BURBANK, Calif. – This coming holiday, Disney invites audiences of all ages to make Prep & Landing (the all-new modern classic Christmas tale) part of their family’s “must own” holiday-viewing collection!Â Arriving to DVD on November 22, 2011, Prep & Landing is the perfect blend of Christmas spirit, humor and entertaining characters that will keep the entire family grinning from ear-to-ear. Complete with two new bonus shorts – Tiny’s Big Adventure and Operation Secret Santa (which features Betty White as the voice of Mrs. Clause) — Prep & Landing will be available for the suggested retail price of $19.99 in the U.S. and $24.99 in Canada. It’s the perfect stocking stuffer for all ages! For more information on this release, please visit www.Disney.com/PrepAndLanding.
Prep & Landing is an adorable holiday story about a high-tech team of elves who ensure homes around the world are properly prepared for their visit from Santa. After working for a tireless 227 years, an elf named Wayne (voiced by Dave Foley) is upset when he doesn’t receive an expected promotion. Instead he is partnered with an idealistic rookie elf named Lanny (voiced by Derek Richardson) to execute a special Christmas Eve mission. While on their journey, Wayne and Lanny encounter unexpected challenges that push them to their limits and ultimately threaten Christmas for children around the world. But in the end, these two elves work together to guide Santa through a raging snowstorm in order to save Christmas.
Prep & Landing, which first debuted in 2009 as ABC TV’s first animated television special produced by Walt Disney Animation Studios, features the voice talents of DaveFoley (Disneyâ—Pixar’s A Bug’s Life, Toy Story 2, Cars) as Wayne, Derek Richardson (TV’s Men in Trees) as Lanny, Sarah Chalke (TV’s Scrubs and Roseanne) as Magee, Mason Vale Cotton (TV’s Desperate Housewives) as Timmy Terwelp, David DeLuiseÂ (Disney Channel’s Wizards of Waverley Place) as Dancer, Peter Jacobson (TV’s House M.D., Transformers) as Waterkotte, Lino DiSalvo (Disney’s Bolt) as Gristletoe Joe, William Morgan Sheppard (Transformers, The Prestige) as The Big Guy, Nathan Greno (Disney’s Bolt, Meet The Robinsons) as Dasher, Hayes MacArthur (Life As We Know It, She’s Out Of My League) as Thrasher and Kasha Kropinski (Fame, Big Fish) as Miss Holly.
Â·Â Â Â Â Â Â Prep & Landing Stocking Stuffer Shorts:
—Â Â Â Â Â Tiny’s Big Adventure — The assistant to the North Pole Christmas Eve Command Center is trying to make a pot of coffee and in the process, accidentally ruins the elves’ break room
—Â Â Â Â Operation Secret Santa — Lead elves Lanny and Wayne are sent on a special assignment by Mrs. Clause (voice of Betty White) into Santa’s office
Â·Â Â Â Â Â Â Prep & Landing Kringle Academy Training Videos — Entertaining Elf training videos shot in Santa’s workshop
—Â Â Â Â Â Elfdate.com/The Fruitcake Factory/Spa Navidad
—Â Â Â Â Â Welcome to Kringle Academy
—Â Â Â Â Â Kringle Academy Equipment Training
—Â Â Â Â Â Academy Do’s and Don’ts
STREET DATES:Â November 22, 2011
Direct prebook:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â September 27, 2011
Distributor prebook:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â October 11, 2011
Release Format:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â 1-Disc DVD
Suggested Retail Price:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â $19.99 U.S. / $24.99 Canada
Feature Run Time:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â 22-minutes
Rated:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â TV-G (bonus material not yet rated)
Presentation:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â 16×9 Widescreen
Audio & Languages:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â English 5.1 Dolby Digital, French Canadian 5.1 Dolby Digital, Latin Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital
Subtitles:Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â French & Spanish
The all-time classic comic strip comes to life as an animated adventure in this complete Season One DVD release on November 22 from Shout! Factory, in association with Corus Entertainment Inc.’s Nelvana Enterprises. For the first time ever in the U.S., fans can join in the raucous adventures of Tintin and his loyal dog Snowy. Experience the excitement and wonder of The Adventures of Tintin at home before you head to the theaters for the brand new major motion picture that weaves in elements from the stories The Secret of the Unicorn, The Crab with the Golden Claws, and Red Rackham’s Treasures that are among the first five episodes of the series and included on this DVD set.
Adapted from the long-running graphic novels by the late cartoon artist Hergé (a.k.a. Georges Remi), the popular animated TV series The Adventures of Tintin, co-produced by Nelvana and Ellipsanime Productions, chronicles the young and intrepid investigative reporter Tintin and his faithful dog Snowy, along with Captain Haddock, the muddled genius Professor Calculus, and the bumbling detectives Thompson and Thomson as they embark on incredible globe-trotting adventures full of excitement, mind-boggling mystery and fun.
Originally created as a French comic strip in the late 1920s, The Adventures of Tintin spawned a series of popular graphic novels, translated in 80 languages and published in over 50 countries. Throughout the years, Tintin and a unique cast of characters have evolved into memorable animated TV series (1990s), a BBC radio series (1992), stage plays, as well as the upcoming 3D motion capture feature film The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn.
The complete first season of the award-winning series is now available for your enjoyment with 13 original episodes on 2 adventure-packed DVDs!
Season One Episode List:
Disc 1 The Crab With The Golden Claws, Part 1
The Crab With The Golden Claws, Part 2
The Secret Of The Unicorn, Part 1
The Secret Of The Unicorn, Part 2
Red Rackham’s Treasure
Cigars Of The Pharaoh, Part 1
Cigars Of The Pharaoh, Part 2
The Blue Lotus, Part 1
The Blue Lotus, Part 2
The Black Island, Part 1
The Black Island, Part 2
The Calculus Affair, Part 1
The Calculus Affair, Part 2
Street Date: 11/22/11
Languages: English, Spanish
Total Running Time: +/- 5 hours
Los Angeles, CA (November 17, 2011) – Industry veteran Simon Mowbray has joined international visual effects company Pixomondo as a Creative Director developing and executing concepts for commercial projects. Based out of Los Angeles, one of Pixomondo’s 11 studios around the world, Mowbray brings a wealth of experience as both a creative visionary and production visual effects artist.
Mowbray comes to Pixomondo from Ntropic where he served as Creative Director and VFX Supervisor since 2009. Prior to joining Ntropic, Mowbray spent 13 years as the Vice President and Creative Director of Radium, a boutique design and visual effects company he co-founded with current Pixomondo Executive Creative Director Jonathan Keeton.
At Ntropic, Mowbray worked on projects for clients including Haagen Dazs, Lowes, and Lincoln, as well as on a number of music videos for top artists such as Rihanna. At Radium, he and partner Keeton grew the company from a 10-person San Francisco-based shop to over 80 employees in both LA and SF, eventually selling the company to Reel FX in 2007. Radium worked on hundreds of film and television commercial projects over the years including multiple MTV Award-nominated music videos and high-profile campaigns for Target, Honda, and Lexus, among others.
“Until now, most of the companies I have worked with have been boutiques, and what’s most exciting about joining Pixomondo is linking in to a network of over 650 artists around the world, and an opportunity to tackle much bigger projects,” said Mowbray. “The caliber of talent and projects at Pixomondo was a huge draw. They have an amazing body of work, both in commercials and features. It’s exciting to be involved with a company on the rise, especially one with so many resources at their disposal.”
“Not only is Simon quite possibly one of the best Flame/Inferno artists living and highly skilled with Nuke and Maya, he is also very gifted at conceptualizing original concepts and executing them flawlessly,” said Jonathan Keeton, Pixomondo Executive Creative Director. “He is fantastic with clients, from the beginning stages of a project throughout production, and we are thrilled to have him on board at Pixomondo.”
Before forming Radium, Mowbray worked for several years at the San Francisco-based digital production and design studio Western Images. With a strong background in computer graphics and design, Mowbray moved to Montreal in 1991 from Sydney, Australia where honed his skills in digital visual effects at VFX software companies Softimage and Discreet.
If you are planning to buy the two sets of UPA cartoons that Jerry posted about, you would do well to also pick up the forthcoming history of the UPA studio, When Magoo Flew: The Rise and Fall of Animation Studio UPA by Adam Abraham. As far as I know, the book and the DVDs weren’t planned together, but the stars are aligned, and one of the most important yet neglected animation studios of all time is ripe for rediscovery in 2012.
I’ve already read Adam’s book and I’m happy to report that he gets it absolutely right. The research is impeccable, the writing solid, the story fascinating. Though the book includes over 70 illustrations, it’s more narrative history than coffeetable art book, but that’s hardly an issue anymore thanks to the two companion DVD sets that contain UPA’s entire theatrical short output. The 324-page When Magoo Flew will be released by Wesleyan University Press next March. Place your pre-order on Amazon for a mere $20.
Here they come – at long last. Columbia Pictures classic collection of UPA cartoons will soon be available as you’ve never seen them before. These revolutionary mid-century cartoons, in restored form – with as many of the original theatrical titles returned as possible – are a revelation. Full vibrant colors, clean sharp prints, crystal clear sound. The complete library of these films will be available on two separate sets, from two separate companies (sub-licensed from Sony). First up, TCM will make available on March 5th UPA Jolly Frolics. This 3-disc set contains 38 cartoons, including Gerald McBoing Boing, Rooty Toot Toot, The Tell Tale Heart and the rare Ham & Hattie shorts, a video introduction by Leonard Maltin, audio commentaries on select cartoons by Maltin and yours truly, Jerry Beck, UPA studio art consisting of model sheets, concept paintings, storyboards, background paintings and more. This set will only be available via mail order through TCM’s website. Pre-order it NOW!
On June 19th, Shout Factory will release The Mr. Magoo Theatrical Collection which will include all the original Magoo theatricals, including the Oscar winners When Magoo Flew and Magoo’s Puddle Jumper (both in letter boxed CinemaScope). Bonus materials include rare pencil tests, audio commentaries by the likes of Emily Hubley, John Canemaker, Charles Solomon and much much more. I will be telling you more details about these two amazing DVD collections as we get closer to each release date – but it wouldn’t hurt to pre-order them now. Here’s the Magoo Amazon link.
Welcome to a new column by Chris Arrant who is also the editor of CB Biz. In today’s inaugural column, he profiles artist Jon Klassen:
Jon Klassen might have made his first big splash as an animator, but in recent years he’s followed the path of animators like Mo Willems and Tony Fucile and applied his illustrative talents toward the picture book medium. After working as a concept artist and illustrator on films like Coraline and Kung Fu Panda 2, the Los Angeles-based artist is focusing the majority of his time on his burgeoning bibliography of illustrated children’s storybooks like Cats’ Night Out and The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place series.
Klassen tells Cartoon Brew that making the leap to children’s book wasn’t as dramatic as it might have been in years past. “It’s pretty fantastic,” he said. “The tools to make illustration or film are merging closer together, and the more you jump back and forth, the more you see how they overlap even at the conceptual stage. I think that illustrators are finding themselves trying out more animation than they would’ve before, and people who are in animation are trying out more print stuff. Hopefully it leads to a lot of fresh work.”
Klassen has illustrated a number of print picture books over the years, but it’s his most recent, I Want My Hat Back, that holds a special place for him because it’s the first he wrote himself.Â Released in September by Candlewick Press, it was chosen a couple weeks ago as one of The New York Times Book Review’s Ten Best Illustrated Books of the Year.
“I’d never written anything for real before, and the formality of writing was really making me nervous, so it was a relief to try everything in dialog instead of narration,” Klassen explained. “The stiffness of everything in the book comes from my nervousness about the idea of trying a book, but it was fun to use that in the story itself. Also I wanted to do something that looked simple, and when you’re illustrating something for somebody else you get nervous about submitting something too simple for fear it’ll look lazy, so it was nice to give myself the excuse. The story really happened on its own once the tone was set. I got lucky there.”
Although picture books might seem like a long way from animation, the list of animators who have moonlighted as picture book illustrators is a who’s who of animation history: Tom McKimson, Pete Alvarado, Hawley Pratt, Al Dempster, Tony Rizzo, Eyvind Earle, Mary Blair, Paul Julian, Bob Dranko, Chris Jenkyns, and Campbell Grant, to name just a few Golden Age artists. Klassen came to work in picture books as an adult after realizing how much they influenced his early stabs at animation.
“After I got into the design and illustration end of animation, I realized how big a deal those books were and are to me. The amount of mood you remember from even pretty simple books is so cool,” he said. “I’ve wanted to do books since the beginning, probably, but it’s one of those things you sort of feel like you need to get invited to do.”
In a break from his drawing board, Klassen teaches a class at CalArts on Wednesdays titled Illustration for Animation, and he readily admitted that “it’s as vague as it sounds.”
“I’ve never taught a class before so I’m feeling my way through it,” Klassen said, “but mainly I’m trying to get them to think past the fact that they are already pretty good at drawing things and get into the reasons why they are drawing what they are drawing. They’re doing so much work on their own, technically they’re always going to get better anyway, so I’m trying to work on thinking about their approach before the drawing starts. That can be useful in all sorts of different jobs.”
Klassen’s own student animation, “An Eye For An Annai,” created with Dan Rodrigues during their third year at Sheridan College’s Classical Animation Program.
Speaking of different jobs, picture books aren’t the only place you’ll find Klassen’s work. He’s also contributed editorial illustrations to a number of newspapers and magazines, including a recent piece for The New York Times. Although he says picture books were initially his primary goal, he enjoys the unique nature of creating editorial illustrations.
“Smaller scale jobs like that, when they come along and when the schedule suits, are really fun because the turnaround is so quick,” Klassen said. “With a book you have to wait around a year between finishing it and showing it to people, and with editorial work you finish it on Thursday and it’s out on Sunday. I’m not sure it’s what I’m best at, but it’s nice when you get asked to do it.”
Cover illustration for the “New York Times Book Review,” focused on a review of “The Grief of Others” by Leah Hager Cohen.
One thing that Klassen is always asked by admirers of his work is when and where he’ll show up next in animation. Although his main focus remains on books nowadays, animation is finding a way back into his life. “I do try to keep a toe in animation, though mostly on smaller scale stuff,” he said. “With the hardware that’s out there now, book publishers are looking harder at developing stories digitally. I think one of the things they’re looking for is kind of a replacement for a page turn, something to move the story from point to point at your own pace, but without making so interactive that you stop feeling like you’re being told a story in a controlled way.”
“One of the big differences between books and animation or film in general is that with books you can play with the idea that the viewer is moving at their own speed through the story, whereas with film you are controlling their time,” he said. “There are advantages to both, but if you could bring some of what is fun about moving through the kind of space a film creates into the experience of reading a story at your own pace, it could be a really nice middle ground. It could also be really lame. I guess we’ll see.” Chances are if Klassen’s involved, it’ll be something worth our time.
This new animated feature from South Korea, The King Of Pigs, tackles adult themes and examines on the social impact of high school bullying. The film opened earlier this month in Korea; director Yeun Sang-ho discusses his inspirations with The Korea Herald.
Norwich, United Kingdom, November 19, 2011 –(PR.com)– Blockhouse TV announces the release date of the second DVD title in the Jack and Holly series.
The second DVD which is called Jack and Holly’s Cosmic Stories features the intergalactic capers of best friends Jack and Holly as they dispel some of the myths surrounding the cosmos and educate first stage learners about the complexities of the universe.
This second film follows the familiar animated style of Jack and Holly’s Christmas Countdown – once again using their distinctive machinima and mixed-media animation techniques.
Julianne Martin, executive producer of the series says, “We’re sure that children everywhere will be delighted with the new adventures of Jack and Holly and that this DVD will form an integral mile-stone in the Jack and Holly series. It took just over 18 months to complete and once again parents and teachers were involved in the production throughout – guiding us as to what they felt was appropriate and best for first stage learning.”
Blockhouse TV is renowned for taking on the big studio productions with their low-budget but high quality children’s productions. “We’re a tiny team with a fraction of the Hollywood big studios budget,” says Julianne. “But we’re delivering the sort of original content parents are looking for. Children’s screen time has never been more contentious -that’s why we believe all children’s media should aspire to the highest educative standards.”
Jack and Holly’s Cosmic Stories is released on December 1st 2011.
Available through Amazon as an all-regions DVD release (PAL & NTSC) and Video Download. (Customers are able to download free workbooks and comics to accompany the paid-for videos.)
WASHINGTON, Nov. 21, 2011 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — Have you ever been curious about where all the technology in your school, home, car, computer, or office comes from? You might be surprised that a great percentage of the technology we rely on each day was developed or enhanced by NASA. We all know about NASA’s outstanding accomplishments in space, but few of us know just how much the space agency has accomplished right here at home. Except for Arthur. Arthur Christmas, that is.
This year in the holiday release of Arthur Christmas, Santa’s North Pole has turned to high technology to run a precise operation in getting billions of gifts delivered around the world. Run by thousands of computer-savvy elves, the North Pole uses NASA-style technology to track the delivery of gifts around the Earth as they are being delivered by Santa’s high speed S-1. The S-1 is a giant spacecraft in the shape of a sleigh.
Sony Pictures Animation team created a special one-minute segment from the film to help bring attention to the many high tech gadgets and everyday items that come from NASA technology. The educational segment will premiere on the Smithsonian Channel during primetime on Tuesday, Nov. 22. It also can be downloaded for use by educators and media at:
“This was an exciting opportunity for us to have real examples of space technology being used right here on Earth featured in a family holiday film,” said Daniel Lockney, NASA’s technology transfer program executive at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “NASA is constantly creating innovative technologies to enable our current and future missions. Many of these technologies get further developed and turned into consumer products by American industries, creating jobs, fueling the economy, and saving and improving lives around the planet.”
NASA’s technology transfer program provides corporations and innovators with opportunities to bring technology initially developed for space to consumers around the world. Hundreds of examples of NASA spinoff technologies and innovations that have become viable commercial products and are now used in our everyday lives can be found at NASA’s Spinoff website:
Sony Pictures Animation is the creator of Arthur Christmas, directed by Sarah Smith. The film is a 3D holiday feature animation, starring the voices of James McAvoy, Jim Broadbent, Bill Nighy and Imelda Staunton. Sony Pictures Animation is one of the leading animation companies in the industry, producing exciting and advanced animated family entertainment.
Yes, I plugged this last week and will be plugging it frequently the next ten days… Cartoon Brew’s first animation festival starts December 1st at The Cinefamily in Los Angeles. Be there! Here’s a trailer:
Friday 18th November 2011: The Â British Animation Awards has today launched its final call for entries to the UK’s most prestigious awards in animation production and announced the search for the Favourite Ever British Animated Character of all time.
There are several new categories including the WOW! award for inspirational use of animation, Best Mixed Media Children’s Series, a BAA Sting Competition and increased commercial categories with separate awards now on offer for 2D, 3D and stop motion.
Given the current debate about the future of animation production in the UK this year BAA is running an online poll and discussion forum to determine the UK’s Favourite Ever British Animated Character of all time. To celebrate the rich heritage of notable and well-loved animated characters in this country, BAA is asking for nominations across TV, online and advertising for consideration for their shortlist which will be voted for by the public in the New Year. The winner will be announced at next year’s British Animation Awards ceremony.
The 2012 awards will be held in London on Thursday March 15th 2012 at the BFI, with the closing date for entries on the 30th November 2011 (apart from the BAA Sting Award and Best Ever British Animated Character).
The complete list of categories for the 2012 awards is: Â Best Children’s Pre School Series, Best Children’s Series, Best Mixed Media Children’s Series, Best Music Video, Best Commercial: 2D, Best Commercial: 3D, Best Commercial: Stop Motion, Best Commercial: Mixed Media, Best Film/TV Graphics, Best Short Film, Best Animation: Long Form, Best Commissioned Animation: Non-Broadcast and the WOW award for animation used innovative or unusual ways.
In addition, there will be a Children’s Choice Award (chosen by a panel of children from finalists in the children’s category) and a Public Choice (voted for by cinema-goers across the country) and the BAA Sting Competition an exciting new category where animators are being asked to create a special sting for the Awards.
BAA director Jayne Pilling said:Â “The last two years have been a successful and innovative but difficult period for British animation and at the BAA’s we’re looking forward to celebrating the very best the UK industry has to offer”.
Held every two years, the BAAs celebrate and recognise British animation talent, with past winners including Nick Park, Tim Burton and David Shrigley.
Voted by peer-group juries, with additional Awards voted for by the public, the British Animation Awards is the only ceremony in Britain to recognise all forms of animation. They reward the work of students and established animators, feature and short films, animated graphics for film and television, children’s and adult television series and specials, music videos and commercials.
My Bloody Lad was produced as part of a summer training program at Paris based production house WIZZ, between July and August 2011, by Cyril Chauvin, William Dousse, Thibaud Petitpas and Pierre Rutz (collectively known as deadWALTER) – all first year students at the Ecole des Gobelins.
Manohla Dargis in the New York Times said it’s “Lighter in mood, softer in political outlook and less narratively ambitious than the first”. Kenneth Turan in the Los Angeles Times was similarly luke warm, saying “Seeing thousands of penguins dance with Rockettes-like precision is still a kick, but coherent storytelling goes missing.” Happy Feet Two opens this weekend. I haven’t seen it yet, but I’d be curious to know what you think.
More importantly, the film opens with a new 3-minute three-dimensional CG Looney Tunes short, I Tawt I Taw a Putty Tat, with voices by Mel Blanc (from a 1951 recording) and June Foray. I have seen this short and think it’s great tribute to Blanc – and perhaps the most visually spectacular of the modern day Looney Tunes. (I’ll be posting an interview with director Matt O’Callaghan next week). If you’ve seen this, let us know what you think in the comments section below.
Comments accepted on Happy Feet Two and/or I Tawt I Taw A Putty Tat only if you’ve seen the films (all other comments will be deleted).