Wednesday, February 05, 2014

At Warner Bros. Animation

I was over on the ranch* this afternoon, doing a 401(k) enrollment meeting and walk around. Things are a wee bit quiet. ...

WB Animation occupies one building on the lot and parts of three others. MAD TV, a staple for years, has shut down after its 100th episode (or whatever the number is) and a multi-year run. There's a Tom and Jerry direct-to-video project in work, and a couple of features cranking up.

Teen Titans Go! is one of the studio's recent success stories, and the series has been green lit for a second season. There is also a series underway that's keyed to an oncoming theatrical feature, but since I haven't seen any announcements about its existence, and since I'm not keen on getting an angry phone call from studio publicity about blatting about a yet-to-be-announced television project, I'll let your imaginations roam as you attempt to guess what this television project might be**.

There are a number of vacant cubes at WBA, but staffers inform me it will soon be getting livelier inside the studio. Here's hoping.

* The Warner Ranch. Near the corner of Hollywood Way and Verdugo Avenue. In the great long ago, it was known as "The Coumbia Ranch," and part of the studio headquartered in Hollywood on Gower Street. Close to half a century ago, Columbia Studios and Warner Bros. merged operations at their respective studios in Burbank. The combined operations of Columbia-Warner Bros. (known as "The Burbank Studios") went on for two and a half decades, but then an over-reaching Columbia executive triggered a lawsuit from the WB, and Warner Bros. won a large monetary judgment from Columbia and gained sole control of both Burbank lots. And that's how the Columbia Ranch became the Burbank Studios ranch and finally the Warner Bros. Ranch. Though a corner of the lot was long ago sold off to make a shopping center, the rest of the facility contains sets, sound stages, a day care center ... and an animation studio.

** Over the years, authoring this blog has caused me a few dollops of pain. Since '06 (when it started), I've received brusque and business-like phone calls from half a dozen cartoon studios claiming to be ticked off that TAG blog has revealed corporate secrets, and lecturing me on "professionalism" (Things like the title of a direct-to-video feature, or the screen shape of "The Simpsons Movie", or the news that a comic book character is coming back into circulation on the teepee or that some cartoon specials are being made. Important stuff like that.)

My personal opinion? It's mostly twaddle; no proprietary information has been revealed and the studios are only miffed because the non-news has gotten out ahead of a press release. But I have better ways to spend my nine-to-five existence than being bellowed at by some studio nitwit on the phone. So as the years rumble by, I've become more coy about what I write.

It makes the blog less interesting, but helps my life to be more ... ahm ... relaxed.


Ruben Chavez said...

That's probably why your visits to us at the studios is the next best thing to getting more in-depth information and of course saying, "Hi, how are things?".

Steve Hulett said...

You want in-depth info from me, you'll have to get it verbally as I stumble by your cubicle.

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