Berkeley Breathed, the Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist and childrens author, is set to make his directorial debut with the filmed version of his newest book, EDWURD FUDWUPPER FIBBED BIG. Nickelodeon Movies and Storyopolis are set to produce the seven-minute short. The book will be released next month by Storyopolis and Little, Brown Co. Sources say the film will screen in theatres in the fall, which might signal its attachment to the release of RUGRATS IN PARIS, but no official word has been announced.
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Former Disney chairman Joe Roths Revolution Studios will turn the Web series, LIL PIMP, into a Flash-animated feature. The MediaTrip.com series will be the first feature length film to be animated using Macromedias Flash software. Creators Paul Gilstrap and Mark Brooks with their team of four animators are set to scribe, produce and direct the project. Production on the flick could begin as early as three to four weeks. No monetary details have been released, however Gilstrap and Brooks look to make most of their money from backend revenues.
Curious Pictures has completed the opening for the new Cartoon Network series THE BOB CLAMPETT SHOW. The spot highlights the mix of Clampetts styles from his Warner Bros. shorts to his later puppet work. In Flame, the Curious artists created smiles on the puppets faces and a film transition into a puppet theatre. Steve Patrick was the creative director for Cartoon Network and Denis Morella directed the open for Curious Pictures.
Rocky Mountain College of Art & Design (RMCAD), located in Denver, Colorado, has added a new animation program to its bachelor degree program. Currently, the college offers five other Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees in Graphic Design and Interactive Media, Illustration, Painting, Sculpture and Interior Design. The schools goal is to delve into the medium of animation as the only interdisciplinary visual art that merges art, writing, storytelling, drawing, design, sculpture, acting, filmmaking, art direction and film directing.
AtomFilms has appointed veteran TV executive Mikael Shields senior VP entertainment Europe. At the Netcaster, Shields will shepherd acquisitions and development of entertainment properties, negotiating and managing co-productions and content partnerships in Europe. He will work out of the year-old London office of the Seattle-based company. Previously, Shields served as CEO of U.K. television production company EVA Entertainment. He was a founding shareholder of EVA and helped negotiate the firms sale to Pearson Television in February 1999.
Slingshot Entertainment is set to release a compellation DVD featuring Brilliant Digital Multipath Web shorts. DVD Intl., which distributes interactive movies IM YOUR MAN and TENDER LOVING CARE, will distribute DVDs featuring the series SUPERMAN, XENA, ACE VENTURA and THE MUMMY. The release will feature further computer rendered graphics and 15-20 minutes of linear programming to advance the interactivity of the story.
On Tuesday August 8, 2000, David Spades new animated series, SAMMY, made a lackluster debut in the bottom of its 8:30 pm time slot. Despite a decent lead-in by a rerun of 3RD ROCK FROM THE SUN, the new primetime toon drew only 4.1 million viewers and a 1.8 rating/6 share for adults 18-49. The long shelved series follows the reunion of a newly famous son and his deadbeat dad. How long will the series last only time can tell. The last two heavily hyped primetime toons, GOD THE DEVIL & BOB and CLERKS, never made it past six episodes combined.
* Saturday, August 5 Friday, August 11, 2000. Trondheim, Norway.
The theme of the 12th SAS Conference is "Digital Challenges - Expanded Boundaries." The conference will discuss how technological changes have effected the industry in the present, past and future. Topics will include technology and budgets, classic animation in the future and motion capture.
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With several debuts around the globe, THE PATRIOT has won the war for international box office supremacy. Premiering at #1 in Germany, the Mel Gibson-starrer grossed a hefty $3.23 million. Slipping to second, THE PERFECT STORM garnered $1.29 million, raising its German cume to $8.62 million. Down one to #4, MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 2 added another $1.01 million to its $22.42 million German cume. At #8, THE TIGGER MOVIE rounded up an additional $206,761, bringing its German cume to $3.97 million. In its 10th week in Germany, GLADIATOR grossed $119,979 in tenth, advancing its cume to $19.99 million.
Web toon house Honkworm International will open a new studio in Vancouver. Video and gaming designer Ian Verchere has been named president of Honkworm Canada and digital production veteran David Weir has been named president of digital production. The Seattle-based company has also assigned Verchere to the post of senior executive producer and Weir to creative director. As president of Honkworm (Canada), Verchere will oversee the physical development and production of new series by the Canadian company.
Rhythm & Hues has added David Glaubke to its staff as director of development. This move quickens the special effects houses transition to becoming an original content producer. Glaubke will help R&H VP of motion pictures, Deborah Giarrantana, in developing relationships with various writers and producers. Previously, Glaubke served as the story editor for Australian-based Village Roadshow. Currently, Glaubke has started work on the companys 3D animated feature, ARMOUR STAR, from FERNGULLY-director Bill Kroyer.
Creative Planet, Inc., the parent company of Animation World Network, has secured an additional US$38 million in new equity financing. The new funding will help drive its strategy to deliver technology solutions and resources for increased cost-efficiencies in the moving image production process.
The 4th Hollywood Film Festival has announced the winners for this year's Hollywood Internet Awards. JoeCartoon.com beat out tough competition in Rumpus and Showtimes WhirlGirl for best animation site. Internet users at the Entertainment Tonight Online (www.ETOnline.com) and NetAwards.com Web sites voted for the nominees. "We are extremely pleased with the massive response. Thousands of voters participated in the nomination of their favorite sites. It was a great interactive experience," Hollywood NetAwards founder, Carlos de Abreu said.