Messiah, the plug-in softbody and character module for Lightwave, has developed a stand alone package, messiah:studio, that should prove to be strong competition to 3D software packages. With Renderman capabilities, a low price tag (US$1600), softbodies for creating cloth and realistic characters, inverse kinematics for simplified animation, and radiosity for realistic rendering, it will be interesting to see how other packages react to messiah's strengths.
AWN Headline News
The international box office this past weekend saw a strong debut by SCARY MOVIE in the U.K. and THE TIGGER MOVIE bounced high in its Swedish nod. Disneys orange idol landed in #2, with a gross of US$280,418. Slipping to fourth, CHICKEN RUN laid another $184,548, bringing its total take in Sweden to $589,026. THE PERFECT STORM sank from #2 to sixth with a gross of $146,588, raising its Swedish cume to $834,053. X-MEN fell from fifth to eighth, with a gross of $78,087, lifting its Swedish cume to $1.43 million.
iFilm has set up an online screening room specifically for agents to check out iFilm shorts before they are released to the public. So far agencies CAA, ICM, the Gersh Agency and the United Talent Agency have signed on to participate in the program. Even before the new "Screening Network" was established iFilm short, 405: THE MOVIE, by Bruce Branit and Jeremy Hunt, landed the filmmakers CAA representation. iFilm is a content destination site that contains its own shorts and links to various work around the Web.
BKN International AG, a childrens animated production, distribution and marketing company, has launched a new media division, BKN New Media Ltd. The division was established to help BKN better exploit its properties over the Internet. The first venture for the new arm will be the launch of its consumer-based community Website featuring THE ROSWELL CONSPIRACIES.
Columbia Pictures has optioned the feature film rights to Image Comics POWERS, created by writer-artist Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming. Financial terms of the deal were listed as the duo receiving low six figures up front leading to high-six figures following the films release. The comic follows the cases of two homicide detectives -- who live in a world full of superheroes and villains assigned to the "powers" division to investigate superpower-related murders. Bendis will either receive a co-producing or an associate producing credit on the film.
* Saturday, October 14 Saturday, November 18, 2000. Manitou Springs, Colorado, U.S.A.
Entry Deadline: September 15, 2000.
* Friday, October 6 Sunday, October 8, 2000. Saint Gely, France.
Objectif Image Saint Gely presents the 15th annual Saint Gely Short Film
Festival. The festivals categories are documentary, fictional-dramatic, animation and experimental. Past festival chairmen have been Jean Pierre Mocky in 1998 and Claude Pinoteau in 1999. For more information contact Jean Pierre Mas at: Tel.: ++33 4 67 66 69 69; or Web: http://perso.wanadoo.fr/herve.lebrouster.
Since 1977, Cinanima has been promoting the international art of animation in Espinho, a city located on the Northern coast of Portugal. The 24th edition of the Festival will happen November 6-12, 2000. The Festival announced their 2000 nominees in official selection -- competition and panorama sections -- and the films competing for the Young Portuguese Director Prize. The selection jury consisted of Jordi Artigas (Spain), Paulo Cambraia (Portugal), Artur Correia (Portugal), Guy Pirotte (Belgium) and Amélia Martins (Portugal).
The Britt Allcroft Company plc announced that as part of its global expansion, the company has changed its name to Gullane Entertainment and hired new key staff members. The companys former managing director, William Harris, has been appointed CEO and commercial director and group entertainment president, Charles Falzon, will serve as president. The move is an opportunity for founder Britt Allcroft to hand over the operations of the company to focus on more creative endeavors.
Mondo Media has signed GUNDAM WING character designer Toshihiro Kawamoto to design characters for an upcoming Mondo Mini Show. Currently the project is entitled SPIRAL, a sci-fi action adventure series which will be available on MondoMedia.com later this year. Kawamoto is best known for his character designs on COWBOY BEBOP, several GUNDAM series, GOLDEN BOY and the cinematics for THE GHOST IN THE SHELL video game. Also brought onto the project as key animator is Cindy Yamauchi, whose credits include AKIRA, VENUS WARS and RANMA 1/2.
Based in the Northern Arts Region of England, Animha Productions is an association of artists, writers, animators and filmmakers dedicated to independent film production and animation workshops. Animha has updated their web site. View clips and find more about Animha's workshops and other projects at http://www.awn.com/animha.
Do you have specific questions about how they do certain visual effects? A community member offers his advice on how to shoot background plate shots when intending to add CG elements. Hosted by Terrence "T-man" Masson, Creative Planet's Visual Effects forum is not about specific software packages, but about how to improve and educate yourself by asking questions and getting constructive and honest feedback from those who have gone before. Join the party and meet the visual effects pros.
Plympton's new series of comics extracted from the comic book, "Sleazy Cartoons of Bill Plympton," is for ADULTS ONLY...
- Opera Imaginaire: Twelve popular operas are brought to life through the interpretations of some of Europe's most talented animators. All styles of animation are represented, including computer animation. Films by Ken Lidster, Monique Renault, Pascal Roulin, Jonathan Hills, Jimmy Murakami, Raimund Krumme, and more!
French authorities, through INA, the Audiovisual National Institute, have pulled their support of Imagina, the foremost European visual effects event. For 19 years, Imagina has served as the testing ground for new talents and technologies in Europe. In the past few years the event has drawn over 1,300 participants and 5,000 visitors, growing to fill venues in two cities. A group has been formed to save the festival, which many professionals cite as being a wonderful meeting place to not only exchange ideas but also network and make valuable production deals.
Santa Monica-based R!OT, a digital production studio, recently finished the visual effects for a commercial promoting Tennessee's Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center. Digital artist Verdi Sevenhuysen helped turn Malibu Beach into the shores of Omaha Beach during D-Day. Sevenhuysen used Discreet Inferno system to alter the live-action footage to match the European topography. He also placed a series of steel tank traps onto the sandy shore. "It was a very close collaboration between director Karsten and I," said Sevenhuysen. "They didn't have the budget to shoot in France, but it didn't matter.
Wild Brain, the San Francisco-based animation house, has wrapped on three 30-second spots for Interline/Scandinavian Designs. The fast-paced commercials pop the furniture companys many types of chairs and sofas onto the screen with an up-tempo sleek design. "The challenge was to design the spots to showcase their huge selection of furnishings in a visually compelling manner, yet remain true to the clean, sleek feel of the line," said spot director and designer Julia Tortolani.