Don’t try to rip off Betty Boop.
Pixar artist Geefwee Boedoe is coming out with a children’s book called ARROWVILLE. I don’t know much more about the book, but Geefwee also has a lot of nice artwork printed in the ART OF MONSTERS INC. book. Here’s an INTERVIEW from a couple years back where he speaks about the origin of his unique name and about other work he’s done in animation.
“Tron” broke new ground for the art of computer generated-imagery when it was first released in 1982. Now Disney’s landmark film returns for special 10-Day, 70 MM engagement at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood, May 6th through the 16th.An opening night panel discussion will be moderated by Academy Award nominated visual effects artist/filmmaker Harrison Ellenshaw, and will include such luminaries from the film as director Steven Lisberger, visual effects supervisor Richard Taylor (“The Lord of the Rings” trilogy), and production designer/futurist Syd Mead. Complete press release here.
Sounds like a fun event taking place in San Francisco this Friday evening, April 30. Here’s the press release:
Enjoy an evening of Art Deco film and animation at the Legion of Honor Museum with Nik Phelps and the Sprocket Ensemble. Join Nik and the Ensemble as they treat you to a tour de force of the Deco Age from a vintage 1928 Felix the Cat to two seldom seen Busby Berkeley masterpieces as part of Art Deco Fridays in honor of the “ART DECO: 1910-1939″ exhibition. Other cartoons include Tex Avery’s MISS GLORY and Chuck Jones’ THE ARISTO CAT.
Each piece will be introduced by eminent animation and film scholar Karl Cohen and the audience will be treated to vocals and voice overs by Scrumbly Koldewyn and Cindy Goldfield. The show is free with museum admission: $8/adult, $6/seniors, $5/teens, free/children under 12 years of age, free for museum members. For info call 415/682.2481. Event starts at 6 PM and the Legion Museum is at 100 34th Avenue in Lincoln Park (San Francisco).
Those of you longing for Columbia Pictures to release their library of UPA and Screen Gems cartoons on dvd – you’ll have to keep waiting.But, Columbia-Tristar Home Video will commit one Color Rhapsody cartoon to digital home video this summer when it releases a “special edition” of the B-movie spoof THE LOST SKELETON OF CADAVERA on dvd June 22nd. The Ub Iwerks 1937 cartoon “Skeleton Frolic”, a color remake of Disney’s “The Skeleton Dance” (1929), was re-released theatrically with LOST SKELETON in its limited theatrical release this past winter. It will be included as bonus material on the dvd. The LOST SKELETON feature itself is hilarious, and highly recommended regardless – the addition of this bonus cartoon makes it a must-buy.
An inspiring WEBSITE offering a visual history of comics, from more than a thousand years ago through 1930. Lots of great scans of comics that can’t be found anywhere else on-line. Plus photos of cartoonists, a history of speech balloons and much more. A lot of my favorites are here – Lyonel Feininger, Milt Gross, Cliff Sterrett – as well as a lot of names that I’d like to see more of, such as Olaf Gulbransson, Herbert Crowley and Oscar Anderson. Enjoy the site and try not to think too much about how in less than a century we’ve passed from the sheer beauty and creativity of these comics to the visual insipidity of DRABBLE.
(Thanks to Jared Chapman’s blog for the link)
Asifa-Hollywood will be celebrating the release of the landmark Disney Treasures DVD On The Front Lines: The War Years with a special screening of rare 35mm prints at the Alex Theatre in Glendale.In addition to the films, arrangements are being made for a special panel of industry professionals to speak, to discuss the work and culture at Walt Disney that went into creating these animted films.The DVD collection, on sale May 18th, contains 32 short subjects (including Education For Death and Der Fuerher’s Face) and exclusive declassified material. In addition to these films, this DVD also includes the full-length feature “Victory Through Air Power” (1943).The special screening will take place Tuesday, May 11, 2004 at 8:00 P.M.
216 North Brand Boulevard
Glendale, CAGeneral Admission Tickets: $10
Members of ASIFA-Hollywood – $7.00
Members of the Alex Film Society – $7.00
Purchase tickets online or call the Alex Theatre box office at 818-243-ALEX (2539).
More Info: www.alextheatre.org or www.asifa-hollywood.org
June 1st is the release date for Winsor McCay: The Master Edition (Milestone Films) a dvd collection featuring brand-new digital transfers of every surviving film, a new piano score by composer Gabriel Thibaudeau, and John Canemaker’s wonderful documentary Remembering Winsor McCay (1976).This is obviously a must-have: the collection includes the stunning hand-colored Little Nemo (1911) mastered from the only known 35mm print in existence, and Gertie the Dinosaur (1914) which was recently restored by the National Archives of Canada using four 35mm nitrate prints from the CinémathÃ¨que’s collection.It also includes How A Mosquito Operates (1912), The Sinking Of The Lusitania (1918), the existing fragments of the lyrical The Centaurs (1918-21), Gertie On Tour (1918-21) and Flip’s Circus (1918-21). McCay’s final three works, all from his surreal “Dreams from a Rarebit Fiend” series are featured: Bug Vaudeville (1921), The Pet (1921) and The Flying House (1921). There is also an audio track commentary by John Canemaker and a still gallery from his amazing collection of McCay memorabilia. Order it from Amazon.com for $20.99
We’re excited to announce our first guest blogger, Mark Mayerson, who will be joining us on Cartoon Brew next Monday, May 3. Here’s a little bit about him:
In 28 years in the business, Mark Mayerson has worked on commercials, TV specials and TV series in both drawn and computer animation. In addition to animating, he’s also written, directed and produced for MONSTER BY MISTAKE, a computer animated series he created. Mark lives in Toronto, Canada.
Both Jerry and I greatly enjoy Mark’s thoughts on modern and classic animation, and we’re looking forward to his contributions in the coming weeks. Here’s a few of Mark’s longer pieces on cartoons:
Here’s three books that I’ll definitely be buying (or perhaps stealing) when they’re released later this year.
ANIMATION NOW!: A visual survey of contemporary world animation
by Julius Wiedemann
Taschen, 576 pages, paperback, $40
THE ART OF THE INCREDIBLES: The ‘art of’ book for the animated film I’m most looking forward to this year
by Mark Cotta Vaz
Chronicle Books, 160 pages, hardcover $40
THE MISCHIEVOUS ART OF JIM FLORA: The first book devoted to the art of the influential Fifties record cover designer
by Irwin Chusid
Fantagraphics, 150 pages, paperback, $25
(Thanks to Thorsten Hasenkamm, who keeps very good tabs on upcoming animation art books. Check out his fine website HERE.)
While discussing cartoon trivia at a brunch yesterday (with friends Keith Scott, Will Ryan, Harry McCracken, Amid Amidi, Milt Gray, Tom Knott, Mark Kausler and Mark Evanier) I was surprised to learn that many of my friends hadn’t seen, nor heard of, a great new book on Dr. Seuss I bought a few weeks ago. So I made a note to mention it here.The Seuss, The Whole Seuss and Nothing But The Seuss A Visual Biography of Dr. Seuss by Charles D. Cohen ($35.00 Random House) is a must-have for Suess fans and animation buffs. The book discusses Seuss minutiae and traces Ted Geisel’s inspirations and influences. This includes much about his work on Private Snafu, The 5000 Fingers of Dr. T, and Gerald McBoing Boing.The book is very well written and researched – he even draws a line between Krazy Kat, Felix and Dick Whittington’s Cat (illustrated by showing the Iwerks film’s one sheet poster with Wittington’s cat, in a hat, a pose almost identical to Seuss’ CAT IN THE HAT). The book is loaded with lavishly illustrated with rare and oddball Suess cartoons and ads. There is much information on Geisel’s Hollywood writing – including the lost 1931 Flit films Put On The Spout and ‘Neath The Bababa Tree(both released by Warner Bros.). If you have any interest in this subject – I urge you to buy this volume. It’s great!
Saturday’s Asifa-Hollywood screening & tribute to UPA was an incredible success – thanks to the number of UPA veteran’s who showed up and participated. We showed eight films (35mm prints) including ROOTY TOOT TOOT, UNICORN IN THE GARDEN, WILLIE THE KID, TELL-TALE HEART, HOW NOW McBOING BOING, CHRISTOPHER CRUMPET, HAM & HATTIE: SAILING AND VILLAGE BAND, and in CinemaScope, MAGOO’S PUDDLE JUMPER.Tee Bosustow showed us a brief clip of his work-in-progress documenmary “UPA: Mavericks, Mayhem and Magoo” which included rare 1952 footage of Bill Melendez animating Christopher Crumpet. But the highlight of the day was our guest panel: Alan Zaslove, Bob McIntosh, Fred Crippen, Mel Levin, Ed Friedman and Joe Siracusa. Also in attendance, Bob Kurtz, Henrietta Jordan (UPA manager), Martha Sigall and Mrs. Art Babbit. The program was taped for Bosustow’s documentary. We all felt transported to the 1950s – all the panelists were candid, and no one had a bad word about the studio or its directors, designers and producers. It sounded like they were all having a ball – and they produced animation changed the world.
My thanks to the panelists and the audience who shared this experience. If you were there yesterday, I’d love to hear your comments and recollections on our Animation History Forum
Brew reader (and artist extrodinaire) Stephen deStefano wants to call your attention to a rather exceptional film that’s come out of New York, directed by a super talented young animator.
“His name is Alex Woo, and you can check out a trailer for his film, REX STEELE, NAZI
SMASHER at Monkeysuit.com. Watch it, I think you’ll enjoy it, then wrap your mind around the fact that it’s actually a student film, which Alex produced this past year at NYU. Of course, he had a bit of help from co-producers Bill Presing and Matt Peters, two NY animation veterans.
Still, Alex’s talent is undeniable. Also, if you’re not familiar with the work of the uber-talented Mr. Presing, you may soon be. I worked with him here in NY at a studio called Noodle Soup, where he was Storyboard Supervisor. Around the beginning of this year, however, the west coast called, and Bill is now at Pixar. Bill’s not quite thirty yet, but has unbelieveable gobs of talent.”