Monthly Archives: February 2011

Keitel, Giamatti joining Folman’s “The Congress”

Keitel, Giamatti joining Folman's "The Congress"

Keitel, Giamatti joining Folman's "The Congress"

Actors Harvey Keitel, Danny Huston and Paul Giamatti have officially joined the cast of Ari Folman’s The Congress, his science-fiction follow-up to Waltz With Bashir.

Their names had appeared on a now-defunct Facebook page for the picture, which combines animation with live action. Their roles in the movie have not been announced.

Robin Wright has been long attached to star in the picture. Last month, Kodi Smit-McPhee announced that he had joined the movie.

Early last year, Folman screened some early footage at the Cartoon Movie Symposium in Lyons, France.

More at The Big Cartoon Forum

“Kung Fu Panda” lawsuit strikes out at DreamWorks

"Kung Fu Panda" lawsuit strikes out at DreamWorks

"Kung Fu Panda" lawsuit strikes out at DreamWorks

Another lawsuit again has been filed against DreamWorks Animation over the 2008 hit flick Kung Fu Panda, this time by a Boston illustrator.

Jayme Gordon filed a federal copyright infringement lawsuit Wednesday against DWA, charging that the pudgy panda and his group of fighters were taken from “Kung Fu Panda Power,” a series of sketches and drawings that he created in the late 1980s and 1990s.

Gordon demands unspecified profits and statutory damages, along with an acknowledgment of authorship on both Kung Fu Panda and Kung Fu Panda 2 , slated for release May 26.

“Characters featured in the Kung Fu Panda film and Secrets of the Furious Five [a spinoff direct-to-video short) are unlawful copies of, derivative works of, and substantially similar, even strikingly similar to, the characters in Gordon’s ‘Kung Fu Panda Power Work,'” said the lawsuit, which was filed in United States District Court in Massachusetts.

Gordon, who is represented by Fish & Richardson and Duane Morris, named distributor Paramount and Glendale, California-based DWA in his 28-page complaint. He said that his illustrations — some of which appeared in his claim — were registered with the United States Copyright Office in 2000.

He charged that in the late 1980s or early 1990s, he submitted multiple packages to The Walt Disney Company containing original illustrations and stories, including parts of “Kung Fu Panda Power.”

Please Read More at the Big Cartoon Forum

Actor Kenneth Mars, 75, played King Triton, Nazi in “Producers”

Ken Mars

Ken Mars

Character actor Kenneth “Ken” Mars, whose German-type accents helped him land the role of nutbar Nazi playwright Franz Liebkind in Mel Brooks’ 1968 movie The Producers, died Saturday of pancreatic cancer at his Granada Hills, California home. He was 75.

Mars had a longtime career as a voice actor during his four-decade-long career. He voiced Grandpa Longneck in many installments of The Land Before Time series, which ran theatrically and on television as well as on video.

Born in Chicago on April 14, 1936, Mars voiced King Triton in Disney’s 1989 film The Little Mermaid and its 2000 direct-to-video sequel, The Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea. Also in animated films, he was Professor Screweyes in We’re Back! A Dinosaur’s Story (1993) and King Colbert in Thumbelina (1994).

More at the Cartoon Forum

“Chico y Rita” named best animated film at Goyas

"Chico y Rita" named best animated film at Goyas

"Chico y Rita" named best animated film at Goyas

Partly set in Cuba, the Spanish-British co-production “Chico y Rita” was named best animated film late Sunday at the Goya Awards, Spain’s version of the Oscars.

In Chico y Rita (Chico & Rita), Oscar-winning director Fernando Trueba and famed designer Javier Mariscal teamed up to create an epic animated love story that occurs around the time of the Cuban Revolution. Highlighting a pivotal moment in the evolution of jazz and traveling from Havana to New York, Chico y Rita is a tribute to the music, culture and people of Cuba.

The film was a collaboration between studios Fernando Trueba PC SA, Estudio Mariscal SA, Magic Light Pictures and IOM Ltd.

For best animated short film, the Goya winner was La bruxa, directed by Nicolais Matji of La Fiesta PC.

Winning nine trophies at the Goya Awards was the Catalan-language Pa Negre (Black Bread), about a family drama in post-Civil War Spain.

From: Big Cartoon Forum

Disney’s Tangled (Review)

I went out to Havelock North to see this film. I could have seen it in Napier but I wanted to see the film that followed this one so it made sense to see both at the same theater.

I went to the 5.30 p.m session on January 2nd. There were four children who went ahead of me. The woman on the counter called me ‘a big kid’ for seeing Tangled.

Her comment again highlights so much adult prejudice with animation. It is just not the sole domain of children. In the film Rapunzel is almost eighteen. The kids watching it with me were no older then ten. What do they know about being a teenager? I, as an, adult had more understanding of the characters than a child could.

I really can’t figure this mentally out. There is just a raft of good quality animation coming out and most adults don’t really realize what they are missing. As I’ve said previously I love animation. It, like horrors, westerns, dramas, etc, are a genre, and like all genres there is the good, the average, and the awful.

Tangle is in the good category . In my opinion it is one of the best animated Disney films in some years. The animation is just brilliant, the songs are snappy, and the humor is of a very high standard. I just can’t fault anything in this film. I truly loved it. In fact so much so I have since seen it again here in Napier! My two nephews raved about it and I have found the children I’ve spoken to have been positive towards it. The few adults who have seen it have been full of praise.

It really is the Disney studio at their very best. Rapunzel is a lovely character with an unbelievably neat little figure!! But my favorite character was Maximus the horse. I find that no other studio humanizes animals and makes them a stand alone character like Disney. Maximus is a great example of this. He starts out being tough and staunch but as the relationship between Flynn Rider and Rapunzel deepens his heart softens. At first he and Rider hate each other and constantly fight, which brings some of the funniest moments of the film.

Like all animation it has the moral tone. It is very subtle and in my experience most kids never pick it up. They like animation for the humor, and I have always found that is what kids talk about after a film. But I aren’t saying it shouldn’t be there. It adds to a storyline and kids shouldn’t be subjected to the complications of the adult world. So the morality is a good thing.

It is in a nut shell a film everyone can watch. It is aimed as a family film but anyone of any age will enjoy it. It is an animated film of the highest quality, in fact I don’t think they come much better!

See it and enjoy, as it will not disappoint!!!

Wham And Eggs (1973) Theatrical Cartoon

CotD: One of DePatie-Freleng’s more obscure creations, the Blue Racer in “Wham And Eggs

Wham And Eggs: Blue Racer sneaks inside to the Colonel Kiochi’s Chicken Farm to get a hand on eggs for a meal. When he sneaks in, the chicken laid an egg and asks a rooster to guard it.

Is My Palm Read (1933) – Betty Boop Theatrical Cartoon Series

CotD: Everybody’s favorite bimbo Betty Boop appeared in “Is My Palm Read” in 1933 
Is My Palm Read (1933) - Betty Boop Theatrical Cartoon Series

Is My Palm Read (1933) - Betty Boop Theatrical Cartoon Series

Is My Palm Read (1933) – from the Betty Boop Theatrical Cartoon Series

Is My Palm Read: Bimbo the fortune-teller tries to score with Betty Boop. As she enters the house, the lights are changed so as to see Betty’s silhouette through her dress, upon which Bimbo and Koko remark Hi-dee-ho.

The Duck Doctor (1952) – Tom and Jerry Cartoon Series

CotD: Today we shall defer to 1952’s “The Duck Doctor”, one of only 5 cartoons in which Tom dies ~

The Duck Doctor: Tom is duck hunting, and he wings a little duckling that can’t quite keep up with the flock.

Cinderella (1950) Feature Length Theatrical Animated Film

CotD: Today we have Walt Disney’s 1950 feature film classic “Cinderella”, which coincidentally is the ballet I am currently appearing in, too (yes, real men can do ballet!) ~

Cinderella: Beautiful Cinderella has been forced by her jealous stepmother and ugly stepsisters to become a servant in her own home, though she keeps a positive outlook with the help of her fairy godmother.

Bugs Bunny’s Valentine (1979) Cartoon Special

CotD: Today being Valentines Day and all, we need little bit of loving from the animated side with “Bugs Bunny’s Valentine” (1979)

Bugs Bunny's Valentine

Bugs Bunny's Valentine

Bugs Bunny’s Valentine (Bugs Bunny’s Cupid Capers) (1979) Cartoon Special

Elmer Fudd is a “stupid cupid” who zaps the wabbit with the love bug.