U.K.-based Astley Baker has just finished up their new series for the BBC, THE BIG KNIGHTS. The new show is created by Mark Baker (JOLLY ROGER) and Neville Astley (TRAINSPOTTER). The series chronicles the tales of two knights: one the best swordsman in the world and the second is at least the most enthusiastic swordsman in the world. Along with the armor-clad pet dog and hamster, the two knuckle-headed knights leave the Castle Big on search for adventure.
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Italy-based Crackartoon is currently in production on three new series BAR BONES, JACOB and ANIME SOULS. Giorgio Bellasio and Terry Amanini created BAR BONES with Carlo Cordella penning the project. The series chronicle the tale of several dogs that live out surreal dreams in an old run down caravan/bar. JACOB was also created by Giorgio Bellasio and Terry Amanini and is scribed by Alex Crippa. The show is a spoof of John Carpenters HALLOWEEN series, where the murderer, dawning a panda mask, steps over everyone in his way to obtain the sweets (ie candy) that he desires.
The Zagreb Animation Festival was held in the Croatian capital on June 21 25, 2000 for the fourteenth time. The atmosphere was literally hot; the sun shined more than enough during the whole festival, raising the daily temperatures easily to 35 centigrade (approximately 90+° F). No wonder the daily festival newspaper reported about the festival picnic with the headline "A hell-hot picnic". On the positive side, however, is that an effective air conditioned inside drew a large audience for the films. The four competition-screenings were very popular among the local audience.
Despite finishing in second place, CHICKEN RUNs U.S. opening gross was the highest animated debut in DreamWorks history. With Jim Carreys ME, MYSELF & IRENE taking the top spot in its premiere, CHICKEN RUNs US$17.51 million gross was more chicken feed than ANTZ $17.2 million debut stock piled. The future box office glory isnt bleak for the British beaks. With next weekends July 4th holiday and wonderful word of mouth, pun-squawking poultry may slip in the ranks behind big holiday new comers, but might out gross its debut with strong family attendance.
In a 22-page decision filed Friday, June 23, 2000, L.A. Superior Court Judge Ernest Hiroshige ruled that the Walt Disney Co. willfully destroyed documents regarding the long-running litigation over royalties on WINNIE THE POOH. The judge ruled that plaintiff Stephen Slesinger Inc., owner of the rights to late author A.A. Milne's WINNIE THE POOH characters, is entitled to monetary sanctions and that the jury in the upcoming trial be instructed that Disney willfully suppressed evidence to prevent it being presented.
In August, Germany-based director Heinrich Sabl will start production of MEMORY HOTEL, which will feature puppets animated against live-action backgrounds. The main difficulty in filming the feature is that the filmmakers only have seven seconds to set up the new frame before it needs to be shot. This short time frame to adjust the puppets into their new position is due to continuity of the live-action environment (ie clouds, grass, trees, etc).
The deadline for entries at this year's Ottawa 00 International
Animation Festival is July 1, 2000. The festival will accept entries
as late as July 5, 2000. There are three competitions: independent
films, commissioned films and animation for the Internet. Categories
include: films for children, graduate films, independent films under
50 minutes, first professional film, TV series, TV special,
commercials, music videos, educational or industrial, ids, trailers
The next Holland Animation Film Festival will take place in Utrecht,
the Netherlands, November 15-19, 2000. Since 1985 this biennial
festival has aimed to be an intermediary between animators and the
business world, in addition to including film screenings,
retrospectives and theater programs. In the competition for applied
animation, films can be entered in the following categories:
publicity and promotional films; music videos; educational and
Plympton's new series of comics extracted from the comic book,
"Sleazy Cartoons of Bill Plympton," is for ADULTS ONLY...
Folioscope's catalog, "L'Equipée de Folimage Studio de Films
d'Animation," now includes an English insert for non-French speakers!
The catalog is a companion for the exhibition on Folimage, the
creators of the 1999 Cartoon d'Or winner, "L'Enfant Au Grelot"
(Charlie's Christmas), among other award winning productions. The
Folimage exhibition will be presented at the Annecy Museum, Annecy
France, June 3-October 31, 2000.
Alexander Petrov's "The Old Man And The Sea" won the coveted Grand
Prix at the International Festival of Animated Film at Annecy. The
paint-on-glass Imax short also won the audience prize. Petrov worked
for 2 1/2 years on the 20 minute animated film. A Canadian, Japanese
and Russian co-production, the film has been financed 95% by private
investments from Canada, and in part by NHK, the largest TV network
in Japan. The film is an adaptation of Ernest Hemingway's novel "The
Sylmar, California-based VCE, Inc. is looking for 2D EFFECTS ARTISTS
for work on a high profile motion picture. . . Visual Book
Productions, a company producing animated e-books, is looking for 3D
ARTISTS. . . Santa Clarita, California-based College of the Canyons
is seeking ANIMATION INSTRUCTORS for a tenure-track position in
Animation for the Fall 2000 semester. . . Homewood, Illinois-based
StarToons, a privately-owned, animator-owned studio, is looking for
Video Symphony's Boot-Up! is a unique summer program in digital media
arts for creative people aged 17 to 24, all with a 55% sponsored
scholarship! The 120-hour Boot-Up! curriculum covers: Nonlinear
film/video editing (Avid); Web construction (Macromedia Dreamweaver);
Web animation (Macromedia Flash); Imaging and graphics (Adobe
Photoshop); and DVD pre-mastering (Sonic Solutions DVD Creator).
Sessions begin June 26, July 17 and August 7, 2000. Open House is on
The Oscar winner for best short animated film, "The Old Man And The
Sea," has won the coveted grand prize at the International Festival
of Animated Film at Annecy. In a lively ceremony held on Saturday,
June 10, 2000, the awards were handed out by the festival's artistic
director, Serge Bromberg. The short and feature film jury, comprised
of Meral Erez (Turkey), Aida Ndiaye (Senegal), Georges Schwizgebel
(Switzerland), John Lasseter (U.S.A.) and Jimmy T. Murakami
* Thursday, July 13, 2000. Westwood, California, U.S.A.
Joshua Fisher of Fox Family Worldwide will be guest speaker at the Women In Animation Writers' Group Seminar Series. Fisher will discuss the development process at Fox. The event will take place at Saban Entertainment, 10960 Wilshire Blvd., Westwood at 7:30 pm. Fee is US$5. RSVP is required to Jean Ann Wright, Tel.: (818) 360-8321 or E-Mail: email@example.com.
Hot off signing a deal that will transform his Urban Entertainment series UNDERCOVER BROTHER into a feature at Universal, writer and producer John Ridley (THREE KINGS) is revving up his new animated series for UrbanEntertainment.com. The new series will be an adaptation of Ridleys crime novel WALK IN DARKNESS. Urban Media, parent of the Web site, will produce the show, and revenues will be shared 50/50 with Ridley. The story chronicles the perils of a rookie cop whose mission is to hunt down mutants with superhuman powers. Ridley is set to produce, write and direct the series.
At the end of June, before a securities commission, Cinar Corp. will have to defend why they feel their stock should not be delisted from stock exchanges in Canada and the U.S. The Montreal-based childrens producer has dates to appear with the Ontario Securites Commission on June 30 and with the Nasdaq exchange sometime next month to reveal the reason behind why the firm has been unable to file its financial statements since the period ended November 30, 1999.
Pulse Entertainment has hired Leo Hourvitz, Pixars former technical director and multimedia producer, as their new vice president of creative content technology. Hourvitz will oversee Pulses drive to up the use of its proprietary technology in the production of 3D Web animation. He will also be responsible for testing new technology and ensuring its functionality in real-life production environments. During his six-year tenure at Pixar Animation Studios, he worked on Pixar's award-winning films and interactive products.