Shokus Internet Radio, where I occasionally appear on Stu’s Show (my next appearence there is scheduled for November 11th), now has a new regular daily show for classic animation buffs. Cartoon Carnival with Joe Bevilacqua is broadcast online everyday at 3pm (PDT), 5pm (CT) and 6pm (ET). This week, for example, host Bevilacqua (co-author of the biography Daws Butler, Characters Actor) will present part one of a tribute to Bob Clampett’s Time for Beany; an interview with Stan Freberg; and a live performance of Dudley Doo-Right featuring June Foray. For more information on previous shows and upcoming episodes, check JoeBev.com.
Next week, as part of it’s Perspectives on Editing series, The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is hosting a seminar on Editing For Animation. Hosted by Academy Editor’s Branch Governors Donn Cambern (The Last Picture Show) and Mark Goldblatt (Teminator 2), the seminar will feature film clips and open discussion between audience and guests. Panelists include Kent Beyda (Scooby Doo), John Carnochan (Ice Age, The Simpsons Movie), Nancy Frazen (Runaway Brain, Surf’s Up), Lois Freeman-Fox (Fantasia 2000, Osmosis Jones) and Kevin Nolting (Up).
The event takes place at the Academy’s Linwood Dunn Theater on Vine St. on Tuesday September 29th 7:00-10:00pm. For more information and tickets, visit oscars.org.
ASIFA-Hollywood has announced its Call for Entries for this year’s 37th Annual Annie Awards.
Annie Awards will be presented in 25 categories including best animated feature, home entertainment, television production, television commercial, short subject, video game, as well as individual achievements. Entries can be submitted for consideration from productions released in the United States between January 1, 2009 and December 31, 2009. The deadline to receive entries is Friday, October 16, 2009.
Some big changes to the voting rules have been instituted this year, most significantly that ASIFA-Hollywood members will vote only on the Production categories, and that a final election committee of animation professionals will determine the award recipients for all of the Individual Achievement categories.
This year’s ceremony will be held on Saturday, February 6, 2010 at Royce Hall on the campus of UCLA. The updated ‘Rules and Categories’ list, entry forms and more information can be found online at www.annieawards.org.
It was bound to happen. Canadian TV execs greenlight a cartoon about… TV Execs!
Created by Kevin Gillis (Atomic Betty) and Laura Kosterski, Producing Parker looks rather attractive – art direction-wise. I hadn’t heard about this show until today; Wouldn’t mind seeing an episode if it ever makes it to the States. It’s currently airing in Canada on TVTropolis, and coming to GlobalTV later on this year.
Once again, a plug for my monthly comedy-and-cartoons craptacular: Cartoon Dump! MST3K’s Frank Conniff (TV’s Frank) and J. Elvis Weinstein (Dr. Erhardt & the original Tom Servo), Erica Doering and special guest star comedian/trickster Michael Rayner join me at the Steve Allen Theatre Tuesday September 22nd at 8pm. Comedy! Songs! Puppets! Magic! And God-awful cartoons from the wasteland of 50s and 60s Saturday morning television! Advanced tickets click here.
And on Friday September 25th, it’s Fleischer-palooza on Hollywood Boulevard! I’ll be introducing a double feature Max Fleischer’s two great animated features, Gulliver’s Travels (1939) and Mr. Bug Goes To Town (1941) at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood. Both will be presented in 35mm, with uncut IB Technicolor prints projected on the large screen, just as they were meant to be seen. And psssst! Surprise short subjects will be shown! More info here.
Auctioneers Profiles In History are currently having an incredible entertainment memorabilia sale which is including a Lot of 100 puppets and pieces-of-puppets from the George Pal’s Jasper Puppetoons. The bids start at $8000. Here’s the link. There are also separate lots for puppets from individual non-Jasper films such as The Gay Knighties, Rhythm In The Ranks, Two-Gun Rusty, John Henry, Tubby The Tuba and on and on! This lot was part of the estate of William Nassour who, with his brother, produced several Hollywood movies and experimented in stop motion animation. Apparently they took over the Puppetoon shop when Pal moved on into feature production – and held onto these puppets until now!
If those prices are too steep, you can own one of Pal’s most iconic movie models for a more modest $35. Pegasus Hobbies, under license from Paramount Pictures, is exclusively selling reproductions of the Martian War Machines from War Of The Worlds. They sell them as either plastic model kits or pre-built and plated. I actually have one of the pre-built ones and it’s quite beautiful.
Mark Evanier also points out that the Hollywood auction above is also selling an astonishing collection of Walker Edminston’s Time For Beany Beany & Cecil puppets and memorabilia. Lot’s of jaw-dropping Clampett puppets and ephemera here.
Her birthday was yesterday, Friday September 18th. Mark Evanier sent us this great photo of June and Walter Lantz (click thumbnail at left to see it at full size) to mark the occasion. June’s new autobigraphy can be ordered at her website, www.juneforay.com – and I highly recommend it. She’s a living legend – and been much more than animation’s greatest voice actress: she’s been a tireless worker in bringing respect and recognition to the animation field. We love you, June! I know she’s reading this website, so feel free to send her a greeting in the comments below.
Portland’s Laika studio (Coraline) has scrapped all its plans for creating CG features and will instead focus on making stop-motion films exclusively. The studio laid off 63 computer graphics employees today, according the website SlashFilm. UPDATE: Studio publicist Maggie Begley wrote in to clarify: “It’s not accurate to say that the studio is abandoning CG altogether. They will continue to use CG opportunistically in stop motion films and will continue to develop CG projects in house for further down the road.”
I personally think the decision to specialize with stop-motion is great move – not only for the health of the studio, but for the art of stop-motion animation itself. And this is shaping up to be a helluva year for stop-motion. I just attended an advance screening of Wes Anderson’s The Fantastic Mr. Fox today. It’s not from Laika, but it’s an outstanding film – which, compared with 2009′s other stop-mo releases (Coraline, Mary And Max), shows the wide range of this technique. I’m delighted to know this ancient hand made animation process has a somewhat healthy future.
A Yom Kippur Public Service Announcement from Jake Rosenbaum is a film by Scott Roberts & Daniel Klein. Roberts is an artist, animator, and associate professor of animation at DePaul University. The voice work is by Jake Johnson, who’s currently co-starring in the film Paper Heart with Michael Cera and Charlyne Yi.
Saw Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs last night – and it’s hilarious. It’s 3 for 3 (or 4 for 4 if you count Monster House) for Sony Pictures Animation. Phil Lord and Chris Miller made a real “cartoon”, loaded with laughs and filled eye candy (the 2D end credits are especially gorgeous). See it in a theatre this weekend! The 3D effects are outstanding, and the directors really fill the wide-screen with all sorts of Kurtzman/Elder “chicken fat”. I loved it.
How about you? If you’ve seen it (and only if you’ve seen it), post your opinion here in our comments section.
Anyone who has been to the Shine Gallery at L.A.’s Farmer’s Market or has seen Shine’s collection showcased on the Walt Disney Treasures DVD know that Bernie Shine is one of the world’s biggest collectors of original Disney memorabilia.
Former LA County District Attorney Gil Garcetti has recruited Shine to host a party in his home for a very worthwhile charity, Wells Bring Hope. That’s Willie Ito’s art on the poster (above). Rarely does Shine allow anyone but his closest friends into his home see his entire collection. Please click this link for full details of a unique evening of cartoon fun for a good cause – a must for Disney fans who think they’ve seen it all. It’s happening on Friday October 16th at 7:00pm. If you are in L.A. that evening, it will be well-worth attending.
We’ve highlighted the talented filmmakers at MAKE, the animation studio out of Minneapolis Minnesota, before. And as long as they keep making great little films, we will continue to point them out to you.
Here’s the latest short from the MAKE team: Fruitless Efforts: Fruit of the Womb. This cartoon highlights a day in the life of Apple, “an average fruit guy trying to hold a job, have friends and just live his life in peace like a normal apple.” It’s fast, funny and pretty cool lookin’. This short, which combines 3D and hand-drawn animation, was directed by Aaron Quist and Andrew Chesworth. See it here.
Pixar animator Jim Capobianco’s long awaited hand-drawn short film Leonardo will screen this weekend for Academy Award qualification. You can catch the short on Sept. 18th, 19th and 20th at 11:45AM and 12:25PM at Laemmle’s Sunset 5 in LA. Capobianco writes:
I may be there for the Sunday shows. The old fellow is showing with two other qualifying short films BIRTHDAY GIFT (animated) and AFTER TOMORROW (live action). I have no idea if they are any good or what they are about.
If you want to see LEO in glorious 35mm with a nice Dolby 5.1 sound then go check it out. And if you’re in the Academy tell your Academy pals to see it too and nominate it.