Animated battling robots series MEDABOTS will have its U.K. television premiere on Fox Kids UK starting February 18, 2002. The 52 half-hour episodes, produced by Corus-owned Nelvana Ltd. in association with NAS/Kodansha and TV Tokyo, are set in a technologically advanced future where every child owns a "Medabot," a pet robot fuelled with artificial intelligence and an arsenal of weapons.
Geographical Region: Europe
The January 2002 Acrobat issue of Animation World Magazine is now online! In this issue, we honor animation legends that passed away in 2001. Read tributes to Bill Hanna, Robert Abel, Maurice Nobel, Faith Hubley and Jan Lenica. Gene Deitch gives us a few tips about luck. Martin "Dr. Toon" Goodman takes on live-action animated features, with a vengeance. Plus, take a look at four studios that have decided to produce their own independent animated features and find out why Lille, France is a hotbed of cutting-edge Web animation.
Hayao Miyazaki's SEN TO CHIHIRO NO KAMIKAKUSHI (SPIRITED AWAY) was awarded The Golden Bear, the top prize at the 2002 Berlin International Film Festival. SPIRITED AWAY shared the award with Paul Greengrass's live-action film BLOODY SUNDAY. Winning the coveted award, and acceptance of the film by Western audiences, may mean the film will finally be seen in the U.S. SPIRITED AWAY broke box office records in Japan, where it was the number one film of all time, earning 29.4 billion yen (US $221.5M). But as recently as summer 2001, Disney (who released Miyazakis PRINCESS MONONOKE in the U.S.
Family entertainment company Igel Media has appointed Victoria Valius as head of distribution. In her new role, Valius will head up the company's international television distribution division in London, overseeing all international sales. In addition, she will be actively looking to expand the company's catalogue and sourcing opportunities to co-produce quality programming in the company's key markets including Germany, France and the UK.
French animation studio Xilam Animation has launched its first initial public offering (IPO) on Paris Second Market (Marché dEuronext). The producers of the series OGGY AND THE COCKROACHES, SPACE GOOFS and THE NEW ADVENTURES OF LUCKY LUKE raised 15 million Euros through this IPO. The company floated 1 million shares representing 27.03% of its capital. Shares rolled out at 15 Euro. The companies founder and CEO Marc du Pontavice will retain the remaining 66.7% of the capital.
NewKidCo International Inc. has signed a three-year agreement with Dr. Seuss Enterprises L.P. to publish interactive entertainment software for next-generation gaming systems based on the classic characters and stories of Dr. Seuss. The games, targeted to children ages six and up, will be distributed to all major retail accounts throughout North America, with distribution into Europe, New Zealand, Australia and the Pacific Rim planned as well. The first title, scheduled for release in fall of 2002, will be developed for Game Boy Advance.
With categories like Best Animation on the Cutting-Edge, Best Music Video and Best Student Film, the British Animation Awards (BAA) honor all aspects of the U.K. animation scene, from student work to commercials, children's entertainment to short and experimental films. This year the BAA introduced two new award categories: International Award for Best Short, and an award for Best European Animated Feature.
Here is the full list of the nominees for the British Animation Awards (BAA).
Best Pre-School Childrens Series
BOB THE BUILDER: MUCKY MUCK Directed by Sarah Ball
BILL AND BEN:THE RAINBOW Directed by Tim Collings
64 ZOO LANE: KEVIN THE CROCODILE Directed by An Vrombaut
Best Childrens Series
THE CRAMP TWINS Directed by Becky Bristow, Produced by Cartoon Network
ALBIE Directed by Francis Vose,
Boomerang UK is adding more classic cartoon characters to its ranks. 30 half-hours of PRIME TIME PEANUTS SPECIALS and 18 half-hours of THE CHARLIE BROWN SHOW have been acquired by the network from Patrick Sinfield Ltd. The Charlie Brown series join Boomerangs recent acquisitions THUNDERBIRDS, THE PINK PANTHER and DANGERMOUSE. "This is another very valuable acquisition for Boomerang as Snoopy's appeal spans generations and is an extremely well-known franchise," said Jo Sweby, acquisition manager for Cartoon Network Europe. The shows will launch in August.
Kirkland, Washington's Amaze Entertainment is looking for a BACKGROUND ARTIST . . . Lille, France's An Eye for an Eye is looking for a 3D ANIMATOR . . . Olympia, Washington's Catalyst FX is looking for a 3D ANIMATOR/MODELER . . . HoChiMinh, Vietnam's Demen Animation Co. is looking for an ANIMATION AGENT . . . Digital Creations is looking for a FLASH ANIMATOR (UNPAID) . . . London, UK's EMailYourCV is looking for a 3D GAMES PROGRAMMER and a PS PROGRAMMER . . . Glendale, California's NeoPets, Inc. is looking for an ILLUSTRATOR/ARTIST . . .
Disneys Classic Treasures Crosses The Alps. Buena Vista International Television has added Austrian terrestrial broadcaster ORF and Telepool Zurich in Switzerland to its list of licensees for the "Classic Treasures" package of Disney and Disney/Pixar films. For the first time, viewers in these territories will be able to watch popular animated films on terrestrial television. The package includes A BUG'S LIFE, MULAN, HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME, TOY STORY and TOY STORY 2.
This week's updates to the Calendar of Events include: Third Annual Scandinavian Film Festival: Friday, February 01 - Sunday, February 03, 2002, Beverly Hills, California USA . . . Tom Yakutis Services and Wake: Wednesday, February 06, 2002, Los Angeles, CA USA . . . Portland SIGGRAPH Organizational Meeting: Wednesday, February 06, 2002, Portland, Oregon USA . . . Toy Manufacturers of America International Toy Fair: Sunday, February 10 - Thursday, February 14, 2002, New York, New York USA . . .
Each week, Animation World Magazine offers new articles, specialfeatures and theme-based coverage of the art, craft and industry ofanimation. New this week:
- No LAAF-ing MatterMartin "Dr. Toon" Goodman takes on LAAFs, or Live-Action Animated Features, with a vengeance. How come Hollywood insists on making these flops!?
ADV Films is bringing Chaos! Comics' LADY DEATH to life. Artists at SunMin Image Pictures in Asia under the supervision of director Young H. Sang will be animating the digital feature, based on Brian Pulido's original story. Set in 15th century Sweden, a wrongly accused young woman named Hope is sent to Hell where she is transformed into Lady Death and forced to battle Lucifer in his own domain. Executive producer and ADV co-founder John Ledford hopes to create a new production model with LADY DEATH that redefines the relationship between Asian animation studios and Western creators.
Distribution company Salsa Entertainment, a division of TV-Loonland, has moved the headquarters of its distribution operation to its Miami location and made several key promotions including Jerry Diaz to the position of evp. In his new capacity, Diaz becomes the overall manager of Salsa Entertainment, while maintaining his previous responsibilities as head of sales and overseeing all sales, merchandising and distribution of the Salsa catalogue throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. Diaz continues to report to president Lisa Hryniewicz. Diaz joined Salsa Entertainment in October 1999.
Corus Entertainments Nelvana scored a slew of sales at this years NATPE show, including an output deal with Venezuelas Venevision for four shows per year plus first look options. Other programming deals saw ABC-TV Australia license seven shows including FRANKLIN THE TURTLE, LITTLE BEAR and BLAZING DRAGONS and Panamanian broadcaster FETV has agreed to a package deal of over 100 half-hours of animation.
Ottawa, Canada's Dynomight Cartoons is looking for a LAYOUT & POSING COORDINATOR . . . EmailYourCV is looking for an ARTIST/ANIMATOR . . . Munich, Germany's Neue Bioskop Film is looking for a STUDIO MANAGER . . . Birmingham, Alabama's Otterworks is looking for a CARTOON ANIMATION AGENT . . . Montreal, Canada's Pascal Blais Productions is looking for a 3D ANIMATOR . . . West Lafayette, Indiana's Purdue University is looking for an INSTRUCTOR . . . Austin, Texas' Saab & Miller Productions is looking for an AGENT . . .
A judgement was recently rendered by a Stockholm Chamber of Commerce arbitrator that Swedish animation house Happy Life violated copyright and was in breach of contract when it produced a second series of the animated show LISA. The dispute between LISA creator Magnus Carlsson and his former employers ended in his favor on December 21, 2001 after a six-month long arbitration process.
Game developer THQ Inc. and Motorola, Inc. have teamed to develop a suite of games for Motorola's current and next-generation handsets. As a result of this agreement, the companies will introduce new wireless games for Motorola mobile phones with Java 2 Platform, Micro Edition (J2ME) technology. The first four games, WWF MOBILE MADNESS, TETRIS, INTELLIVISION'S ASTROSMASH and MOTOGP will launch in North America in mid-January 2002 with worldwide distribution to follow throughout the year.
Fremantle International Distribution (FID) will be launching a second series of the animated adventures of BILLY THE CAT at NATPE 2002. Based on the books created by Stéphane Colman and Stephen Desberg, BILLY THE CAT is the story of a boy who is transformed into a cat as punishment for being cruel to animals. BILLY THE CAT has already been well-received by broadcasters worldwide, with sales of the first series to the U.S., the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain, Scandinavia, Benelux, Australia, Latin America, South East Asia, the Middle East and Africa.
The December Acrobat issue of Animation World Magazine is now online! This issue is all about feature films. Rick DeMott reports on the 10th anniversary re-release of a large-format version of BEAUTY AND THE BEAST to see how it measures up to the original, and he also charts the rise of box office hit JIMMY NEUTRON. Kumi Kaoru takes a look at Hayao Miyazaki's Japanese blockbuster SPIRITED AWAY. Andrew Osmond talks to Jimmy Murikami about his five decades in animation.
Salt Lake City, Utah's Acclaim Sudios is looking for a CHARACTER ANIMATOR . . . Austin, Texas's Cangamation is looking for an AGENT . . . a Sherman Oaks, California-based company is looking for a GAME PRODUCER . . . Mumbai, Maharashtra, India's Crest Communication Limited is looking for an ANIMATOR . . . Rome, Italy's Mother srl is looking for a 3D ARTIST . . . Munchen, Bavaria's Munich Animation is looking for a PRODUCTION MANAGER . . . Bangalore, Karnataka, India's Paprikaas Animation Studios is looking for a MARKETING CONSULTANT . . .