This evening John Lasseter received an honorary doctorate from his alma mater California Institute of the Arts. He also delivered the commencement address to the graduating class. Five years ago, Lasseter received his first honorary doctorate from Pepperdine University, the school that he dropped out of to attend CalArts. So, does this mean we have to call him Dr.² Lasseter now?
Today is the 100th birthday anniversary of one of the most important women who ever worked in animation: Joy Batchelor. With her husband, she ran the studio Halas & Batchelor, which was the largest English animation outfit for a good part of the 20th century and made that country’s first feature-length animated film, “Animal Farm.”
Animation artist Jamie Baker (“UP,” “WALL·E,” “Finding Nemo”) has written a hilarious and detailed account of what it was like to work as an artist in Taiwan in the mid-1980s. Spoiler—it was weird:
We’re entertaining ourselves on Cartoon Brew’s Instagram account this afternoon with a series of childhood photos of famous animation folk. How many can you identify? Click on the images for the answers.
Tonight, just for fun, I posted a series of photos of legendary animators from the Golden Age of theatrical animation. We owe them a great deal. Without the pioneering efforts of these artists (and hundreds of others like them), animation would not be nearly so advanced as it is today. How many of these animators can you identify? You can click through to Instagram for the identifications.
“Ren & Stimpy” creator John Kricfalusi attended the Dallas International Film Festival this weekend to accept the Texas Avery Award.
DC Comics has posted online the new Bruce Timm short “Batman: Strange Days” that was created in honor of the character’s 75th anniversary.
Born in 1984 in Aichi Prefecture Japan, Tatsuhiro Ariyoshi is an independent animator who lives and works in Tokyo. He graduated from the Musashino Art University (Department of Imaging Arts & Sciences) in 2009, followed by a graduate degree from the animation department at the Tokyo University of the Arts.
If LEGO can have its own movie, so can crayons. At least that’s the thinking behind “The Hero of Color City,” an animated feature being distributed in the U.S. by Magnolia Pictures, which also distributes the Oscar-nominated short films as well as documentaries like “Jiro Dreams of Sushi” and “Blackfish.”
Japanese-American animation legend Jimmy Murakami, who played an important role in the development of Ireland’s animation industry, has died at the age of 80, reported the organization Animation Ireland. The cause of death is unknown.
“Vanity Fair” doesn’t write about animation often, but when they do, it’s memorable. Their new Hollywood issue has an excellent long read by Sam Kashner about the legendary CalArts animation program of the Seventies and Eighties.
Fabien Mense is a visual development artist and comic book author.
Hal Sutherland, the co-founder of the low-budget American TV animation studio Filmation, has died at age 85.
A new series of Brazilian ads for Brilux cleaning supplies resurrects Hanna-Barbera’s Rosie the Robot in CG. The character is removed from her futuristic context on “The Jetsons” and dropped into a contemporary scene of Brazilian upper class domesticity.
If you missed the CTN Animation Expo last November in Los Angeles, don’t fret. This one-hour lecture features director/animator extraordinaire Eric Goldberg (supervisor of Genie in “Aladdin,” head of animation on “Get a Horse!”) interviewing himself about his personal history. Lots of clips and lots of fun to watch—all from the comfort of your own home.
Hayao Miyazaki may be revoking his plan to retire and returning to animation, according to unconfirmed reports.
Thirty-five years after her death, the iconic animation artist Mary Blair is getting artistic representation.
Is Glen Keane’s next project set up at phone manufacturer Motorola?
For those of you still feeling sedentary after the holidays or just looking for some weekend inspiration, listen to these two interviews with Lotte Reiniger and Rebecca Sugar. They each have accomplished an important first in animation: Lotte Reiniger was the first woman to direct an animated feature, and Rebecca Sugar was the first solo woman creator of a TV series at Cartoon Network. These milestones are separated by 87 years, which says a lot about both how far animation has come and how far it still has to go.
A fun online find: early theater and movie advertisements drawn by Disney animation legend Milt Kahl.
Happy birthday to the animation world’s favorite badass, Ralph Bakshi, who turns 75 today.
Animation legend Don Lusk, who animated on nearly every Disney classic between “Snow White” and “101 Dalmatians,” turns 100 today.