Turbine Inc. and Midway Games Inc. announced that THE LORD OF THE RINGS ONLINE: SHADOWS OF ANGMAR is now available for purchase across North America. The game is the first and only massively-multiplayer online game based on the books of J.R.R. Tolkien. In development for more than four years, the game opens up the mystical world of Middle-earth and creates the opportunity for endless adventure.
TELETOON will launch two new digital services, Video on Demand (VOD) on April 27, 2007, and Mobile TV on May 15. Building upon the recent re-branding of the network, TELETOON now offers a more flexible and far-reaching suite of services from traditional broadcast, across VOD and Mobile TV to the popular teletoon.com.
LazyAnimation, which specializes in 2D and 3D animation, has launched its website, the third business venture for Jane Kirk's Copenhagen, Denmark-based firm. LazyAnimation's production facilities are located in Cebu City, Philippines.
"We can animate anything under the sun," said LazyAnimation's top animator Owen Cartegena.
Kirk said that the Philippines have always been her top choice when it comes to graphics. "Not only do we offer our clients low cost but the quality is superb, just superb."
Gameloft has signed a domestic and international licensing agreement with DreamWorks Animation to produce a mobile game based on the animated feature film, SHREK THE THIRD, in theaters May 18, 2007. SHREK THE THIRD, the mobile game, is scheduled for release across 170 operators in more than 75 countries, in conjunction with the movie.
The mobile game will closely follow the film's storyline of the film with appearances from all the main characters.
Corus Ent. Inc.'s Nelvana Enterprises announced that it will sell its animated and live-action content through Amazon Unbox, Amazon.com's video download service that offers digital downloads of movies and television shows.
Nelvana's fans in the U.S. will be able to download-to-own episodes of well-known classics like THE ADVENTURES OF TINTIN, BABAR and BOB AND MARGARET, as well as current hits like DI-GATA DEFENDERS for just $1.99. The content will be available starting in early summer at www.amazon.com/unbox.
Marvel Ent. Inc., SEGA Europe Ltd and SEGA of America Inc. have expanded their relationship to include the rights to develop and distribute games inspired by Marvel's franchises -- CAPTAIN AMERICA, THE INCREDIBLE HULK and THOR. Through the exclusive, multi-year global licensing agreement, SEGA will create titles for console, handheld and PC platforms based upon both the classic comicbooks and planned feature film adaptations of these superheroes.
AOL announced that it would launch an online interactive game based on the popular SHREK franchise on April 26, 2007, three weeks before SHREK THE THIRD hits movie theaters. The game is co-produced by AOL, DreamWorks Animation and Mark Burnett Prods. AOL also announced that Hillshire Farm would be one of the sponsors of the game.
Warner Bros. Interactive Ent. will launch the all-new LOONEY TUNES: DUCK AMUCK videogame in fall 2007, starring Daffy Duck in stylus-based gameplay for the Nintendo DS.
Minyanville Publishing & Multimedia, a leading financial intelligence community, will launch the first ever animated business television show, HOOFY AND BOO'S NEWS AND VIEWS, on April 10, 2007, at on Minyanville.com. Hoofy and Boo's News and Views features a topical and timely look at the week's big stories, market conditions and the world we live in.
Curious Pictures and game developer/publisher Gamelab roll out their first creative collaboration today (April 9, 2007). It's a casual game titled OUT OF YOUR MIND, where the action is set in a virtual "brain spa" where players can spruce up their mental hygiene. Gamers can find it a www.playoutofyourmind.com, as well as on leading gaming portals, where it retails for $19.95. Initially released on the PC platform, plans call for Mac, Nintendo DS and mobile versions as well.
Gameloft has partnered with Sprint to launch a trio of award-winning 3D games to Sprint customers. Gamelofts slate of hit titles includes REAL SOCCER 3D, MIDNIGHT BOWLING 3D and MIDNIGHT POOL 3D.
The games are part of Gamelofts expanding catalog of original licenses and strong 3D offerings. The company upholds its commitment to 3D by continuing to provide consumers with the latest selection of enhanced high definition games. 3D, with an increase in file size, allows for realistic, immersive gameplay.
SCIFI.COM, the award-winning website of the SCI FI Channel, has launched the Battlestar Galactica Videomaker Toolkit, an exclusive SCIFI.COM resource that arms fans with everything they need to create their own four-minute BATTLESTAR GALACTICA shorts.
New Delhi-based La Vision Animation Pvt. Ltd. (LVAPL) has developed a new portal called Buzziboy for Kids. The edutainment site hopes to provide content to a generation children that will help them grow with the right values.
BuzziBoy.com is a place where not only kids, but parents and teachers, can interact with experts and help their children to get best out of the site. Buzziboy recognizes talents by giving a space to kids, theirs moms and dads and teachers by putting their short profile on the site.
RingTales announced the debut of a new iTunes podcast featuring animated versions of the world-famous cartoons of THE NEW YORKER magazine. Subscribers to the free advertiser-supported podcast will receive three new episodes of THE NEW YORKER "RingTales" each week. RingTales has the exclusive license to animate and distribute THE NEW YORKER's library of more than 100,000 cartoons.
JibJab released its latest musical satire entitled WHAT WE CALL THE NEWS. The original video, set to the classic tune "Battle Hymn of the Republic," lampoons news outlets for covering absurd and ridiculous stories to the exclusion of hard news in their epic quest for ratings. The free video is now available on JibJab.com and MSNVideo.com.
The National Film Board of Canada has launched the Hothouse 4 website at www.nfb.ca/hothouse, which includes a regular behind-the-scenes podcast series.
Hothouse is a NFB project that encourages new talent, provides an A-Z experience in professional animation filmmaking and re-imagines ways of making animation: ways that are faster, more flexible and that celebrate the shortest of short forms. Eight emerging filmmakers spend 12 weeks at the NFB Animation studios in Montreal to create 30-second films on the theme "A Chance Encounter."
Electronic Arts Inc. has renewed the license to launch additional games within the world created by J.R.R. Tolkien's epic literary fiction, THE LORD OF THE RINGS, through 2008. EA has developed games based on New Line Cinema's Academy Award-winning LORD OF THE RINGS movies since 2001. To date, the New Line Cinema feature film trilogy has grossed more than $3 billion worldwide. By moving ahead with this popular license, and the development of an all-new title scheduled for release in 2008, EA will continue to give gamers more Middle-earth adventures.
Cartoon Network New Media announced Bloo for FOSTER'S HOME FOR IMAGINARY FRIENDS will be the first featured character within the new mobile application CallToons, the patent-pending technology that replaces ordinary mobile phone functions (such as ringtones and wallpapers) with an all-encompassing entertainment platform provided by users' favorite characters.
Beijing-based CDC Games, creator of the "free-to-play, pay-for-merchandise" model for online games in China, announced it has signed a definitive agreement to make a strategic investment in MGame Corp., one of South Korea's leading developers of online games including YULGANG, the hugely popular licensed free-to-play game in China.
CDC Games will be the company's largest external shareholder and John Lee, president of CDC Games Corp., will serve as a board observer of MGame.
Player X is now the exclusive distributor for Aardman Animations' premium mobile video content in North America. Player X will launch Aardman classic content, such as WALLACE & GROMIT, ANGRY KID and CREATURE COMFORTS on two of the U.S.'s major carrier networks for starters.
A new deal between Sony Pictures TV and Apple's iTunes will bring TV episodes online, including THE ANIMATED SPIDER-MAN. The deal is the first between rivals Sony and Apple. Sony previously announced to launch a competitor to iTunes in the U.K. Other series to go to iTunes as part of the deal include CHARLIE'S ANGELS, NEWSRADIO, and STARSKY & HUTCH.
Electronic Arts announced that the complete collection of MIDDLE-EARTH PC realtime strategy (RTS) games, THE LORD OF THE RINGS, THE BATTLE FOR MIDDLE-EARTH ANTHOLOGY has shipped to North American retailers nationwide.
Studio 2.0, a South Korean film studio and multimedia firm, has inked a video-on-demand agreement with RealNetworks Inc., according to THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. The deal will start in the Asia-Pacific region and will grow upon the reaction to the initial launch.