Sunday, September 21, 2008

September Linkdom

Obviously DreamWorks Animation's Jeffrey Katzenberg has noted the Koch box office calculator here on TAG blog:

Katzenberg, speaking at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia XVII Conference in New York, told Wall Street analysts to adjust the "multiplier" estimates for the movie. A "good" movie, he said, will earn 3.5 times opening weekend box office, while a "very good" should get a 4 multiplier and an "exceptional" movie a 4.3 multiplier.

Either that, or Jeffrey can also do math ...

Robert Winquist, an iconic teacher at Cal Arts, died on September 10th:

He was the kind of inspirational teacher that movies are made about, said his former students, who went on to make films that reflected lessons learned in his Valencia classroom between 1983 and 1991.

Ralph Eggleston, who won an Academy Award in 2001 for his animated short "For the Birds," credits Winquist with pushing students to think more broadly about what they could accomplish.

"When Bob came in, animators primarily left the school and became animators. Suddenly, they started becoming art directors and storyboard artists. He made us think of ourselves as filmmakers, not just animators," [Pixar art director Ralph] Eggleston said ...

Foreign box office continues to percolate, and Pixar's latest feature thrives right along with it:

Family fave "Wall-E" scooped up $6.6 million at 2,700, mostly thanks to No. 1 launches in Australia ($3.1 million), Greece and New Zealand. The Disney-Pixar vehicle's become the 10th pic released this year to top $200 million.

So the little robot is up to, what? $420 million in worldwide grosses? I'm guessing it generates profits.

Producer Max Howard tells of getting the new animated feature Igor to the screen:

Howard contends that this film is a smaller, independent production. "We're not aspiring to be Pixar or Disney," Howard says. "We're more like Juno. I'm hoping we'll be discovered."

That discovery appears to be underway. In fact, when Igor opens on September 19 in North America, it will be on more screens than originally anticipated. "We'll be on 2,300 screens," Howard says. "We originally thought it would be 1,200 to 1,500 screens."

Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson are hitting some rough headwinds as they try to get their Tin tin animated features financed:

Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson don't hear "no" very often.

But after they submitted a final budget of $130 million for their 3-D animated movie "Tintin," based on the Belgian comic strip, to Universal Pictures, the studio balked. The decision has left the two powerful filmmakers scrambling to find another financial partner ...

The particular problem for Universal with "Tintin" is that Spielberg's and Jackson's involvement comes with a huge price tag. The two filmmakers together would command such a large percentage of the movie's revenue as part of their compensation -- without putting up any of the capital themselves, as is typical in Hollywood -- that it takes a substantial slice of the profit off the table for the backers ...

We end with a piece on the teen-aged world's favorite show, Robot Chicken:

The series, which uses stop-motion animation, began largely as a hobby for [Seth] Green and partner Matthew Senreich, who worked in the comic book world in New York. The Emmy Award-winning series has a large following, not only in the United States, where it is shown on the Cartoon Network Adult Swim block, but also abroad, where they get the parodies of pop culture and spoofs of the Star Wars movies.

Senreich said the series has an aggressive production schedule _ roughly about 11 months work to produce a 20-episode season. The company started with a few employees and many interns to a current staff of more than 100 people.

Green, who appeared as Doctor Evil's son Scott in the Austin Powers movies, has no plans to abandon his movie career. But he says his work in animation is giving him much satisfaction ...

Add on: Variety details the competition between Disney Xtreme Digital (formerly Toon Disney and Turner/Time Warners' Cartoon Network (whcih Variety mistakes for a Viacom subsidiary):

The Mouse's ad-supported toon net will face a tough hombre in the mighty Cartoon. The Viacom net recently announced new iterations of marquee properties -- including a new Star Wars show -- for the fall, and it's about to debut a giant, downloadable massively multiplayer online game called FusionFall; after all, the kids these nets need are notorious for reaching for a joystick before their remote control.

If Disney has a cheering section in this enterprise, it's Madison Avenue, which, if it's going to sell action figures or sugary food, has to buy boy-focused ad time from Nick or Cartoon, whether their ratings are good or not.

Enjoy the dwindling hours of your weekend.

6 comments:

Kevin Geiger said...

Here’s my $0.02 this subject vis-a-vis "Igor's" $8M opening weekend:

“I-Gad!” (Begin With The End In Mind)
http://tinyurl.com/3s65at

KG

Anonymous said...

"Senreich said the series has an aggressive production schedule _ roughly about 11 months work to produce a 20-episode season. The company started with a few employees and many interns to a current staff of more than 100 people."

That 100 people is still made up of a vast majority of interns. The production of that show is made possible by the wide eyed, unpaid labor of young college grads.

Its not cool.

Anonymous said...

Kevin Geiger shamelessly plugging his blog in here again. Color me unsurprised.

Kevin Geiger said...

And?

James said...

At least he has something to say, anon. Why such a hater?

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