Blur Studio, a leading animation and visual effects production studio, has completed a major expansion, which added a state-of-the-art motion capture production studio to their facilities. In addition, Blur has gained a digital edit bay and a clean room for networking and digital storage hardware. The expansion comes as Blur Studio is embarking on the production of a 3D ride film for Paramount Studios and Stan Lee Media, entitled STAN LEE'S 7TH PORTAL 3D SIMULATION EXPERIENCE. "Blur is evolving and evolving quickly," said Tim Miller, the company's president.
AWN Headline News
The chairman of Jim Henson Co., Brian Henson, has signed on to direct CBS' four-hour miniseries JACK AND THE BEANSTALK: THE REAL STORY. The production will start within the next two months in London with the Creature Shop handling the job of bringing the land of giants to the small screen. Henson and Bill Haber will executive produce the program with writer James V. Hart. Martin G. Baker and Tom Smith are producing and Alex Rockwell co-producing.
Phil Roman Entertainment, Inc. (PRE) has entered into a three-year, non-exclusive strategic alliance with the C-3D Television Network and the 3D.com Virtual Reality Portal Website, divisions of Chequemate International. The new agreement follows on the heels of PRE's president, Phil Roman's appointment to C-3D's advisory board. The partnership calls for both companies to jointly seek, develop, produce, promote, market and distribute animation and live-action programming for the C-3D Television Network and the 3D.com Virtual Reality Portal Website.
One-time L.A. Laker cheerleader/singer/choreographer Paula Abdul and her Planet Paula Productions have signed a deal with Fox Kids Network to develop a new live-action/animated children series. The untitled show will follow a garage band's climb to success. Abdul is set to produce, choreograph and perform an animated character's voice or play a live-action character. The series idea was inspired by Abdul's work on her "Opposites Attract" music video, in which she interacted with an animated character named M.C. Scat Kat.
* Thursday, October 12 Sunday, October 15, 2000. Montreal, Canada. Wednesday, October 18 Saturday, October 21, 2000. New York, New York, U.S.A. Wednesday, November 1 Saturday, November 5, 2000. Los Angeles, California, U.S.A. Thursday, November 16 Sunday, November 19, 2000. Seoul, South Korea. Friday, November 24 Sunday, November 26, 2000. Tokyo, Japan. Saturday, December 2 Sunday, December 3, 2000. Osaka, Japan.
With Denzel Washingtons football flick, REMEMBER THE TITANS, firmly taking the top spot, the reissue of THE EXORCIST repossessed second place. The classic horror flick, with digital clean-up by Pacific Title Digital, scared up another US$7.21 million, levitating its cume to $17.67 million. Taking third for the second straight week was ALMOST FAMOUS, with a gross of $5.57 million. The rock n roll romp, with primary visual effects by Manex and Pacific Title Digital, raised its cume to $17.83 million.
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.
Like in the U.S., WHAT LIES BENEATH is showing its legs at the international box office, while HOLLOW MAN is fading fast. In its German debut last week, WHAT LIES captured US$3.46 million. FINAL DESTINATION crashed to second, with a gross of $2.6 million, lifting its German cume to $5.01 million. LITTLE VAMPIRE in its German premiere week brought home $969,183. In fifth, THE NUTTY PROFESSOR II: THE KLUMPS gobbled up another $878,918, lifting its German cume to $1.8 million. X-MEN materialized in seventh, grossing $683,497 thus raising its German cume to $11.56 million.
Eidos Plc, one of the world's leading publishers and developers of entertainment software, announced the resignation of the companys chief financial officer, Jeremy Lewis. Lewis is leaving Eidos to pursue a range of other interests. The company has commenced an external search for a new CFO to replace Lewis. Michael McGarvey, Eidos COO, said, "On behalf of the Board, I should like to thank Jeremy for the positive contribution he has made to Eidos and we wish him well for the future."
Dotcomix, a San Francisco-based animation company, has recently added Beth Sandell as the chief operating officer, Edward Burke as general counsel and vice president of business affairs, Peter Katz as vice president of marketing, and BZ Petroff as head of production. "Dotcomix is committed to presenting the best in online entertainment and animation," said Damon Danielson, CEO of Dotcomix.
On Monday, October 9, 2000, Eidos Plc., the U.K. video game maker, declined a potential takeover after it decided that the terms and price didn't offer a good value to its shareholders. Eidos wouldnt release the names of the bidders, which analysts had rumored were either Infogrames SA, Microsoft Corp. or Electronic Arts. Upon the news, the companys shares fell 11% on the London stock exchange to 261 pence and dropped 14% on the Nasdaq stock exchange to US$3.88.
CBS Saturday morning ratings have been sky rocketing since beginning airing the Nick Jr. block, with shows such as BLUES CLUES and LITTLE BILL. On September 30, 2000, the Nick Jr. programming on CBS averaged a 3.8 rating/18 share among kids 2-5. The ratings were up 58% from the previous week and up 388% from last year. WB ran second in the same demographic with a 2 rating/9 share, followed by ABC with 1.9/10 and Fox .9/4.
On Friday, October 6, 2000, Cinar Corp. released a letter by company president and CEO Barrie Usher to its investors chronicling the reasons behind their delayed reporting of financial statements dating as far back as 1997. Currently, the Montreal-based production firm is under investigation for allegedly using false Canadian names on scripts, written by Americans, to obtain lucrative Canadian tax credits.
AWN's Web Animation Guide is the place for what's new on the Net. This week's installment features funny Webisodes of WEEKEND PUSSY HUNT and THE STATISTICS SHOW and much, much more.
Get your Web Animation Guide here!
Also every week AWN's associate editor Rick DeMott highlights what he thinks is the top new toon in cyberspace in "Rick's Picks!"
Sunwoo Entertainment has announced they have appointed Regis Brown to the newly created position of vice president of international television & video. Brown formerly served as VP of international film and television distribution at Film Roman. In his new post with Sunwoo, he will help expand and produce original properties. In addition, he will help seek out new co-production partners and form strategic alliances, plus grow the companys global entertainment strategy. Sunwoos senior vice president Jae Y.
Cornerstone Animation has hired Jason VanBorssum as their new executive vice president and COO, in addition Sutherland C. Ellwood Jr. has joined the companys board of directors. Ellwood is a former VP/head of production, head of technology and producer/writer for firms such as DreamWorks, Fox and Disney. He currently serves as co-founder, CEO and producer/writer for FilmWarp, a special effects feature film company. "Were excited and privileged to have Sutherland aboard," said Larry D. Whitaker Jr., Cornerstones CEO.
Steele VFX, a Santa Monica, California-based special effects firm specializing in non-linear online editing and visual effects compositing, has wrapped on a new 30-second spot for Jeep. The commercial shows a Jeep moving out of the way of a stampede of elephants. Visual effects artist Jerry Steele had to increase the amount of elephants in the herd to create a more thunderous impact. "The way we did this, was the elephants were photographed at different depths in the scene," said Steele.
ViewPoint Studios has created an on-air identity package for Animal Planet Network. The creative team spent a week at the Chapman Leonard Studio in Orlando Florida filming 34 different species of animals for blue screen compositing. Filming the animals on blue screen allowed the ViewPoint Studios design team to incorporate the footage within the environmental backgrounds. In some cases the animals interact with graphic elements in the scene, as with the prairie dog pushing up the Animal Planet logo as he pops up and down out of his burrow.
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada-based Remote Planet, an independent radio program developing an animated TV series, is looking for 2D ANIMATORS/CONCEPTUAL ARTISTS. . . Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada-based Helix Animation Inc., a 2D animation production studio, is looking for a 2D CLASSICAL ANIMATION POSER and an ANIMATION POSING SUPERVISOR for a Saturday morning television production. . . Mexico City, Mexico-based Ollin Studio, an animation and visual effects studio specialized in 3D animation and VFX for commercials, is looking for 3D ANIMATORS with experience. . .
On November 14, 2000 the 7th annual London Effects & Animation Festival (LEAF), Europe's leading computer generated animation and special effects festival will award the best work from around the world in the commercial, short film, feature film, student, music video, titles, idents & stings, education & simulation and Web animation categories. Winners will receive the prestigious Golden LEAF Award. This year, the festival will once again showcase computer-generated animation and special effects, reflecting some of the best creative and technical achievements of the past year.
The films in competition for Independent Short, Applied Animation and Student Films in Belgium and The Netherlands were selected by festival organizers Erik van Drunen, Mette Peters and Gerben Schermer. The selection list is now available on the festival Web site. The selection can be viewed by film title, director, production company, country and competition category.