Raymond Eugene "Gene" Portwood Jr., a one-time Disney animator and the co-creator of the ground breaking computer game, WHERE IN THE WORLD IS CARMEN SANDIEGO?, has passed. On July 17, 2000, Portwood died of a heart attack in the Windsor, California convalescent center, where he was staying to recover from a stroke 18 months earlier. He was 66 years old. In 1950, Portwood skipped college and went directly to work at Disney. He eventually helped draw scenes for LADY AND THE TRAMP, SLEEPING BEAUTY and CAPTAIN HOOK.
Geographical Region: Europe
The 5th International Animated Film Festival/I Castelli Animati will
take place in Genzano, Italy, October 4-8, 2000. I Castelli Animati
highlights animation in all its forms from commercials to features
films. The international competition features the following prizes:
grand prize "I Castelli Animati," special jury prize, best debut
short film, best European short film, audience prize, the Fabrizio
Bellocchio prize and best non-narrative short film. The Italian
Bill Plympton has updated his appearances page. In the upcoming
months, his films will be appearing in various festivals and other
events, including the Hiroshima Animation Festival, Japan, August
24-28, 2000; the Macau Urban Council art carnival, Macau, August 19,
2000; and the Atlantic Film Festival, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada,
September 15-23, 2000. In addition to Hiroshima, Bill will be
attending the KROK Animated Film Festival Moscow, Russia, August
With MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 2 still holding on in many countries, PERFECT STORMs debut in Hong Kong and the U.K. shook up the international box office. Finishing at the top spot in the U.K., STORM grossed US$2.86 million over the weekend and $3.25 million since its Wednesday nod. Slipping to #2, STUART LITTLE grossed $2.08 million, advancing its British cume to $9.59 million. The U.K. sensation, CHICKEN RUN, amassed another $1.82 million in third, bringing its cume to $28.85 million.
Pulse Entertainment has signed a deal with Paris-based digital post-production company, Exmachina, which will have the French post house resell Pulse technology to developers, designers, agencies and corporate clients in Europe. Exmachina first utilized the Pulse software to create a Web character, Akinia, who helps on-line gamers solve riddles in a treasure hunt. "We are making Pulse technology one of the cornerstones as we build our Web business," said Pierre Noizat, general manager of Exmachina.
After having announced the entries for the Independent Film
Competition, the Ottawa 00
International Animation Festival has
released the selections for the Panorama section - Commissioned,
Canadian and Computer categories. For a complete list of competitors,
please visit the Ottawa 00 Web site. The competition will take place
September 19-24, 2000 with the awards ceremony being held on Sunday,
Our August issue, Internet And Compuer Animation, features a
number of special articles. In the Internet animation section we
feature a theoretical look at what might have happened if animation
legends such as Tex Avery had the freedom of the Internet at their
disposal. Martin "Dr. Toon" Goodman sends that one our way.
Plus, we have professionals currently working in the
Internet animation field give you tips on the latest equipment and
The Conseil Superieur de lAudiovisuel (CSA), a French broadcasting watchdog, has approved the three-way merger between Vivendi, Canal + and Seagram, the parent of Universal Pictures. The okay came on the heels of Vivendi chairman and CEO Jean-Marie Messiers decision not to fold Canal +s subscriber base into Vivendi Universal, thus avoiding French television ownership laws prohibiting a single shareholder from owning 49% or more of a TV network.
With more summer blockbusters arriving in international theatres, the old guard is weaning. MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 2, however, is still strong, finishing atop the charts in Italy, Sweden Japan and Spain. In its second week, M:I 2 grossed another US$700,928 in Italy, raising its cume to $6.82 million. GLADIATOR is losing its power, slipping a spot in Italy to finish at #4 with a gross of $103,693, bringing its Italian cume to $8.64 million. In Sweden, GLADITOR also finished in 4th place with a gross of $217,952, advancing its cume to $3.93 million.
Dusan Vukotic, Croatian animator, director, artist and former head of the animation unit of Duga Film, known as the Zagreb Animation Studio, passed away two years ago at the age of 71. He directed films such as "The Playful Robot" (1956), "Concerto for Sub-Machine Gun" (1959) and "Substitute/Ersatz" (1961), the first non-U.S. animated film to win the Oscar for Best Animated Short Film. Another of his films, "The Game" was nominated for an Academy Award in 1964.
MR Kinowelt Merchandising has nabbed the German-language merchandising rights to the highly anticipated fantasy trilogy THE LORD OF THE RINGS. The financial stats on the deal with New Line Cinema were not released. MR Kinowelt is made up of a joint venture between German indie distributor Kinowelt and MR Merchandising & Retail. The deal marks the first RINGS merchandising deal outside the States. The first film in the trilogy is scheduled to arrive in movie houses December 2001. Kinowelt is handling the release of all three pictures in Germany.
Executive producers Michael Miller and Rick Wagonheim have joined Rhinoceros Visual Effects and Design, New York, as part of the partnership and management team. The duo will be responsible for expanding and redirecting the fledgling digital studio owned by Multi-Video Group, Ltd. Previously, Miller and Wagonheim worked at R/Greenberg Associates, where they produced many award-winning commercials from 1996-2000. Wagonheim said, "Rhinoceros had done work on one of our R/GA spots and we started talking to (CEO, Multi-Video Group, Ltd.) David Binstock.
Infogrames, Inc., announced that entertainment industry veterans Jason Bell and Alyssa Padia have joined Infogrames' North American management team. Bell will become senior vice president of publishing for Infogrames' North American operations, while Padia will become senior vice president of corporate evolution. Bell will head all publishing activities for Infogrames' labels in the U.S. For the past six years, Bell has worked at Electronic Arts and Kesmai. During that time, he held senior management roles focused on development of single player and multi-player games.
This week's updates to the Calendar of Events include the Burbank International Children's Film Festival, the Bourg-en-Bresse Animated Cartoon Festival For Young People in France, a Centennial Tribute To Oskar Fischinger, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund Auction Extravaganza and many more! With multiple search capabilities, AWN's calendar of events gives you a customized way to look through the upcoming events - by Name, Location, Entry Deadline, Category, Event Type and more. Use it to stay abreast of animation related activities across the globe.
* Monday, October 30 Friday, November 3, 2000. Bourg-en-Bresse, France.
Entry Deadline: August 25, 2000.
New York-based digital studio Spontaneous Combustion has created a 3D sequence for the seven and a half-minute Xerox promo entitled, "A Storm of Innovation." The sequence was created for Philadelphia-based interactive event and communications agency PGI, Inc. The promo debuted at drupa 2000, the worlds largest full service trade show and exhibition, on May 31, 2000 in Düsseldorf, Germany. The film was projected on nine screens in a round theater. "Opening in the midst of a thunderstorm, the viewer shoots through clouds, and makes a sudden descent.
Animha Productions, a unique association of professionals dedicated to independent film production and animation workshops, presents its latest production: Old Boro Town - Our Town Story. The aim of the project was to provide a sequence of film as a backdrop for the performance of 'Our Town Story' to be held at England's Millennium Dome in October 2000. Through a series of children's workshops, a variety of subjects were brought to life through cut-out animation and a film was produced to the script of "Old Boro Town" - a folk song written by local children.
Following up on the hugely successful television show "Walking With Dinosaurs," BBC British Television and The Discovery Channel have set into production on "Walking With Prehistoric Beasts." The 3-hour miniseries will start where "Dinosaurs" left off. The budget is set at US$10 million, which was the price tag for the original miniseries. In addition, the two channels will create a "science behind the series" special to air after "Beasts" sometime in 2001.
With nods in Brazil and Hong Kong, Disneys DINOSAUR roams atop the box office charts. In Brazil, the special effects spectacle landed $2.65 million in its debut. Whereas in Hong Kong, the blue-green beasts stomped out an amazing $1.29 million on only 43 screens! The prehistoric pic adds another name to the long time three way battle between MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 2, GLADIATOR and GONE IN 60 SECONDS for international box office glory. Back in Brazil, M:I 2 fell to second with a gross of $1.89 million, bringing its Brazilian cume to $5.63 million.
The Ottawa 00 International Animation Festival has completed this year's pre-selection for the official competition. Once again, the festival set a record for entries, receiving 1,300 films from over 50 countries. To ease the pressure on the selection committee, this year's selection was divided into two committees. Festival organizers Chris Robinson and Hayden Mindell judged the Independent Film Competition (graduate films, first professional films, independent short works under 50 min. and films for children).
The 6th Cartoombria International Animation Festival will happen in Perugia, Italy, November 23-25, 2000. The artistic committee of the festival has put together a number of computer animation-related retrospectives, exhibits, workshops, screenings, premieres and artist tributes. This year, Cartoombria will focus on Web animation and video games. The festival will also profile European animation schools, and more specifically schools offering computer animation, new media and Web animation programs.
Fox Kids Europe NV has locked a deal with Turkish cable service provider Turk Telecom that will put the family-friendly channel in 790,000 Turkish homes. The launch date was July 15. The new distribution deal brings Fox Kids Europe to major cities including Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir. The Turkish-language broadcast will air from 7 am to 8 pm seven days a week. Just two months ago Fox Kids entered the Turkish market via an agreement with digital satellite television platform DigiTurk.