Michel Welter has been named president of CinéGroupe International. In this newly created position, Welter will head the companys international corporate development efforts in addition to overseeing all aspects of international sales for the company including distribution, licensing and merchandising. Prior to coming to CinéGroupe, he was president of Saban Enterprises International, where he managed the worldwide licensing and merchandising activities of Saban Entertainment and developed new international ventures.
Sesame Workshop has announced that they have named Nancy Steingard to the new post of senior VP of creative development and have promoted VP of development Julian Scott to the position of VP of European operations. Steingard will oversee talent deals, the building of production and broadcast relationships and expanding the firm's new media options. Prior to her new job, Steingard was an executive VP at Universal Family Entertainment. Scott will head up a new London office, where he will oversee the company's actions in the European market, including projects with Granada and the BBC.
Dennis Hoffman has been promoted to vice president and head of visual effects for Cinesite. Since joining Cinesite as an executive producer in 1998, Hoffman has supervised the production of more than 1,500 visual effects shots on 65 projects including such films as RED PLANET, DEEP BLUE SEA, MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE and THIRTEEN DAYS. Prior to joining Cinesite, Hoffman was a producer and subsequently vice president/executive producer at Dream Quest Images, where his producing credits included CRIMSON TIDE, the Imax film ASTEROID ADVENTURE and the series EARTH 2, for which he earned an Emmy.
Joanne Barlow joins Turner Entertainment Networks as marketing director for Cartoon Network UK and Boomerang, Cartoon Network's spin-off classic animation network. Her goal will be to bring together all aspects of marketing, offering strong and focused propositions to the partners and audiences of Cartoon Network and Boomerang. Previously, she served as European promotions manager for service station chain Shell. Before joining Shell, she ran her own business designing children's products. "We are very excited to have Joanne onboard," said James Greville, head of Cartoon Network UK.
Ben Orisich has joined Cyclotron, a New York design, production and F/X company, as digital artist/designer. Prior to Cyclotron, 25 year-old Orisich worked for four years at Atlanta-based Click 3X as senior inferno* artist. Orisichs work has won him numerous awards, including the Gold BDA International Design Award (2000) for commercial spots for UPS and retailer Carson Pirie Scott.
Warner Home Video has shuffled its management into new posts in light of increased revenues from the company's DVD sales. Sales executive John Quinn has been promoted to the new post of VP, supply chain management and logistics. The 15-year veteran of Warner Home Video will oversee all aspects of manufacturing, physical distribution, customer service, vendor management and inventory systems. Exec. VP of worldwide marketing and development, Thomas Lesinski has been raised to the new position of executive VP and general manager for the U.S. Lesinski joined Warner Home Video in 1993.
Brilliant Digital Entertainment Inc. has announced the appointment of Robert Chmiel to the newly combined position of Chief Financial Officer/Chief Operating Officer. In this new position, Chmiel will help direct operations in executing the company's latest initiatives in music and advertising. In addition he will actively seek out further investors and move the firm into profitability. He joins Brilliant from Phase2Media Inc.
Icebox president Gary Levine is shedding his coat at the struggling entertainment Website for warmer pastures at Showtime. Levine was the key player in Icebox selling its STARSHIP REGULARS series to Showtime as a live-action series. At the cable network, he will assume the role of executive VP of original programming, and therefore will oversee the production of STARSHIP from the other side. Before joining Icebox, Levine served as exec VP of creative affairs for Warner Bros. TV.
Will Ryan pays a visit to the super-kinetic Charlie Adler, one of the industry's foremost voice actors and directors.
Chris Oarr has announced that he is resigning as executive director of the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. Oarr headed the CBLDF, a non-profit organization protecting First Amendment rights in the comics industry, for more than three years. "It's been great working for such an important cause," said Oarr. "And I feel like we've accomplished a lot. The Fund will continue to stand ready to provide the highest quality legal advice and service to the comics' community.
Director Nick Hewitt has joined Stockholm-based Filmtecknarna F. Animation AB. Previously Hewitt worked for San Francisco-based Curious Pictures. In his new role, he will work as a commercials director for Filmtecknarna but will also continue to pursue the creation of long-format animation. Hewitt joins Filmtecknarna directors Jonas Odell and Jonas Dahlbeck.
Ed Catmull, Pixar Animation Studios co-founder, has been named president of the company. Catmull has served as a member of the company's executive team and chief technical officer since the incorporation of the company in 1986. In his new role as president, Catmull will report to chairman and CEO Steve Jobs and work closely with Jobs and Pixar's executive team to guide Pixar's growth. "Ed and I founded Pixar almost 15 years ago, and we've been through thick and thin together," said Jobs.
Rumpus.com, a children's new media company, announced that Rick Mischel, former president and chief operating officer of Harvey Entertainment, will join the company as acting president. Mischel will forge new revenue streams for Rumpus in domestic and international television and home video markets. Mischel will continue his consulting duties at Harvey, and will serve in a non-exclusive capacity to Rumpus.
Mandy Martin has joined ATTIK, an all-media creative solutions provider, as executive producer of the San Francisco studio. Previously, Martin served as executive producer for Los Angeles-based broadcast design and media company Pittard Sullivan. She has worked on campaigns for Sat.1 (Germany), Star TV (Turkey) and BskyB (England), among others. Will Travis, president ATTIK USA, said, "I couldn't be any happier about Mandy joining ATTIK. Her blend of professionalism and production acumen is a fantastic match for our growing team.
As a consolidation measure, the combined AOL Time Warner company has cut six members from its board of directors including U.S. Secretary of State designate Colin Powell. Former General Powell has received some bad press in regards to his involvement with AOL and how it would affect his work as Secretary of State. His removal from the board can be seen as a move to better insure Powell's approval into president-elect George W. Bush's cabinet. The new company's board consists of 16 members. Three members were cut from each of the two company's boards.
Unbound Studios, an animation and interactive entertainment company, has announced Jill Proctor Ramirez to the newly created position of VP of business development. Proctor Ramirez began her career as a newscaster in Dallas, Texas. Later she held the positions of director of development at Morgan Hill Films/Hearst Entertainment and vice president of development at the Dick Clark Film Group.
The iXL Digital Video Group, New York, a graphic design and visual effects company, has added Robin Horlick as executive producer and Doug Dimon as senior visual effects artist. Horlick joins iXL following four years as director of sales/executive producer at Sony Music Studios, New York. During her career in television production she has won an Emmy, Peabody and BDA awards.
In light of its recent acquisitions of Sony Wonder/Sunbow Entertainment and Paris-based Salsa Distribution, German kids' production house TV Loonland has added key components to its sales staff. Marzenna Czubowicz was hired to head up sales for TV Loonland. Besides overseeing the company's sales offices in London, Paris and New York, she will direct distribution of the company's content in the U.K., Germany, Spain, Ireland, Portugal, Poland, Russia, Israel and South Africa. Previously, Czubowicz served as director of sales at Alliance Atlantis Television International.
Cartoon Network Online has promoted Sam Register to the role of senior VP and creative director. Register oversees CartoonNetwork.com's original content and the tie-ins to the cable channel like "Toonami: The Intruder" and "Theater," and has been instrumental in the site's development and growth since its inception. Previously, he served as creative director for Colossal Pictures and Turner New Media.
Will Ryan interviews Joanie Sommers the voice of the Pepsi Generation...and many, many cartoon characters.
Cinesite, Inc. has appointed Jon Townley as their new senior designer. He helped found Metro Light Studios where he served as creative director from 1987 to 1993. Since then he has worked at Sony Imageworks, L-Squared Entertainment and most recently as a founding partner of Click3X in Los Angeles. Townleys credits include visual effects design for such films as HIDEAWAY, WOLF, TO DIE FOR and VIRTUOSITY. He also worked as a visual effects designer on such large format films including A LICENSE TO THRILL, THE MAGIC BOX and JOURNEY OF MAN.
Mondo Media has named David McCoy, former vice president of advertising sales for Comedy Central and CNN, as its new vice president of advertising sales. "We are thrilled to welcome David McCoy to the Mondo Media team," said Douglas Kay, president of Mondo Media. "His extensive background and experience in television and cable are vital building blocks to the Mondo Media business model, and we look forward to his expertise for our continued growth and success." McCoy said, "What really excites me about Mondo Media is their desire to create a high value, new model Internet syndication company.
Somewhere in between still images and motion is a moment of transmutation, or pure magic, that transfixes many of our animation masters. Here Piotr Dumala expands on this notion, comparing animation to the mysterious science of alchemy.
Chris Robinson interviews Polish independent animator Piotr Dumala regarding his latest masterpiece, Crime and Punishment, leading to a discussion of his unique plaster technique, Hitchcock and post-war Poland.
Asun Gil has been named channel manager of Cartoon Network Spain. Gil joined Cartoon Network Spain as head of research where she played a key role in building 1.2 million subscribers for the network in just over one year on air. "It is very exciting to take on the channel at this stage and my brief is to increase viewers as well as moving further into the area of new media and launching additional services," said Gil.