ASIFA-Hollywood, The International Animated Film Society, announced today (Nov. 10, 2004) this years Winsor McCay award recipients, Don Bluth, Virginia Davis and Arnold Stang. These are juried awards recognizing lifetime achievement or exceptional contributions to the art of animation.
ASIFA-Hollywood also announced that prolific comedian and voice actor Tom Kenny (voice of SpongeBob in SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS) will host the 32nd Annual Annie Awards, animations oldest and most prestigious awards will be held on Jan. 30, 2005, at the Alex Theatre in Glendale, California (216 N. Brand Blvd.). The Annie Awards (the animation industrys equivalent of the Oscars) honors the years finest animation across film, television and short subjects.
Kenny was a standup comedian and actor in live-action TV roles, and then found his home in animation as one of the industrys busiest actors. His roles include THE BATMAN SERIES, THE FAIRLY ODDPARENTS, POWERPUFF GIRLS, FUTURAMA and many more. In addition to the TV series, Kenny stars in the film version of SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS set for release by Paramount Pictures later this month.
One of the modern icons of animation, Bluth gained worldwide recognition for a prolific and versatile career. Bluth began at Disney but spent years as an independent, joined 20th Century Fox for a while, and is again on his own. Bluth has a long list of major animated films to his name, including most recently ANASTASIA and TITAN: A.E.
In 1924, Walt Disney found his model for ALICE IN WONDERLAND in a four-year-old girl named Virginia Davis. Originally titled, ALICE IN CARTOONLAND, these early Disney films featured a real-life Alice interacting with animated characters in a cartoon universe. More than 50 films were produced in this period earning Davis the distinction as Disney Studios first star and now oldest surviving employee.
Stang is one of Americas most beloved comic character and voice actors of the 50s and 60s. He was a fixture in comic TV series of the era with credits including the animated character Top Cat, Milton Berles sidekick during his UNCLE MILTIE days, RAGGEDY ANN AND ANDY, and more recently, he played roles on Cartoon Network's COURAGE, THE COWARDLY DOG.
The Annie Awards honor overall excellence as well as individual achievement in a total of 21 categories in areas ranging from production design, character animation, and effects animation to storyboarding, writing, music and voice acting.
Tickets are $60 and are available online at ASIFA-Hollywood.org or by calling (818) 842-8330 by Dec. 16. Tickets include admission to a pre-event reception at 3:00 pm, the awards ceremony at 5:00 pm and a post-Annie dinner and celebration at Milanos Cucina Italiana (525 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale) immediately following the ceremony at approximately 7:30 pm.
Sponsors of the 32nd Annual Annie Awards include Nickelodeon Movies, Paramount Pictures, DreamWorks Animation, Walt Disney Feature Animation, DisneyToon Studios and Walt Disney Television Animation.
Founded in 1972 by ASIFA member and veteran voice talent June Foray, the Annie Awards have grown in scope and stature for the past three decades. Today, ASIFA-Hollywood (www.asifa-hollywood.org) the largest of an international network of chapters supports a range of animation activities and preservation efforts through its membership. Current initiatives include special animation event, classes and screenings, film and video archives and film preservation efforts.