Over the past year, Sweden has been urging the European Union to ban TV advertising aimed toward children under 12, however policymakers have reassured the advertising and children's programming industry that they are moving away from the notion. Currently in Sweden, ads targeted to kids are banned, because the government is worried that children could unnecessarily influence their parents' shopping habits. In January, Sweden hopes to win favor for their plans when they take over the six-month rotating presidency of the EU.
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From Manga Video, the ANGEL COP COLLECTION is coming to DVD. Violent terrorists called the Red May have started a wave of bombings and murders across Tokyo and the Special Security Force has been called in to restore order before the entire country comes tumbling down. The compilation contains six episodes of the popular series, in an English dubbed version, English subtitled version and Japanese version, plus there are Manga previews, links, fan club info and a DVD catalog. The DVD will sell for US$29.95 and hits stores October 31, 2000.
In celebration of the upcoming holidays, Walt Disney Home Video will be releasing MICKEY'S ONCE UPON A CHRISTMAS and ROLIE POLIE OLIE: A ROLIE POLIE CHRISTMAS. ONCE UPON A CHRISTMAS will be available on both VHS and DVD, while A ROLIE POLIE CHRISTMAS will be on VHS. ONCE UPON A CHRISTMAS will feature holiday tunes, Christmas themed cartoons starring Mickey, Minnie, Donald Duck and Goofy, all linked together by narration from FRASIER's Kelsey Grammer. A ROLIE POLIE CHRISTMAS features three holiday themed episodes of the popular 3D animated children's series.
Spurred on by overwhelming high-end interest, Joe Alter, Inc. will release Shave EXTREME, a high-end version of "Shave and a Haircut," the hair and fur software that has true integrated dynamic hair simulation, inverse kinematics and collision integrated into the modeling environment. Currently, the program works with LightWave and Messiah. Shave EXTREME will endeavor to replace/augment cumbersome in-house hair creation and rendering pipelines. Amongst an ambitious list of planned enhancements is direct and efficient support of Pixar's Renderman rendering software.
Montreal 3D digitizing firm, InSpeck, Inc., announced the official launch of its new Multi-Head 3D digitizing system, FAPS. The product is a single-unit, modular solution that uses multiple digitizers to acquire data of a complete 3D surface within a few seconds. The company's software has also been updated, offering a new, intuitive user interface and the ability to handle acquisition data from the Multi-Head system. InSpeck's new Multi-Head System is designed to digitize/compile up to six different views of a 3D model, and automatically merge them into a composite 3D image.
Icebox.com, an Internet animation content creator, has named entertainment industry veterans Cheryl Parnell as chief operating officer and Christos Garkinos as senior VP and chief marketing officer. Previously, Parnell served as executive VP and chief operating officer for Roger Corman's production company, Concorde-New Horizons, where she oversaw shows such as Showtime's ROGER CORMAN PRESENTS. "Cheryl is a passionate and talented entertainment executive who has a tremendous breadth of experience," said Icebox CEO Steve Stanford.
DMA has completed new IDs for Hearst-Argyle stations featuring Salty the Parrot. Tony Caio of DMA Animation directed the animated shorts, which promote local broadcasts from sports to holiday greetings. DMA's design approach is a mix of CGI and traditional Warner Bros. style of animation. The Salty character is owned by King Features. DMA has worked with clients such as Nickelodeon, The Food Network, Noggin, Grey Advertising, Kidvertisers, Sesame Workshop, ABC, CBS and WGBH/Boston. To view the Salty spots, go to http://www.dma-animation.com.
Sideshow, a New York post-production and visual design studio, has finished a series of promo spots for the new syndicated TV crime series ARREST & TRIAL. Sideshow delivered two 15-second and 10-second teasers, three 30-second promotional spots and 4 15-second versions of the same. In addition, the company is working on a 30-second Jumbo-tron spot for use in Times Square and other outdoor viewing venues. The show is a reality-based crime series from LAW AND ORDER creator Dick Wolfe and produced by Studios USA.
Director Richard Bazley is finishing up on a 7-minute theatrical short entitled THE JOURNAL OF EDWIN CARP, which was animated using Macromedia's Flash. Produced by Ray Bengston, the film is based on the book of the same name by Richard Haydn (voice of the caterpillar in Disney's original animated ALICE IN WONDERLAND). The short features the voice talents of British actor Hugh Laurie (STUART LITTLE, live-action 101 DALMATIONS). Richard Bazley was a lead animator at Disney and later at Warner Bros. on THE IRON GIANT.
Walt Disney is recalling copies of the new TOY STORY 2 DVD because it contains footage from Touchstone's R-rated HIGH FIDELITY. Costco stores received copies of the TOY STORY 2 DVD three-pack, which featured an F-word filled clip from FIDELITY in the middle of the movie. The glitch only effects the TOY STORY three-pack in less than 1% of the discs. "We are confident that the defective product has been isolated and removed from store shelves," Disney said in a statement.
Chennai, India-based Pentamedia Graphics, Ltd., formerly known as Pentafour Software and Exports, Ltd., and Film Roman, Inc. have announced a letter of intent pursuant to which Pentamedia will purchase a 51% stake in Film Roman. The deal was a US$15 million cash deal, which is aimed to close by January after regulatory and board approvals. In regards to the deal, Film Roman CEO and president John Hyde told AWN, "I think it allows us to execute our very specific five-year plan.
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With HOLLOW MAN claiming strong debuts in Germany and Italy, WHAT LIES BENEATH and X-MEN hold on tight to other tops spots around the world. In first place, HOLLOW MAN scored big in its German premiere with a gross of US$3.78 million. SCARY MOVIE came in right behind with a gross of $3.47 million, raising its German cume to $8.84 million. WHAT LIES BENEATH sunk to third with a gross of $1.37 million, lifting its German cume to $7.11 million. In seventh, FINAL DESTINATION piled up $487,846, bringing its German cume to $6.66 million.
Cartoon Network Netherlands has promoted Bas van Putte to senior marketing manager and hired Erma van Lamoen as senior programme manager. Van Putte has been with Cartoon Network Netherlands for three years. He will continue to oversee all marketing and brand development in the Netherlands, in addition to directing the administration and marketing the channel's multimedia activities. Van Lamoen will work closely with the programming team in London and will oversee the on-air look of the channel.
Montréal-based KliK Animation, a worldwide leader in motion-capture and 3D animation, has appointed Vincent Ethier as director of business development. Previously, Ethier served as Canadian sales manager for Softimage. He will oversee sales in the services and production segment.
The sixth volume of the MARTIAN SUCCESSOR NADESICO hits video stores October 24, 2000. In "Between Heaven and Hell," a new military initiative takes the Nabesico by surprise and Akito finds himself cut adrift. Volumes 1 through 5 are currently available. The tapes retail for US$19.98 (English Dubbed) and $29.95 (English Subtitled).
Anime feature, SIN: THE MOVIE, will be seducing home viewers on VHS and DVD October 24, 2000. Lead by Colonel John Blade, HARDCORPS must uncover a string of kidnappings in Freeport and bring some semblance of peace to this crime infested 21st Century city. The flick is based on the FPS video game of the same name. Released by ADV Films, the DVD will feature both the English dubbed and English subtitled versions of the film, plus an alternate storylined version. The film will retail for US$19.98 (English Dubbed VHS) and $29.98 (DVD).
* Sunday, August 12, 2001 Friday, August 17, 2001. Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
Entry Deadline: March 21, 2001.
German children's production company EM.TV & Merchandising AG has named Rolf Rickmeyer chief financial officer. This move comes in light of deputy chairman Florian Haffa's stepping down from the position. EM.TV's stock has lost more than two-thirds of its value since an accounting error in the acquisition of the Jim Henson Co. and Formula One cut earnings for the first quarter. Previously, Rickmeyer served as CFO for Lahmeyer AG, a German utility and machinery company.
House of Moves (HOM), a world-leader in motion capture services and technology, has released its custom software plug-in Dominatrix for Maya 3.0 on Windows NT, with Win2k and Irix shipping soon. The Dominatrix plug-in addresses several problems by allowing animators to use traditional Inverse Kinematic "key-frame" animation techniques in conjunction with all of the nuances of motion-captured performance and allowing animators to compensate for differences in proportion between live performers and CG characters.
3Dup.com and DeEspona Infografica have started distributing free 3D models over the Internet. The agreement between the Web portal for 3D artists, 3Dup.com, and DeEspona Infografica, a 3D modeling company, has started the free distribution of quality three-dimensional models for special effects in movies and advertising spots. DeEspona Infografica, a European company whose 3D models are used by DreamWorks (GLADIATOR) and RezN8 (spots on CBS, NBC and ABC), are among the best in the market due to the realism and finish. The models are available at http://3dup.com/highmodels.
To celebrate the holidays, Warner Bros. will release the direct-to-video title GRANDMA GOT RUN OVER BY A REINDEER. Produced by Phil Roman Entertainment, GRANDMA is based on the popular song of the same name and follows the misadventures of young Jake Spankenheimer on his journey to discover what happened to his missing grandmother. The original song was written by Randy Brooks and was recorded by Elmo Shropshire in 1979. Shropshire will provide the narration for the new cartoon. The new toon will arrive in video stores on October 31, 2000 and will sell for US$14.95.
With the Robert DeNiro and Ben Stiller comedy, MEET THE PARENTS, taking the top stop for the third straight week, the new devilish comedy, BEDAZZLED, debuted in #2. The sell-your-soul side-splitter, with primary visual effects by Rhythm & Hues, seduced US$13.11 million out of U.S. moviegoers' pockets. Losing 59% at the ticket window, New Line's LOST SOULS scored only $3.24 million in seventh. The evil enchanter, with primary visual effects by Cinesite and yU + Co, has scared up $12.88 million in total in 10 days. Coming in 8th, the reissue of THE EXORCIST spun another $2.91 million.
One of the founders of the UPA animation studio, William Hurtz, has passed away. He was 81 years old. Hurtz started his career at Disney in 1938 as an assistant. He assisted Art Babbitt on FANTASIA's "Mushroom Dance Sequence." Hurtz was an active member of the Hollywood Cartoonists' Union and made the motion to strike at Disney in 1941. Hurtz spent the war years at the Film Motion Picture Unit. FMPU was stationed in Culver City as part of the U.S. Army Signal Corps under Major Rudy Ising of Harmon & Ising fame. Throughout World War II they did training cartoons for overseas servicemen.