Monthly Archives: October 2011

“Green Lantern: The Animated Series” arrives on CN

Green Lantern: The Animated Series

Green Lantern: The Animated Series

Green Lantern, a DC Comics mainstay for more than 70 years, will be seen in an entirely new way when Warner Bros. Animation’s Green Lantern: The Animated Series – from world-renowned producer, artist and animator Bruce Timm (Batman: The Animated Series, Justice League) — comes to Cartoon Network in a one-hour special event.

With stunning, stylized CG animation, Green Lantern: The Animated Series takes viewers on a journey of cosmic proportions as Hal Jordan and his band of heroes fight to save the universe. The special premieres at 7 p.m. (ET/PT) on Friday, November 11 as a precursor to the series debuting on Cartoon Network next year as part of the new DC Nation programming block.

Fans in the United States can watch a sneak peek of the complete first scene from the series at the Green Lantern: The Animated Series webpage at BCDB .

As Earth’s Green Lantern, Hal Jordan is used to being in dangerous situations — but he’s never faced anything like this!

Set at the farthest reaches of deep space, Green Lantern: The Animated Series finds Hal on the Guardian Frontier, where he must face down an invasion by the Red Lantern Corps. Powered by pure rage, the evil Red Lanterns have sworn to destroy the Green Lantern Corps and everything they stand for. Dispatched on the experimental spacecraft The Interceptor, Hal is soon joined by an all-new group of heroes on a mission to protect Guardian Space — and the Green Lantern Corps itself!

Green Lantern: The Animated Series is an epic space adventure that has something for everyone, and we are delighted for fans to see it November 11 on Cartoon Network. We can’t wait to show the world this fresh take on an iconic hero — one that represents not only the first Bruce Timm series to be produced in CG, but also the first time Green Lantern has been rendered in CG,” said Sam Register, executive vice-president of creative affairs for Warner Bros. Animation, who also serves as an executive producer of the series. “Green Lantern: The Animated Series is inspired by current and classic Green Lantern mythology, but it’s also an all-new story — one that is the perfect vehicle for the great Bruce Timm’s take on the character.”

“It’s exciting for me to see Hal Jordan reimagined in such a compelling way, with fantastic CG and visual effects that only enhance the story,” stated Geoff Johns, chief creative officer of DC Entertainment and longtime writer of the Green Lantern comic book series. “Working with Warner Bros. Animation and Cartoon Network to create Green Lantern: The Animated Series has been a great experience, and most importantly, we’ve created a show that I can’t wait for people to see.”

Based on the DC Comics superhero, Green Lantern: The Animated Series is an all-new CG animated action series from Warner Bros Animation. Timm and Register (Teen Titans, Ben 10, Batman: The Brave and the Bold) are the executive producers. Giancarlo Volpe (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Avatar: The Last Airbender) is the producer, and Jim Krieg (Ben 10: Alien Swarm) is the producer/story editor.

The voice cast for Green Lantern: The Animated Series includes Josh Keaton (Transformers Prime) as Hal Jordan, Jason Spisak (Young Justice) as Razer, Kevin Michael Richardson (Young Justice, ThunderCats) as Kilowog and Grey DeLisle (Batman: The Brave and the Bold) as Aya.

DC Comics will release a Green Lantern: The Animated Series comic book as a companion to the new series, and the first issue will be released to coincide with the November special on Cartoon Network.

The Jungle Book (1967) – Feature Length Theatrical Animated Film

The Jungle Book (1967)

The Jungle Book (1967)

CotD: Disney took on Rudyard Kipling in “The Jungle Book“, the last feature film Walt Disney actively oversaw.

The Jungle Book (1967) – Feature Length Theatrical Animated Film

Young Mowgli is abandoned in the jungle and raised by wolves, never knowing other humans. When the tiger, Shere Kahn, menaces the jungle, Bagheera, the panther, convinces Mowgli to find a man-village for protection. Along the way, Mowgli befriends Baloo, the bear, and Colonel Haithi, the elephant; and is menaced by King Louie, the ape, and Kaa, the snake, as well as a quartet of vultures. Mowgli ultimately outwits Shere Kahn and decides to remain in the jungle, until a pretty female man-cub turns his head-and Mowgli proceeds directly to the man-village.

Watch “The Jungle Book” on video at Big Cartoon DataBase

Rio, Yogi Bear vie for Environmental Media Award

Rio

Rio

The animated “Rio” and partly animated “Yogi Bear” are among the three nominees for this year’s Environmental Media Award in the Feature Film category.

The 21st annual EMAs will be held Saturday in Los Angeles.

Also nominated in the Feature Film category is Sony Pictures’ live-action The Other Guys.

For Television Episodic Comedy, the three nominees include last November’s Futurama episode The Futurama Holiday Spectacular.

In the Children’s Television category, nominees include the April 22 Bubble Guppies episode Boy Meets Squirrel (in which the Bubble Guppies learn about trees) and Legend Of The Earth Troll, an April 8 episode of Disney’s Fish Hooks in which Oscar tries to get Milo involved in recycling.

The Environmental Media Association is a non-profit organization. Its mission is to mobilize the entertainment industry in a global effort to educate people about environmental issues and inspire them into action.

Watch the Environmental Media Awards live at 6 p.m. this Saturday at www.Facebook.com/EMAOnline.

A Tiki Scare Is No Fair (1970) – Scooby Doo, Where Are You! Episode Guide

A Tiki Scare Is No Fair (1970) - Scooby Doo, Where Are You!

A Tiki Scare Is No Fair (1970) - Scooby Doo, Where Are You!

CotD: Those meddling kids head to the islands in “A Tiki Scare Is No Fair“; So did Freddy drive the whole way?

A Tiki Scare Is No Fair (1970) – Scooby Doo, Where Are You! Episode Guide

The teen sleuths’ vacation on the Hawaiian islands results in a busman’s holiday after Shag and Scooby, having attended their 47th luau, are threatened by a ghoulish witch doctor to leave immediately or face the vengeance of Mano Tiki Tia, a ghostly legend come to life. Although the two bon vivants are prepared to follow the warning, the kids investigate the haunting legend of the Tiki god after discovering that Mr. John Simms, their tour guide has mysteriously vanished.

Watch “A Tiki Scare Is No Fair” on video at Big Cartoon DataBase

Feature film rights to “Hank the Cowdog” acquired

Hank The Cowdog

Hank The Cowdog

Dallas-based media and entertainment company Odyssey Pictures Corporation has acquired the screenplay and feature film rights of the children’s literary franchise Hank the Cowdog from Rising Star Studios.

Odyssey plans to produce the property as an animated feature film.

Hank the Cowdog, written by John R. Erickson, is a highly successful series of 58 humorous children’s mystery novels and audios based on the adventures of Hank, the smelly, smart-aleck canine Head of Ranch Security on a Texas Panhandle cattle ranch. The series has sold more than 7.5 million copies, is a Book-of-the-Month selection, and is the winner of a 1993 Audie for Outstanding Children’s Series from the Audio Publishers Association.

In fact, the franchise is the longest running popular children’s audio book series to date, and is especially popular with schools and libraries. Publishers Weekly has called the series a “grassroots publishing phenomena,” and USA Today referred to it as “the best family entertainment in years.”

“We are proud to be associated with such a hugely successful property,” remarked Odyssey CEO John Foster. “We’re confident that the animated feature version of Hank the Cowdog will be a natural extension of the franchise and a big winner at the box office.”

“It’s an exciting time for us to see the beginning of Hank finally making his appearance on the big screen,” said Erickson. “We’ve been approached by producers before, but Odyssey impressed us with their understanding of the genre and their solid sales and marketing strategy.”

From A To Z-Z-Z-Z (1954) – Looney Tunes Theatrical Cartoon Series

From A To Z-Z-Z-Z (1954) - Looney Tunes

From A To Z-Z-Z-Z (1954) - Looney Tunes

CotD: Poor Ralph Phillips from “From A To Z-Z-Z-Z” is still daydreaming his life away, 57 years later

From A To Z-Z-Z-Z (1954) – Looney Tunes Theatrical Cartoon Series

Ralph is a daydreamer… and he is quick to adapt his current surroundings into new, adventurous dreams.

Watch “From A To Z-Z-Z-Z” on video at Big Cartoon DataBase

“Lady of Names” named best feature at Philly fest

The Lady of Names,” a family-friendly film directed by Adam Ciolfi of the Toronto suburb of North York, Ontario, was named Best Feature: Animation at the Philadelphia Film & Animation Festival.

The 85-minute stop-motion animation film was made by No Gasoline Productions. In it, a beautiful librarian discovers the power of magic when an ill-conceived wish catapults her into the world of fairy tales. She falls into the clutches of the Troll King, a monster obsessed with imprisoning all the fairy tale folk.

Her only hope for rescue is Zack Driscoll, a young handyman in love with her. Kidnapped by a pompous mushroom and an elfin creature, Zack braves goblin magic and the icy domain of the Memine in his quest towards the final showdown with the Troll King himself.

Meanwhile, Worlds Apart — created in a unique class called Project X at Sunnyvale, California’s Cogswell College — received the Best Short: Animation award at the festival.

Film director Michael Zachary Huber and Cogswell chancellor Chuck House attended the ceremony at the International House Ibrahim Theater to accept the award.

Part science fiction and part cautionary fairytale, Worlds Apart explores the universal themes of stewardship of nature and the fate of humanity. Worlds Apart asks the question, “Can humanity change its ways and save itself?”

The short was also nominated for Best Marketing “for an exceptional online trailer and proactive attitude of Cogswell College for submitting their students’ films to festivals, helping them get to their premieres, and promoting their work online.”

“One of the reasons for the success of Project X is the fact that it operates on a deep-running ideological premise,” said Huber. “That premise is that beauty in craftsmanship transcends time and space. Anyone from anywhere in the world can look at a beautiful piece of art or architecture and be inspired by it. There is an inherent truth in beauty and that fact can be appreciated from generation to generation. Project X strives to uphold these principals through the modern mix of art and technology that is digital animation.”

San Jose-area audiences will have the chance to see Worlds Apart at the upcoming San Jose Short Film Festival (sjshortfest.com), set for October 20 to 23, where the film is an “Official Selection.”

Said Stephanie Yuhas, the co-founder of Project Twenty1 and the Philadelphia Film and Animation Festival: “I’m blown away by the level of work coming from Cogswell College and greatly admire the mission of Project X. We’ve been running this festival since 2006, and I’ve never seen a film or animation come through our juries or screening panels of dozens of people with a “perfect 10″ in every category.

“In other words, in our total library of about 650 films, some of which are features that have now received worldwide theatrical distribution, the student short Worlds Apart has received the highest scores. Whatever you’re doing over there in Sunnyvale, California — keep doing it; our audiences want more!”

Project X is a one-of-a-kind, project-based class at Cogswell College that is run like a professional animation production studio using teams of skilled artists and sound designers. Students work tirelessly for three semesters to produce a studio-quality short film. During production, they are supported by a massive collaborative effort from faculty, staff, visiting artists, industry professionals and alumni.

Also in the Best Short: Animation category, Gilded Age Gladiator and VICENTA tied for honorable mention. The Lighthouse also was nominated.

In the separate 21-Day Filmmaking Competition, Team Dragon Crest Productions won in the Best Animation category for Little Dudes. Other nominees were Friedman Equation, Squawks of Fury!, Family Tree and Go West.

Clock Cleaners (1937) – Mickey Mouse Theatrical Cartoon Series

Clock Cleaners (1937) - Mickey Mouse

Clock Cleaners (1937) - Mickey Mouse

CotD: For what it’s worth, “Clock Cleaners” is my personal all-time favorite Mickey Mouse cartoon. Have you seen this one?

Clock Cleaners (1937) – Mickey Mouse Theatrical Cartoon Series

Paranoid and stressed from a life of ghost hunting, Scooby decides to book a vacation on an ocean liner. The problem is, that the ship is headed for the Bermuda Triangle. All the other passengers are also ghosts.

Watch “Clock Cleaners” on video at Big Cartoon DataBase

“Top Cat” film purrs to record in Mexican theaters

Don Gato y Su Pandilla (Top Cat)

Don Gato y Su Pandilla (Top Cat)

A feature version of Hanna-Barbera’s “Top Cat” series has broken the opening weekend record for a Mexican film at that country’s box office.

Don Gato y Su Pandilla grossed almost $3.2 million in Mexico. Distributed by Warner Bros., it was shown in 2D and 3D on over 1,000 screens.

Revenues exceeded those for all Hollywood movies, including Rise of the Planet of the Apes and Friends with Benefits.

The movie was expected to debut well in Mexico, where Top Cat has always been popular.

Two of Latin America’s leading animation firms, Mexico’s Anima Estudios and Argentina’s Illusion Studios, produced Don Gato y Su Pandilla.

Three animated pictures are among the most successful opening films of all time in Mexico.

Creative consultant Colin Brady — character designer for Toy Story– and screenwriters Kevin Seccia and Tim Mckeon worked with Mexican director Alberto Mar on the feature.

The Top Cat movie will open October 13 in Argentina and Peru, said Anima Estudios producer Jose Carlos Garcia de Letona. Sales are in “advanced negotiations” for six other South American countries, he added.

Nemo, Little Mermaid swimming to theaters in 3D

Finding Nemo (2003) - PIXAR

Finding Nemo (2003) - PIXAR

Finding Nemo,” “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty And The Beast” and “Monsters, Inc.” will make their 3D theatrical debuts in 2012 and 2013, The Walt Disney Studios announced Tuesday.

“Great stories and great characters are timeless, and at Disney, we’re fortunate to have a treasure trove of both,” said Walt Disney Studios president Alan Bergman.

On the heels of the phenomenal success of The Lion King 3D — which was set to cross the $80 million mark at the domestic box office Tuesday — The Walt Disney Studios announced limited theatrical engagements for four of its classic films for the first time in 3D.

The following titles from Walt Disney and Pixar Animation Studios will be released in 2012 and 2013:

Beauty And The Beast – January 13, 2012
Disney-Pixar’s Finding Nemo – September 14, 2012
Disney-Pixar’s Monsters, Inc. – January 18, 2013 (Monsters University, a prequel to the original film, arrives in theaters in Disney Digital 3D on June 21, 2013)
The Little Mermaid – September 13, 2013

“We’re thrilled to give audiences of all ages the chance to experience these beloved tales in an exciting new way with 3D — and in the case of younger generations, for the first time on the big screen,” said Bergman.

Originally released in 1991, Beauty And The Beast is a classic “tale as old as time” that follows the adventures of Belle, a bright young woman imprisoned in the castle of a mysterious beast and his enchanted staff, who must learn the most important lesson of all — that true beauty comes from within. Beauty and the Beast was the first animated film ever nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture, earning an additional five Oscar nominations and winning two. It has grossed $380.4 million worldwide.

First released in 2003, Disney-Pixar’s Finding Nemo takes audiences into a whole new world in this undersea adventure about family, courage and challenges. When Marlin, an overly cautious clownfish living in the Great Barrier Reef, helplessly watches his son get scooped up by a diver, he must put aside his fears of the ocean and leave the safety of his coral enclave to find Nemo. Buoyed by the companionship of Dory, a forgetful but relentlessly optimistic fish, Marlin finds himself the unlikely hero in a seemingly impossible land-and-sea rescue. Finding Nemo won an Academy Award for Best Animated Feature and was nominated for three others. With a total of $867.6 million worldwide, it was the second highest-grossing film of 2003.

In 2001, Disney-Pixar released Monsters, Inc. Lovable Sulley and his wisecracking sidekick Mike Wazowski are the top scare team at Monsters, Inc., the scream-processing factory in Monstropolis. But when a little girl named Boo wanders into their world, it’s up to Sulley and Mike to keep her out of sight and get her back home. Monsters, Inc. shattered every DVD-era home entertainment sales record when 11 million DVD/VHS copies were sold during its first week of release. It won an Academy Award for Best Song and has grossed $526.9 million worldwide.

Released in 1989, The Little Mermaid stars Ariel, a fun-loving and mischievous mermaid, off on the adventure of a lifetime with her best friend, the adorable Flounder, and the reggae-singing Caribbean crab Sebastian. But it will take all of her courage and determination to make her dreams come true and save her father’s beloved kingdom from the sneaky sea witch Ursula. One of the most celebrated animated films of all time, The Little Mermaid was nominated for three Academy Awards, winning two. It has grossed $228.9 million worldwide.