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Channel Headline News

HBO Family channel arrives

By Amid Amidi | Wednesday, February 3, 1999 at 12:00am

HBO Family, a new 24-hour commercial-free channel dedicated exclusively to family programming, launched February 1. The channel is teaming up with producers like Nelvana, Cinar, S4C and Hit Entertainment to deliver original animated programming. Among the new animated series premiering are "George and Martha," "The Adventures of Paddington Bear" and "Anthony Ant," as well as a new mixed-media pre-school series from Curious Pictures, "A Little Curious." In addition, a variety of original specials will have a "sneak preview" on HBO Family Channel before they premiere on the main HBO channel.

Animated Headline News

"WhirlGirl" is a new animated series on the 'net

By Amid Amid | Wednesday, February 3, 1999 at 12:00am

Showtime Network's Internet service Showtime Online has acquired the on-line rights to the futuristic Web-based animated sci-fi strip, "WhirlGirl," in a multi-year pact with WhirlGirl parent Visionary Media LLC. "WhirlGirl" will debut on the site on February 26 with a complete season of 28 new weekly episodes. Chronicling the adventures of a sassy, 21st century superheroine, Kia Cross (a.k.a. WhirlGirl) fights to save the world from an evil, mediatech empire. "WhirlGirl" is Showtime's first original series developed exclusively on the Web.

Film Headline News

Mark Osborne's "More" a winner at Sundance

By Amid Amidi | Wednesday, February 3, 1999 at 12:00am

Mark Osborne's animated short film, "MORE," has won the Jury Award for Special Recognition for Short Filmmaking at the 1999 Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. The 6-minute film, about an inventor's struggle to find meaning in a grey emotion-less world, is the world's first stop motion short produced for exhibition on 70mm/15 perf (IMAX). "MORE" is inspired by and features the instrumental song "Elegia" by British electronic pop group New Order.

Headline News

AWN's animated box office report

By Amid Amidi | Wednesday, February 3, 1999 at 12:00am

DreamWorks' "The Prince of Egypt" was the top animated film on Super Bowl football weekend placing 10th with $2.6M, making a grand total of $90.8M. Disney/Pixar's "A Bug's Life" followed closely at 12th taking in $1.9M for a dazzling cume of $154.1M. "Bug's Life" has already outgrossed Disney's "Pocohontas" ($141.6M) but won't reach Pixar's blockbuster first effort "Toy Story" which accumulated $191.8M. Disney's live-action/CGI "Mighty Joe Young" moved up a slot to 13th with $1.6M amassing $45.5M in 6 weeks.

Headline News

Klasky Csupo getting ready for a big move

By Amid Amidi | Tuesday, February 2, 1999 at 12:00am

After the success of "The Rugrats Movie" and plenty of hit television shows, Klasky Csupo is relocating to a bigger building at 6353-57 Sunset Boulevard, across from the Hollywood Cinerama Dome. The 6-floor, 95,000 square ft., state-of-the-art glass and steel structure was originally designed as an auto showroom for Mercedes-Benz, but will now hold up to 500 Klasky Csupo employees. Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan says, "This is great news for the heart of Hollywood.

Kids Headline News

Fox Kids ups Poindexter to VP, Head of Programming

By Amid Amidi | Tuesday, February 2, 1999 at 12:00am

Fox Kids Network has promoted Roland Poindexter to Vice President, Head of Programming. In the newly created position, Poindexter will oversee day-to-day management and administration of all programming and development for Fox Kids. He replaces Carol Monroe, Senior VP, Programming and Development, who left the company to pursue new opportunities. "Roland is a dynamic, creative executive who has solid relationships within the creative community and a wealth of experience developing children's entertainment," said Maureen Smith, General Manager of Fox Kids Network.

Headline News

Brian Austin hired at Spontaneous Combustion

By Amid Amidi | Tuesday, February 2, 1999 at 12:00am

New York-based Spontaneous Combustion has hired 3D modeler/animator Brian Austin in a further expansion of the company's CGI capabilities. Austin, who had been freelancing in the New York City area for the past couple years, is an accomplished fine artist as well as a digital artist and has works in the permanent collection of New York's The Museum of Modern Art.

Series Headline News

Monster helps Kevin save the world

By Amid Amidi | Monday, February 1, 1999 at 12:00am

"Kevin Saves the World" is Monster Productions' newest entry, based on books by Daniel Postgate, produced and directed by Kine Aune and Oscar-winning British animator Bob Godfrey ("Great," 1964). The series (13 x 5 minutes) follows the misadventures of Kevin, a boy who always manages to come out on top despite his apparent ineptitude. The series, targeted for kids 4-8, has already been acquired by Nickelodeon U.K., Nickelodeon Scandinavia, RTE and ABC Australia among others.

Series Headline News

Cartwrights move back to the Ponderosa

By Amid Amidi | Monday, February 1, 1999 at 12:00am

1999 marks the 40th anniversary of the longest running television series in history, "Bonanza," and New York-based Abrams/Gentile Entertainment is producing a new animated series based on the perennial Western. The show is a prequel of sorts taking place on the Ponderosa Ranch with a young Ben Cartwright and his teenage sons. Abrams/Gentile also presents numerous other new projects including:"Open Call" (13 x 22 minutes): a comedy about two divorcees who become casting directors, as unqualified as they may be, in a unique blend of "real-time" animation and live-action.

Headline News

Columbia TriStar Has 5000 Fingers

By Amid Amidi | Monday, February 1, 1999 at 12:00am

Columbia TriStar Television Children's Programming (CTTCP), who currently produces and distributes shows like "Jumanji," "Men in Black" and "Godzilla: The Series," announces a number of show pre-sold to U.S. broadcasters: "Dragon Tales," a co-production with Children's Television Workshop for PBS, "Big Guy & Rusty the Boy Robot" for Fox Kids Network and "Bug Wars: A Starship Troopers Adventure" for BKN. In direct-to-video, CTTCP is currently developing "5,000 Fingers of Dr. T," "Berenstein Bears," "Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer" and "I Dream of Jeannie."

Animated Headline News

Goodtimes with Rudolph

By Amid Amidi | Monday, February 1, 1999 at 12:00am

GoodTimes Entertainment announced that "Rudolph, The Red-Nosed Reindeer, The Movie," made its Latin American debut this Christmas on Cinecanal and Sky. This marked Cinecanal's first acquisition of an independently-produced animated feature and was the first time Cinecanal ran two versions of a single animated feature: neutral Spanish dubbed version for children and the original, English-language version with Spanish subtitles for family audiences.

Interactive Headline News

Interactive TV with Hugo

By Amid Amidi | Monday, February 1, 1999 at 12:00am

Interactive Television Entertainment has firmed deals with Columbia and Peru for the interactive television show "Hugo, the TV Troll." Hugo premiered in Columbia on Canal Capital in December '98, and in Peru in January '99. The show, which allows the TV audience to respond instantaneously to programming content by using their telephone touchpad, currently airs in over 20 countries.

Headline News

New York premiere of Blue Sky's short, "Bunny"

By Amid Amidi | Friday, January 29, 1999 at 12:00am

*Thursday, January 28. New York City, New York, U.S.A.

The New York City public premiere of Blue Sky's "Bunny" will be held on January 28 at 7:00 P.M. at:

Pace UniversityNYC Schimmel Center for the ArtsOne Pace PlazaNew York, NY

The event costs $7 for general admission and is free to NYC ACM SIGGRAPH members and Pace students & faculty. The screening will be followed by a presentation hosted by director Chris Wedge, digital effects supervisor Dave Walvoord and senior animator Doug Dooley.

Series Headline News

D'Ocon has lots of NATPE animation programs

By Amid Amidi | Thursday, January 28, 1999 at 12:00am

Barcelona, Spain-based animation company D'Ocon Films Productions announces the launch of a co-production with Sony Wonder on Myths&Legends, a 13-episode series (with an option of a second set of 13), about two kids who discover a magic cavern which allows them to travel back through history. Their adventures take them to ancient Greece, the shores of Loch Ness and amongst the Knights of the Round Table; in each case making sure that good triumphs over evil.

Headline News

Salsa's sizzling sci-fi series

By Amid Amidi | Thursday, January 28, 1999 at 12:00am

Among Paris, France-based Salsa Distribution's predominantly science fiction genre programming slate is the animated Tommy and Oscar. Produced by Rainbow s.r.l., Salsa is offering 26 half-hour episodes to Latin territories. Tommy is a young boy who befriends a loveable alien named Oscar, who feeds on music instead of edible foods. Salsa is also overseeing Latin American merchandising on the series.

Film Headline News

Encore for critters and goofs

By Amid Amidi | Thursday, January 28, 1999 at 12:00am

After nine holiday-themed specials, Encore Enterprises has created 26 new episodes of Chucklewood Critters with educational structures and guidance provided by the UCLA Department of Education. The show has been pre-sold to Ravensburger Film & TV in Germany, BBC in the UK and Daro Film in the rest of the world. Additionally, Encore has two hundred 1-minute fillers of Goofballs, a dialogue-less, gag-driven series featuring two handymen - Tiny the elephant and Jake the lizard. The show is a co-production between Riverstar Entertainment and SPI International.

Headline News

A Catalyst of animation

By Amid Amidi | Thursday, January 28, 1999 at 12:00am

Catalyst Distribution has a number of shows to offer including The Adventures of Captain Pugwash (13 x 30 minutes or 26 x 10 minutes), James the Cat (52 x 5 minutes), The Raccoons (65 x 30 minutes) and Britt Allcrofts Magic Adventures of Mumfie (39 x 30 minutes). Representatives are located at their U.S. associate company, Gullane Pictures.

Media Headline News

Stan Lee Media formed

By Amid Amidi | Thursday, January 28, 1999 at 12:00am

Legendary Marvel comic book creator, Stan Lee, has formed a new company, Stan Lee Media, to harness the power and global outreach of the Internet to create a new world of superheros. The first venture of the newly formed company is StanLee.net (http://www.stanlee.net), which is being constructed to attract and accommodate the largest global assemblage of young comic book enthusiasts, who will be engaged in community creation on the Internet with Stan Lee and his new universe of superheros.

Kids Headline News

Friedman appointed "Kids WB!" Senior VP

By Amid Amidi | Thursday, January 28, 1999 at 12:00am

Donna L. Freidman has been named Senior Vice President, "Kids WB!," the WB Television Network's children's programming service. In this newly created position, Friedman will creatively oversee "Kids' WB!" on a day-to-day basis, concentrating on current programming and the development of new series - both animated and live-action. Friedman joins the WB from a decade-long stint at Nickelodeon where most recently, she had been Vice President, Marketing/Associate Creative Director, Nickelodeon Latin America.

Kids Headline News

Kids WB! picks "Pokémon"

By Amid Amidi | Thursday, January 28, 1999 at 12:00am

Beginning in February, Kids WB! Saturday morning line-up will start airing the hit Japanese animated series, "Pokémon," a cartoon which gained infamy in late '97 when hundreds of young Japanese viewers simultaneously suffered seizures while watching an episode that featured a high-contrast flash sequence [AF 12/23/97]. While the series currently completes its first season in first-run syndication, Kids WB! will premiere twelve all new episodes of "Pokémon," which will join the series syndication package of 52 episodes for the completion of the '98-'99 season.

Headline News

The Superfresh "SpaceBuddies!" are at NATPE

By Amid Amidi | Thursday, January 28, 1999 at 12:00am

Superfresh Productions (Booth 3331) brings with them "SpaceBuddies!," best described as "The X-Files" from the alien's point of view. The half-hour clay animated sitcom recalls the old serials of the 1950s, only this time the hero, Nanook, is a little chartreuse man from outer space. "SpaceBuddies!" aims to explain Earth's mysteries...from the alien autopsy video to the success of Celine Dion.

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