AWN Headline News
Plympton's new series of comics extracted from the comic book, "Sleazy Cartoons of Bill Plympton," is for ADULTS ONLY...
In a lackluster weekend at the U.S. box office, early reports had Sonys HOLLOW MAN and Warner Bros. SPACE COWBOYS running neck-and-neck for the top spot, but in the end MAN finished first by a nose. HOLLOW, with primary visual effects by The Ranch Entertainment, Tippett Studios and Sony Imageworks, held on to first place, adding US$13.05 million to its $50.3 million cume. COWBOYS, with primary visual effects by ILM, moved up a spot to settle for second and a gross of $13.02 million, bringing its 10-day cume to $39.02 million.
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After its first full week in theatres, THE PATRIOT finished at the top in Germany, Spain and Brazil. In Germany, THE PATRIOT fought out the debut of CHICKEN RUN with a gross of US$1.62 million, bringing its cume to $6.05 million. CHICKEN came in with a gross of $1.35 million. Dropping two slots to fourth, THE PERFECT STORM washed up $569,269, advancing its cume to $9.63 million. TITAN A.E. premiered in fifth with a gross of $491,902. Slipping to sixth, MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 2 added $463,141 to its German cume of $23.08 million.
Swedish-based animation studio Filmtecknarna has wrapped on a 40-second animated sequence for the latest Madonna music video entitled "Music." Within the video, the tooned Madonna beats up British comedian Ali G who also appears in the live-action part of the video. The animation was directed by Jonas Odell at Filmtecknarna and produced by Leila El-Zein. The backgrounds were designed by Boris Nawratil. Jonas Akerlund of Petterson & Akerlund helmed the live-action portion. Filmtecknarna has previously worked with Akerlund on videos for Madonna and Metallica.
The legendary Chuck Jones is bringing his first original character in 40 years to the Internet. The series will feature Thomas T. Wolf, an unlucky timber wolf who often falls victim to falling objects when someone yells, "Timber!" Jones created the character 10 years ago as an idea intended for a theatrical short. Executive producer Stephan Fossati, who worked on six Looney Tunes shorts in 1992, was asked by a Warner Bros. executive whether Jones had any new characters for the Web. Fossati remembered Thomas T.
For the live-action feature SIMONE, writer-director Andrew Niccol (THE TRUMAN SHOW) has decided to go completely CGI for the title character in the New Line Cinema drama. According to the HOLLYWOOD REPORTER, the CGI actress will star opposite Al Pacino, who will play a Hollywood film producer. The story centers on the life-changing challenges of an aspiring young actress who becomes a movie star overnight. In a move that marks actors worst nightmares, Niccol decided to go with the computer-generated lead after unsuccessfully testing several young, up-and-coming actresses.
USA Entertainment is set to release the direct-to-video feature, FRANKLIN AND THE GREEN KNIGHT. Hitting stores on October 10, 2000, the film based on the popular childrens series will be released on VHS and DVD. The DVD will feature coloring games, puzzles, music videos, Web site links and a behind-the-scenes featurette with creator Paulette Bourgeois and illustrator Brenda Clark. "There is very little risk with this project," USA Entertainment executive VP Joe Amodei said. "FRANLIN has been a huge success with a long track record of family satisfaction.
In a lackluster weekend at the U.S. box office, early reports have Sonys HOLLOW MAN and Warner Bros. SPACE COWBOYS finishing neck-and-neck for the top spot. COWBOYS, with primary visual effects by ILM, moved up from third to claim an early-tally share of #1, with a gross of $13.1 million, bringing its 10-day cume to $39.1 million. HOLLOW, with primary visual effects by The Ranch Entertainment, Tippett Studios and Sony Imageworks, held on to a piece of first place, adding 13.1 million to its $50.4 million cume.
Nelvana Limited has announced plans to produce two new animated series. BRACEFACE will be a co-production between Nelvana and Chinese studio Jade Animation. Voiced by Alicia Silverstone (CLUELESS), the series tells the story of Sharon Spitz, a 13-year-old who turns her metal mouth into a winning smile. The first 26 episodes are set for completion in spring 2001 for Fox Family in the U.S. and Teletoon in Canada. CYBERCHASE will be a co-production between Nelvana and WNET/13 in New York, which will air nationally on PBS KIDS in winter 2002.
A long list of Hollywood heavyweights has been announced as the voice cast for Disney/Pixars upcoming CGI feature MONSTERS, INC. The star-studded cast includes Billy Crystal, John Goodman, Steve Buscemi, James Coburn, Jennifer Tily, Bonnie Hunt and first-timer Mary Gibbs. The film chronicles what happens when a careless monster lets a human girl into the land of spooks and scares. Goodman will voice James P. Sullivan, a large, furry and horned employee of Monsters Inc. Voicing Sullivans sassy one-eyed sidekick will be Crystal.
Toon In is AWN's guide to what's new on the Net. This week's installment features the newest toon from John K, Bill Plympton and much, much more.
Get your Toon In: Web Animation Guide here!
Every week AWN's associate editor Rick DeMott highlights what he thinks is the top new toon in cyberspace in "Rick's Picks!"
Rick's Pick For Friday, August 11, 2000!
AniVision Inc. has signed a licensing deal with the U.S. college footballs Southeastern Conference (SEC) to transport online game players into key plays from the 2000 season. Under the 5-year pact, AniVision will recreate SEC games and place gamers within the action to view replays on-demand, analyze players performance or insert themselves into key plays. The alliance marks the first use of AniVisions 3D-animation technology for real-sports recreation.
Class-Key Chew-Po director Voltaire has wrapped up his first national spot for Kelloggs PopTarts Pastry Swirls. The spot features cherries parading in a chorus line then diving into a pool of cream cheese. Innovative Business Communications provided the CGI cream cheese so that the fluid nature would be more believable. The commercial was produced for Chicago-based ad agency Leo Burnett.
Ring of Fire has finished two spots for Sonys Walkman entitled "Spaceship" and "Dorm." Both spots center around the space alien Plato. In "Spaceship" after downloading tunes onto his Sony Memory Stick Walkman, Plato fights Los Angeles traffic in his shuttle on his way to his new college. In "Dorm," Plato enters his room after a shower to find that his female over-night visitor loves the mini disk of songs Plato has made her on his MiniDisk Walkman.
Eyeball has livened up the newest spot for Nikes latest shoe line, Presto! The spot that airs in Nike stores shows off the bright colors of the shoes with slick retro style. Director Limore Shur said, "We were after a moving, driving, fun-looking piece to exemplify what the shoes are all about. I think we achieved that. There was a nice aesthetic appeal to the whole thing." Curious Pictures used Adobe After Effects, Illustrator, Photoshop and Discreet edit* to blend the graphics with the colors and product shots.
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.
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.
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.