Masaaki Yuasa’s ‘Ping Pong’ Series Looks Incredible

Table tennis sounds like just about the last thing that needs an animated series, but leave it to the Japanese to make the sport as exciting as a superhero action-adventure series. This is our first extended look at “Ping Pong,” a new 11-episode animated series by Japanese director Masaaki Yuasa (“Mind Game,” “The Tatami Galaxy”) that will debut April 10th on Fuji TV’s late-night noitaminA block.

Patreon Offers a New Way to Crowdfund Animation

There are countless crowdfunding sites nowadays, but none have offered a viable alternative that challenges Kickstarter and Indiegogo’s dominance. Patreon may change that though. The crowdfunding site offers a twist on the crowdfunding model that may prove attractive to filmmakers who want to produce content regularly.

‘Tom and Jerry Show’ Premieres April 9 on Cartoon Network

“The Tom and Jerry Show” will premiere Wednesday, April 9th, at 5:30pm (ET/PT) on Cartoon Network. It’s being pitched as “a fresh take on the iconic frenemies that preserves the look, core characters and sensibilities of the original theatrical shorts.” Unlike the original 6-7 minute theatrical shorts, which were produced during the 1940s-’50s, the new episodes will be 11-minutes each.

Animation Torrent Festival Will Debut in Chicago Next Month

The United States has surprisingly few animation festivals for a country of its size, but increasingly we are seeing smaller local events that serve as a substitute for the festival experience. Animation Breakdown is an ongoing series in Los Angeles, and Chicago animation fans, who already enjoy the Eyeworks Festival of Experimental Animation, will see the arrival of Animation Torrent next month.

New Spots: Hermès by Julien Vallée and Honda by Smith & Foulkes

The following two spots attracted my attention for the inventive ways in which they mixed live-action with animation: “Metamorphosis” for Hermès, directed by Julien Vallée of Vallée Duhamel, and “Inner Beauty” for Honda, directed by the venerable production team of Smith & Foulkes through Nexus Productions.

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