MTV Networks (MTVN) has promoted Greg Clayman from svp, MTVN Mobile Media, to evp, digital distribution & business development. Based in the company's New York City headquarters, Clayman will continue to report to Mika Salmi, president, Global Digital Media, MTVN.
Eden FX, a Hollywood-based creator of visual effects for feature films, television programs and commercial advertising content, has added Mark Kolpack as visual effects supervisor. Most recently, Kolpack was the vfx supervisor on the hit NBC TV series HEROES. Some of his other credits include effects work on COMMANDER IN CHIEF, RUFFIAN, ONE TREE HILL and THIEF.
A hard disk belonging to suspected U.K. terror plotter Kafeel Ahmed contains an animated video showing how a syringe can be used in a bomb, reports NDTV.COM. Police found the disk at his home in Bangalore.
The technology was to be used to trigger the bombs found in London, but they failed because the syringes malfunctioned, British investigators said.
Former Warner Bros. Animation president Sander Schwartz returns to familiar territory, but in a bigger capacity as president, international production of Sony Pictures Television International (SPTI), and becomes head of SPTIï¿½s global production group. Before WBA, Schwartz was Sony Pictures Entï¿½s family entertainment group first president from 1999 to 2001. Schwartz will relocate from Los Angeles to SPTIï¿½s European headquarters in London, England, and will report to SPTIï¿½s president, Michael Grindon.
Eight new governors have been elected to represent their branches on the Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Six incumbent governors were reelected.
Newcomers to the board are Henry Winkler, Actors Branch; Vilmos Zsigmond, Cinematographers; Richard Pearce, Documentary; and Charles Fox, Music.
Returning to the Board after a hiatus are Dede Allen, Film Editors; Curt Behlmer, Sound; Richard Edlund, Visual Effects and Frank Pierson, Writers.
Dana Walden and Gary Newman, who have served as presidents of Twentieth Century Fox Television (TCFTV) for nearly a decade, have been promoted to chairmen of the studio.
"Under Gary and Dana's leadership for the past decade, 20th Century Fox Television has achieved unparalleled success in the television marketplace and has been at the forefront of successfully leveraging new technologies to extend its hit franchises," said Peter Charmin, president/coo News Corp., to whom they report. "Their promotion to chairmen is richly deserved."
Fox Broadcasting Co. has upped Peter Liguori to chairman, entertainment, and named Kevin Reilly president, entertainment, in a restructuring designed to add depth to the senior ranks of the network.
Television sales veteran Patricia Ryan has been upped to evp of sales for Foothill Ent. Well known in the global television sales community, Ryan has brought tremendous experience and knowledge to Foothill over the past year as a consultant.
"We are thrilled to have Pat in this new role," said Foothill president Jo Kavanagh-Payne. "Pat is very well liked and respected throughout the world so having her in this new management role is a huge plus for us, especially with our increasing catalogue."
Karen Rupert Toliver is the new vp production at 20th Century Fox Animation, replacing John Cohen. Her duties will include the development and production of animated projects. She reports to recently appointed TCF Fox Animation president Vanessa Morrison.
"Karen has the expertise and sensibility with the development and production of big, all-audience, animated movies, and her taste and talents fall perfectly in line with the films that we make here at Fox Animation," Morrison commented.
Thomas Helmintoller joins S4 Studios in the newly created post of creative director. A specialist in graphics production for trailers, music videos, movies and home video packaging, Helmintoller designed air combat sequences of DER ROTE BARON (THE RED BARON), an international co-production being distributed by Warner Bros. in October 2007.
Karen Raugust reports that despite the wide gap in budgets and resources, independent animation houses can learn from the major media companies' digital/new media activities.
MTV Networks' Ent. Group has promoted Erik Flannigan to evp, digital media. The Entertainment Group is comprised of a multi-platform portfolio of brands featuring the Comedy Central, Spike TV and TV Land cable channels, as well as Internet sites AtomFilms, AtomUploads, GameTrailers.com and Xfire. Flannigan supervises the linear channels' digital media teams, overseeing the networks' digital programming initiatives, to maximize revenue growth opportunities for the group and now will oversee all of the Entertainment Group's digital businesses as well.
Sharon Morrill, president of DisneyToon Studios, has stepped down from her post, where she had been responsible for producing direct-to-video sequels of the Disney Co.'s animated features. She will do special projects for Disney.
ANIMATION WORLD MAGAZINE reported on March 28, 2007, that it was the end of the line for Disney direct-to-video sequels and how the studio was moving forward under the new corporate climate with Ed Catmull and John Lasseter at the helm.
Dream Works Animation has hired former Nickelodeon Movies development vp Damon Ross as a senior development exec. Ross's main duty will be acquiring and developing literary properties as well as original projects. He will work on the day-to-day development of features at the studio with Chris Kuser.
The new DreamWorks exec will report to the studio's head of creative development and production Bill Damaschke and head of development Kristine Belson.
Karen Raugust looks at how animation executives rely on their big-studio experience to launch new indie production houses.
Janet Hetherington talks to Canadian vfx professionals about why their companies are being tasked with providing effects for A-list productions such as 300, Superman, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, Babylon 5: The Lost Tales and more.
Lisa Streff to vp of domestic licensing in DICâs consumer products division, to oversee the development and implementation of domestic licensing and merchandising programs for the company's slate of entertainment and lifestyle brands, including MOMMY & ME, HORSELAND, MCDONALDS, STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE, CAKE, MADELINE SLUMBER PARTY GIRLS and DICâs all new boy-driven property, DINO SQUAD. She will oversee the efforts of sales, retail and product development.
Shari Weisenberg joins SCI FI Channel in the newly created position of vp, strategic marketing, to lead all sales marketing initiatives for the SCI FI brand. Her appointment signals the Channel's commitment to leveraging its multimedia assets to maximize the reach and impact of all sponsor messaging.
Method Studios has signed Andy Boyd as a CG supervisor. Most recently working as the head of 3D Commercials with Framestore-CFC London, Boyd is a well-known 3D artist and recognized as the visual effects creative force behind high-profile campaigns such as the Daniel Kleinman-directed GUINNESS Noitulove, SURE/REXONA lensed by Noam Murro and ESUVEE directed by Daniel Kleinman. His official start will be July 1.
San Francisco-based animation and production studio W!LDBRAIN announced that Michael Polis will be the new chief marketing officer for the company, the first in the studio's history. Polis will focus on building up brands for the company, such as the YO GABBA GABBA series for Nick Jr., while also focusing on management of the overall W!LDBRAIN corporate identity.
Digital media and children's television exec Lisa Judson has been named president, Warner Bros. Animation, succeeding Sander Schwartz, who recently departed to concentrate on broadband and new media animation with the studio as a producer.
Veteran Warner Bros. Ent. business operations exec Andy Lewis has been named evp/general administrative manager at Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution (WBDTD), overseeing all business operations, including finance, administration, planning and analysis for WBDTD, one of the leading distributors of first-run and off-network programming in the domestic television marketplace. Lewis comes to WBDTD after a decade at Warner Bros. Animation (WBA).
Handcranked, otherwise known as the veteran animation director team of Bryan Papciak and Jeff Sias, will join Global Mechanic to be represented for commercial production worldwide, it was announced by Global Mechanic exec producer Matthew Charde. Global Mechanic produces commercials, television series and films in all media, working with directors internationally and studios on both coasts of North America.
Visual effects studio Guava has signed seasoned animator and designer James Collins to its roster. He recently completed a spot for GMC via Lowe Worldwide with Guava. He comes from Click 3X, where he rebuilt the CG department and headed the team.
"In addition to providing an environment that is conducive to creativity, Guava offers a very talented staff," said Collins. "I am eager to contribute my skills while also learning from the experienced artists here. At Guava, I hope to help clients nurture their ideas and solve their creative needs."