Wednesday, June 25, 2008


Laika has been mentioned in an article or two the last few days. They're advertising their slate and announcing a new studio is being built even further away from civilization.

I love talking about Laika. More so, I love trash talking Laika. The reason being, many of the guys that work there are sure to lash out. I think that many of them and maybe the whole studio have underdog syndrome. This puts them on the attack when anything is said that may have the slightest hint of negativity.

Look, I haven't worked at the place. However, I have and do know a few that do. I've heard some BS, not sure it is anymore or any less BS than other studios out there. However, I like to stoke the fire and say things to rile up the troups. Everytime I mention anything, I get an earful via email. And I love it. The passion these guys show is almost cool, while at the same time being a little brainwash esque scary

Let's start out by saying that Coraline will be a complete flop. Sorry. But that is my prediction. However, I wouldn't be too worried, my box office track record has sucked lately. Just the same, I don't think the film has the "it" factor. Then again, I'm not excited to see Wall-E either, and all the fan boys are telling me it is going to be the best animated film ever.

I admire that these guys are in the middle of no where putting up a studio. Getting quality artists may be difficult in the long run. And after the first round of layoffs, look out. Finding people after that will be really hard in a one horse town.

Seriously, I'm pulling for these guys. Coraline will do moderately okay. Lucky for you, daddy warbucks has deep pockets and you'll survive. I'm going to spend the weekend trying to improve my trash talking. Cause this really sucked.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

KFP & Wall-E

Congratulations to DWA for how well Kung Fu Panda is doing in the box office. The opening weekend was a good one. I was just a tad off in my guestimate. Oh well, I guess you can't win them all. Besides, if I were that accurate with box office opening weekends, I'd make my million on the Hollywood Stock Exchange and wouldn't be writing this lovely blog.

I'm not going to bother guessing what Wall-E's opening will be. I hold the right to change my mind, but as of now I'm not feeling it. And if I felt it for KFP, then I really must not know what I'm talking about on Wall-E.

However, I will take a guess that it will do a little less than KFP. Less? Are you insane? Short answer: "yes". I'm sure this film will be a good one, but I can't help to be annoyed by the constant barrage of television commercials I've seen recently. I'm starting to get turned off. Therefore I'm going to be a baby and say that it will do less money than Panda.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Here and there

I'm back! Okay, so I didn't really go anywhere. Real life has just interrupted my blogging efforts.

So, what's going on in the animation world? First off, Kung Fu Panda comes out this weekend. It's going to be a good one. Be sure to check it out. I think this is probably the best DWA film yet. Whether the average joe will feel the same way, I don't know.

I predict a $38 million KFP opening

Just around the corner is Wall-E. The next Pixar toon. Another good film that will probably do well and be a great charmer. Visually, I'm more interested in Panda. Pixar seems to really be tilting towards more and more realism. Not my cup of tea. I'm sure I'll still like it. The winner of the box office battle will end up being Wall-E. Someone told me that Wall-E will contain a trailer for Bolt. Disney's next CG talking animal movie.

Speaking of Kung Fu Panda. Be sure to read this interview with co-director John Stevenson. He has some interesting things to say. I especially like how he slips in that he wouldn't mind doing a live-action or MOTION CAPTURE film for his next project. Crap. Just what we need, another person in the animation world that would rather do anything but animation.

With all the animation directors leaving the business for live action films, it makes more room for new directors to come up (and eventually leave to live action). Speaking of which. Panda co-director Mark Osborne jumps into directing this film after directing the short stop motion film "More". I know nothing about this guy. Did he work at DWA for a while before becoming a director for Panda? Or did he jump immediately in that role from his short film work? Kudos for him.

The cast for the Simpson's will be making $400k per episode for their voice work. That show must be making some serious coin to afford those prices. Amazing!

I read an interesting article about the rising cost of gasoline. They analyzed what could potentially happen from the trickle down effect. Cost of gas raises freight/shipping costs, therefore raising the price of virtually everything. Some analysts say that it could potentially put a temporary reverse on the popularity of outsourcing so many things to other countries. Now, this really won't affect animation outsourcing. But one can dream. Maybe we will actually see American made products in Walmart in the coming months/years!

Variety put up another interesting animation article here. Even though they quoted Max Howard, I still liked the story! I'd have to agree that we are going to see much more of this type of animation pipeline in the future. Disney, DreamWorks, Blue Sky, Pixar, of course they will continue to do things the way they are. However, these lower budgeted projects are going to almost entirely go down this same path. Although, I would like to reiterate that it doesn't necessarily have to mean outsourcing the production work to another country. Some very crafty companies right here in the US of A could take advantage if they put their minds to it.

That's it! See you guys in another three or four months! Just kidding, I'll try to write again before that. Maybe next month! :)