Four of the U.K.'s leading CGI artists, Richard Scott, Graham McKenna, Stuart Aitken and Dana Dorian, together with Scottish new media group VIS Interactive PLC, have launched Axis Animation, a high-end 3D and digital post-production facility based in Glasgow, Scotland. Axis' focus will target the advertising, broadcast, film and computer game markets for animation and visual effects. The four founders were the core team at award-winning digital content creators Digimania.
Geographical Region: Europe
For the week ending May 21, GLADIATOR still reigned in the U.K. and Australia and conquered new territory in Italy. By more than doubling the debut of FINAL DESTINATION, the DreamWorks colossal hit grossed another US$5.11 million in the U.K. The world champ has garnered $13.96 million on the British Isle. More than tripling the second placed newcomer ROMEO MUST DIE, the Roman ruler grossed $3.32 million in Australia, raising its cume in that country to $7.79 million. In its Italian premiere, the maker of Maximus coin landed $1.89 million.
Pokemon has caught new deals with several eastern European countries and renewals from around the rest of the continent. New locations of Pokemon infestation include Polsat in Poland, RTL-Klub in Hungary, Nova in Czech Republic, ETV in South Africa and Fox Kids Scandinavia Satelite service. The countries that renewed the second seasons 52-episodes were TV2 in Denmark, TV2 in Norway, TV4 in Sweden, Star Channel in Greece and RTL in Belgium.
VanHook Studios, a Hollywood-based effects and animation house, has ventured into cyberspace with a new episodic program for whatsonweb.com. VanHook has worked on the visual effects for such features as MY FAVORITE MARTIAN and 13TH WARRIOR and TV series ALLY MCBEAL, ZENA, HERCULES and MAX STEEL. The first series to hit whatsonweb.com will be the fantasy series KIRA: THE CURSED, staring adult film star Kylie Ireland. "Kylie is a great choice for us. Not only is she a wonderful actress, with great screen presence she also has an enormous and incredibly loyal fanbase.
Test your skills and challenge your brain with AWN's
Quiz. This week, we're asking questions about stop-motion and puppet
animators. Which English puppet animator was replaced by computer
animation folks on Tim Burton's "Mars Attacks!?" Which Czech animator
began drawing films but ended up working with puppets? Which video
did Disney recall because a cameraman had inserted a few frames of a
This volume provides a survey of films made at Joonisfilm Studio
since Estonia's independence. Included: "Viola" (Grand Prize, 2000
Nordic and Baltic Animation Festival), "On the Possibility of Love"
(Grand Prize, Brisbane Animation Festival), "Bermuda" (Director's
Prize, Ottawa International Student Animation Festival), "Birthday,"
"Departure," "Gravitation," "Jaagup and Death," and two Estonian
films made at Finland's Turku Arts Academy: "Cappuccino" and
The 8th Holland Animation Film Festival will be held November 15-19,
2000 in Utrecht, Netherlands. Besides the international competition
for applied animation and student films from the Netherlands, Belgium
and Luxembourg, this year the festival will present an international
competition for independent animation. The competition is divided
into two separate categories: one for narrative films and one for
non-narrative films. In both categories a Grand Prix will be awarded.
Honkworm International, a leading producer of original on-line entertainment content, has unveiled three new animation projects at the Cannes Film Festival. Each title will consist of no less than 20 Webisodes, ranging from two to six minutes in length. Honkworm executive VP of content Chris Cobb said, "We approach each of our short-form series from a filmmakers perspective, for us, first and foremost, it's about storytelling.
As anticipated, Marvel's net sales decreased over last years first quarter period due in part to film licensing revenue. The year-ago quarter included a non-refundable advance from Sony Pictures Entertainment for the feature film license of Spider-Man, as well as an advance from Universal Studios for a feature film based on The Hulk. Also, year-ago first quarter revenues reflected strong initial distribution shipments for the Toy Biz divisions new line of World Championship Wrestling (WCW) products.
At the international box office, DreamWorks GLADIATOR conquered Australia and the U.K. while MISSION TO MARS landed on top in Italy and Germany. For the week ending May 11, 2000, GLADIATOR reigned by grossing US$4.53 million in Australia and $5.37 million in the U.K. in its first week in release in both countries. The global gladiator hit has now grossed nearly $86.56 worldwide. Buena Vistas part APOLLO 13-part 2001 space epic, MISSION TO MARS remained atop the charts in Italy where it grossed another $524,264, raising its Italian cume to $1.92 million.
Folioscope presents "L'Equipée de Folimage Studio de Films d'Animation," the catalog for the exhibition on Folimage, the creators of the 1999 Cartoon d'Or winner "L'Enfant Au Grelot" ("Charlie's Christmas"), among other award winning productions. The Folimage exhibition will be presented at the Annecy Museum, Annecy, France, June 3-October 31, 2000. The Annecy festival will also present a retrospective of the studio's world-famous work.
With live-action Julia Roberts-starrer ERIN BROCKOVICH reigning the international box office, POKEMON: THE FIRST MOVIE and STUART LITTLE started their descent down the charts. For the week ending May 4, 2000, STUART LITTLE fell from the #1 spot in Australia to land in 2nd place. The Columbia pic grossed another US$1.53 million Down Under, raising its cume in the country to $10.7 million. The radiant rodent also fell from the top spot in Germany and Hong Kong to land in fourth place in both countries. STUART's gross in Germany was $516,789, raising its German cume to $4.75 million.
On Sunday, May 7, 2000 in Fredrikstad, Norway, the Nordic and Baltic Animation Festival Fredrikstad called to an end its five-day festival. The Oscar award nominated MY GRANDMOTHER IRONED THE KING'S SHIRTS took home two awards at the festival. The jury consisted of Marjut Rimminen (Finland/U.K.), Konstantin Bronzit (Russia), Sven Påhlsson (Norway), Richard R. Reeves (Canada) and Cory Wynne (U.S.A.). The festivals focus is to promote the screening and better understanding of animation.
For its 2000 edition and its 40th anniversary (June 5-10, 2000), the Annecy International Animated Film Festival received 1,092 films (995 in 1999) from 52 countries. 279 of them, representing 36 countries, have been selected for official competition with 207 in competition and 72 in panorama.
"The Masters of Russian Animation," an extraordinary collection of Russia's most important animated short films, is now available on DVD! Volume 1 includes ten films from directors Fyodor Kitruk, Vadim Kurchevsky, Andrei Khrjanovsky, Rasa Strautmane, Yefim Gamburg, Andrei Khrjanovsky, Nikolai Serebryakov and Anatoly Petrov. In All, the Russian collection includes seven videotapes, available individually and in 3- or 7-tape packages. Volume 1 is now available on DVD for $24.95 plus s/h.
On Tuesday, May 2, 2000, Swatch, a world leading watch producer, and AtomFilms, a leader in Internet entertainment, announced a partnership to seek independent creative talent for an animated Swatch "Internet Time" ad campaign. The jointly organized competition is open to Flash animators from around the globe. Winners will help Swatch develop an Internet communication campaign. Peter Fonda, two-time Academy Award nominee, will join Swatch and AtomFilms as one of the advisory judges for the contest.
POKEMON: THE FIRST MOVIE and STUART LITTLE are struggling over who will nab the top spot at international box offices. For the week ending April 26, 2000, POKEMON took Spain and Italy. Around the globe POKEMON finished in 2nd in the U.K. in its second weekend in theatres; 3rd in Germany in its second weekend in theatres; and 4th in France and Sweden. Already in the U.K., POKEMON has grossed a total of $13.14 million in only one week of release. STUART LITTLE finished at #1 in Germany, Australia and Hong Kong.
The Cannes Film Festival may never be the same. Mellow Manor Productions has announced that it will bring its "Spike and Mike Festival of Animation" to France for this year's event. Recently "Spike and Mike" had successful runs at American festivals Sundance and Austin's South by Southwest, but it is yet to be seen how the European audience will take to the in-your-face humor of the festival of twisted toons.
11,111 participants representing 2,776 companies from 100 countries
gathered in Cannes for the 37th edition of MIP TV which closed on
Friday April 14, 2000. The countries most represented in terms of
stands were: France (191), US (188), UK (177), Canada (85) and
Germany (76). In terms of participating companies the countries most
represented were: UK (443), France (422), US (372), Germany (173) and
Canada (139); more than 500 of them came from media and Internet
In the television competition at Cartoons on the Bay, Warner Bros.'
beleaguered series "Mission Hill" took home the prize for best
over-all animation series. The 4th Cartoons On The Bay International
Festival of Television Animation was held in Positano (Amalfi Coast),
Italy from April 14 - 18. Cartoons on the Bay is the only festival in
the world dedicated to television animation. The festival is an
international event with awards, workshops, lectures and events