Toronto-based distribution company, Breakthrough Ent. has promoted Nat Abraham as its Head of Distribution. Abraham will oversee daily operations including worldwide sales, pre-sales and co-production opportunities.
Geographical Region: North America
Animated MIGRATIONS, by filmmaker Alyssa Sherwood, is the inaugural winner of the $10,000 Poetry Film Prize from The Poetry Foundation and Facets Multi-Media. Selected by a jury from more than 80 entrants, the film is based on a poem by Dorian Merina, a Filipino-American poet, journalist and the recipient of a 2008 Pulitzer fellowship. The award was presented last week at the closing night ceremony of the 25th Annual Chicago International Children's Film Festival.
DECODE Enterprises, the distribution subsidiary of DHX Media, and Neptuno Films have signed further deals for new 26x30 (52x11) preschool series POPPETSTOWN, a co-production between Neptuno and DECODE Entertainment.
TVO and Knowledge in Canada, and Disney Channel Latin America have followed France's Canal J, TeleQuebec and Disney International (for its channels in the U.K., Spain, Scandinavia, Italy, Australasia and Taiwan) in acquiring the 2D animated series, which is an official Canada/Spain co-production in association with OLC/Rights Ent. in Japan.
Animax Canucks Cartoon Script ContestDeadline: November 31, 2008
Animax Ent., creators of BOB & DOUG (animated series coming to Global TV in January 2009), is celebrating the opening of their new studio in Toronto with a contest to beat all contests -- for Canadians only.
Animax big-wig, Dave Thomas, knows some of the very best writers in television history have come from Canada. Now, Dave wants to find the best of the best, pay you for the work and... buy you a beer. Really!
4Kids Ent.'s revenue in the third quarter 2008 was up about 46 percent, largely due to sales of the CHAOTIC trading cards. The global children's entertainment and merchandising licensing organization also announced a litigation settlement with Fox.
The new settlement agreement means that 4Kids' block of Saturday morning television on the network will end on December 31, 2008, rather than at the end of the 2008-2009 broadcast season in September 2009.
Image Metrics, a provider of facial animation solutions for the entertainment industry, is aligning its operations into Video Game and Film & TV divisions to address the growing demand for its services in the two industries.
Image Metrics' Kelvin Duckett has been promoted to GM of the film group. Former Havok sales exec Brian Waddle is joining Image Metrics as GM of the games organization. In these newly-created positions, Duckett and Waddle will work directly with CEO Mike Starkenburg to expand business operations in their respective markets.
Red Stick International Animation Festival 2009Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USAApril 22-25, 2009Deadline: December 1, 2008
Red Stick International Animation Festival, the largest event of its kind in the United States, is now accepting entries for its fifth annual 2009 "Best of the Fest" competition.
HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY On DVD And Blu-ray
The roughest, toughest, most unlikely hero of all is back in HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY, available in 3-disc special edition DVD and 2-disc Blu-ray on November 11, 2008 from Universal Studios Home Ent.
New York-based design and animation studio Offspring recently completed an exciting collaboration with agency JWT/Team Detroit to deliver a graphically adventurous campaign introducing American automaker Ford's newly revamped F-150 pickup truck.
In the eight-spot series of dynamic :60s and :30s, Ford's revamped F-150 plows through a succession of nature scenes populated with a seismic graphic backdrop.
Imagi Studios has signed worldwide licensing agreements with American Greetings, Penguin Group (USA) Inc., Jazwares Inc., D3Publisher and IDW Publishing for ASTRO BOY, its upcoming CG-animated film based on the adventures of the superhero icon. The studio's agreement with American Greetings also extends to future Imagi films. ASTRO BOY, slated for domestic release on October 23, 2009, is being distributed worldwide by Summit Ent. except for Imagi's reserved territories of Japan, Hong Kong and China.
BabyFirst has launched its 24/7 commercial-free programming service for babies, toddlers and their parents in Germany with top cable operator Unitymedia. The operator joins the channel's existing group of European partnerships which include BSkyB (U.K.), CanalSat (France) and DigiTurk (Turkey).
Unitymedia will offer the full 24/7 BabyFirst programming service as part of their children's tier package.
The Portable Film Festival is reaching out for viewers to indulge in an online visual feast of short film, music video, documentary and animation content. Every day a new film is featured on the site for masses to view free of charge. These films can additionally be uploaded onto any digital device -- iPod, 3G phone or PSP -- for your portable viewing pleasure. Traffic jams, malfunctioning elevators and Trans Siberian railways never looked so good.
Cake Distribution has sold FRESH TV's TOTAL DRAMA ACTION, the spinoff to TOTAL DRAMA ISLAND (TDI), to Cartoon Network U.S. TDI has been a hit on Cartoon Network's Thursday night line-up and has developed a substantial following both on-air and online.
Viewers on the program's interactive Web site have created more than two million unique avatars within three months of the series premiere.
Entertainment Rights has secured distribution rights to the latest 13 episodes for the new TRANSFORMERS ANIMATED series, bringing the total number of episodes of the series currently available to 42 (42x22). The announcement follows on the heels of Cartoon Network in the U.S. having confirmed the commission of an additional 13 episodes for delivery in spring 2009.
The 24th MIPCOM recorded its highest attendance figure of all time, driven notably by an increase in attendance from the "METRIC" countries and regions (Middle East, Turkey, Russia, India and China), as well as Ukraine.
At the close of the market on October 17, MIPCOM 2008 totaled 13,588 participants, an increase of 1.6% over the 13,371 industry professionals who attended in 2007. A total of 4,519 companies from 103 countries registered, of which 1,779 were exhibitors. The number of international buyers grew by 7.2%, from 4,242 in 2007 to 4,573 this year.
The 2007 Academy Award Winner for Best Animated Short PETER & THE WOLF arrives on DVD December 9 from Magnolia Home Ent.
Based on the classic musical composition PETER AND THE WOLF by Sergei Prokofiev, this spellbinding new interpretation combines stop-frame model animation and state-of-the-art digital technology, along with a new orchestra recording to create a magical world in which little boys can find the strength and courage to overcome their fears.
A record 67 countries, including first-time entrant Jordan, have submitted films for consideration in the Foreign Language Film category for the 81st Academy Awards.
The 2008 submissions are:
Afghanistan, OPIUM WAR, Siddiq Barmak, director;Albania, THE SORROW OF MRS. SCHNEIDER, Piro Milkani and Eno Milkani, directors;Algeria, MASQUERADES, Lyes Salem, director;Argentina, LION'S DEN, Pablo Trapero, director;Austria, REVANCHE, Gotz Spielmann, director;Azerbaijan, FORTRESS, Shamil Nacafzada, director;
New York-based Animation Collective and France's CANAL+ today announced a broadcast partnership on four animated series: THREE DELIVERY, ELLEN'S ACRES, JOLLY RABBIT and HTDT. Each of the original series was created by Larry Schwarz, founder and CEO of Animation Collective.
THUMB WRESTLING FEDERATION: TWF is quickly pinning down broadcast deals around the world. Cartoon Network U.S., Spain, Italy, and Latin America have joined Cartoon Network Asia, Australia, and New Zealand in scooping up all four seasons of the successful live-action comedy series.
The Collector's Edition of THE SIMS 3, the next flagship PC game from THE SIMS Label, is now available for pre-order at select North American retailers including GameStop, Best Buy, Circuit City, Fry's Electronics, GameCrazy, EB Canada, Amazon.com, Gogamer.com, Target.com and Walmart.com.
AniMazing! Spotlight Open To EntriesFirst Deadline: December 29, 2008
AniMazing! Spotlight focuses exclusively on animated shorts, and offers every applicant personal comments on the work by an international panel of animation experts. The applicant may use these comments for promotional purposes as well as valuable edification and encouragement.
The first deadline is Monday, December 29, 2008.
Electronic Arts is opening a new studio, Pogo Austin, who have come together to build new games as part of the Pogo.com team. The Pogo Austin team will be joining EA's Bioware studio in Austin, Texas, USA.
The new studio will focus on creating family-friendly titles based on Hasbro properties. The initial team of 12 features a strong foundation of Austin natives who boast more than 108 years of collective game experience and have shipped titles at companies such as LucasArts, Aspyr Media, Acclaim, Amaze Ent., Human Code, Origin Systems and Family Time Interactive.
Hot Wheels, Mattel's top vehicle property in the U.S., will be developed into a new animated television series. The new series, entitled HOT WHEELS: BATTLE FORCE 5, will feature CGI animation by Corus Ent's Nelvana and Nerd Corps Ent., and will premiere fall 2009 in Canada on TELETOON in the network's Sunday morning action block and on Cartoon Network in the U.S. as part of its Saturday morning lineup.
In celebration of the release of Don Hahn's latest book, THE ALCHEMY OF ANIMATION, Woodbury University and ASIFA-Hollywood are putting on a panel discussion hosted by author/producer Hahn. Hahn and his panel of colleagues from the past 20 years will share their insights into the highly creative and involved process of making animated films across a variety of mediums -- traditional, computer and stop-motion animation -- as reflected in THE ALCHEMY OF ANIMATION.