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This Week in Animation History

This Week in Animation History: Disney Gutted Their Hand-Drawn Animation Division, 3-D is a Fad, Athens Olympic Mascots

To commemorate ten years of Cartoon Brew, I thought it would be fun to revisit our posts from earlier years. What happened in animation last year? Five years ago? Ten years ago?

I’m borrowing the idea from our pals at Boing Boing who have recently been running a similar feature. We’ve documented ten years’ worth of cartoon history on the Brew, a lot of which I’ve forgotten, and I’m curious to read through the site again. So let’s get started.

One year ago this week
Disney Just Gutted Their Hand-Drawn Animation Division: On April 11, 2013, Disney gutted their hand-drawn animation division, and laid off nine veteran animators, including some of the studio’s biggest names: Nik Ranieri, Ruben Aquino, Frans Vischer, Russ Edmonds, Brian Ferguson, Jamie Lopez and Dan Tanaka. Two of the animators who still have jobs are Eric Goldberg and Mark Henn.

Five years ago this week
3-D is a Fad: “I love 3D movies. Thanks to a pair of 3-D film festivals held in L.A. several years ago, I’ve been lucky enough to see perhaps 95% of all 3-D films ever made. On top of that, I think the use of 3-D in recent motion pictures (Coraline for example) is perhaps the best application of the format in film history. Digital technology has -at last- perfected the technique. I’m not crazy about having to wear the extra set of glasses… nevertheless, it’s a wonderful way to experience a movie. But it ain’t gonna last.”

Ten years ago this week
Proof That There’s No Greek Cartoon God: The mascots for the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens – Phevos and Athena – are inspired by a 2,700-year-old Greek terracotta doll, but as comedian Lewis Black puts it, they look more like dicks in sweaters.