THE MATRIX, the special effects driven science-fiction adventure, remained No. 1 at the US box office for the week ending April 11, with a weekend gross of $22.2 million, and a cumulative gross of $50 million. It slipped only 20% from last week.
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In London on Sunday night, April 11, The British Academy of Film and Televsion Arts (BAFTA) presented THE CANTERBURY TALES with their 1999 award for Best Short Animated Film. The film is a 27 mininute long adaptation of Geoffrey Chaucer's classic poem about pilgrims telling tales while travelling to Canterbury. The film includes three of the travellers' tales, each one animated in a different style. The film was produced by Renat Zinnurov, Claire Jennings, and Les Mills. It was directed by Aida Zyablikova, Ashley Potter, Dave Antrobus, Mic Graves, Joanna Quinn, and Jonathan Myerson.
The deadline for The New York Festivals is June 1, 1999. The New York Festivals is a competition devolted to the recognition of excellence in Interactive Multimedia.
The animation students at The Royal College of Art will exhibit their work as part of The Royal College of Art Show 1999: Design, Communication & Humanities from Wednesday 23 June - Sunday 4 July, from10am - 6pm daily + one late night. The college is famous for the high quality of work done by its students. It is located in Kensington Gore, London W7. For further information, TEL: 0171 590 4444; or FAX: 0171 590 4500. Also visit www.rca.ac.uk for more information.
* Sunday, April 11. Richmond, Viriginia, USA.
BRIEF HISTORY OF THE ANIMATED TV COMMERCIAL will feature over 50commercials from 1948-1993. Janet Scagnelli will introduce the program,which starts at 3pm at the James River Festival. TEL: (804) 355-1383 orvisit www.vcu.edu/artweb/jamesriverfest.
DIC Entertainment, a subsidiary of Disney, has sold two new animated seriesto Pax TV, a new family-oriented network in the US. "Archie's WeirdMysteries" and "Sherlock Holmes in the 22nd Century" will appear this Fallas part of the weekday "Pax Power Mystery Hour." "Archie's WeirdMysteries," a co-production with M6 France, is based on the long runningArchie comics series. In the series, a lab experiement goes awry, creatingsuch characters as a 50-foot Veronica, and Dr. Jughead and Mr. Hyde.
The new Paramount Home Video release of THE RUGRATS MOVIE was the bestselling video in the US for the week ending April 4, 1999. RUGRATS out soldits nearest rivals, TAE-BO WORKOUT and MIGHTY JOE YOUNG, by about four toone. However, MULAN, which debuted on video in the US earlier this year,sold about 38% more copies during its debut week than RUGRATS sold duringits first week. RUGRATS was also released on DVD last week where it debutedat #2, just behind Buena Vista's THE WATERBOY with Adam Sandler.
Universal Pictures has begun production in Los Angeles on TribecaProductions' live-action/animated comedy adventure "The Adventures of Rockyand Bullwinkle," starring two time Academy Award(R) winner Robert De Niro("Raging Bull," "The Godfather Part II"), Jason Alexander (TV's "Seinfeld")and Rene Russo ("Get Shorty"). Des McAnuff ("Cousin Bette," Broadway's"The Who's Tommy") is directing from a screenplay by Kenneth Lonergan, withDe Niro and Jane Rosenthal producing. David Nicksay ("The Negotiator") and
Daffy Duck will finally get the respect he longs for on April 16 at 10am atthe Mann's Chinese Theater in Hollywood when a U.S. postage stamp isdedicated in his honor and "Daffy Duck Day" is declared in Hollywood tocommemorate the event. Johnny Grant, Ceremonial Mayor of Hollywood andChairman of the HollywoodWalk of Fame, will declare the day as "Daffy DuckDay" when he joins Tirso del Junco, M.D., member of the Postal Service'sBoard of Governors, and Dan Romanelli, President, Warner Bros. Consumer
This year the San Diego Comic-Con International will be held August 12-15.Comic-Con is the largest convention of its kind. It features a huge comicbook, animation, film and related items marketplace, a slew of panels, andmany special guests. The special guests currently scheduled include NeilGaiman (SANDMAN), Mike Mignola (HELLBOY), Art Spiegelman (MAUS, RAW), JimSteranko (publisher of PREVUE, writer and artist of famous 1960's issues ofS.H.I.E.L.D. and CAPTAIN AMERICA), Dave Stevens (THE ROCKETEER), Jill
Bob Gurr, designer and veteran Walt Disney Imagineer whose designs for Disneyland include the original "bubble-top" Monorail engine, will appear in person Saturday, April 10, from 1:30 to 3:30 pm in The Disney Gallery, New Orleans Square, Disneyland. Gurr will meet with Disneyland guests and sign a specially commissioned lithograph representing his own imaginative vision of a future Monorail. The lithograph retails for $95.
International Fine Arts College, founded in 1965, has received approvalfrom the Florida State Board of Independent Colleges and Universities tooffer the Master of Fine Arts in Computer Animation. Classes will beginJanuary 2000. The Master of Fine Arts Degree in Computer Animation is astudio based, sixty credit program focusing on animation utilizing theSilicon Graphics platform with Alias|Wavefront Maya software. The AnimationStudio boasts 63 SGI O2s running the latest versions of Alias|Wavefront;
The adventures of Toucan Sam continue in a 30 second spot made by SimExDigital Studios for Leo Burnett/Chicago. The spot, entitled "Frog/Idol,"promotes Kellogg's Marshmallow Blasted Froot Loops.
"Frog/Idol" is a continuation of last summer's "Marshmallow Temple/ExtremeAdventure." In it, Toucan Sam falls through a temple floor into anunderwater cavern. There he discovers an enormous frog idol, and swims intoits mouth. Once he surfaces, a multitude of frog marshmallows jump towardshim.
* Sunday, April 11. Richmond, Virginia, USA.
PRE-1950 AMERICAN ANIMATION will feature several gems including "Porky inWackyland," "Bimbo's Initiation," and Betty Boop in "Snow White." JanetScagnelli introduces the program which starts at 5pm at the James RiverFestival. TEL: (804) 355-1383. www.vcu.edu/artweb/jamesriverfest alsooffers further details.
Marvel Enterprises has secured a $60 million credit line from Citibank. This lends credence to rumors that it is interested in taking over Harvey Entertainment which owns the rights to many animated and comic book characters such as Casper the Friendly Ghost and Richie Rich. Three years ago, Marvel Entertainment Group filed for bankruptcy. Toy Biz, which had been a subsidiary, acquired the bankrupt Marvel Entertainment Group, then created Marvel Enterprises as the umbrella company.
PDI has named producer/director Don McBain as Visual Effects Producer for its Commercial and Feature Film Effects Division. McBain's credits include Production Supervisor for the STARSHIP TROOPERS Miniature Unit, the crash sequence for MONEY TRAIN, and line producer/production manager for 25 projects at Sony Pictures Imageworks, as well as making the independent, experimental Imax film, FIRE.
Pam Coats has been promoted from producer to senior vice president of creative development at Walt Disney Feature Animation, making her the hightest ranked woman at Disney Animation.
Coats, who produced MULAN, will direct creative development of all projects in the studio's feature animation division. Her previous credits include producing the Roger Rabbit short, TRAIL MIX-UP, and executive producing the Mickey Mouse short, RUNAWAY BRAIN. She joined Disney feature animation in 1989.
Judy Fearing has been appointed to the newly created position of senior vice president, Global Marketing and Studio Development, for Disney Consumer Products, it was announced Thursday by division Chairman Bo Boyd and President Anne Osberg.
The deadline for submissions for the 7th Annual New York Digital Salon is May 1, 1999. The competition consists of a gallery exhibition of prints, sculpture, CD-ROMs, and interactive installations; animation/digital video screenings; websites/internet-works; and a catalog of original essays on digital culture. For further information contact Kirsten Solberg, Director of the Digital Salon and Director of Operations for the MFA Computer Art Department, at (212) 592-2535 or by fax at (212) 592-2509. e-mail: email@example.com www.sva.edu/salon
A team from HELIUM PRODUCTIONS, INC. and TWO HEADED MONSTER has created a new computer animated spot for Starburst which immerses the viewer in a simulated water environment designed for absolute believability. The animators used SGI Octanes, Side Effects' Prisms, and Pixar's Photorealistic Renderman software to create the realistic physics of water splashing and swirling. At Helium Productions, John Scheafer was creative director. At Two Headed Monster Christopher Willoughby was creative director and Ruth Schiller produced.
Big Ticket Television has teamed-up with Will Vinton Studios to produce a new Claymation and dimensional animation series entitled GARY AND MIKE, slated to air on FOX this Fall. The series will be executive produced by creators Fax Bahr and Adam Small, along with Academy Award winning Will Vinton and Tom Turpin (CEO/president of Will Vinton Studios).
Chadwick Communications, a New York-based creative media company, is looking for a CHARACTER ANIMATION SPECIALIST
ImagineAsia Studios is seeking a LIGHTWAVE/SOFTIMAGE TRAINER for a 3+ month commitment in Metro Manila, Philippines. Transportation, accommodations and meals are provided. ImagineAsia Studios is an exciting state-of-the-art digital animation studio currently in production on Columbia TriStar/Cine Groupe's "Heavy Metal F.A.K.K.2". Candidate must be highly experienced in the latest versions of Lightwave/Softimage. Areas of critical focus include character modeling, lighting, texturing and animation. Strong demo reel and excellent English communication skills required.
California SUN Festival will happen April 10, 1999 at California State University Northridge. This year's festival has seen an increase in the number of entries from the international animation community, with films from Australia, Canada, China, England, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Indonesia, Japan, and the USA. 57 films were chosen for screening.