Released two years ago today, and last year’s winner of the Academy Award for best feature animated film, the cartoon oif the day is Rango. Directed by Gore Verbinski and starring Johnny Depp– wow, that sounds like a couple of pirate films we know– this stylish western was on the tops of many lists last year. Let us know what you thought of this one.
#CotD: One-off character Snapper appeared in “News Hound” and then was dropped. Snapper did not make the grade.
News Hound (1955) — Noveltoons Theatrical Short
Snapper has to get a sensational picture for the Daily Bow Bow (“Tree Star Edition”) or get fired.
You can watch “News Hound” on video at Big Cartoon DataBase
David Stainton has suddenly resigned as head of Paramount Pictures’ fledgling animation unit, just four months after he was hired, the studio announced Wednesday.
Stainton left his job for “personal reasons,” said the studio. It would not give further details on why he and Paramount parted ways.
“We are grateful for the time David spent at the studio and we wish him well in his future endeavors,” Paramount Motion Picture Group president Adam Goodman said in a statement.
The studio said that Goodman will directly supervise the animation development team from now on.
Stainton was hired by Paramount last October. Earlier, he was a 17-year veteran at Walt Disney Studios.
He rose to president of feature animation at the Mouse House, staying in that job until early 2006, when Disney bought out Pixar Animation Studios.
Stainton became chief of Paramount’s animation unit after it was established last year following the release of Rango, which has been nominated for an Oscar for best animated film.
Paramount Pictures’ “Rango” has been named Best Animated Feature at the 15th Annual Online Film Critics Society Awards, the 200-member society announced Monday.
The Tree of Life, which led the Online Film Critics Society nominations with seven, was the big winner at this year’s awards.
The film took home the prize for Best Picture, as well as trophies for Best Director (Terrence Malick), Best Supporting Actress (Jessica Chastain), Best Editing and Best Cinematography. No other film won more than one award.
The other three acting winners were Michael Fassbender, winning Best Actor for his performance in Shame; Tilda Swinton’s work in We Need to Talk About Kevin won the award for Best Actress; and Christopher Plummer received the Best Supporting Actor prize for his work in Beginners.
Other winners of the 15th Annual Online Film Critics Society Awards:
Best Original Screenplay: Midnight in Paris
Best Adapted Screenplay: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
Best Film Not in the English Language: A Separation
Best Documentary: Cave of Forgotten Dreams
Special Awards (previously announced)
To Jessica Chastain, the breakout performer of the year
To Martin Scorsese in honor of his work and dedication to the pursuit of film preservation
Founded in 1997, the Online Film Critics Society has been the key force in establishing and raising the standards for Internet-based film journalism. The OFCS membership consists of film reviewers, journalists and scholars based in the United States, Canada, Europe, Latin America and the Asia/Pacific Rim region. For more information, visit the Online Film Critics Society at ofcs.org.
The Adventures Of Tintin: Secret Of The Unicorn, directed by Steven Spielberg, was named runner-up in the category for the 37th annual Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards.
The Descendants was named Best Picture, with The Tree of Life the runner-up. For their work on The Descendants, Alexander Payne, Nat Faxon and Jim Rash were named runners-up for Best Screenplay.
Terrence Malick won Best Director honors for The Tree of Life. The picture also won Emmanuel Lubezki a Best Cinematography award.
Martin Scorsese was runner-up in the Best Director category for Hugo. Dante Ferretti won Best Production Design for the picture.
Michael Fassbender won Best Actor honors for his roles in A Dangerous Method, Jane Eyre, Shame and X-Men: First Class. Michael Shannon was runner-up for Take Shelter.
Best Actress honors went to Yin Jung-hee for Poetry, while Kirsten Dunst was declared runner-up for Melancholia.
Christopher Plummer was named Best Supporting Actor for his role in Beginners. Patton Oswalt was runner-up for Young Adult.
Jessica Chastain was named Best Supporting Actress for her work in Coriolanus, The Debt, The Help, Take Shelter, Texas Killing Fields and Tree of Life. The runner-up was Janet McTeer for Albert Nobbs.
Best Screenplay went to director Asghar Farhadi for A Separation, which was declared runner-up for Best Foreign-Language Film.
City of Life and Death, directed by Chuan Lu, was named Best Foreign-Language Film. Cao Yu was runner-up in Best Cinematography for the movie.
Best Production Design runner-up went to Maria Djurkovic for Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy.
The Chemical Brothers were honored for Best Music Score for Hanna; Cliff Martinez was the runner-up for Drive.
For Best Documentary/Non-Fiction Film, Werner Herzog’s Cave of Forgotten Dreams was the winner; Clio Barnard’s The Arbor was the runner-up.
Founded in 1975, the Los Angeles Film Critics Association is comprised of Los Angeles-based professional film critics working in the Los Angeles print and electronic media.
The Friendly Ghost (1945) — Noveltoons Theatrical Cartoon Series
Casper runs away from home and the other ghosts there to explore the world and make friends. After unintentionally scaring away several different animals, he decides to end it all by laying on the railroad tracks in front of a speeding locomotive. Failing that, two children, Bonnie and Johnny, find him crying on the tracks and befriend him.
Watch “The Friendly Ghost ” on video at Big Cartoon DataBase
Paramount Pictures announced Monday that it has appointed veteran animation executive David Stainton as president of its new in-house animation division.
Stainton joins Paramount after a 17-year run at Disney, where he served as President of Walt Disney Feature Animation. During his studio tenure, he oversaw several dozen releases across various platforms that brought in $3.5 billion in worldwide revenue. He spearheaded Disney’s transition from its hand-drawn roots to fully digital animation production, led the successful Disney Video Premieres division, and oversaw the studio’s 150-person animation facility in Paris. More recently, Stainton served as CEO of family entertainment producer Henry’s World Media, which he founded in 2007.
In his new role, which takes effect this week, Stainton will report to Adam Goodman, President of the Paramount Motion Picture Group.
Paramount Animation aims to focus on high-quality animation with budgets per picture of up to $100 million, with an initial target of one release per year. The division’s mandate will be the development of the broadest range of family CGI animated films, with a key piece being titles under the label of Viacom’s Nickelodeon, the No. 1 entertainment brand for kids worldwide. Paramount will also build on Viacom’s already thriving global consumer products business by seeking to capitalize on merchandising opportunities tied to all Paramount Animation releases.
“The success of Rango this year helped us recognize our potential and ability to create wonderfully imaginative animated pictures with global appeal,” said Brad Grey, Chairman and CEO of Paramount Pictures. “David is a proven leader with a broad portfolio of experience in animation and family entertainment. He will be a welcome addition to Adam’s highly talented team.”
“David’s accomplishments speak for themselves, and I am glad to welcome him to the lot as we start this exciting new chapter,” Goodman added. “With David’s leadership, we will look to build on what has been a very strong year for our studio in animation, with Rango and the upcoming Adventures of Tintin pointing to the kind of artist-driven, broad-appeal films we intend to make at Paramount Animation.”
“Today’s marketplace affords terrific flexibility as we set out to create fresh, new and different films and seek to attract great talent to Paramount,” Stainton said. “It is a great honor to be joining a company as storied and successful as Paramount and to be able to shape its future in animation. I look forward to helping usher in this new era.”
While Paramount has released an array of successful animated films in its history, the company’s first fully owned CGI animated property was Rango, released to great acclaim in March. The Western, directed by Gore Verbinski and featuring the voice of Johnny Depp in the title role, has grossed more than $240 million worldwide and is the best reviewed animated movie so far this year. Due for release in December by Paramount is The Aventures of Tintin, an animated film from director Steven Spielberg and producer Peter Jackson.
Quick On The Vigor (1950) — Popeye the Sailor Theatrical Cartoon Series
Popeye takes Olive to the amusement park. She falls for strongman Bluto, and he has eyes for Olive. Feeling threatened, Popeye needs to prove his manliness. Bluto locks Popeye in a safe and takes Olive “for a ride.” “You keep your hands to yourself… that’s what you are,” says Olive, who gets stuck on the roller coaster. There’s a fourth party involved… a can of a certain vegetable. If these two can get together, the whole film may take off in a different direction.
Watch “Quick On The Vigor” on video at Big Cartoon DataBase
Ship A-Hooey (1954) — Herman and Katnip Theatrical Cartoon Series
Mice are on a ship when they see a drifting raft in seeming distress. When they throw out a rope, Katnip the pirate climbs aboard. He invades their ship. They take to his raft to escape, but Herman has other plans and tries to recapture his ship from Katnip.
Watch “Ship A-Hooey” on video at Big Cartoon DataBase
Paramount’s deal with DWA expires at the end of 2012.
The distributor had offered to keep releasing DWA films for an 8% fee. However, Paramount wanted to receive more in the future, and DWA wants to pay a lower commission.
A spokeswoman for DreamWorks Animation declined to comment.
Last month, Paramount head Brad Grey announced that his studio would start its own animation division.
Although DWA is said to be looking at other distribution options, “nobody has been pitched to do distribution” for the studio, The Hollywood Reporter quoted an unnamed insider as saying. The animation firm “is not quaking in its boots going ‘Paramount is the only game in town’” because DreamWorks can deliver fees on films that usually gross in the hundreds of millions of dollars, the source added.
However, Warner Bros. isn’t interested in distributing DWA movies, “knowledgeable people who were not authorized to speak publicly on the matter” told the Los Angeles Times.
Meanwhile, the Hollywood Reporter source belittled Paramount’s announcement of an animation division, deriding it as a plan “to do low-rent movies.”
CotD: A blend of live action & animation, “Cool World” was Ralph Bakshi’s answer to “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” ~ http://www.bcdb.com/cartoon/23338-Cool_World.htmlCool World (1951) — Feature Theatrical Cartoon
Burnt-out cartoonist Jack Dweebs withdraws into his cartoon creations, the Cool World, where sexy “doodle” Holli Would uses him to become human. The story follows two humans who encounter Cool World– a parallel universe where cartoons actually exist– and tangle with the seductive Holli, an ambitious animated bombshell determined to escape into three-dimensional reality.
Deebs created and then is seduced by Holli. Frank Harris is the Cool World cop out to make sure that humans don’t have sex with cartoon characters, since that act can rupture the fabric between the two universes. Of course, the rupturing occurs, and all sorts of freewheeling animated hell breaks loose as cartoon misfits of all shapes and sizes invade the city of Las Vegas.
With a thumping techno score that includes tracks from Moby and David Bowie and such goofy touches as Holli singing “Let’s Make Love” with Frank Sinatra Jr., Cool World is definitely a freaky place to visit.
CotD: One of the later Noveltoons from Famous Studios, well after the Fleischers hasd left “Tarts And Flowers” in 1950 ~
Tarts And Flowers (1950) — Noveltoons Theatrical Cartoon Series
Little Audrey bakes a gingerbread man while listening to a radio cooking show. When the dough is in the oven, she falls asleep. The gingerbread man comes to life and takes her to Cakeland, a colorful musical land of candy canes and ice cream cones. There is a big celebration because the Gingerbread Man is taking Miss Angel Cake as his wife.
There is a song, “Gay Holiday,” with dancing and singing confections, including a drunken rum cake and a caricature of Maurice Chevalier as Mr. Eclair Debonair. This sends the Devil’s Food Cake into an jealous rage. Interrupting the wedding, he kidnaps Miss Angel Cake and paddles her up the old milk stream.
It’s Audrey to the rescue. When Audrey wakes up, she opens the oven to discover in her baking pan not only a gingerbread man, but Miss Angel Cake and a couple of kids. Audrey laughs through the closing as she learns something about life.
CotD: This is one of those unfortunate cartoons that was colorized in the 1990’s. Watch “What– No Spinach?” at BCDB ~
What– No Spinach? (1936) — Popeye the Sailor Theatrical Cartoon Series
Wimpy is working in Bluto’s Restaurant and tries all sorts of tricks to get free food (including pouring hot sauce on Popeye’s roast duck).
CotD: In 1956, we had “Popeye For President”; anyone notice if he was a Republican or Democrat?
Popeye For President (1956) — Popeye the Sailor Cartoon Series
Election time again with Popeye on the Spinach Party and Bluto on the Blutocratic ticket. To beat Bluto, Popeye must win Olive’s decisive vote. Popeye and Bluto race to Olive’s country farm to win her affection.
CotD: Paramount had some good shorts in the early 60’s, like “Funderful Suburbia”
Funderful Suburbia (1962) — Modern Madcaps Theatrical Cartoon
A family tries to live in the suburbs, but it can’t take the traffic jams, household problems and shopping difficulties, so it moves into space.