AWN Headline News
The Quickdraw Animation Society web site has been updated, with the presentation of "When the Water is Sick, The World is Sick," a 5:30' collective film by 10 young QAS animation students. It will be featured this summer in the Annecy International Film Festival in France, and hopefully other festivals as well! Read more about this project on the QAS web site at:
In its fifth week of release, THE MATRIX, the special effects heavy action film starring Keanu Reeves, finished second in the USA weekend box office race and grossed $8.7 to bring its total gross to $129.7.
On Monday in the USA, toymaker Hasbro introduced a series of actionfigures, play sets, vehicles, and other toys based on STAR WARS: EPISODE I- THE PHANTOM MENACE, the prequel to the STAR WARS trilogy. Most Toys R Usstores and some FAO Schwarz and K-B Toys stores opened at 12:01 a.m. on May3, and within hours their stock was sold out. "It was unbelievable.Insane," says AWN's Heather Kenyon, who visited four stores in the LosAngeles area. "People were leaving with shopping carts filled up. It was
Michel Ocelot's new feature film, KIRIKOU AND THE SORCERESS, will bescreened as part of the DGA (Directors Guild of America) film festival,City of Lights: A Week of French Films. The screening will take placeSaturday, May 1 at 1 pm in Los Angeles, California. For ticket information,call (310) 289 2000. There are currently no plans to release the film inthe USA, so this may be your only chance to see what appears to be, basedon the pressbook images, a very beautiful film. The story is based on
Fox Family Channel's 1999-2000 6 pm-8 pm lineup includes two new animated series. Saban Entertainment's PIGS NEXT DOOR, a new animated series in the tradition of ALL IN THE FAMILY, chronicles the life of a family of pigs who move from the farm to the suburbs and are forced to deal with prejudiced humans. Rodney Dangerfield provides the voice for the title character of RODNEY, a series in development for the 1999-2000 season that depicts Rodney's misadventures as a struggling comic and the everyday ups and downs of dysfunctional family life.
ImagineAsia Studios, the Manila, Philippines-based 3D animation studio, announced the hiring of two U.S.-based executives in San Francisco and Los Angeles. Chairman Jeffrey Harrison appointed JAMES MYHRE to the post of Director of Development & Marketing, and IVAN ROTH as the studio's new Creative Director. Myhre will oversee operations in ImagineAsia's corporate headquarters in San Francisco. Roth will divide his time between Los Angeles and the studio's main facility in Metro Manila.
Frank Gladstone, Head of Artist Development at DreamWorks, and Clifford Cohen, founder and president of AnimAction, have joined forces as members of UNICEF's International Animation Consortium for Child's Rights to create an animated PSA that addresses the Right to a Name and a Nationality. The PSA will be screened on June 4 at the Annecy Film Festival in Annecy, France. Also at the Festival, Mr. Cohen will speak about "How Animation Can Change People's Thinking."
Released last week in the USA, Pixar's A BUG'S LIFE was the week's bestselling video and DVD title, selling enough copies to already put it at No.4 on the list of the year's best selling videos, and No. 10 on the list ofthe year's best selling DVD's. (There are no plans to release the Pixarfilm on laser disc.) It is already ahead of ANTZ and just behind THERUGRATS MOVIE, but farther behind MULAN. Other best selling VHS titles forthe week include THE RUGRATS MOVIE, which finished third; SCOOBY-DOO'S
In opening statements in the second phase of a $250 million breach-of-contract lawsuit, Jeffrey Katzenberg's lawyer Bert Fields presented a series of memos to bolster his argument that Disney concocted a contract argument over an incentive bonus to deprive Katzenberg of the money he was owed for making the Disney company a success while he was the chief of Disney's film entertainment division. During Katzenberg's first few years at Disney, operating income went from $2.3 million in 1984 to $186.3 million in 1988.
Walt Disney Co.'s earnings plunged almost 41% in its second quarter. Although Disney said it expects improvement in the second half of the year, it still plans to review its operations in a bid to make them more efficient and increase cash flow. The Burbank, California-based media and entertainment giant turned in net income of $226 million, or 11 cents a diluted share, for the quarter ending March 31, compared with $384 million, or 18 cents a diluted share, in the same period a year ago.
The recently concluded Cartoons on the Bay festival in Poistano, Italy has announced its awards. The Golden Pulcinella for best character went to the Little Entertainment Co.'s BILLY, an animated British TV series for pre-schoolers about an infant daydreamer. The Golden Pulcinella for best program went to Folimage's CHARLIE'S CHRISTMAS, a French TV film about an abandoned child's friendship with a postman.
Nickelodeon has announced that, following in the wake of the success of THERUGRATS MOVIE, another Klasky Csupo produced TV series, THE WILD THORNBERRYS, will get its own shot at the big screen. The film will have abudget of at least $25 million and release is expected in 2002. THE WILD THORNBERRYS is currently the most popularanimated TV series on Nickelodeon.
SGI's Silicon Graphics(R) Onyx2(TM) visual workstation will be used toproduce and project the world's first scientifically accurate 3D atlas ofthe Milky Way Galaxy at the new Hayden Planetarium as part of the AmericanMuseum of Natural History's Rose Center for Earth and Space in New YorkCity, which opens in 2000. As the centerpiece of the Hayden's 68-foot"virtual dome" Space Theater, Silicon Graphics Onyx2 will manipulatemassive scientific datasets containing billions of stars -- 100,000 times
THE MATRIX, the special effects heavy action film starring Keanu Reeves,returned to the number one spot at the US box office last weekend andgrossed an estimated $12.6 million to bring its cumulative gross to $117million.
Nichimen Graphics, Inc. (Nichimen), a manufacturer of technology for the 3Dcontent creation market, and Viewpoint(R) Digital, Inc. (Viewpoint),creator and publisher of a 3D digital content library, have releasedNendo(TM) & LiveArt(TM) SE Workshop, a combined graphics software packagethat provides 3D modeling and rendering tools for $99 (suggested retailprice).
The Workshop consists of Nendo v. 1.1, Nichimen's award-winning 3D modelingand 3D paint software, and Viewpoint's LiveArt SE software, with the
Pixar Animation Studios' revenues for the first quarter were $3.4 millioncompared with $5.0 million in the first quarter of 1998. Net income for thefirst quarter was $900,000 compared with $3.8 million for the first quarterof 1998. Diluted earnings per share for the first quarter were $0.02compared with $0.08 for the first quarter of 1998.
A BUG'S LIFE has earned $162 million in domestic box office receipts and$190 million in international box office receipts, totaling $352 million
D.FILM and The New Venue in association with Atom Films and Evan's StarWars Cinema present a new online Star Wars-inspired filmmaking contest. Toenter, send in a short script for a Star Wars spoof. Short means very short- a story that can be told in two minutes or less. A panel of celebrityjudges (headed by a prominent member of the original Trilogy cast) willreview the scripts. At the end of April, the judges will select a script,and hand it over to a team of innovative digital filmmakers, including
* Through April 24. Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
A selection of personal paintings and production pieces from the collection of UPA artist and experimental animator Jules Engel will be exhibited at the Tobey Moss Gallery (7321 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036) through April 24. Also included in the exhibit are his sculptures and paintings from Disney's FANTASIA. The gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. For additional information, call (323) 933-5523.
The Cartoons on the Bay International Festival of Television Animation will be held April 20-24, 1999 Positano, Italy.
Nickelodeon will preview SP0NGEBOB SQUAREPANTS, a new animated series, onMay 1 at 9:30 ET/PT in the USA. The cartoon features the adventures ofSpongeBob, a hopelessly optimistic and earnest sea sponge. Creator andexecutive producer Steve Hillenburg (ROCKO'S MODERN LIFE, THE GREEN BERET,WORMHOLES), studied art and marine biology before earning a degree from CalArts in Experimental Animation. Soon you will be able to visit Nick.com formore information about the series.
BBC1 has bought another season of New York-based BKN's POCKET DRAGONADVENTURES. The first season currently airs in the U.K. Monday and Thursdayat 3:45 pm on BBC1, averaging 1.3 million viewers, which represents about a37% share. The series features the mischievous little Pocket Dragons whoseek adventure in a magical world of wizards, knights and gargoyles.
Tom Sito will host an evening with Phil Mendez on Wednesday, April 28 at7:30 pm. Phil is one of the pioneering African American artists in Americananimation, a designer, author, director and storyteller. He was Marc Davis'assistant at Disney during the development of some of the his famousattractions at Disneyland. He has done work for Disney Feature Animation,Hanna-Barbera, Jack Zander, and Phil Kimmelman, and he was with RalphBakshi at the beginning of FRITZ THE CAT and HEAVY TRAFFIC. Don't miss this