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3D Animation Glut?

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3D Animation Glut?

I keep expecting the 3D animation glut to happen. So where is it? I've heard rumors of dozens (and estimates of hundreds) of 3D projects in development over the past 3 years, all threatening to make 3D cheaper than the worst days of '80's saturday morning animation. But so far all I've seen the release of films from the usual suspects. "In the Barnyard", the Lego/GIJoe toy vids and "Chicken Little" being the only potential "new" entries in the field recently.

Even Saturday morning (and cartoon network) only has one or two 3d pieces, nothing more than what were being produced by Mainframe.

There was one with Brad Pit as a lizard man getting alot of press out of Atlanta (?) that I haven't heard anything of for several years now.

So where are they? What happened? Any solid industry dirt? Or they still "just around the corner"?

Mostly I'm just curious; interested in the health of the industry.

kdiddy13's picture
Producing solidily ok animation since 2001. Now with more doodling!

Producing solidily ok animation since 2001.

Now with more doodling!

You could give this site a try, it is not perfect but it does a good job.

Maybe I shouldn't have asked

Perhaps I shouldn't have asked. WARNING! What I'm about to say will put nearly the most obnoxious song (not taking into account "The Song that Never Ends") into your head for about the next day and a half:

:eek: You've been warned....

Smurfs... They're coming.... And it's going to be a trilogy...

And I had finally gotten that damn song out of my head!

Ok, I'm going to hijack my own thread for a second, but recently I saw that a number of episodes of the Smurfs had been reclassified as "Educational" so that tv stations could play them as part of their educational television obligation under the FCC. And just how sad is it that this sort of cheap garbage passes as educational.

And if you're going to tell me it's because of the moral problems they deal with (and only passably so for that matter), don't MOST saturday morning cartoons deal with moral problems. Disney has classified it's entire Saturday Morning lineup "Illuminating Television". Is this the same thing? BAH!

Producing solidily ok animation since 2001.

Now with more doodling!

There's going to be a ton of cheaply-produced 3D animated films. How well they'll do, I don't know....

well it will depend on what kind of stories they tell. just coz they are cheap or expensive wont make them do well by itself

I don't think that's strictly true, for I very much doubt that people will go and see even a great story if the production values are not consistently high. Pixar, Dreamworks and Blue Sky have set a high benchmark for others to follow in this regard.


Well just off the top of my head, and this wil be a jumble, so no quoting me on titles or who's doing what, but there is Chicken Little, Wilbur Robbinson, American Dog, Rapuzel Unbraided, Toy Story 3 from Disney. Cars and Ratatouli from PIXAR. Shreks 3 through 7 :P, Over the Hedge, The Bee Movie, and Shark Tale 2 from PDI/Dreamworks. Surfs Up from Sony. Ice Age 2 from Blue Sky. I know I've left a bunch out, but like I said those are just the one's off the top of my head with out any poking around. And those are just the large studio features.

the Ape

...we must all face a choice, between what is right... and what is easy."
Character Animator - Lucas Arts

Whew. That's what I was wondering. It still seems like "just around the corner." But it does indeed seem to be coming. I wonder how many will never make it to the screen?

I don't think that production value necessarily will break a good film. Flintstones (the cartoon not the live action) had minimal production value, and yet had good solid gags and a very good run until it ran out of jokes. Same for the past few years of much of Cartoon Network stuff. They borrow very heavily from the Hannah-Barbera school (isn't Cartoon Network what became of Hannah-Barbera) and use cycled animation, character sets, and keep "new" animation to a minimum.

This isn't to say that it isn't quality animation (it's extremely good what they can accomplish with such a "save money" mandate). Quite the opposite, they've taken a minimalist style and really take advantage of it, and rely very heavily on good scripts, good timing, and good cinematography (Samurai Jack really stands out in this last category). They aren't fully articulated 3 dimensional drawings associated with Disney, but they don't need to be.

And I've seen quite a few (even recently) animated films (and live action for that matter) with incredibly high production value and beautiful animation bomb because there just wasn't any real substance.

High production values will get people in the theater that first weekend. High value on the story, editing, timing (the basics of animation and film in general) will bring them in for much longer. Word of mouth is a pretty powerful thing in the movie business, and that's usually based off the substance of the movie, not how it looks.

Producing solidily ok animation since 2001.

Now with more doodling!

All I can say is that I didn't enjoy Shrek 2, downright hated Shark Tale and didn't see either Robots or Madagascar (no offense, Kevan) because the movies and their plots didn't tickle me. I also think it unlikely that I'll see Chicken Little before its DVD release and Ice Age 2 doesn't sound that exciting to me, either. Neither does Cars, for that matter. Ach, picky, picky, picky!
I'm looking forward to Corpse Bride, I'm mildly curious about Curse Of The Were-Rabbit and longing for Nocturna.

Wouldn't it be fascinating to see the response from studios if both Corpse Bride and W&G did huge box office? Would we see 3D departments being gutted in favor of stop motion?

The ghost of George Pal would be laughing his replacement head off... :D