Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Animation Creators in Kenya as Marketers

Animation creators are slowly gaining acceptance in Kenya as marketers embrace use in commercials especially those targeting children. The moving pictures of drawn-up images or caricatures are also being used in situations where real people are not desired or where complex and abstract ideas need to be communicated in a simple way, for instance, how drugs work in the body.

The increasing sophistication of brand promotion through use of websites has also opened up demand for animated content on the websites. The growing use has led to opening up of colleges to train animators. There are currently three colleges teaching animation and the total number of animators in the country is estimated at 200, though not all are active in the profession. Nairobi Institute of Technology and Shang Tao are among the new entrants. It takes about one year to complete a basic course in animation and more for a 3D (three dimensional) animation course which is more complex.

Analysts say that for one to take a course in animation, it is assumed that the person is already a visual artist; a graphic designer who can work with the various graphics software. The sector is gaining recognition from local and international clients, adding that international stakeholders were impressed by the level of sophistication of local exhibitors at a recent animation forum.

"There is a perception that animation is fast and easy. The truth is that it can take a month or more to create an animation, especially if it is complex. While they are capable of producing smaller projects, they are facing competition from other markets."

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Rockstar Games Upcoming Adventure Red Dead Redemption

The Grand Theft Auto developer team reported that John Hillcoat, director of flicks like The Road and The Proposition assisted Rockstar Games in creating a 30-minute animated film based on the development studio's upcoming open-world action adventure, Red Dead Redemption.

Upcoming open-world western epic, Red Dead Redemption is already to tip to be one of the biggest releases of the year, and developer, Rockstar Games is making damn-well sure that it doesn’t go unnoticed.

The special, simply entitled, Red Dead Redemption, is scheduled to air on FOX on Saturday, May 15 which is the weekend before the games release. There are currently very few details about the project other than it will be animated using entirely in-game assets, which will give us a good chance to see the modified RAGE engine in action.

Red Dead represents a massive challenge, even for a developer at the peak of their game like this San Diego based studio. With Grand Theft Auto, the premise is well established. You know you'll be driving a fast car and engaging in illicit acts with women of the night, and that there's likely to be carnage on a city-wide scale in your immediate gaming future. Red Dead looks to be one of the best titles of the year, and assuming it's packed full of missions.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Cartoon Network’s Updated New Cartoon Series

Cartoon will resurrect two veteran cartoon franchises, Scooby-Doo and Looney Tunes, for new series within its animation slate. Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated will showcase new thrillers for the Mystery Inc. gang, while The Looney Tunes Show will feature classic cartoon characters Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck.

Other animated projects include Robotomy, about two teenage droids interacting among human kids in high school; Secret Mountain Fort Awesome, which follows underground monsters shunned by humans; Young Justice, a takeoff on cartoon’s Justice League that showcases several teen superheroes trying to earn their stripes: and Mad, a sketch comedy produced in part by Mad magazine.

The network will jump into the awards show arena in 2011 with Cartoon Network’s Hall of Game, honoring the best sports stars and sports moments of the year as chosen by the viewers.

Cartoon will put its best content up against other cable competitors such as Disney XD, Nickelodeon, Nicktoons and The Hub, the forthcoming Discovery Communications/ Hasbro network partnership.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Cartoon Laws of Physics for Kids

The laws of physics that govern the cartoon universe may not sneer with those set down by Newton, but they are immutable nonetheless. Rule No. 1, as defined by generations of Wile E. Coyote/Road Runner shorts, asserts that a body suspended in space will remain impervious to gravitational forces until the moment it becomes fully aware of its situation.

In hot pursuit of the scrawny, flightless bird, the coyote’s momentum takes him over the edge of a cliff. He keeps churning his legs like furry brown pistons until he happens to look down, whereupon the time-honored formula of 32 feet per second kicks in. Before gravity does its dirty work, the doomed beast will take a moment to produce a tiny sign that reads something along the lines of “Eep!” or “Yipes!”

In a sense, the kids upfront abide by similar principles, inasmuch as it follows a distinct internal logic that doesn’t necessarily apply to the general-entertainment upfront. In the Looney Tunes cosmos, characters may create replicas of themselves if they attain a certain velocity (usually this happens in the context of some sort of dog-vs.-cat melee). A similar principle has taken hold in the kids TV space, where the emergence of new networks has sent some established players back to the drafting table.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Monsters Inc 2 Announced to Release at 2012

Pixar's Monsters Inc. 2 will come out of the closet in 3D on Nov. 16, 2012, Walt Disney Pictures announced but one thing absent from the announcement was any mention of a writer or director.

Marking Pixar's fourth sequel following Toy Story 2, Toy Story 3 and Cars 2, Monsters Inc. 2 will mirror the holiday launch of its predecessor, only it won't open as early due to DreamWorks Animation's The Guardians (working title) occupying the Nov. 2, 2012, slot.

The first Monsters, Inc. was released in 2001 and featured the voice talents of Billy Crystal, John Goodman and Mary Gibbs. Monsters Inc grossed $525 million worldwide and also provided cinemas with the CUTEST character ever seen on screen little Boo, who was voiced by Pixar story artist Rob Gibbs’ 2-year-old daughter Mary.

Pixar had a smashing success with Toy Story 2 in 1999, Toy Story 3 appears poised to continue that trend, and Monsters Inc. 2 should have similar "return-of-old-friends" appeal.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Chrison’s The Driver New Animated Series

Chrison is a great animator his previous work, "Extreme Limit" 2001, an official short. "Extreme Limit" is the first animated short done by Chrison and clipped it with "No One Sleep in Tokyo" Music by EDO BOYS.

Now the new animated series The Driver is kind of awesome. The animation was about a half-shade above what we could crank out flip-book style, and yes, to call the plot repetitive would be gracious at best. But the series also featured what we loved most as young auto-obsessed creatures insane cars doing insane things fender to fender every Saturday morning. That series likely drove some of us to bust our own knuckles and put our first cars through the kind of hell that can only be attributed to a proper learning curve.

It looks like a new animated series has come along to whet our appetite for well-drawn cars, and judging from the trailer, it should make Speed Racer look like the half-effort it was. It's called The Driver, and so far, we know next to nothing about it other than the creators is beyond obsessed. Everything from the metering on a DSLR camera to car interiors physics and damage all drip with the kind of detail we aren't used to seeing from the cartoon world. It's delicious. The best part? It looks like our hero drives a Nissan GT-R.

Don't be fooled into thinking this is a toon you can sit down and enjoy with your young ones, though. From tobacco use to blatant street racing, it's clear this one is more likely to show up on Adult Swim than Nick Jr., and that's just fine by us. The Driver site says it should launch by summer of this year.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


An animated version of the DC Comics teen superteam Young Justice got its official announcement. The Cartoon Network 2010 upfront announcing new programming for the coming year. Presumably based on Peter David and Todd Nauck comic of the same name which ran for 56 issues starting in 1998, the "Young Justice" series will feature a "junior Justice League" consisting of Superboy, Robin, Kid Flash, Miss Martian, Artemis and Aqualad.

However, at this point it's unclear exactly how much these characters will synch up with the original "Young Justice" series or the modern DCU as there are changes to the team evident even in the early teaser image. For example, Artemis is a name that's never been associated with a teen heroine in DC Comics, though the design of the character does resemble the former YJ member Arrowette. Similarly, the new version of Aqualand produced for the show is black; adding a bit of diversity to the all-white lineup of what is obviously a one-for-one comparison to the classic Justice League (although Green Lantern appears to have no teenage representative).

Young Justice is produced by Warner Bros. In Young Justice, being a teenager means proving yourself over and over to peers, parents, teachers, mentors and, ultimately, to yourself. But what if you’re not just a normal teenager? What if you’re a teenage super hero? How much harder will it be to prove yourself in a world of super powers, super villains and super secrets?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Cheshire Cat Character in Walt Disney's Alice in Wonderland

The Cheshire cat is a character created by Lewis Carroll for his book, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. It has 'to its origins in a well known saying, grin like a Cheshire Cat'. The phrase first appears in print in the second edition of Francis Grose's Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue, from 1778.

The Cheshire Cat is the cat of the Duchess. Alice meets it when she leaves the Duchess house, and finds it in a tree. It constantly grins and can disappear and reappear whenever it likes. Sometimes it disappears and leaves its grin behind.

The Cheshire Cat is the only character in Wonderland who actually listens to Alice. With his remarks, he teaches Alice the ‘rules’ of Wonderland. He gives her insight in how things work down there.

It is not 100% clear why Carroll named this character 'Cheshire Cat'. "To grin like a Cheshire Cat" was a common phrase in Carroll's day. Its origin is unknown, but it may have originated from a sign painter in Cheshire, who painted grinning lions on the sign-boards of inns in the area.

The unpredictable Cheshire Cat's propensity for appearing and disappearing (often leaving behind only that crescent-shaped smile) makes him one of the most uniquely funny characters in all of Disney animation. In the hands of animator Ward Kimball, the zaniest of Walt Disney's animated “the Cheshire Cat” with indeed weird and wacky but in an understated manner contrasting with the more outlandishly mad Wonderland character. The Cheshire Cat has java animation and an excert from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Mighty Mouse Cartoon is Going to Back

According to an article in Los Angeles Times, Paramount and Nickelodeon are planning on a new Mighty Mouse movie in the not too distant future. The article cites the success 20th Century Fox has had with their two recent Alvin and the Chipmunks movies as the prime motivator for this project.

Mighty Mouse was a Terrytoons cartoon that ran for thirty years from the 1950s to the 1980s and was a major part of the old Saturday morning cartoon block for kids. The character was kind of a cross between Superman and Mickey Mouse and had one of the more iconic theme songs, thanks partially to comedian Andy Kaufman.

Whether or not this upcoming project will be fully animated or a mix of animation and live-action is still up in the air. At the moment Paramount and Nickelodeon are looking for a new writer and director.

If done right, this could be a really fun picture for kids and nostalgic adults. The new film will deal with the classic cartoon hero in a modern world.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Ultimate Spider-Man Cartoon

Marvel has announced an Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon based on Brian Michael Bendis's popular comic. Speculation has surrounded Peter Parker's future on the small screen since Sony relinquished the rights for an animated series back to Marvel.

Spider-Man has had something of a checkered cartoon past. There have been seven webslinger 'toons in the past 30 years or so, and the ones that are remarkable are so because they were either trippy (the '60s show, with it's lava-lamp exteriors and great theme song), lame (Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends in the '80s), or experimental (MTV's all-CG Spider-Man: The New Animated Series, with Neil Patrick Harris as Peter Parker). While they all had their merits, none of them seemed to capture everything Spider-Man had to offer — not nearly as well as, say, Sam Raimi's Spider-Man 2.

So the Mouse House, looking to woo a young male demographic, is stepping up to the plate by hatching Ultimate Spider-Man for the Disney XD channel, set to premiere in Fall of 2011.

"Ultimate Spider-Man will be a unique journey exploring our favourite web-slinger as he teams up with other fan favourite Marvel Super Heroes in never before seen stories with a new life filled with great challenges, new friends, intense action and character growth," said Marvel Animation president Eric S. Rollman.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Kung Fu Panda World Gameplay Animation

DreamWorks Animation has big plans to bring a new kids-centric MMO to the online scene in the form of Kung Fu Panda World.

It's taken longer than it did to train up Jack Black in the dark arts of tubby-chub kung fu, but DreamWorks Animations' first virtual world for kids, is to launch today in the U.S. Kung Fu Panda World is $10 million-worth of virtual theme park for 8- to 12-year-olds to hone their martial arts talents and learn the thoroughly admirable skills of styling cartoon animals using in-world games and on-site currency, and there will be safe chat rooms.

There are two versions a pay model, which costs $5.95 a month, and a free version, accessible after a 15-second second ad, including, somewhat controversially, a promotion for MacDonalds' Happy Meals: very Spotify but DreamWorks could find it a hard slog, as kids can be notoriously fickle when it comes to brand loyalty. Just ask Disney, whose attempt to launch a virtual Pirates of the Caribbean world ended in failure.

DreamWorks has also taken time to allay parents’ fears over online security for their kids. Chat rooms will be monitored by college graduates and safe software to keep everything just so, and Moms and Dads will have the power to turn off gameplay, should any panda-esque dark circles appear under their kids’ eyes that smack of sleepless nights in KFP World.

Users can then play in-world games (from dance/rhythm to jump-and-run and fight games with such names as "Manis and Crane" and "Kung Fu Beats"), unlock additional abilities and games over time and use in-world virtual coins they earn to buy items, such as clothing or scrolls and potions to enhance game play. The goal is to boost their kung fu mastery by earning colored sashes that stand for ever-improving levels of skill.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Motion Comic In Holocaust

Disney Educational and Artist Neal Adams announced Motion Comics Series on Holocaust. Disney Educational Productions has enlisted comic book artist and activist Neal Adams to illustrate and narrate a new ten-part series of motion comics titled They Spoke Out: American Voices Against the Holocaust.

When superheroes team up in comic books, they typically combat a great evil. A similar approach is being undertaken with “They Spoke Out: American Voices of Protest against the Holocaust,” a 10-episode series of motion comics.

The project is collaboration among Disney Educational Productions, the David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies in Washington and the veteran comic book artist Neal Adams. Each episode will highlight a rarely told story of Americans who helped rescue Jews from the Holocaust and include a mix of animation, traditional comic book art, period photographs and film.

The first two episodes, “La Guardia’s War Against Hitler” and “Voyage of the Doomed,” will be screened at an art festival held by the Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art on Sunday at the 69th Regiment Armory in Manhattan. The 10-episode series was written by Rafael Medoff, the director of the Wyman Institute.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

High Five Info of Cartoon Animation

This are high five information in cartoon animation going to held between April 9 - 15.

  1. “Ran” changes Shakespeare’s king to a samurai lord, his daughters to sons, and throws in a Lady Macbeth-ish wife for one of them. But its chief creations and most profound delights are cinematic: vast, gorgeous landscapes; splashes of lurid color; a score played by an entire orchestra; heated, bloody battles; tricks of scale and perspective and contrast.
  2. “How to Train Your Dragon” The latest 3D adventure film is also one of the very best family entertainments in years a genial tale of a young, nerdy Viking boy’s encounter and eventual friendship with a deadly dragon, the very species his people have spent generations trying to vanquish. The script is funny and sharp, the vocal work bright. But the real star is, as it ought to be, the animation: fantastic textures of skin, hair, water, smoke, thrilling action sequences, uncanny depth of field, and so on. It doesn’t feel real-real, as “Avatar” did, but it’s meant to be a (you should forgive the term) cartoon, and it’s a doozy.
  3. “Mother” South Korean director Bong Joon-Ho came to attention here with “The Host,” which looked like a monster movie but was really about a fractured family. This film is nearly the opposite, telling the story of a selfless mom (Hye-Ja Kim, utterly, utterly glorious) trying to clear her dimwitted son (Bin Won) of a terrible crime to which he has confessed. There’s actually a murder mystery at the heart, which keeps you well on your toes, but the real drama is in the woman’s crusade. And Bong concocts a myriad of vivid filmic ideas. Gripping, funny, and altogether terrific.
  4. Ashland Independent Film Festival This year’s AIFF is the ninth, and features world premieres of two made-in-Oregon features along with an invariably well-curate selection of dramas, documentaries and shorts, many of particular local interest. Ethics force me to reveal that I’ll be speaking about my Paul Newman biography at an event on Sunday, in exchange for which the festival is according me lodging. But I’d be there anyway, as I have in the past: it’s always worth the drive to see good films in such a magnificent setting.
  5. CHEAPIE OF THE WEEK (Good values for tough times) “A Town Called Panic” A truly unique movie that never stops surprising and delighting. Using stop-motion, a pair of Belgian animators have brought plastic toys to life inside a world with a warped logic and zippy energy all its own. A horse, a cowboy and an Indian live together in a little village which turns upside-down when somebody does something dumb and draws the attention of some mischievous extraterrestrials. Filled with wild and silly humor, ceaselessly entertaining, its like “Toy Story” made by insanely inspired kids. Note: although it’s excellent family fare, it is subtitled.

Ellen's Acres Animation on iPad

Along with the iPad's official release last weekend, Animation Collective launched Ellen's Acres Puzzle Pieces, its first iPad application. The app is an interactive storybook based on an original episode of Ellen's Acres and is a literacy tool suited for the iPad's large screen and multi-touch interfaces.

The book is loaded with animated pages and features including high definition images, official audio and sound effects. Read along with Ellen as she realizes that Mr. Martinez's chameleon carrier, along with many other things have gone missing. It is up to Ellen to solve the puzzle. To do so, she must use her lucky lasso to find her friend Fred, discover the Alien Treasure Stone, and solve the puzzle of the Sphinx!

The app is available for free download at the iPad App Store on iTunes.

About Ellen's Acres
Ellen's Acres is an adventure comedy about a 5-year-old girl named Ellen, her feather duster, her radial tire, the hotel she owns and her amazing adventures. Actually, the hotel belongs to her parents, but the amazing adventures part is totally true. There's not a lot to do and there aren't too many kids Ellen's age at Emerald Acres Hotel, 39 miles outside Tonapah, Nevada. Ellen's companions are her parents, the folks that work at the hotel and the guests. But Ellen's got a big imagination. Actually, it's totally enormous!

About Animation Collective
A leading independent creator of children's entertainment in the U.S., Animation Collective has original content in more than eighty countries and in over fifteen languages on platforms including television, broadband, wireless, books, games and consumer products.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

New Animated Series of Voltron Movie is Back

The Hollywood big screen adaptation of iconic 1980s television cartoon Voltron has been languishing in development hell for years. After several script drafts, the live-action movie version is heading back to square one.

UTA agency is now representing World Events Productions, who own the US rights to "Voltron," that focuses on a band of five robot-lions (piloted by humans) that combine to form one giant warrior.

The original Voltron cartoon was a mix-mash of two Japanese anime: Armored Fleet Dairugger XV and Beast King Go-Lion. A "Voltron" movie has already been set up with producer Charles Roven, and UTA is expected to help bring a writer aboard and begin shopping the projects to studios.

The pitch is expected to include the idea that, unlike other toy brands, "Voltron" allows for human-centric stories. In addition to the movie, the agency also aims to expand the property into an animated cable series, video games and toy deals.

Film adaptation for the Voltron film is long awaited by the fans, but now the whole production has stopped and the previous director Max Makowski is no longer attached to direct the big screen adaptation.

Monday, April 5, 2010

All New Comedic Star Wars Cartoon Series

"Star Wars" creator George Lucas' Lucasfilm Animation announced it is developing a new animated "Star Wars" series that will take a comedic and irreverent look at the characters from the sci-fi franchise and will feature creative involvement from Green and Senreich as well as writing from Brendan Hay.

A new comedic Star Wars TV show was being developed and that the writing talents behind “The Daily Show” and “Robot Chicken” were involved in it, you probably would have just rolled your eyes and moved on. After all, George Lucas has already proven he’s more than willing to exploit his sci-fi creation for all its worth but even that idea sounds a bit far-fetched.

Well, the maestro of operatic sci-fi warfare has shocked fans again as his Lucasfilm animation studios has announced that they are indeed working on a comedy series set in the legendary galaxy far, far away. This will be the organization’s second TV project as their first, “Star Wars: The Clone Wars,” premiered only back in 2008 and is currently in its second season which airs on Cartoon Network. Meanwhile, "Chicken" buoyed by its popular "Star Wars: Episode 1 and 2" specials, is the flagship series on Adult Swim.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Night of the Living Dead with 3D Animation

The art world has always been so varied and diverse; there is certainly something for everyone even hardcore horror fans. For them, that something has come in the form of Night of the Living Dead: REANIMATED.

More exclusive artwork has come our way for upcoming 3D animated feature film Night of the Living Dead: Origins, and like everything else we've seen from this project, things are looking pretty damned cool.

This project is a mixed-media installment wherein various artistic styles, contributed by over 100 artists from a variety of different disciplines, are utilized to recreate scenes from George A. Romero’s seminal NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD, threaded together by the film’s audio and narrative. The media include everything from illustration, cartoon animation, computer imaging and rotoscoping to stop-motion, claymation and puppetry (yes, that’s right: zombie puppets). The result is a quite imaginative amalgam of creative forces unlike anything you’re liable to see elsewhere.

The experience of viewing NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD: REANIMATED is rather unique. While the production generally maintains the thrill of the original film, much of it strikes entirely different emotional chords as well, with inclusions such as sock-puppet newscasters, undead Furbies and animated sequences in which the living humans are depicted as mice while the ghouls are cats. This artistic fusion culminates in a distinctive and exceptional presentation sure to enthrall all viewers familiar with the source material.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Taiwanese company’s Internationally Successful Cartoon

A cartoon series developed by a Taiwanese company has made a splash in the international market and its developers are now preparing to test an online game derived from the TV series.

The Flash animated TV series Hero 108, co-produced by Taiwan’s Gamania Digital Entertainment Co, Moonscoop of the UK and Cartoon Network International of the US, premiered on March 1 in the US and Britain and later in Italy and Germany. The graphics are cute, pseudo-anime and cell-shaded.

The series tells the story of how humans and animals were once friends, before an evil character named High Roller convinced animals otherwise. In its quest to end the conflict between the two groups, the young First Squad must take on High Roller and the Zebra Brothers.

The series, made up of 52 11-minute episodes, was inspired by the 14th-century Chinese novel The Water Margin. It uses state-of-the-art technology to appeal to a target audience of six to 11-year-olds.

The main characters and initial storyline were both crafted by Gamania and the series was produced in collaboration with Moonscoop and Cartoon Network International.