Monday, February 26, 2018

Animated Events: Women Animators at AlmaCon

I'm trying to get back into the swing of things in 2018--work on my animation skills, work on my public speaking skills, spread the good word about the history of women animators, stuff like that. And where better to do that than at anime cons!

It started this month with Alma Con up in Alma, Michigan. Well, this con was both good and bad for my purposes. I had a turnout of nine people at my presentation. Pretty close to the threshold for a smaller anime con, I usually expect between ten and twenty people at a smaller con. Four guys, five girls. And everyone was pretty engaged, though the girls were a little too giggly for my tastes, but hey, everyone was interested in the subject matter so I took it as a win. The weather that weekend was poor, I presented my "Game Show" on a Friday night, and they didn't print the description of my panel in the program booklet due to a printing error (quietly bangs head against wall).

So, personally, I think that I might have had a bigger turnout if the weather and lack of booklet quality control hadn't been working against me, but fact is: even if one person showed up, I still would've run the panel. And everyone had fun learning about women animators, so I'm counting this presentation in the "win" column!

My next two presentations will be on March 25th at Shuto Con in Lansing and again a week later in Grand Rapids for ASIFA Central's "Celebration of Women Animators" on March 31st.

Hope to see some of you there!

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Animated Events: 2018 Academy Award Animated Short Films at the DIA
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has released the nominations for the 90th Annual Academy Awards and as per tradition, the Detroit Institute of Arts' Detroit Film Theater will be showing their annual shorts nominee program in February and March.

This year, the following animated films have been nominated (click on the links to see the trailers):

Dear Basketball - Glenn Keane and Kobe Bryant
Garden Party - Victor Caire and Gabriel Grapperon
Lou - Dave Mullins and Dana Murray
Negative Space - Max Porter and Ru Kuwahata
Revolting Rhymes - Jakob Schuh and Jan Lachauer

The screening schedule from the DIA's website is as follows:
  • Friday, February 9, 2018 - 7:00 PM
  • Saturday, February 10, 2018 - 7:00 PM
  • Sunday, February 11, 2018 - 1:00 PM
  • Sunday, February 11, 2018 - 6:00 PM
  • Thursday, February 15, 2018 - 7:00 PM
  • Friday, February 16, 2018 - 7:00 PM
  • Saturday, February 17, 2018 - 2:00 PM
  • Saturday, February 17, 2018 - 7:00 PM
  • Sunday, February 18, 2018 - 1:00 PM
  • Friday, February 23, 2018 - 7:00 PM
  • Saturday, February 24, 2018 - 7:00 PM
  • Sunday, February 25, 2018 - 1:00 PM
  • Sunday, February 25, 2018 - 6:00 PM
  • Friday, March 02, 2018 - 7:00 PM
  • Saturday, March 03, 2018 - 2:00 PM
  • Saturday, March 03, 2018 - 7:00 PM
  • Sunday, March 04, 2018 - 1:00 PM
  • Sunday, March 04, 2018 - 6:00 PM
For those interested in the results, the Academy Awards will be broadcast on Sunday, March 4, 2018.

The Detroit Film Theater is located at:
5200 Woodward Ave
Detroit, MI 48202

Ticket prices are listed as:

$9.50 general admission
$7.50 seniors, students, DIA members

And you can buy tickets from either the box office or online on the DFT's website.

Congratulations to all the nominees and to all the filmmakers who submitted their films for consideration.

* The Academy Awards and the Oscar are registered trademarks of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Animated Thoughts: the Annie Awards

Well, the 45th Annie Awards ceremony has come and gone was tonight. Some random thoughts I had during the ceremony:
  • Loved the vintage drive-in theater intermission animations that they played while waiting for the ceremony to start. A lot of them had this nice UPA feeling to them.
  • Should prepare a short 'thank you' script ahead of time, folks. Glenn and Kobe really handled it well though.
  • Very happy to see Samurai Jack getting some love!
  • Very touching video showcasing memories of June Foray.
  • They found a UPA print that was never released? Wow!! When do we get to see it?
  • Putting the student films Cradle, Elsewhere, and Once a hero on my list of films to track down.
  • Wished that Negative Space had won the Best Animated Short Subject. :/
  • Very, very happy to see Samurai Jack getting some love at the Annies.
  • Glad to see Studio MDHR Entertainment get recognized with a special achievement award for their use of traditional 2d animation in their game  Cuphead.
  • Lots of lovely animation work being produced using TV Paint.
  • Studio MDHR got the Character Animation in a Video Game award for Cuphead and it was very well deserved.
  • I can't wait to see the Big Bad Fox & Other Tales. I also can't help but think that if the Waterloo Festival for Animated Cinema was still around, I would've seen it already.
  • Very, very, VERY happy to see Samurai Jack getting some love! It's long overdue.
  • Wendy Tilby and Amanda Forbis win the Winsor McCay Award, another well deserved award.
  • Wow!!! Rick and Morty won for Writing in an Animated Television/Broadcast Production for that awesome Ricklantis episode. Congrats to Ryan Ridley and Dan Guterman.
  • Y'know, every time I see anything from We Bare Bears, it makes me wish I had Cartoon Network on my basic cable package.
  • "PICKLE-RICK!!!!"
  • Did they just give away the winner of the Best Animated Feature - Independent before showing the clips?
  • Y'know, I'm glad to see Nory Twomy get some well-deserved recognition for directing the Breadwinner (the first solo-woman director to win an Annie for Best Animated Feature), but I was still pulling for Loving Vincent. ;)
Congrats to all the winners and nominees.

Friday, February 2, 2018

Animated Events: 45th Annie Awards

This Saturday, February 3rd at 7 p.m. PST (10 p.m. EST), ASIFA Hollywood will be streaming the annual Annie Awards, a celebration of the best our industry has to offer.

Both the Production and Individual Achievement categories are listed on the Nominees page, however some highlights are below:

Best Animated Feature
  • Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie - DreamWorks Animation
  • Cars 3 - Pixar Animation Studios
  • Coco - Pixar Animation Studios
  • Despicable Me 3 - Illumination
  • The Boss Baby - DreamWorks Animation
Best Animated Feature - Independent
  • In This Corner Of The World - Taro Maki, GENCO, Inc. and Masao Maruyama, MAPPA Co., Ltd
  • Loving Vincent - BreakThru Films, Production Company Trademark Films, Co-Production Company     
  • Napping Princess - Nippon TV 
  • The Big Bad Fox & Other Tales - Folivari / Panique! / Studiocanal
  • The Breadwinner - Cartoon Saloon / Aircraft Pictures / Melusine Productions
Best Animated Short Subject
  • Dear Basketball - Glen Keane Productions, Kobe Studios, Believe Entertainment Group
  • Hedgehog's Home - National Film Board of Canada, Bonobostudio
  • Negative Space -  IKKI Films / Manuel Cam Studio
  • Scavengers -  Titmouse, Inc. // Adult Swim
  • Son Of Jaguar - Google Spotlight Stories, Reel FX
In addition to the Production and Individual Achievement awards, they'll also be presenting the Juried Awards for the following:
  • the Winsor McCay Award - 'for their career contributions to the art of animation',
  • the Ub Iwerks Award - 'for technical advancement in the art of animation',
  • the Special Achievement Award,
  • the June Foray Award - 'for their significant and benevolent or charitable impact on the art and industry of animation', and
  • the Certificate of Merit.
You can watch the 45th Annie Awards ceremony live right 'here' on the Annie Awards website.

Congratulations to all the nominees!

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Animated Quotes: Floyd Norman

Floyd Norman: An Animated Life

"It's great to work with this cool technology, but you have to serve the story. It’s the content. That's what the audience responds to. Ultimately, if the story doesn't work and it's not compelling, the technology isn’t going to save you."

~ Floyd Norman
SIGGRAPH keynote address
Source: Hollywood Reporter