Web entertainment network Heavy.com has signed a deal to have its BEHIND THE MUSIC THAT SUCKS Net series appear within the TV variety show FARMCLUB on USA Network. THAT SUCKS is a 52-Webisode series that lampoons the hit VH-1 show, BEHIND THE MUSIC. Popular recording artists rise to stardom is reinvented in outrageous ways. "As the signature show on Heavy.com, BEHIND THE MUSIC THAT SUCKS has a great following," said show creator and Heavy.coms Co-CEO David Carson. "Were totally into the Heavy.com/Farmclub association.
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SLACKER and DAZED AND CONFUSED director, Richard Linklater, has started the rotoscoped animation for his new feature, WALKING LIFE. The film will digitally shoot live-action actors which will then be "painted" over by artists using filmmaker Bob Sabistons new interpolated rotoscoping software. The program allows animators to stylize live-action footage with simulated brushstrokes. "WALKING LIFE is not animated in the truest sense of the word. It is a composite of wildly different, reimagined video scenes drawn in cartoon style," said Sabiston to the HOLLYWOOD REPORTER.
Infogrames Entertainment S.A., a global publisher of interactive entertainment software, has signed a deal to acquire Paradigm Entertainment, Inc., one of the leading developers of interactive 3D video games and related technologies. Within the deal, Paradigm Entertainment will be a wholly owned subsidiary of Infogrames. In addition to developing games, Paradigm will maintain a research and development group with a focus on developing technology for current and next-generation game platforms. The deal will involve the exchange of up to 700,000 Infogrames Entertainment shares.
Avid Technology, Inc. has announced the acquisition of Fremont, California-based Motion Factory, Inc., an applications company specializing in interactive 3D software for character-driven games and the Web. Along with the deal, Avid named Motion Factorys former president and CEO, David Pritchard, as the new general manager of Softimage Co., Avids graphics and effects arm.
Icebox, Inc., an original animation destination, has inked a content deal with comedian and co-creator of DR. KATZ, Jonathan Katz, to write and produce new animated shows. The first series will be AGAINST THE GRAIN, which Katz will co-create with Tom Snyder, co-creator of DR. KATZ. "Jonathan is one of only a handful of successful creators of smart, primetime animated television series," said Icebox CEO Steve Stanford.
Tom Snyder Productions announced a deal with CartoonNetwork.com to create, develop and produce three original Web Premiere Toons. The first series is SWITCHEROO, which interviews children and animates their daydreams with a satirical twist. OVERDUE chronicles an over-aggressive librarian and the extremes to which she will go to retrieve overdue books and collect fines. Finally, LETS HAVE FUN watches the slow break down of a live-TV childrens show host who really has no patience with kids. "Did we get three shorts?
Disney Interactive has enlisted Into Networks PlayNow.com to create the Disney Interactive Channel for Disney-themed games on the Net. The new channel will be like Sonys Station, which features on-line versions of JEOPARDY and WHEEL OF FORTUNE. Into Networks will produce 12 titles for Disney that will be available on a pay-for-play basis through high-speed Internet services available from cable set-top box providers. Games will be based on Disneys feature films THE LION KING, TOY STORY and TARZAN.
Mattel Interactive has signed a licensing agreement with Harmony Gold to create games based on the popular anime series, ROBOTECH. Mattel Interactive plans to have ROBOTECH games ready for next-generation console systems and PCs beginning in fourth quarter 2001. Specific details regarding platforms and developers have yet to be announced. The ROBOTECH series helped ignite the anime phenomenon in America, with an 85-episode animated series that aired in early 1985. The series was re-aired in 1994 on Sci-Fi Channel and once again on Cartoon Network in 1999.
With CHICKEN RUN claiming victory at theatres, Aardman Animations ANGRY KID on AtomFilms Web site has set Internet records. In just seven weeks, ANGRY KID, Aardman's first character created exclusively for the Web, has been watched by over 1 million people -- an Internet record. With roughly 300,000 people downloading the mischievous miscreant and sending it to their friends, the total audience is nearing one and a half million people. "We knew that the Internet had vast potential as a major entertainment medium," said Dave Sproxton, co-founder and managing director of Aardman.
On Wednesday, July 5, 2000, Mainframe Entertainment, Inc. announced its financial results for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2000. The CGI production company reported earnings of US$1.4 million ($0.84 million attributable to common shareholders) or $0.05 per share, versus a loss of $17 million or $1.23 per share for the year ended March 31, 1999, on a revenue increase of more than 100%. The increase has been attributed to the delivery of 52 episodes, which is double the amount of the prior year.
Coming on the heels of recent executive departures, Fox Family Channel and Fox Kids Network have promoted Brian Casentini to VP current programming at both networks and named Jonathan Rosenthal as VP development at Fox Kids. Casentini will helm current programming in production for Fox Family and Fox Kids and Rosenthal will head day-to-day development management and administration for Fox Kids Network. Previously, Casentini served as director of programming and development at Fox Family, where he helped create the award-winning series ANGELA ANACONDA.
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Swamping the July 4th holiday favorite, THE PATRIOT, Warner Bros. THE PERFECT STORM, with primary visual effects by ILM, has docked atop the U.S. box office charts. The seafaring spectacle landed an estimated US$64 million within the five-day holiday run. For the Friday-Sunday time frame, the wet wonder grossed a reported $41.5 million. The George Clooney-vehicle has the second highest debut of the year behind MISSION IMPOSSIBLE 2s four-day Memorial Day holiday opening of $70.8 million.
British audience flocked to theatres to catch the first Aardman Animation feature CHICKEN RUN. In its British premiere, the clay character cavalcade racked up an amazing US$5.8 million. The fearless free-rangers knocked seven-week champion GLADITOR into second in the U.K. The Roman romp tallied up an additional $38.8 million in its international showings. The box office blood bath has brought in $165.8 million outside the U.S. Slipping for the U.S. top ten, Disneys DINOSAUR, however, stomped over the competition in Brazil to the tune of $1.6 million.
Our July issue is focusing on Comics and Adult Animation. We are
featuring stories on Fox's upcoming feature film, "The X-Men," and
superstar Todd McFarlane...
Cambridge, UK-based Kelseus Limited, a software company, is looking
for 3D ANIMATORS and/or MODELERS to create character animation using
cutting-edge techniques. . . Venice, California-based Max Ink Cafe is
looking for a 3D MAX CHARACTER ANIMATOR and MODELER, a CG and LIVE
ACTION COMPOSITOR with experience in Digital Fusion, AfterEffects or
comparable applications and a SYSTEM ADMINISTRATOR. . . Los Angeles,
California-based Phenix Touch, a start up company, is looking for 3D
In September 2000, Sheridan College in Ontario, Canada, will
celebrate the opening of the new Sheridan Centre for Animation &
Emerging Technologies. As part of the opening festivities, Sheridan
will stage an Animation Retrospective (September 1-10), a Digital
Media Innovations Conference (October 26-28) and the Premiere of the
Canadian Millennium Television Series. The Animation Retrospective
will celebrate Sheridan's successful, 31-year history in animation.
is Brazil's international animation Web competition.
The festival has pre-selected 10 animations for the official
competition. Now, you can be part of the international cyber jury and
vote for your favorites. The jury consists of the people that have
registered on the Anima Mundi Festival Web site. The winners will be
announced on the closing night of the Anima Mundi Festival in Rio de
L.A. locals, start your 4th of July weekend with DHIMA to celebrate
the completion of the Santa Monica-based DH Institute of Media Arts'
newly remodeled facility...
Plympton's new series of comics extracted from the comic book,
"Sleazy Cartoons of Bill Plympton," is for ADULTS ONLY...
Creative Planet launched a brand new discussion forum:
Tools And Techniques, hosted by award winning animator and educator
Larry Lauria. Anyone who has been in the business long enough knows
that no two animated projects are ever alike -- that's the challenge
and fascination of the art form. The A T & T (uh-oh) forum is a place
to share your thoughts and expertise about animation. Whether you
The WB Network is adding their newest animated series BABY BLUES to their Friday night line-up. The new series, based on the newspaper comic strip of the same name, will air back-to-back episodes from 8 9 pm starting July 28. The series chronicles the everyday lives of a suburban couple, Darryl and Wanda MacPherson, and their highly energized baby daughter. Mike O'Malley and Julia Sweeney are voicing the two parents.
In the international box office, MISSION IMPOSSIBLE 2 remained #1 in Australia by holding off newcomer DINOSAUR, while GLADIATOR gained the top spot in its debut in Japan. DreamWorks GLADIATOR claimed new territories in Japan, making $982,911 in its Japanese debut. Elsewhere, GLADIATOR remained at the top in Spain, the U.K., Brazil, Italy and Sweden. The Maximus money-maker grossed $1.89 million in Spain, advancing its three-week cume to $10.05 million.
After only six years in existence, Fox has closed the doors to its Phoenix, Arizona-based animation division, subsequently ending Don Bluth and Gary Goldmans relationship with Fox. The move comes after the recent resignation of Fox Filmed Entertainments chairman and CEO, Bill Mechanic, who had taken a big interest in animation and helped start the Fox facility in Phoenix. With the recent box office disappointment of TITAN A.E., the news is not much of a shock. In February, Fox laid off nearly 70% of its toon factory's staff.