Greetings from Anatoly Belikov in Ekaterinburg, Russia. The rabbit says, “New year has come! Old year go away!”
Art Grootfontein in Paris:
Le French Bulldog in Tel Aviv:
Karolien Soete in Ghent, Belgium:
I can’t wait to continue NOT seeing any of these films in 3-D during 2011:
Katzenberg (left) speaking at CalArts last October (Photo via 24700 blog)
Good read: a delightfully bizarre blog post from last October by Stephen M. Levinson. He was accepted into CalArts and started attending last fall. After Jeffrey Katzenberg came to speak at the school, he was inspired to drop out of CalArts just four weeks into his freshman year. Nobody but Stephen will know whether it was the right decision, and he probably won’t know himself until many years down the line, but I can appreciate his ballsy, gut-instinct decision making. Best of all, if things don’t pan out, he can always blame Jeffrey:
After his visit, I emailed Jeffrey Katzenberg and thanked him for all of his time, for coming down to CalArts and for speaking to us, telling him how he’s had a huge impact on my life. I sincerely thanked him for his visit. His response, “:-). Best of luck to you.”
Disney’s Tangled wrapped up its sixth weekend with an FINAL $9.8 million and a grand total of $167.8 million. The film may end up grossing $200 million domestically, if not more. Early next week, it will surpass Tarzan to become the highest-grossing Disney feature in the US since The Lion King. It is a worthwhile accomplishment, however in terms of admissions, the film lags far behind its predecessors:
Tangled: 21,132,075 admissions through January 2, 2011 (approx.)
Tarzan: 33,679,491 admissions (approx.)
The Lion King: 78,598,511 admissions (approx.)
Yogi Bear took in $12.4 million for a three-week total of $65.8 million. The film is no Alvin and the Chipmunks or Stuart Little but it will end up doing performing better than other CG animal pics like Marmaduke, Garfield and Underdog.
DreamWorks’ Megamind added $630,940 boosting its total to $144.2 million. Despite higher 3-D prices, the film lags the US grosses of earlier DreamWorks features like Over the Hedge, Shark Tale, and the Madagascar series. Jeffrey Katzenberg didn’t heed his own advice about 3-D: “If you’re asking people to pay a premium price, you better deliver.”
Sylvain Chomet’s The Illusionist did even better in its second weekend, picking up $46,416 from just three theaters and boosting its total to $123,476. It had the fifth-highest per theater average of any film in release with $15,472. Paul and Sandra Fierlinger’s My Dog Tulip earned $5,340 from 3 theaters. Its total is now $151,258.
This well-edited Pixar tribute by Leandro Copperfield weaves together clips from all of the studio’s movies. “Pixar’s films have always been very important in my life,” he said. “I was 6 years old when I watched Toy Story the first time, and his films made my childhood more happy. So this video is a personal tribute for, in my opinion, the best animation studio of all time.”
Jerry already shared a few of the holiday greetings he received so I thought I’d share a few of my favorites too.
Hands down my favorite greeting of the year: Joe Pelling designed and directed this one for London-based production studio Sherbert. All the models were cut from wood and hand painted (see the making of photos). The spirit of George Pal lives on!
Colorado-based filmmaker Corrie Francis Parks depicts snow with an ironic use of sand animation.
Queens, NY-based David Sheahan, whose short film Together! earlier appeared on Cartoon Brew TV, created this cheery holiday ditty.
Rio de Janeiro-based artists Cristina Eiko and Paulo Crumbim, who publish a webcomic in both Portuguese and English at QuadrinhosA2.com, created this greeting.
Sylvain Chomet’s The Illusionist opens today on 3 screens in the United States. They are:
Laemmle Royal (11523 Santa Monica Blvd., LA, CA 90025)
Showtimes (Sat/Sun): 1:00, 3:10, 5:20, 7:30, 9:40
Landmark Sunshine Cinema (143 E. Houston St., NY, NY 10002)
Showtimes (Sat/Sun): 11:00am, 1:00, 3:00, 5:10, 7:10, 9:10, 11:15 (last screening only on Sat)
City Cinemas Paris Theatre (4 W. 58th St., NY, NY 10019)
Showtimes: 12:00, 2:00, 4:00, 6:00, 8:00, 10:00
If you see (or have seen) the film, let us know what you think. This post will serve as our official “talkback” thread for the film.
The Grinch and sexy Cindy Lou Who…just for you!
(Artwork by Erin Ptah. Artist’s statement: “I’m a sucker for pairings involving brilliant little girls and the monsters they aren’t scared of. Integra/Alucard, Mandy/Grim, and, here, Cindy Lou Who and the Grinch. Drawing the Grinch as a quasi-bishounen was one of the weirdest things I’ve ever done. Cindy Lou grew up hot.”)
Une Vie de Chat, a new hand-drawn animated feature directed by Alain Gagnol and Jean-Loup Felicioli, opened in France and Belgium last weekend. The film was produced at Jacques-Rémy Girerd’s Folimage studio, which has also been responsible for the features Mia and the Migoo and Raining Cats and Frogs.
Une Vie de Chat‘s opening weekend earned $552,663 in France, landing the film in 12th place. However, it had a limited release in only 171 theaters. By contrast, Megamind, which also opened in France last weekend, appeared in 695 theaters. Co-production partners on the film include Digit Anima (Belgium), Rhone-Alpes Cinema (France), and Lunanime (Belgium).
The idea sounds promising: “A cat leads a secret double life: he spends his days with Zoe, the daughter of a commissioner, but at night he accompanied a thief on the rooftops of Paris. While the mother of Zoe investigate burglaries at night, another mobster kidnaps the girl.” More details about the film’s story can be found on AnimationInsider.net.
(Thanks, Michel Van)
Titeuf: The Film will open in French theaters on April 6, 2011. Based on France’s bestselling comic character, the film is directed by Titeuf‘s creator Zep (the pseudonym of Swiss cartoonist Philippe Chappuis). The $15 million euro film is a French-Swiss co-production by Pathé, Moonscoop, France 3 Cinéma and Point Productions. An earlier animated TV series based on the character also appeared in the UK retitled as Tootuff. For the record, this is the first time I’ve ever heard of or seen this character. In other words, it’s unlikely this film will be appearing in the States anytime soon.
Few viewers actually saw Brad Bird’s The Iron Giant when it had its theatrical run in 1999 so theatrical revivals are always welcome. The film has a special one-week engagement beginning today at the Film Forum in Manhattan. Screening times and more details here. It’s a shame that the revival has to be at the Film Forum, which has the rudest patrons and employees of any movie theater I’ve ever been to.
(Thanks, Joel Schlosberg)
New details have emerged about Henry Selick’s new San Francisco animation studio Cinderbiter Productions. A job recruitment post on CreativeHeads offered the following details:
Cinderbiter is a new stop-motion company whose mandate is to make great, scary films for young ‘uns with a small, tight-knit crew who watch each other’s backs. Joining Henry on Cinderbiter’s first production will be veteran team members Eric Leighton and the celebrated production designer, Lou Romano. That’s right — Lou Romano!
They’re currently hiring a head of story for their first project, titled Shademaker, and if you want to work alongside Lou Romano–that’s right, Lou Romano!–here are the the requirements:
Bart Simpson grows old and dies, over and over again, in Springfield Eternal, a conceptual piece by Philippe Blanchard. In a world of quick cuts and constantly shifting camera angles, the intense focus on a single animated character creates a surprisingly poignant viewing experience.
(Thanks, David OReilly)
UK-based Cyriak‘s path to stardom has been an odd one. He made his name by becoming a master of one of the least glamorous yet most challenging forms of animation–the animated GIF. Today, he’s making music videos and commercials. His latest is this video for Eskmo’s “We Got More.” I’m continually impressed by his ability to create hypnotically recursive animated patterns using only the most trivial live-action footage.