This is an interesting, if not entirely successful, CG ad for Johnnie Walker produced by Aardman Animations. The one-minute spot brings to life the paintings of Delacroix, Hokusai, Seurat, Miro and Magritte. View ad HERE.
(via Hydrocephalic Bunny)
Next Thursday night I will be giving a talk at the Van Eaton Galleries, discussing and screening some of the best non-Disney cartoons of all time – surrounded by original art from the films themselves. This is a benefit for the ASIFA-Hollywood Animation Archive – there will be an admission charge ($8) and a healthy pitch for further donations to this worthy cause. Cartoons I’ll be discussing at the event will include Happy Harmonies (Dance of the Weed pictured above), Woody Woodpecker, Screwy Squirrel, the Fox & Crow and Popeye. Seating is very limited and you must RSVP (to email@example.com) if you are interested in attending. The fun begins at 7:30pm, Feb. 23rd, at Van Eaton Galleries, 13613 Ventura Blvd. in Sherman Oaks.
Visit HERE for an excellent blog post by feature story artist Jenny Lerew discussing simplicity in animation storytelling and how it applies to LADY AND THE TRAMP and THE INCREDIBLES:
Where “Lady and the Tramp” succeeds is in taking a simple story and making absolutely sure that every character and every scene makes an impact on the audience. As leisurely as some of the pacing is, it’s deliberate and crucial to establishing the mood–either of the time period, the time of day, or the characters’ emotions. And there is very little dialogue–as well as the fact that it’s not so much what the characters say, but how they act while saying it. The humor comes from context and expression, not from verbal jokes.
How cool is this – Pixar animator Andrew Gordon has done a three-part podcast interview with co-worker Andrew Stanton, the director of FINDING NEMO. Haven’t had a chance to listen to it yet, though I’ll definitely be making time for this. Check out part one which was just posted at Spline Doctors.
Pixar previewed a couple clips from CARS at WonderCon in San Francisco last weekend. Here’s a description of the clips shown. More interestingly, below is a collection of blog comments I found online that offers some sense of what WonderCon attendees thought of the clips. Discuss amongst yourselves.
They showed a couple of clips of it. Ugh Nascar.. and the main car character makes me think Nemo got turned into a Nascar car :P I sure hope this movie is better than it seems to be.
Pixar showed updated trailers to Cars that looks much better than the advanced trailers we saw last year (it’s a very NASCAR movie, with some camera moves that are impossible in the real world. It looked cool.)
Also I saw One Man Band and CARS IS GOING TO BE SO AWESOME oh my god I cannot even describe, it looks AMAZING they showed the first sequence in the film and like… I really don’t like cars much but that bit they showed us… man it made me want to go hump a lambhorghini.
Overall, the trademark Pixar humor is still there, but I felt the topic of auto-racing limited its potential, as the footage didn’t make me more excited about seeing the film.
The Pixar panel was pretty snooze-inducing, but we did get to see the Oscar-nominated short “One Man Band.” We only wish Cars looked half as entertaining as that short.
The clips shown generated excitement and laughter from the crowd. Looks like Disney and Pixar’s merger will prove to be a valuable partnership in the long run.
“Cars” looks a lot better with some of the fully-rendered clips presented by a panel from Pixar. The details are pretty breathtaking, IMO. Before I was concerned because the cars looked like Silly Putty in last-year’s trailer. I’m still a little ambivalent, but I’m willing to see it.
The tribute to UPA on March 26th at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood is shaping up nicely. Mark your calendars now. Scheduled to appear for a Q&A are Bill Melendez, Willis Pyle, Alan Zaslove, Fred Crippen, and Sam Clayberger – among others. Films will include rare 35mm presentations of such classics as ROOTY TOOT TOOT (1952) and THE TELL TALE HEART (1953), as well as commercials, BOING BOING SHOW shorts (like Ernie Pintoff/Fred Crippen/John Whitney’s BLUES PATTERN and Rod Scribner’s THE LOST DUCHESS) and industrial films like THE BROTHERHOOD OF MAN (1946) and MAN ALIVE! (1952). More info will be posted here in the coming weeks or check UPApix.com.
I am blown away by images appearing on the internet from the International Toy Fair being held this week in New York. In addition to the cool Looney Tunes figures from DC Direct (mentioned below) there are also some nice items on tap from Disney’s MEET THE ROBINSONS and Pixar’s CARS. And Dark Horse has an incredible selection of stuff for 2006, ranging from Harvey Comics HOT STUFF to Disney’s wartime GREMLINS (above), Kellogg’s cereal cartoon mascots and Al Capp’s Shmoo!(Thanks, Ted Pratt)
A favorite Mexican character actor of mine, Pedro Gonzales Gonzales has passed away at age 80. His only connection to animation was loaning his distinctive personality to several DePatie-Freleng Speedy Gonzales/Daffy Duck cartoons in 1966.
Animation director Michael Sporn points out a depressing moment he saw on JEOPARDY’s “Teen Tournament” a couple nights ago. There’s apparently more than a bit of truth to all those research studies that claim kids today have no idea who Walt Disney was. And these teens on JEOPARDY are supposedly the smart ones.
UPDATE: Tim Nickel writes:
You can view the game with that clue HERE. The clue itself is in the second round under the category “NATIONAL INVENTORS HALL OF FAME” and the clue reads “‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’ was the first full length animated film to use this inductee’s multiplane camera”. Which makes it sound like the answer should be Ub Iwerks, not Disney. So you can see why no one got it, it was a confusing clue.
Did Michael Eisner attempt to break up the Disney-Pixar merger?
Use BugMeNot to bypass NY POST registration.
LOS ANGELES LETS BE FRIENDS is a delightfully inventive CG/live-action spot from 2005 directed by Greg Gunn, Reza Rasoli and Diffan Norman of the Los Angeles animation collective Three Legged Legs. The designs were inspired by the work of Jeff Soto. Too bad Los Angeles isn’t actually like this.
DC Direct, the action figure division of DC Comics, is releasing a series of Looney Tunes figures this spring which look pretty hot. The toyline, dubbed the “Golden Collection” (not to be confused with the DVD sets of the same name), are based on scenes from great Warner Bros. cartoons. They look terrific.Meanwhile over in Italy, a company called Ape Collection is selling a set of 60 individual figurines based on the Warner Bros. cartoons including such obscure figures as Clampett’s Do-Do, Slow-Poke Rodriguez, Baby Face Finster (below, left), Cecil Turtle (below, center) and Egghead (below, right). And that’s NOT all, folks! According to moderator Jon Cooke on The Termite Terrace Trading Post, they plan to release further obscurities like Cool Cat, Conrad the Sailor and the Bookworm. With Looney Tunes no longer on broadcast TV or Cartoon Network, Warner Bros. is slowly managing to erase its animation legacy from the public mindset. Luckily the DVD sets and these smart collectibles can remind us how great these cartoons are for years to come.
John Canemaker discusses Oswald The Rabbit on NPR’s TALK OF THE NATION.
REMIXING THE MAGIC opens this Friday, February 17, at Gallery 1988 (7020 Melrose Ave., corner of Melrose & La Brea). Opening reception is 7-10pm. The exhibit features the work of fifty contemporary artists, including many animation folk, reinterpreting Disney characters and films. Jerry mentioned this show on the Brew last weekend, and now we’re offering an exclusive preview of a few of the pieces that’ll be on display.
Show co-curator Jon Gibson tells the Brew, “The most amazing part of this show is the broadness of the theme – some artists went all-out theatrical classics, while others dug into the vault of Disney shorts, while others, like Biskup, did Disneyland. There’s even an Oswald piece!” Personally, I think there’s a great symbolic quality to this show as well: artists are reclaiming classic animated characters that have for too long been slumming it as corporate symbols. The timing of the show couldn’t be more appropriate considering that in the past month artists have begun reclaiming the Disney studio as well and helping to set it on the right path again.
(click on images for larger versions)
Inspiration: PINOCCHIO, misc.
Tinkerbell’s Lucky Day
Inspiration: PETER PAN
Inspiration: Tomorrowland (Disneyland)
Inspiration: ALICE IN WONDERLAND
Alice Spills Her Tea
Inspiration: ALICE IN WONDERLAND
Inspiration: BUILDING A BUILDING
Tags: Art, Disney, Animation
Classic Disney cartoon shorts are slowly being made available for download in Apple’s iTunes music store. The plan is to release every Disney Oscar winner and nominee over the next several months, ten at a time. Among the first titles available are THE OLD MILL, THE BRAVE LITTLE TAILOR and THE TORTOISE AND THE HARE. We applaud the decision to include the original version of THREE LITTLE PIGS with its original 1933 United Artists opening titles and the infamous Peddler gag intact – a scene which was subsequently re-animated in the 1940s to be less offensive (the Apple download combines the original 1933 picture with the Wolf’s voice, in that one scene, re-dubbed from a 1940s reissue). This stuff is highly recommended in any format!