Wanna see what Renegade Animation does when it isn’t working on PUFFY AMI YUMI?This spot for Cocoa Puffs combines cel animation and flash. Darrell Van Citters directs, Mike Giamo and Frank Montagna designed it and Scott O’Brien, Bert Klein and Will Finn, animated. Beautifully done. Now if only General Mills would rehire Chuck McCann to voice Sonny and Gramps, I’d be really happy.
CINDERELLA (1950) played an important role in setting the Disney feature animation style of the 1950s, it inspired key attractions at Disneyland – but most significantly, it restored financial stability to the studio after a difficult decade. To celebrate its 55th anniversary, the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood will be running a digitally restored presentation of CINDERELLA on the big screen for eleven days, September 15th through the 25th, with an opening night panel discussion (9/15 @ 7pm) with animators and filmmakers (names to be announced).Click on the Mary Blair concept painting (from Van Eaton Gallery) above for a larger image.
Here in the U.S., the fine folks over at The Right Stuff are looking for several lost episodes (in 16mm) of the original 1963 ASTRO BOY series – to complete their restoration of the series for DVD. A full list of missing titles is posted on FPS.Meanwhile in Japan, researchers have found an ancient piece of anime:
The 35-millimeter, celluloid animation film consists of 50 frames stuck together with paste. It depicts a boy in a sailor suit who writes Chinese characters, “katsudo shashin” (moving picture), takes off his hat and gives a salute.
The Japanese historians believe this film strip to be over 100 years old! Read the full news report here.(Thanks to Charles Brubaker for the link)
Scrappy – America’s favorite forgotten cartoon star – was created in 1931 by Fleischer expatriate Dick Huemer for the Charles Mintz studio, as Columbia Pictures answer to Mickey Mouse (which was strange because Columbia was releasing Disney’s cartoons at this time).Harry McCracken has just recently expanded his spectacular homage website, SCRAPPYLAND, with twice as much content. If you haven’t visited lately, you’ll now find more Scrappy promotional items, Mintz studio photos, more photos of Columbia child stars with Scrappy products, Scrappy theatrical posters, updates to existing areas, a complete Scrappy fan magazine from the 1930s and last, but definitely not least, a report on the ASIFA-Hollywood’s Scrappyland event I hosted back in April.
I’m still in shock over the news of Joe Ranft’s death.Steve Segal introduced me to Joe sometime around 1986 or 87. I recall walking around Melrose Avenue with them talking about cartoons. Steve was working with Joe on THE BRAVE LITTLE TOASTER at the time (photo at right is from that production). I’ve met up with Joe numerous times since then. He was a fan of Jim Tyer’s animation and I supplied him with numerous Terrytoons for inspirational purposes. Several years ago, when I was working on an ill-fated revival of Heckle & Jeckle for MTV (the project ultimately died in development hell), Joe recommended a great writer whom I ended up collaborating with.What a great guy. I saw him last on July 15th, in Hall H, at the San Diego Comic Con. I joked with him backstage and interviewed him in front of a crowd of 6000. He really was one of the greats of our generation. Rest in peace, my friend.
Next week Nicktoons premieres its second Annual film festival, Nextoons, each night August 21-28, Midnight (ET)/9:00 p.m. (PT). Created in partnership with Frederator Studios, Nextoons showcases the diversity of independent cartoon filmmaking by animators from around the globe.Nextoons consists of seven half-hour specials which will premiere everynight the week of August 21st. The final episode, on Sunday, August 28, will count down the top ten shorts and will reveal the grand-prize winner at the end of the episode. The following shorts are finalists featured in the first episode:La RÃ¨volution des Crabes – Arthur de Pins
Hobbies – Model Bus Collector – Nick Mackie
Runaway Bathtub – Annie Poon
Unmarked – Justin Foo
Those Scurvy Rascals – Blue-Zoo Productions
Her Teddy Bear – Ji Eun Lee
Blue Dress – Chungmin MoonFred Seibert, Rita Street and Eric Homan are the Festival Directors, and Christina Vann of Nicktoons is Executive in Charge of Production. The panel of Grand Jurors for the Nicktoons Film Festival responsible for selecting the $10,000 Grand Prize winner includes: Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker); Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko (co-creators of Nickelodeon’s hit show Avatar), Mike Gabriel (Disneys’ Lorenzo), Elizabeth Ito (last year’s Nextoons winner) and ten-year-old Noah Webb, a cartoon connoisseur.
It’s bad enough that Disney veteran animation directors John Musker and Ron Clements (THE GREAT MOUSE DETECTIVE, THE LITTLE MERMAID, ALADDIN, HERCULES, TREASURE PLANET) said goodbye to the magic kingdom last Friday, after 31 years. Now the financial advice website MOTLEY FOOL has posted this negative overview of Disney’s current animation prospects.Personally, I’m looking forward to CHICKEN LITTLE, and the other forthcoming in-house projects, with great enthusiasm.
What do Tim Biskup, Shag, Miles Thompson, Robert Williams, Frank Kozik, Coop and Leonard Nimoy have in common? They’ve all had exhibits at the Copro/Nason art gallery in Santa Monica. The latest installation, SPLAT! opens this Saturday August 20th featuring the highly entertaining cartoon artwork of Anthony Ausgang and Krk Ryden. Both artists have an obvious subversive 1940s cartoon edge in their work – thus they are two of my current favorites. An artists reception on Saturday night is open to all from 8:30pm to 11:30pm.
Need any 16mm prints of GUMBY? Want any back issues of UNCLE SCROOGE? Can you use a collection of black & white TERRYTOONS?Gotta clean out the garage. So it’s time to have a yard sale! Visit Cartoon Research for all the details!
Dan Lee remains both famous and anonymous. You might not have heard of this Montreal-born, Toronto-raised artist, but you already know his animated characters. Dan Lee was a character designer at Pixar Animation Studios for 7 years. His most famous character creations include the design of the lost clownfish Nemo from Finding Nemo, and the charming little girl named Boo in Monster Inc.At the young age of 35, Dan Lee passed away much too early on Jan 16th, 2005, after a 17 month battle with lung cancer. To honor his Dan’s life and talent, three of his good friends from Pixar, Mark Holmes, Noelle Page, and Carmen Ngai had an idea of compiling some of Lee’s most recent personal artwork together as a coffee table book, In Your Face (Zippety Publishing), to show the other side of Lee to the rest of the world.In Your Face is all about faces. When Lee wasn’t busy designing blockbuster characters for Pixar, he could be found doodling the local coffee drinkers at Canvas Gallery Cafe in San Francisco, where the book launch will take place. All of the proceeds will be donated to a chosen charity. You can find more information about this event at:http://danleebooklaunch.blogspot.comIn Your Face
A Dan Lee Tribute, Exhibition and Book Launch
Thursday, August 25, 2005 7pm to Midnight
UPDATE: Ronnie del Carmen writes on his BLOG that the Dan Lee show on Aug. 25, will not just include Dan’s artwork, but artwork by a variety of Pixar artists. All proceeds will go to charity. Artists participating include Albert Lozano, Robert Kondo, Ronnie Del Carmen, Ernesto Nemesio, Enrico Casarosa, Paul Topolos, Louis Gonzalez, Liz Holmes, Daniel Arriaga, and Jay Shuster.
Our friend David Gerstein has been hard at work for many months compiling a new book for Gemstone that, I will tell you now, is a must-have. Mickey and the Gang: Classic Stories in Verse, doesn’t immediately sound (by its title) like the major historical resource it is. But believe me, you want this book.The main feature of the 360-page full color tome is the 123 lavish studio-produced “Disney pages” originally published in Good Housekeeping magazine between 1934 and 1944. This alone is worth the price of the book. But David has added much more background information and “bonus material” to each piece, including never-before-reprinted Disney Sunday strips by Floyd Gottfredson, rare comic art by Walt Kelly, Al Taliaferro, and Daan Jippes; gag cartoons and text features from Mickey Mouse Magazine, Mickey Mouse Weekly, and Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories; photos of Disney toys and games from the period; and rare animation sketches by Carl Barks, Albert Hurter, and others. David explains the genesis of each of these Disney Pages, and explains why there is more there than meets the eye.The book will be published in November and will retail for $29.95. Highly Recommended!
Does Ross Bagdasarian know about this? Oy!
If you love Looney Tunes (and who doesn’t?), you’ll probably like these compilations of Mel Blanc novelty records and radio excerpts. PARTY PANIC was released a few years ago with the classic “Daffy Duck’s Rhapsody”. That CD is now joined by THE BEST OF MEL BLANC which has 25 tracks and includes Mel’s WOODY WOODPECKER song and a rendition of BARNEY GOOGLE. THE GOLDEN AGE OF COMEDY, an import, is also worthy for the bits with Jack Benny and Burns & Allen.(Thanks to Mark Dillman) That’s all, Folks!