I found out these came out a few months ago, but I hadn’t seen them till yesterday. The black box is very hip and the band-aids themselves use 1930s comic strip images – perfect if you cut your finger while reading David Gerstein’s new book. A bargain at $2.28 in the cardboard box. A package of Mickey Band-Aids in a special collectors tin costs $7.86 on amazon.com.
I’ll be in San Diego next week, lurking around Comic Con, hanging out at Tr!ckster, and showing The Worst Cartoons Ever.
If you’re going, you’ll be seeing a lot of people walking around with this bag (above) which will be handed to all attendees of Comic Con. It’s the official carry-bag of the Con, designed by Warner Bros. Worldwide TV Marketing. The bags feature artwork from 10 different Warner Bros. titles (TV series, video games, DC Comics) on one side, with official Comic-Con 2011 artwork (also designed by WB WW TV Mktg) on the other. For the first time, the giant-sized (24″x28″) bag converts into a backpack, making it more functional. And, yes, the protective poster tube remains intact.
I’ll be posting later this week about my panels and whereabouts. If you know of any parties, panels, things I should check out while there, let me know.
Sadly, Disney and Pixar are limiting their participation at next week’s San Diego Comic Con (they are saving their previews and scoops for the D23 event next month in Anaheim). However, if you are in L.A. and skipping the Con, you have a unique opportunity to see the latest short from Pixar ahead of everyone else.
On Thursday July 21st, the North American premiere of La Luna will screen as part of the opening night program at the LA Shorts Fest. A special presentation of “The Making of Pixar’s La Luna” by its director Enrico Casarosa will take place on Sunday July 24th at 12 noon. The presentation will be “loaded with original artwork and insightful looks into Pixar’s production process”. Casarosa will “discuss the journey that led him to create this very personal short, and demonstrate the singularly artistic style by which the film was crafted”. Tickets go on sale July 14th online, the screenings will take place at Laemmle’s Sunset 5 in West Hollywood. If you aren’t at Comic Con, I’d recommend checking this out.
On an oil platform, a story of friendship between two workers is compromised by the insanity of one of them. This one is a little more subdued than the usual student films from Gobelins, but no less effective. By popular demand, the 2011 student project by Rémi Bastie, Nicolas Dehghani, Jonathan Djob-Nkondo, Paul LaColley, Nicolas Pegon, Jérémy Pires, Kevin Manach (much of the team behind last years music video Todor and Petru).
Here it is, the trailer for the hand drawn/CG, Mexican Top Cat movie from Illusion Studios. Don Gato y su Pandilla will open theatrically, and in 3-D (stereoscopic), in September. No word on any U.S., release.
We post a lot of new student films on Cartoon Brew, so as an interesting contrast I thought it would be worthwhile (and fun) to watch Joel Fletcher’s 1982 stop-motion film Encounter. Although not technically a student film, Fletcher recently digitally remastered this 29 year-old amateur production, one of his first attempts to make puppets, build sets and animate characters of his own design. Today he’s is a professional animator (Nightmare Before Christmas, Dinosaur, King Kong, Land Of The Lost, X-Men: The Last Stand) and recently added a creative process blog to his website, which has much behind the scenes info about the making of Encounter.
“A man comes to get back his identity, stolen by an ogre while he was a child”. Absolutely bizarre, absolutely beautiful. Who’s Afraid of Mr Greedy?, is a 4-minute, traditionally-animated short directed by Simon Boucachard, Jean Baptiste Cumont, Sylvain Fabre, Guillaume Fesquet, Adeline Grange, Maxime Mary and Julien Rossire – all students at Gobelins in Paris.
Here’s a strangely abrupt teaser trailer for Studio Ghibli’s newest film, From Up on Poppy Hill (Kokurikozaka kara). It’s based on the 1980 two-volume manga of the same name written by TetsurÅ Sayama and drawn by Chizuru Takahashi. The film is a collaboration between GorÅ Miyazaki (Tales from Earthsea), who directed it and his father, Hayao Miyazaki, who wrote the screenplay.
They appeared in comic books, military insignia, as dolls, and in advertisements but Disney’s Gremlins never appeared in an animated film. Or did they?
There are still a lot of animated films made for the U.S. Army and Navy during World War II that are completely undocumented. Recently a military film collector wrote to me asking about a film he had in his collection that contained Disney animation. The film he said, Fundamental Fixed Gunnery Approaches (1943), contained a sequence of Gremlins pulling a plane away from its mission.
I haven’t viewed the film myself, but I had him send me a few frame grabs so I could see what he was talking about. Take a look. What do you think? Five little Gremlins, with the letter “G” on their flight jackets, with large goggles, noses, gloves and aviator caps – similar to the Disney character designs. Could this be the only Disney animation of Dahl’s Gremlins?
Click the thumbnails below to see larger images of the film’s titles and an extreme close-up of the Gremlin frame grab.
In another sign of Hollywood’s slow recognition of animation as a money-making powerhouse: Paramount Pictures announced today the formation of a new in-house animation studio to create animated features, mainly (but not entirely) in conjunction with its Nickelodeon Movies unit. Their goal is one feature per year.
Paramount has been releasing Dreamworks Animation films for the last several years, but that arrangement is said to be ending. Warner Bros. is a potential distributor for Dreamworks post-2012. Disney, which is distributing Dreamworks live action movies, will never touch the Dreamworks Animation films.
Paramount has been releasing Nickelodeon Movies animated features – as well as films spawned by other Viacom Networks, MTV (Beavis and Butt-head) and Comedy Central (South Park) – for years now. The success of ILM/Nick’s Rango this past spring, and the potential of the forthcoming Spielberg/ Jackson Tintin movie has spurred this new division.
Longtime readers of this site know that Paramount has long ties with animation, going back to 1917 1916. It’s relationship with Max Fleischer was its most significant commitment to the form (yielding Betty Boop, Popeye, Superman and Gulliver’s Travels), and its in-house Famous Studios created Casper the Friendly Ghost in the 1940s. Paramount released several Hanna Barbera and Peanuts features in the 1970s and 80s, and had a long series of Nick spin-offs (Rugrats, Spongebob, Jimmy Neutron, etc.) since.
Pixar animator Bob Scott (Day and Night, Toy Story 3) has been drawing a delightful comic strip, Molly and the Bear, for the past few years. It’s worth a read any ol’ time, but this week is a great place to jump in: the strip introduces an animation theme many of our readers can relate to. The current continuity started Monday (7/4), and you can catch up with the whole strip at the Molly and The Bear website.
1972 was a low-point in the history of the medium (the theatrical release of Fritz The Cat and Snoopy Come Home excepted). That year may also have been the nadir of bad Saturday morning cartoons. Critical writing relating to animated films was practically non-existent (Funnyworld #14 was all we had). Brew reader Tony Wisneske was looking through some old LIFE magazines and found this rather cynical little write-up on the status of the Saturday morning shows. Worth a read to experience the mind-set back then, when the best we had to offer was The Brady Kids, Roman Holidays and The Osmonds. The date of the magazine was December 1, 1972.