North Hollywood, California-based NETTER DIGITAL, which provides 3D andspecial effects animation services, has named JAY FUKUTO to the newposition of senior vice president of animation. Fukuto has been senior vicepresident at MGM Animation since 1997, where he oversaw the development andproduction of MGM's animated theatrical features and direct-to-video moviesincluding THE SECRET OF NIMH II, AN ALL DOGS CHRISTMAS CAROL and TOM SAWYER.
DISNEY INTERACTIVE has promoted JAN SMITH to executive vice president ofDisney's software-development business. Smith will be responsible forworldwide operations of Disney Interactive, including product development,marketing, finance and administration, business and legal affairs, andcustomer support.
London, UK-based commercial production company PASSION PICTURES has signedDAVID FEISS and EMMA CALDER as directors. Feiss, a long time veteran, isbest known as the creator of Cartoon Network's COW AND CHICKEN. Calder'srecent film, THE QUEEN'S MONASTERY, has won prizes at film festivalsthroughout the world. . . PIXAR ANIMATION STUDIOS has hired ANN MATHER asits executive vice president and chief financial officer. Mather has morethan eighteen years of financial operations experience, including seven
Seattle, Washington-based REALNETWORKS, a company specializing in Internetmedia delivery, has promoted THOMAS FRANK to chief operating officer andhired MARTIN PLAEHN as senior vice president of media systems. Frank, whojoined RealNetworks in January of this year, was previously senior vicepresident of media programming and publishing. Plaehn joins RealNetworksfrom Viewpoint Digital, Inc., a computer graphics company, where he wasPresident. . . UNIVERSAL PICTURES has promoted GREG SUCHERMAN to vice
WARNER BROS. TELEVSION ANIMATION has promoted LINDA STEINER from vice president of development to senior vice president of creative affairs and CHRISTOPHER KEENAN from vice president of programming to vice president of creative affairs. Steiner and Keenan will oversee the development of cartoon series, shorts and direct-to-video projects.
CHERYL MILLS, Deputy White House Counsel, will join OXYGEN MEDIA, Geraldine Laybourne's media company founded to provide content for women, as senior vice president of corporate policy and public programming. In her new post, Cheryl Mills will address women's access to and participation in civic, political and public policy issues that affect their lives. She will oversee Oxygen's philanthropic activities, its grass roots initiatives and will work with Sarah Bartlett, Oxygen's Editor-in-Chief, to develop its legal and political programming.
SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT has hired MEL HARRIS as Co-President and ChiefOperating Officer, sharing both of those titles with Bob Wynne. MASAYUKI(YUKI) NOZOE has also been promoted to Co-President, Digital Entertainment.The three executives will oversee the day-to-day operations of the companyand report to John Calley, Chairman and CEO of SPE. Nozoe will focus on theDigital Studios division and technology expansion, Wynne will managecorporate and financial operations, and Harris will emphasize worldwidetelevision and related businesses.
Toronto-based NELVANA LIMITED has promoted EMMANUELE PETRY to vicepresident of Nelvana Europe International Limited. In her new position,Petry will be responsible for supervising the company's London and Parisoffices. She will continue to investigate co-production and financingopportunities in Europe, and she will also oversee the distribution of TV,video, theatrical and merchandising rights in countries outside NorthAmerica.
The Walt Disney Company's Buena Vista Internet Group (BVIG) has named ABCInc. President Steven Bornstein as chairman. Bornstein will oversee BVIG'spreviously announced plan to merge with Infoseek, an internet searchengine, to form a single Internet business called go.com and issue a newclass of common stock to track the performance of the new enterprise. Thetransaction is expected to be completed by the end of the 1999 calendaryear. At that time, Bornstein, who is currently a member of the Infoseek
Burbank, California-based DISNEY CONSUMER PRODUCTS has hired SUSAN GARELLIas vice president of human resources. Garelli joins Disney from Pasadena,California-based Avery Dennison, a worldwide manufacturer of self-adhesivematerials and consumer products, where she was also vice president of humanresources.
INFOGRAMES, a global publisher of interactive entertainment software, hasappointed a new management team. STAN ROACH, formerly executive vicepresident of marketing, will take on the role of COO overseeing sales,marketing and product development. YVES LEGRIS, formerly with Infogrames'headquarters in France, will become COO responsible for finance, businessdevelopment, legal affairs, studio operations, information technology andhuman resources.
New York City-based SPONTANEOUS COMBUSTION has named Flame Artist FABRICEMAUREL as Design Director. Maurel comes to Spontaneous Combustion from LosAngeles, California-based Novocom where he contributed to the artdirection, design, implementation and special effects compositing oftelevision shows, commercials and music videos.
Harrison, New York-based BLUE SKY STUDIOS has promoted CHRIS BURROWS andTIM SPELTZ to technical directors. Since beginning as a technical assistantat Blue Sky Studios in 1998, Burrows has worked on a variety of projects,including lighting and rendering for Blue Sky's Oscar award-winning short,BUNNY. Speltz has been with Blue Sky Studios since he graduated from BrownUniversity in 1997. Since then, he has excelled at effects, particle work,and lighting. He was credited as technical assistant and technical directoron BUNNY.
SONY PICTURES FAMILY ENTERTAINMENT GROUP has appointed five key developmentexecutives. BOB HIGGINS has been promoted to Senior Vice President ofCreative Affairs; STACEY ATTANASIO has been named Senior Vice President ofProduction; JOE D'AMBROSIA has been named Executive Director of CreativeAffairs; TARA POLACIK has been promoted to Director of Creative Affairs andGRACE BENN has been named Creative Executive. Prior to his new appointment,BOB HIGGINS served as Vice President of Creative Affairs for Columbia
CARTOON NETWORK has promoted MARK NORMAN to senior vice president ofbusiness operations for Cartoon Network USA and BOOMERANG. Norman will beresponsible for long range strategic planning and forecasting, includingnetwork investments in original programming and program acquisitions. Hewill also oversee all business and operational aspects of the new CartoonNetwork Studio in Los Angeles, as well as orchestrate the launch and manageall operation of Boomerang, the network's new classic animation channelwhich will launch on April 1, 2000.
ERIK ST. ANTHONY has been appointed director of multimedia at LosAngeles-based INTERACTIVE TELEVISION ENTERTAINMENT (ITE)-USA, where he willhead the newly formed North American multimedia division. St. Anthony willbe responsible for developing and implementing retail, on-line andancillary distribution of the company's CD-ROM, PlayStation and Game Boyformats within North America. St. Anthony founded Adventure Media Group andTrinidad Entertainment, which together acquire DVD rights, create
UNIVERSAL STUDIOS HOLLYWOOD has appointed BRIAN COMPTON Senior VicePresident, Chief Financial Officer. Compton will be responsible forfinancial reporting and budgeting, planning and implementation of operatingbudgets, and direction of the financial management organizations of bothUniversal Studios Hollywood and Universal Studios CityWalk. Previously, Mr.Compton served as Director of Operations, Finance for Coach Leatherware, adivision of Sara Lee Corporation. He has held key financial posts with
Santa Barbara, California-based SANTA BARBARA STUDIOS, a visual effectscompany that produces CGI for motion picture, commercial, television andspecial venue markets, has hired PETE TRAVERS as CGI supervisor and VIVIENMINTON as sales and marketing manager. Travers is returning to the studiowhere he previously worked on AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN PARIS, after which heleft to form his own company, ShadowCaster, through which he worked ascomputer graphics supervisor for Oscar winner WHAT DREAMS MAY COME. Minton
DENNIS KANG, a graduate of Robert Bateman Secondary School in Abbotsford,Canada, has been awarded a $5,000 entrance scholarship by the CENTER FORDIGITAL IMAGING AND SOUND (CDIS). Kang will begin his post-secondarystudies this October in CDIS's full-time Character Animation Program.Established in 1979, CDIS is one of Canada's oldest and most successfulprivate media arts colleges with graduates working world-wide in today'smost interesting fields.
Hollywood, California-based CLASS-KEY CHEW-PO COMMERCIALS has signed TOMDECKER to direct spots for its commercial division. Decker is best knownfor his direction of the on-going Chuck E. Cheese campaign. From 1994-1997Decker was senior animator at Chuck Jones Productions where he worked ontheatrical shorts starring Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, and other classiccharacters in such titles as SUPERIOR DUCK and FROM HARE TO ETERNITY.
Disney's Hercules is the record holder for the largest single-season voice cast in the history of TV animation. Let's hear from Kathie Lee Gifford, Jon Favreau, Diedrich Bader, French Stewart, Linda Hamilton and James Woods, why animation really is a whole new world...
A survey of development executives at Cartoon Network, Linda Simensky, Michael Ouweleen, Khaki Jones and Jay Bastian answering the question, "What ten films would you want to have with you if stranded on a desert island?
Everyone knows the Bob Clampett of Termite Terrace, but what about the Bob Clampett that received 3 Emmies for one of television's first daily live puppet shows, Time for Beany? Robert Story was there and tells us this and other stories.
Cartoon Network has promoted James Porges to vice president of off-channel commerce. Porges will manage the businessdevelopment of consumer products and off-channel presence of all CartoonNetwork-branded multi-character efforts, including publishing, music, homevideo, and theme parks. He will also manage all original Cartoon Networkcharacters such as The Powerpuff Girls and Johnny Bravo. Prior to becomingdirector of brand management, Porges was director of Cartoon Network Clubsat Turner Home Entertainment.
When Clare Kitson announced that she was resigning from her post as Commissioning Editor of Animation for the UK's Channel 4, the news moved like wild fire, bringing with it tremendous sadness. Animation World Magazine is proud to host this forum for the many who wanted to thank Clare for her support, inspiration and contributions to the animation industry.