of Harvey Preferred Stock.

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Tuesday, October 31, 2000

AWN's stock ticker features the most prominent publicly traded companies in the world of animation. AWN, Inc. makes available certain financial information from third party information providers. AWN does not give advice in any such fields, and has not reviewed, and in no way endorses the validity of such data. This information is provided solely as a means to keep our readers informed of the market performance and trends of certain companies. AWN strongly suggests that one seek advice from a competent professional regarding any investment or financial issues.

Headline News Commercials For Kids Stay In Europe For Now

Over the past year, Sweden has been urging the European Union to ban TV advertising aimed toward children under 12, however policymakers have reassured the advertising and children's programming industry that they are moving away from the notion. Currently in Sweden, ads targeted to kids are banned, because the government is worried that children could unnecessarily influence their parents' shopping habits. In January, Sweden hopes to win favor for their plans when they take over the six-month rotating presidency of the EU.

Headline News Cinar Recovers $50.9M More In Unapproved Investments

Cinar Corp. has signed a deal with Bahamas-based Globe-X Management to recover US$50.9 million that was invested in offshore accounts without board approval. The investments were originally to be paid by November of this year, however the new agreement has Globe-X paying out weekly installments between now and August 17, 2001. As part of the new arrangement, Cinar has dropped all legal charges made against Globe-X.

Headline News Sony Restructures After Marketing Exec Ousted

In an attempt to strengthen its executive ranks, Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) has retooled, leaving a worldwide marketing executive seemingly without a job. Chief of worldwide distribution, Jeff Blake has assumed the duties of Bob Levin, who had held the post of marketing exec. Levin, who was in New York yesterday for the CHARLIE'S ANGELS premiere, was not available for comment and no word was announced on his definite future with the company or otherwise. According to insiders, there were tensions between Blake and Levin, who has 1 1/2 years left on his contract.

Headline News iFuse.com Ready To Explode

News and entertainment destination site, iFuse.com, is about to go under unless it can find a buyer immediately. The company has run out of money and told its 30 staff members on Tuesday, October 24 that they no longer would be paid. The Marina del Ray, California-based company's CEO Rich Battista and president and COO Michael Dowling are in talks with several Websites to buy the sinking Netcaster. Battista told the DAILY VARIETY that, "Our doors are still open.

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Tuesday, October 24, 2000

AWN's stock ticker features the most prominent publicly traded companies in the world of animation. AWN, Inc. makes available certain financial information from third party information providers. AWN does not give advice in any such fields, and has not reviewed, and in no way endorses the validity of such data. This information is provided solely as a means to keep our readers informed of the market performance and trends of certain companies. AWN strongly suggests that one seek advice from a competent professional regarding any investment or financial issues.

Headline News India's Pentamedia Buys 51% Of Film Roman

Chennai, India-based Pentamedia Graphics, Ltd., formerly known as Pentafour Software and Exports, Ltd., and Film Roman, Inc. have announced a letter of intent pursuant to which Pentamedia will purchase a 51% stake in Film Roman. The deal was a US$15 million cash deal, which is aimed to close by January after regulatory and board approvals. In regards to the deal, Film Roman CEO and president John Hyde told AWN, "I think it allows us to execute our very specific five-year plan.

Headline News Mondo TV Revenues Up 250%

Italian animation studio Mondo TV released second-quarter revenue reports, which were up 250% to 6.7 billion lire (US$2.94 million). This report is the first since going public on the Milan stock exchange in June. In the quarter, Mondo TV's gross operating margin inflated 484% to 5.3 billion lire ($2.32 million). The big gains are attributed to the firm's increasing presence in Asia and its new co-production deal with Seoul-based Hahn Shin Corporation. Mondo TV is the owner of Italy's largest library of domestic and imported television cartoons.

Headline News ASIFA Opens First Chapter In India

By Rick DeMott | Wednesday, October 18, 2000 at 12:00am

ASIFA, the only internationally sanctioned organization for animation, will open a chapter in India. This new chapter will be located in the city of Trivandrum within the Indian state of Kerala, home of Toonz Animation India. The first meeting of ASIFA India will occur during The 2nd Annual Week With The Masters Animation Celebration, from October 30 - November 3, 2000. Bill Dennis, president and CEO of Toonz Animation India, will head the new chapter. Dennis has worked on animated classics such as THE LION KING, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, ALADDIN and THE LITTLE MERMAID.

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Tuesday, October 17, 2000

AWN's stock ticker features the most prominent publicly traded companies in the world of animation. AWN, Inc. makes available certain financial information from third party information providers. AWN does not give advice in any such fields, and has not reviewed, and in no way endorses the validity of such data. This information is provided solely as a means to keep our readers informed of the market performance and trends of certain companies. AWN strongly suggests that one seek advice from a competent professional regarding any investment or financial issues.

Headline News Z.com Laid Off Not Laughing

On Monday, October 16, 2000, Z.com, an Internet comedy content site, laid off 50 workers -- half of its staff. However, the Webcaster has secured additional financing to keep it operating until at least next spring. The company's major backers include Internet incubator Idealab, Basic Entertainment, 3 Arts Entertainment, producer Jerry Bruckheimer and Maverick Records partner Guy Oseary. "It's a tough time," Z.com CEO Joe DiNunzio told THE DAILY VARIETY. "Today's a very challenging day to have to let some really talented people go, but it's in the best interest of the company.

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