Thursday 27 February 2014

Muppets Most Wanted First Scene and Song Online!

Boy do we have a treat for you! The first scene and song from Muppets Most Wanted is online!

Watch: Impressive "Let It Go" Sing-along on Good Morning America

As if its near-billion dollar worldwide haul and the countless covers of "Let It Go" on YouTube weren't proof enough, here's the latest evidence that Frozen really has made a huge impact on the general public. To celebrate the film's early digital release on (the US version of) iTunes, Good Morning America had a live sing-along across various locales in the States yesterday, with hundreds of people belting out "Let It Go."

Katzenberg On Shrek 5: "We’re Not Finished, and More Importantly, Neither is He.”

"We’re not finished, and more importantly, neither is he." Those are the slightly villainous-sounding words of DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg, threatening indicating that another Shrek film is on the cards, only four years after Shrek Forever After, which was subtitled The Final Chapter.

Monday 24 February 2014

DreamWorks Animation Traditionally-Animated Films: What Went Wrong?

DreamWorks Animation is a studio that has positioned itself as one of the leading studios in the animation industry. In recent years it has a achieved a certain level of excellence with great films such as Kung Fu Panda and How To Train Your Dragon. Their CG films are very popular, with many of them becoming franchises and spanning many sequels. But, what many people have forgotten, is that in their early years, they also released a bunch of hand-drawn animated films that have now fallen into obscurity. The question is, what happened? Are these films very bad and deserve to be forgotten? Or, are they underrated films deserving a second chance? Well let's take a look at each film and the circumstances surrounding their releases. Unlike the Disney Retrospective, nostalgia won't play a part in any of these films as I remembered very little of them (and in the case of Sinbad, had never seen it before) so I re-watched all of them with fresh eyes. The meaning of theis article is not to provide a definite answer for the question in the headline, but just to give some context and try to make some guesses as to why that happened.

Note: Only the theatrical traditionally animated films are taken into account so Joseph: King of Dreams is not included.

Saturday 22 February 2014

Directing Candidates for Marvel's Doctor Strange Include Brave's Mark Andrews

It doesn't seem like so long ago that Marvel kicked off their Cinematic Universe with Iron Man in 2008, but we're now about halfway through Phase 2 of it, with our eyes starting to glance over to Phase 3. One film that's heavily talked about in relation to the third stage of Marvel's massive screen universe is Doctor Strange. And we're now starting to hear some interesting rumours about who could direct it.

Friday 21 February 2014

The Lego Movie 2 Officially Set for May 2017

The first film's not been out long (but it's already made more than $200 million, all the same), but The Lego Movie has done such wonders for Warner Bros.' newly-resurged animation division that the studio have not only already greenlit a sequel, but given it a release date! The Lego Movie 2 will open on 26th May, 2017, says Variety.

First Trailer for Guardians of the Galaxy!

It's finally here: the very first trailer for James Gunn's Guardians of the Galaxy landed last night! And it was worth the wait.

Monday 17 February 2014

Munir's Disney Retrospective - Animated Classic #53: Frozen (2013)

Last Week's: Munir's Disney Retrospective - Animated Classic #52: Wreck-It Ralph (2012).

The Snow Queen, like many other Disney projects was in development hell for many years. Constantly revived and shelved, the project never seemed to properly take off and fans never knew when/if the film was finally going to be released. After the latest 2002 attempt was cancelled again, Chris Buck (director of Tarzan) pitched a new version to John Lasseter in 2008 and development started once more. Finally, in 2011, Disney officially announced the film with a new title and a 2013 release date. What nobody expected is that the new film, now called Frozen, was to become a critical darling and a box office behemoth that matched the run of The Lion King almost 20 years ago.

Sunday 16 February 2014

Frozen Wins BAFTA for Best Animated Film!

Frozen's hot streak is continuing into awards season; after winning Walt Disney Animation Studios its first Golden Globe for Best Animated Feature, the musical behemoth has now won the BAFTA for Best Animated Film for the studio for the first time (in forever)! Directors Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee were on hand to collect the award at tonight's British Academy Film Awards, hosted by Stephen Fry.

Saturday 15 February 2014

4th Annual A113Animation Awards Results

It feels strangely surreal that our little animation blog has been going long enough to be at its 4th annual Awards, but here we are. 2012 was an incredibly strong year for animation, 2013 was less strong. There were some really good animated films released last year, but far fewer great ones than in previous years. As opposed to last year, then, there wasn't much of a spread of awards this year; one film dominated, and you'll never guess which one... So, check out the results below: the winners are in bold and there's a breakdown of who won what and why at the bottom.

Friday 14 February 2014

A Plea for The Wind Rises to Win the Oscar

With the Oscars right around the corner, we are all being bogged down with promotional petitions and stunts on who should win Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Director and on and on. Some of these promotional petitions may be re-releases, special Q&A screenings, or even sing-along versions of the films. And while I'm sure most people regard the Oscars as the ultimate authority on what merits recognition in the world of motion pictures, there has been more than one occasion where the Oscar has been awarded to what can only be regarded as the most popular film of the year, rather than the best film in the category. Unfortunately, I fear this may be another such year where the film that merits the award for Best Animated Feature will be cast aside for the more popular film of the nominations.

Monday 10 February 2014

Animation at the Box-Office: Frozen Now Over $900 Million; Big Opening for The Lego Movie

It's been a good few months for animation at the box-office, and that looks to continue as we move further into the second month of 2014. With Disney's mammoth hit musical Frozen still going strong, and Warner Bros.' The Lego Movie doing expectedly big business, mainstream American animation is doing immensely well right now.

Sunday 9 February 2014

Moon Bear Update: Check Out the Intro for Scotty Jo Cartoons

You may remember that, a while back, we told you about a Kickstarter campaign for an animated short film by friend of the blog, Scott Nicholson. The short exceeded its $3500 goal, and is in the midst of production right now. Now, Scott asked me to share this nifty little intro with all of you: the animated logo for the group bringing you Moon Bear, Scotty Jo Films. Check it out above!

The sound design is by Rachel A. Fowler (Staff Editor at Prologue Films and owner of Freelance Motion Graphics Designer) and all the animation was done by Scotty Jo himself. More updates on Moon Bear as and when we get them.

Saturday 8 February 2014

The Lego Movie Review - Everything is Awesome!

I must confess, when The Lego Movie was announced, I was not particularly excited. Lego was a big part of my childhood and even if I don't buy any sets or build anything anymore, I've always been fond of the company and their products. However, I couldn't really see how Warner Bros. could adapt this huge world into a successful movie. It gave me the impression that it was going to be a blatant product placement piece rather than a genuine work of art. Thankfully, I was completely wrong about the whole thing, and not only does The Lego Movie celebrate the company's legacy, but it also provides an utterly original and beautiful story filled with great characters.

Wednesday 5 February 2014

Exclusive: Full Spreads from Titan Books' The Art of Mr. Peabody & Sherman

The Art of Mr Peabody & Sherman is out now from Titan Books. © 2014 DreamWorks Animation L.L.C.

As we announced moments ago, we're giving away a free copy of Titan Books' new DreamWorks Art of book, The Art of Mr. Peabody & Sherman, and we've got an exclusive gallery of some great spreads from the book to share with you! Whet your appetite below.

[NOW CLOSED] Competition: Win a Copy of The Art of Mr. Peabody & Sherman and Judge an A113Animation Award

A113Animation have got not one, but two, great competitions for our fabulous readers, with two great prizes! Firstly, we're teaming up with the great guys and gals at Titan Books again, to give away a free copy of the art book for DreamWorks' new film, Mr. Peabody & Sherman, directed by The Lion King's Rob Minkoff. In addition to The Art of Mr. Peabody & Sherman, we're giving one of you the chance to judge this year's Second Opinion A113Animation Award, telling us your favourite animated film of 2013. Check out the details of both the competitions below!

4th Annual A113Animation Award Nominations

New logo designed by Damien Chevrier.

It's that time of year again; we're in the throe of awards season glitz and self-congratulation - and loving every minute of it! So, it's time for us here at A113Animation to get in on the act, with our 4th Annual A113Animation Awards! The winners will be announced on Saturday 15th February, and here's the list of what's nominated (it's a slightly different line-up of awards from last year, but broadly the same).

Monday 3 February 2014

Munir's Disney Retrospective - Animated Classic #52: Wreck-It Ralph (2012)

Last Week's: Munir's Disney Retrospective - Animated Classic #51: Winnie the Pooh (2011).

After the more quiet and charming Winnie the Pooh, Disney Animation came firing back on all cylinders with their next film. It was something very different from anything the studio had attempted before, and it seemed like an unlikely endeavour from a studio that seemed more "traditional" in the view of most people. Nonetheless, Wreck-It Ralph came at the perfect time for WDAS, as it helped it reinvent itself and find a new identity, as a pioneer of new and fresh stories, while also developing new technology to match them.

Studio Ghibli to Dabble in TV

Picture courtesy of Den of Geek

Studio Ghibli will be taking a huge leap this fall as they will begin airing their very first animated television series, titled Ronia, the Robber's Daughter. The production will be a collaboration between Studio Ghibli and Japan's Polygon Pictures, headed by Gorō Miyazaki (From Up on Poppy Hill), Hayao Miyazaki's son.

Frozen Wins Big at the Annie Awards

Disney's hot streak with Frozen is continuing into awards season now. The icy musical, which has now made $864 million worldwide (making it the third highest-grossing film of 2013), had a strong showing at the 41st Annie Awards (animation's self-titled "highest honour") a couple of nights ago, taking home, amongst other awards, Best Animated Feature! Check out our full breakdown of the results after the jump.

Sunday 2 February 2014

New Super-Spoof Trailer for The Lego Movie: "Man of Plastic"

Warner Bros.' block-busting return to animation, The Lego Movie, hits cinemas on Friday, so the studio have been rolling out loads of - in the words of their own advertising - "awesome" clips, trailers and TV spots for the film! With DC's super-roster at their fingertips, WB have free rein to Legoify big-name superheroes - hence why we've got this really funny new trailer, spoofing Man of Steel. Plus, hey, a bit of Hans Zimmer's marvellous score makes anything better. Check out that, and more, below.

Predictable Voice Cast Announced for Seth Rogen/Evan Goldberg's Sausage Party

We heard back in September of last year that Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg (directors of This Is The End, writers of Superbad and The Pineapple Express) were moving over to animation, with the raunchy R-rated animated comedy called Sausage Party. Now we know some of the actors who are going to lend their voices to it. And, yes, it is those actors you're thinking of.