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Tape House Toons, a New York-based full-service animation studio, has appointed award-winning storyboard artist and illustrator Richard Codor as design director. Codor will head and art direct for the growing animation department on all projects, as well as continue storyboarding duties. Codor started his work with Tape House when he supervised the layout work for a series of short animated inserts for THE REAL LIZZIE MCGUIRE, a Disney Channel television pilot.
Executive producers Michael Miller and Rick Wagonheim have joined Rhinoceros Visual Effects and Design, New York, as part of the partnership and management team. The duo will be responsible for expanding and redirecting the fledgling digital studio owned by Multi-Video Group, Ltd. Previously, Miller and Wagonheim worked at R/Greenberg Associates, where they produced many award-winning commercials from 1996-2000. Wagonheim said, "Rhinoceros had done work on one of our R/GA spots and we started talking to (CEO, Multi-Video Group, Ltd.) David Binstock.
Sega of America has appointed Joseph Culley as vice president of marketing. Culley will help steer marketing, advertising and promotional campaigns for Sega Dreamcast and SegaNet. A brand-building veteran with most recently Levi Strauss & Co, Culley has 14 years experience in consumer marketing, business development and brand positioning. As vice president of marketing, Culley will oversee Sega's brand strategy and marketing programs, including positioning, advertising, corporate identity and channel marketing.
Magna Entertainment Corp. has appointed Mark Feldman to the position of president and chief executive officer. Previously, Feldman was executive vice president of E! and was responsible for all of its core business operations, including all international ventures and sales, on-line operations, new business development and general administration.
Pulse Entertainment announced the appointment of three key industry executives to its senior staff. Sally Driver was named senior vice president of marketing; Abe Mammen, vice president of engineering; and Brian Becker, vice president of brand development and research. Driver will lead the development and execution of all aspects of Pulse's marketing strategy, including brand development, marketing communications and corporate communications.
Director Tim Burton tapped Ring of Fire for the visual effects on two Timex spots. The first spot, "Kung Fu," features a hero jumping from roof-tops in pursuit of the villains. However, the villains corner the hero. In the midst of a battle, the hero sets the alarms on the villains watches. Once the alarms sound the hero is given just enough time to defeat his advisories. Airing in the U.S. in the fall, "Mannequin" features a cat-suit-wearing heroine running from a devious villain.
On July 20, 2000, the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences released its primetime Emmy nominations with FAMILY GUY receiving two nods, more than any other animated series. Edgy humor has long hampered GUY. Yet, the Academy looked past all the turmoil and gave the series nominations for outstanding animated program for one hour or less for the "Road to Rhode Island" episode and an outstanding music and lyrics nomination for the song "We Only Live To Kiss Your Ass" from composer Ron Jones and lyricist Chris Sheridan.
iXL Digital Video Group has finished promos for Nickelodeons mock presidential election for kids. Anastasia Kedroe, Nickelodeons director, producer and writer, said, "We started with the idea of doing something with the American flag, something complex and unique. We wanted to avoid being too cutsey but have kids be a key part of the spot. Going in we had no idea how complex it would be." Flame artist Frank Nemis and Smoke artist Chris Kreynus molded kids interviews about their hopes for the next president into a tile puzzle game design.
Composer and sound designer Andy Bloch tuned in the newest KeyCorp commercial for JSM. The 30-second spot, "Airplane," features special effects by Digital Domain and highlights KeyCorps retirement planning services. The airy tune follows the flight of a paper airplane on its journey from a New York office building to a sunny beach, where a man unfolds the plane and reads the message, "Im on my way!" Andy Bloch said of the project, "The picture demanded a lyrical approach, a feeling of lightness since we are following the flight of a paper airplane.
New York-based digital studio Spontaneous Combustion has created a 3D sequence for the seven and a half-minute Xerox promo entitled, "A Storm of Innovation." The sequence was created for Philadelphia-based interactive event and communications agency PGI, Inc. The promo debuted at drupa 2000, the worlds largest full service trade show and exhibition, on May 31, 2000 in Düsseldorf, Germany. The film was projected on nine screens in a round theater. "Opening in the midst of a thunderstorm, the viewer shoots through clouds, and makes a sudden descent.
Alex Zamm has been brought on to help William Robertson rewrite the direct-to-video sequel to Disneys INSPECTOR GADGET. Most likely Zamm will helm the $10 million redux with Disney-based Fountain Prods. Charles Hirschhorn and Peter Green developing the project. Disney senior VP Gregg Hoffman is overseeing the film for the studio. Casting has not begun, but with such a slim budget the likeliness that the stars of the original like Matthew Broderick will not return.
U.K. distributor Chatsworth TV, producer Flicks Films and post-production house VTR plc have come together to create a joint venture called tv4c (television for children). Creating mainly pre-school productions, the new group will handle all production, distribution, licensing and merchandising of their properties. The projects will rely on the talent of Flicks Films Terry Ward, producer of the successful MR. MEN. Already the three-way venture has four projects under way.
Walt Disney will be releasing a sing along version of Walt Disney's Academy Award-winning classic MARY POPPINS. At Disneys El Capitan in Hollywood, a restored 35mm Dolby Stereo print of the classic 1964 film will feature on-screen lyrics of all the songs so that audiences can join in. Like a family-friendly ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW screening, moviegoers are encouraged to dress as their favorite character from the film. Prizes for best costume will be awarded at each show.
Thrave has put together a team of comic book creators and animators to transform comic books into Webtoons. Some of the team includes Scott Morse, Bryan Andrews, Jim Mahfood, Brian Michael Bendis, Chynna Gluston-Major, Lawrence Marvit, Bob Camp and Mark Andrews. The creative team includes writers, directors, artists and producers with credits on REN & STIMPY, IRON GIANT, TOY STORY 2, MEN IN BLACK ANIMATED SERIES, COW & CHICKEN, A BUGS LIFE, CLERKS comic, SOULWIND, JINX, GRRL SCOUTS, BLUE MONDAY and THE SIMPSONS.
Eyeball finished a series of two-minute promos for USA Network. Creative director and art director Jory Hull created a slick style for the project that showcases USA Networks fall line-up of original movies, first-run Hollywood features, sporting events and USAs demographics. Eyeball created the design elements that linked the footage provided by USA. The promos were used as a visual representative of USA Networks for media buyers in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles. Shur said, "This was somewhat of a departure for USA Networks.
The Harvey Entertainment Company and Brilliant Digital have come to an agreement to produce new "3Dmovies" that will incorporate Harvey-owned characters. The first project for Brilliant will be 13 Webisodes starring Casper the Friendly Ghost. Brilliant Digital Entertainment produces 3D Web series based on characters that include SUPERMAN, XENA, KISS, POPEYE and ACE VENTURA.
J.J. Sedelmaier Productions brings the green world of Pete the Gardner to life again for Ortho. The spot entitled, "Bookworm Pete," starts off with Pete reading a book about the hungry hordes of bugs nibbling on his lawn. Finally, in frustration Pete throws down the book and grabs Orthos Bug-B-Gon. "The concept underwent some development during production," said director J.J. Sedelmaier. "The client wanted the bugs to appear more threatening than they did in the initial boards.
Montréal-based production house Voodoo Arts, part of the New York-based internationally-membered Ron Soodalter Associates Consortium, has gained exclusive representation in North America of Didier Kwak, one of the best French special effects artists. In addition, Voodoo also announced the appointment of Luc Belanger-Martin as executive vice president. With nearly fifteen years of experience in special effects, Kwaks special effects credits include Wim Wenders PAR DELÀ LES NUAGES, Gérard Pullicinos BABEL and Luc Bessons THE FIFTH ELEMENT.
* Monday, October 30 Friday, November 3, 2000. Bourg-en-Bresse, France.
Entry Deadline: August 25, 2000.
* Friday, October 13 Friday, October 20, 2000, Burbank, California, U.S.A.
Screenplay Deadline: August 20, 2000.
Film Deadline: September 1, 2000.
Student Film & Children Film Deadline: September 9, 2000.
* Saturday, September 23, 2000. Los Angeles, California, U.S.A. Entry Deadline: August 31, 2000.
TOKYOPOP.com has extended their first AnimeOnline Festival until September. Animation artists working in the anime style are invited to submit their original anime Internet works in Flash, Shockwave or Quicktime formats. There are five categories in which participants may enter: Fantasy/Sci-Fi, Fighting (Battle), Love/Comedy, Shoujo (Girl's Anime) and Asia Pop Focus (Open Category). Participants may enter into more than one category and may