Thursday, November 01, 2007

Halloweenie Links

Okay, it's the day after Halloween, and a day before I usually go with a linkfest ... but here's links (with a strong tilt, as I look at them, to DreamWorks and Pixar) for All Hallows Eve:

Seth McFarlane of Family Guy is interviewed with fine results by The Hollywood Reporter:

We were certainly the first show ever to be brought back from cancellation based on sales of a DVD. As far as I know, at that time the TV shows-going-to-DVD phenomenon was not something that had even really emerged yet. Fox released the episodes on DVD almost as an afterthought ... [T]here's nothing like an unexpected financial windfall to help change your mind about a property you had already dumped...

Good God. Losing animation jobs to the Pacific Rim has been going on awhile. But Iowa?

Los Angeles-based Grasshorse Technologies said Friday it would move and expand its animation production studios to Iowa, thanks to new tax incentives Iowa is providing the film industry.

And a new CG feature gets announced by Sony, even as Sony Pictures Animation is put on the block:

... [T]he Resident Evil movie trilogy is to expand after publisher Capcom announced the coming of a new CGI film.

Entitled Biohazard: Degeneration, the computer-generated movie will be released by Sony Pictures Entertainment, which promises to provide "groundbreaking visual effects and a brand new storyline".

And DreamWorks zips along, its stock beating the Street's estimates by 3 cents...

Reports Q3 (Sep) earnings of $0.47 per share ... revenues rose 189.2% year/year to $160.8 mln vs the $164.3 mln consensus. Shrek the Third was once again the largest driver of the quarter, contributing approximately $92.1 ml in revenue, primarily from its significant international box-office receipts in the period. To date, the film has reached approximately $793 mln in box office on a worldwide basis, making it the third highest-grossing animated film of all time ...

And DA will be repurchasing a chunk of stock from Steven Spielberg's Wunderkinder Foundation:

DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc ... said it entered an agreement to repurchase about $24.5 million of stock from Wunderkinder Foundation, a charitable organization originally established by director Steven Spielberg.

... The shares were donated to the foundation by Spielberg, who is the beneficial owner of more than 5 percent of the company's outstanding Class A common Stock.

Sony flirts with selling its animation units, but DreamWorks Animation puts another project into the development hopper:

DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg announced Tuesday that the studio has slated as its fall 2010 theatrical release a superhero send-up acquired under the working title of Master Mind.

The release of Ratatouille to DVD will bring something new with it:

The release of Disney/Pixar’s Ratatouille is to include the first hand-drawn animated 2-D short film in Pixar history. The studio that innovated computer rendered 3D animation returned to the good old fashioned 2D animation method for it’s 11 minute-film (which is the longest short film in Pixar history).

“Your Friend the Rat” was directed by Jim Capobianco and was inspired by the research the filmmakers did into rat behaviour and history - much of this never made it into the final film.

Pete Hammond at the L.A. TIMES asks if Ratatuille might possibly get a nomination for the uppermost Oscar:

Final entries are due today to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to qualify for this year's best animated feature film Oscar.

But the real question is not necessarily: "What will make the final cut?" but "Is there a chance in hell that one of those nominees (we smell a rat here) could actually be nominated for best picture as well?" ...

As Disney's home video campaign (it streets Tuesday) correctly states, it is "the best reviewed movie of the year," leading all comers with a remarkable 97% "fresh" rating on the Rotten Tomatoes website (out of 190 reviews) and a 96 score on MetaCritic, placing it not only first for the year there, but sixth on their all-time list led by none other than "The Godfather."

The DreamWorks/Seinfeld Bee Movie is poised to launch in a theater near you. Rotten Tomatoes has a compendium of reviews here. And the McClatchy newspapers interview Seinfeld during his Bee publicity blitz:

"I would be embarrassed to tell you the amount of retooling" that went into the script, says Seinfeld, who co-wrote and produced, along with voicing the lead character, Barry B. Benson. "I worked this thing so many different ways, so many different times, until they said, 'There's no more time, we have to put the movie out.'"

Have a fantabulous Friday and weekend.


Anonymous said...

'There's no more time, we have to put the movie out.'

Ouch. How's a guy like Seinfeld in a position where he has to go forward with something that isn't ready yet?

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