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Right now "Dexter's Laboratory" and "Samurai Jack" creator Genndy Tartakovsky is busy working on an animated feature film adaptation of the classic sailor cartoon Popeye at Sony Pictures Animation. But Tartakovsky will be very busy at Sony with two more projects in development at the studio. Tartakovsky has just signed on to direct a Hotel Transylvania sequel after directing the original film starring Adam Sandler as Dracula, but he's also working on his own original creation that is currently titled Genndy Tartakovsky's Can You Imagine?, and it might be a little similar to something Pixar has coming soon.
This fall, DreamWorks Animation has their film Home hitting theaters. Formerly known as Happy Smekday!, the film is an adaptation of Adam Rex's children's book, The True Meaning of Smekday. The film follows an alien race invading Earth as their new home to hide form a mortal enemy. But when one lowly alien (Jim Parsons) accidentally notifies the enemies of his whereabouts, he is forced to go on the run with a stubborn teenage girl (Rihanna) to right all of his wrongs. Now an animated short film introduces us to the alien characters trying to find a new home planet, including the leader voiced by Steve Martin. Watch!
The Jungle is Jumpin'! Earlier in the week we posted a batch of artwork from Mondo's spectacular Disney show currently open at their gallery during the ongoing SXSW Film Festival down in Austin, TX. Thanks to art lovers at SlashFilm we now have a look at even more art that debuted at the show, which had a huge line to get in, and if you're a Disney fan, or had a childhood (that means everyone) you have to see these. The show is called Nothing's Impossible - info. There's some art for Pixar's Ratatouille and Finding Nemo, as well as classics like Disney's The Jungle Book, Little Mermaid, The Black Cauldron, and Snow White, plus The Skeleton Dance. Many of these pieces exceed expectations, so take a quick look below.
The last teaser trailer for Laika's new stop-motion animated film The Boxtrolls looked behind the scenes at the painstaking, intricate animation process. Now a new teaser trailer has emerged that still doesn't give us much in the vein of story, but features a catchy new version of an old tune for the film. That's Cee Lo Green's cover of "(You're So Square) Baby, I Don't Care," previously sang by the likes of Elvis Presley and Buddy Holly, driving this whole teaser trailer with more fantastic animation. This time we get to see more of the human characters, but we're still waiting for a full trailer with some story details. Watch below!
"You picking this up, John?" Dang, this is cool. There's an animated short making its way around online (tip via Wired) titled simply Batman versus The Terminator. Enough said. That title alone should be more than needed to make you want to watch this, whatever it is. Well, it's a 5-minute long animated short film from a New Zealand-based filmmaker named Mitchell Hammond that does indeed pit the legendary Bruce Wayne, aka Batman, against The Terminator, aka Skynet, among other things. Set in the year 2029, three decades after Skynet's nuclear blasts, Wayne emerges with a vehicle called "The Stinger" to head out to find John Connor. I love the visual style of this, it's an incredibly well made short, great work. Enjoy below.
Time for our first look at what might end up being a Best Animated Feature nominee next year. The film is called The Book of Life, and is the feature debut of Jorge R. Gutierrez, who is working with Fox Animation to produce with Guillermo del Toro and Brad Booker. Set on the Mexican holiday the Day of the Dead, The Book of Life tells the story of a young man named Manolo (voiced by Channing Tatum) who is torn between what he wants to do - play guitar and win the heart of the girl of his dreams - and what his family wants him to do. We get a glimpse at Manolo, and his girl, who eventually travels across three worlds to find himself.
Recently it was revealed that DreamWorks Animation was planning a London theme park attraction called Shrek's Far Far Away Adventure, inspired by the animated film Shrek and the film franchise that followed. Now it sounds like we might get another film to add to the pile. Fox Business (via Variety) spoke with DreamWorks founder Jeffrey Katzenberg, and he clearly hinted that another film in the Shrek franchise might be in the works. Katzenberg said, "We like to let them have a little bit of time to rest, but I think you can be confident that we’ll have another chapter in the Shrek series." Because four just wasn't enough.
Briefly: Just before The LEGO Movie hit theaters and dominated the box office for two weekends in a row (it could be three after this weekend), we got word that Warner Bros. had already tapped Jared Stern (The Internship) to write the script, and he'll also have help from Michelle Morgan (Girl Most Likely). Though we don't know if the original film's writers and directors Phil Lord & Chris Miller (21 Jump Street, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs) will return, the studio has announced a May 26th, 2017 release date for the animated sequel, which is big because that's the huge box office Memorial Day weekend. We just hope the sequel can deliver more originality and creative brilliance like the first film. Stay tuned for more.
This might be something very cool, and potentially an awards winning short in the next year or two. SXSW has debuted a short trailer for an animated film called Confusion Through Sand. At first, Indiewire was billing this as the entire short itself, but the festival lists it as an 11 minute-long short, which means there's plenty more to see and this is just a tease. Confusion Through Sand is a hand drawn, animated short made by the 26-year-old filmmaker Danny Madden, made entirely on recycled paper, hence the look. The story follows a 19-year old soldier who finds himself alone in a hostile desert, scared as hell and trained to react.
In what seems to Warner Bros. Animation Group having a little fun with a combination of fake animated outtakes and legitimate sound booth mistakes and conversations, The LEGO Movie just debuted their very own blooper reel. What's cool is there are some outtakes that were made just for fun, complete with LEGO crew members with cameras, but there also seem to be real alternate takes of Will Arnett as Batman right before flying into the sun, and a candid conversation between Chris Pratt and Arnett in the recording booth, both made fun with animation to go along with them. Alison Brie has a good one too. Watch below!
After seeing The LEGO Movie last weekend, you might be wondering just how much of the film was created using real LEGO pieces, and how much was just some spectacularly crafted animation. Well, most of the film was created with the help of the FX company Animal Logic in Australia, and it took no less than 3,863,484 unique, virtual bricks and 15,080,330 total pieces to bring the film to life. We've already seen one featurette diving into the making of the film, but a new extensive look at the animation and visual effects of the film has arrived from FX Guide, and it's a thoroughly fascinating journey behind the scenes.
Now that you've seen it, what did you think? The story of a nobody who saved everybody. In theaters everywhere is The LEGO Movie, an animated movie directed by Phil Lord & Chris Miller ("Clone High", Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, 21 Jump Street) based on the minifigs and plastic blocks that the entire world is familiar with. The story involves an ordinary minifig named Emmet, voiced by Chris Pratt, who joins a quest to stop an evil tyrant from gluing the universe together. He teams up with Unikitty, Wyldstyle, Batman and many others. Once you've seen this, leave a comment with your thoughts on The LEGO Movie.
With all the films based on previously established intellectual property that have already hit the big screen and are still on the way, it's easy to be skeptical of a film that doesn't seem to be trying too hard by simply being called The LEGO Movie. After all, how can you craft a story around the building block toy and the countless, seemingly unrelated worlds that have been turned into various LEGO sets? Thankfully, directors Phil Lord & Chris Miller (Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, 21 Jump Street) have crafted an answer that's original and keeps the spirit of imagination alive at a time when Hollywood seems out of creativity.
Though it's mostly American animated films that made up the nominees for Best Animated Feature from the 86th Academy Award nominations, France got their film Ernest & Celestine nominated alongside The Croods, Frozen, Despicable Me 2 and The Wind Rises. Now the film is poised to get a release in the United States with a more familiar cast providing the voices for the English dubbed version. The US release of the film has the voices of Forest Whitaker, Mackenzie Foy, Lauren Bacall, William H. Macy, Megan Mullally, Nick Offerman and Jeffrey Wright. Now the first trailer featuring their voices is here. Watch!