New York-based Charlex was brought in by British Petroleum to give a face-lift to their image. "The challenge was to make an interesting commercial using only the British Petroleum logo," said Charlex founder and spot director Alex Weil. "It was an idea originated by BP themselves, but nobody has been able to make it sufficiently interesting until we got hold of it. As [creative director] David Fowler put it, The idea went from the trash can to Charlex. Its a good thing too.
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Eyeball has woven live-action dance footage together with graphic design elements for the new PBS documentary FREE TO DANCE. "We were provided with live-action footage, which we incorporated into a stylized environment that allowed the dancers movements to be shown to best effect, taking our inspiration from classic art deco posters," said creative director Limone Shur. Designer Tatiana Arocha created the simulated spotlights, which the dancers appear in. "I began by thinking about the colors and about stage lights over dancers," said Arocha.
Smarterville, Inc., a Web-based childrens media company, announced that Peter Doctorow, former president of Knowledge Adventure, has been named as president and chief executive officer. Founder Ben Sharpe will remain as chief technology officer. "We are excited to add Peter Doctorow to our team," said Ben Sharpe, Smarterville founder and chief technology officer.
Digital Artists Agency (DAA) has signed agreements to represent Academy Award-winning visual effects supervisors Volker Engel (INDEPENDENCE DAY) and Tim McGovern (TOTAL RECALL). In addition, the company has also signed visual effects supervisor Patrick Shearn, an Emmy Award nominee for 3RD ROCK FROM THE SUN, and Eric Mises-Rosenfeld, a French national with 15 years of award-winning TV commercial and feature film experience.
* Sunday, September 24, 2000. Ottawa, Canada.
Bill Plymptons newest film "Mutant Aliens" will be screened as part of the Ottawa International Animation Festival. The event will take place at 1 pm at the National Arts Centre. The film version being screened is a work-in-progress. For more information contact the festival at: Tel.: (613) 232-8769 or Web: http://www.awn.com/ottawa/ottawa00.
Belgium-based Eyetronics, a 3D-acquisition technology company, is opening an office in Los Angeles, California. Nick Tesi, Eyetronics LA representative, said, "Eyetronics has been operating from their headquarters in Belgium since the start of operations in 1998. The 9 hour time difference has been a major drawback in communicating with our clients and prospects in the U.S. and Canada.
* Monday, September 25 Tuesday, September 26, 2000. Saint-Laurent, Canada.
The National Film Board of Canada is holding an open house of their new facilities. The event gives the public a chance to meet the filmmakers and staff. The NFB will feature screenings, studio tours and receptions on Monday from 2-6 pm and on Tuesday from 10 am 5 pm. Screening facilities will be available for visitors to screen their own work as well. For more information contact the NFB at: Tel.: (514) 283-9571 or (514) 283-9332.
Harvey Entertainment has announced their acquisition of the U.S. rights from Pearson Television International for the feature-length film A MONKEYS TALE. The film follows the story of two tribes of monkeys one tree dwelling and one ground dwelling and what happens when one curious ape falls into the other tribes world. The film recently won best animated feature at the Hollywood Film Festival and the Toronto Sun Animation Award at the Sprockets International Film Festival for Children.
As counter-programming to the Summer Olympics, the WB Network has decided to begin airing new episodes of THE PJS. The foamation toon will make its official switch from Fox to the WB in a special airing on Friday, September 8, 2000 at 8:30 pm. The Warner Bros./Imagine/Will Vinton Studios production will then join the Sunday line-up on September 10, 2000 at 8:30 pm and will move to 7 pm once the regular season starts. The Eddie Murphy-voiced toon will also have another Friday run on September 15.
TOPIX/Mad Dog was tapped to create the visual effects for the HDTV animated retelling of the Prodigal Son tale entitled, CHOICE. The 25-minute film was produced for Expo 2000s "Pavilion of Hope" in Hanover, Germany. Presented in six languages, the film started airing in June and will run until October. The project was animated by Canuck Creations in Toronto and digitally scanned, inked and painted in Viet Nam at One Shot Pro and Planet Wave. "Originally, our job was to handle the post to finish off the process and put the footage into continuous form.
The New York-based design and production studio hey! has wrapped up 22 thirty-second animations for Arista Records. Presented at Bertelsmann Music Groups marketing conference, hey! created musical sequences highlighting Arista artists Whitney Houston, Santana, Run DMC, Toni Braxton, Carly Simon, Aretha Franklin and many more. "Essentially, we have made stills of the artists come to life by creating 2D animations in inferno*.
ATTIK shot, designed and produced three 15-second spots previewing Sonys Digital Network Recorder with TiVo service. The product allows TV viewers the chance to record programs digitally while they watch something else. ATTIK creative director/designer/director Aporva Baxi said, "We enhanced the existing agency concept with dynamic animated visuals that were specifically designed to reflect the copy line of each commercial. It was also vital that the visuals appear authentic.
Long-time animation producer Zdenka Deitchova has been formally named the chief of the Bratri v Triku (Kratky Film) animation studio in Prague. Deitchova has worked as a producer at the studio for over 55 years. Deitchova commented jokingly, "It's only temporary until they find someone else!" This appointment marks the first female head in the studios illustrious history.
Animation producers/directors Don Bluth and Gary Goldman have set out to expand their DRAGONS LAIR franchise into the lands of Webtoons, next-generation video games and a feature film. Their new Web site donbluth.com will air the DRAGONS LAIR Webisodes, which will follow the not so valiant Dirk the Daring and his battles with the evil wizard, Mordrock. No release date has been set for the premiere episode. DonBluth.com will also feature animation lessons from the legendary director.
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.
Big Idea Productions, Inc. is currently looking to hire a 3D MODELING/TEXTURING SUPERVISOR, a MODELING SUPERVISOR and two MODELERS/TEXTURERS. . . Sherman Oaks, California-based Animation Creations, an animation workshop which teaches animation fundamentals to children, is looking for an ANIMATION INSTRUCTOR. . . NewTV.com, an early stage Internet TV station, is looking for ANIMATORS who can build their work with Flash for a brand new Internet television station. . .
Wildbrain.com is a must-visit site for anyone who is interested in cutting edge Internet animation...
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.