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» AnimationNation   » General Discussion   » HOODWINKED: The Director Speaks (Page 2)

 
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Author Topic: HOODWINKED: The Director Speaks
bronnie
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Though I have not yet seen the film, I spoke with "Q" today and she had high praises for it.It's a lower budget CG film that 'could' and damn well 'DID! For that I heartily conrgatulate you Cory.
That said, the overseas outsourcing issue being part of the economic equation is of no surprise to me.
For years now I have been noticing(along with many others,I'm sure)that a considerable amount of CG animation work has gone overseas..and that someone is eventually going to come along and do big B.O. numbers on a comparatively shoestring budget as a result.This has now been accomplished, and will have major implications of the future of CG animation produced stateside,IMO.(With the possible exception of Pixar,I'm guessing..)
I've spoken to people who still feel pretty secure in their local LA CG feature animation jobs because they assume it will be ages before the overseas studios are capable of doing anything good enough to threaten them. They'd better think again.

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miracle_sets
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Hello Mr. Edwards and anim-nationers,
3 hours ago I read this forums thread for the first time. Your letter, Mr. Edwards made my day (and evening too) as I immediatly went to our local theatre-plex to see Hoodwinked. I told one of my 17 year old sons about your letter and , even though he is at an age of being way "too cool" to see such a KIDS movie, we both went to the 7:10 showing.
Arriving a few minutes early, we read the fairly "big" voice talent names which appeared on the lobby poster. Even though one member tried to summize the budget numbers, I did not remember the budget for such talent being added to his equation. At any rate, I can not remember having so much fun at an animiated movie in a long time. I was admittedly swayed to rooting for your this film because I too have an animated(2D) feature, on a limited budget in production. Even so, my son really did not weigh this factor into his experience. Usually when we exit the theatre, my son will make some kind of a teenager bluntly honest comment. I said nothing until he said" now THAT was a really cool movie". When we first were seated, the theatre was less than half full of mostly young children and their parents. My son felt that this was going to be kiddy movie, so his initial opinion was low. This, combined with the many children I heard laughing at prime moments, cause me to beleive that this sleeper movie does cross the same type of age boundries as Shrek and was at least as enjoyable as any big budget movie of this genre. None of this is probably big news to anyone who has seen the film.
The animation did certainly have some things that would not have been in a Shrek or Ice Age, but the animation did shine enough to not get in the way of enjoyment. The characters, voices, and story out-shined most of the BIG films, and this was what really created the enchanting moments. I loved the singing goat and hyper squirrel.
Thankyou for your years of sweat and worries, time , money and sacrifices, all so my 17 year old son and I could laugh together for many minutes at the theatre. I look forward to your next project.
Blessings
Tom Hignite
Miiracle Studios Inc.

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mephistopheles
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it's laughable that someone would say this movie has ripped-off Shrek. do you think Shrek was the first animated fairytale spoof. might i direct your attention to the "Fractured Fairy Tales" of Rocky & Bullwinkle.

Thanx

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Floyd Bishop
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quote:
it's laughable that someone would say this movie has ripped-off Shrek. do you think Shrek was the first animated fairytale spoof. might i direct your attention to the "Fractured Fairy Tales" of Rocky & Bullwinkle.

I agree that Shrek was not the first to do this, but I would bet that Shrek was what helped this picture get the greenlight.

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animator-boy
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Regarding the outsourcing and whether a lower budget film can be done in the US...I am not sure the "exact" numbers (not privy to that info)...but I think we did Jimmy Neutron Boy Genius the movie, here in the States for $28 million...before marketing that is..

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ovi nedelcu
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quote:
it's laughable that someone would say this movie has ripped-off Shrek
no, whats laughable is someone can be so blind that they cant see how bad sherk is being ripped. do you seriously believe hoodwinked and shrek happen to be a coincidence? do you think its also a coincidence that both films have a similar premise based on parodying fairtales? and both are CG and both came out within the last couple years?

right,

and "Sharktale"/"Nemo", "Ants"/"Bugslife" where a coincidence also huh?

theres a difference between being influenced by material "Fractured Fairy Tales" of Rocky & Bullwinkle", and blatantly trying to ride the latest trend(shrek) for the sake of profit(hoodwinked).
its so freakin' obvious, how you cant see this is bewildering.


>oVi

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toonstruck
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quote:
Regarding the outsourcing and whether a lower budget film can be done in the US...I am not sure the "exact" numbers (not privy to that info)...but I think we did Jimmy Neutron Boy Genius the movie, here in the States for $28 million...before marketing that is..
There are also several direct to video CG movies done for less than $15 million in the US. Not to mention several US CG features in production currently that are $15 or less, or in at least one case, under $10 million.
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SquarejawHero
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Would be good to note that there are people that represent studios and industries across the world on this board, and that read it. Myself included. Although I can understand vehemence towards outsourcing, remember that - keep it civil otherwise it makes things very uncomfortable for those of us who are, on occasion, outsourced to.

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Ravenshoe
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Shrek is the latest trend?

Would that be Shrek 1 or Shrek 2? I thought that stop-motion was hot. Or was it "giant gorillas"? They did pretty well at the boxoffice last month.

I don't think anyone has the patent on fracturing fairytales. They're more public domain that Paris Hilton on a Saturday night. As always, it's what you do with them that counts. Paris too.

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SquarejawHero
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Nah, the latest trend is Yatta.

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Ravenshoe
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And that fig-leaf certainly suits you, sir. My compliments to your tailor.
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MICROPHONE JONEZ
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quote:
How do you know what people have accomplished here?

How do you rate what any of us have accomplished against another?

And trade places?

False.

I would'nt trade places with anyone, ever.

I commend their success, but am quite happy with what I've been fortunate to have accomplished in my career thus far.

Not to mention a very meaningful project I'm teaming up on with a good friend right now.

I don't see Brad Bird, Chris Sanders, or John Lasseter posting here too often, so I'm taking the liberty that directors of top-grossing films don't post here every day. Sure, people here have accomplished other equally great things, but not a #1 movie... which is all I claimed in the first place.

I love that you are railing against a guy who saw his little indie project achieve huge success, and then boast about a little indie project you are starting with your friend. You seem to be quite peleased with yourself and have a healthy sense of self-esteem, so I'm sure you'll be fine when it finally comes out and people on this board say it sucks.

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blackmocco
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quote:
Now now, we can all share rants here, plenty to go around.

well I guess im the bad guy here for speaking the minds of 90% of the animation industry. I guess we’re all wrong. Do you seriously think im the ONLY one who thinks hoodwinked looks horrible? Ask 10 people in a studio what they think of hoodwinked and 9 out of 10 will say exactly what ive said about it. Only I happen to be the one saying it here and have the balls to actually post my REAL name behind my comments, “mr.blackmocco”.

That comment means exactly that. Just because someone CAN make a film doesn’t mean they should. That goes for $150mil “treasure planet” films, $200mil “final fantasy” films, and $20mil “hoodwinked” films. Im sorry but just knowing the film was derived from a previous hit….COUGH! “sherk” is a big enough red flag for me, let alone the visuals.

But hey, its “independent” right? That makes it OK?

You know ive been a “starving artist” for ten years too, but that doesn’t give me a license to go ahead and write/create my own “independent” shrek knock-off. Or maybe it does, and maybe I should follow the latest trend and ride shrek’s coattails.
Lets see, ill call it “INCRED-BABIES”. The story will be about hobbit babies trying to find a magical pacifier to use against the evil forces of the X-KIDS, mutant teens “gone wild”. Then throw in a surfing baby penguin called “march” who runs into a hip-hop clown fish underwater called “Memo” that bumps his iPOD and is voiced by snoop dog. They team up to save the planet nabooly, but wait there’s more! To make it even more interesting ill go through all my “hans Christian Anderson”,”brothers grimm”, and old folk tale literature to make sure I can cram as many parodies in the film as possible; cause you know that type of thing hasn’t been done yet? Then to top it all off ill ship it to the Philippines to be animated. Wow what a brilliant plan.

And yes if I got 20mil to make a Pigtale film I would. And it would look AMAZING. Not only that, but it would be made right here in the good ol’ U.S-of-A. Imagine that?

I feel like I should say “this is just my opinion”, but I really, really doubt it. Just ask anyone at a studio near you.

>oVi

Wow. You know 90% of the animation industry well enough to speak for them all. All this from someone who hasn't even seen the movie being discussed yet. Well done. Must be cold up there on your high horse...
(Incidentally, just to dent your response further, the studio I work at doesn't hold up to your 90% failure rate. More like 50%. Which is about the same ratio concerning 'King Kong' and 'Chronicles of Narnia'.)

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Ravenshoe
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quote:
Lets see, ill call it “INCRED-BABIES”. The story will be about hobbit babies trying to find a magical pacifier to use against the evil forces of the X-KIDS, mutant teens “gone wild”. Then throw in a surfing baby penguin called “march” who runs into a hip-hop clown fish underwater called “Memo” that bumps his iPOD and is voiced by snoop dog. They team up to save the planet nabooly, but wait there’s more! To make it even more interesting ill go through all my “hans Christian Anderson”,”brothers grimm”, and old folk tale literature to make sure I can cram as many parodies in the film as possible; cause you know that type of thing hasn’t been done yet? Then to top it all off ill ship it to the Philippines to be animated. Wow what a brilliant plan.

SOUNDS LIKE A PLAN, BABY! I'M IN! CALL MY AGENT! [thumbsup]
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MICROPHONE JONEZ
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quote:
That comment means exactly that. Just because someone CAN make a film doesn’t mean they should.
Wow. How incredibly facist. I say we allow Bush to tap our phones, Ashcroft to sleep in all of our beds, and ovi to decide who gets to make a movie and who doesn't.
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ovi nedelcu
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quote:
That comment means exactly that. Just because someone CAN make a film doesn’t mean they should.
Wow. How incredibly facist. I say we allow Bush to tap our phones, Ashcroft to sleep in all of our beds, and ovi to decide who gets to make a movie and who doesn't.

huh?
wow, how did bush come into the picture? haha.

i never said i should be the one to decide what gets made.

>oVi

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ovi nedelcu
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quote:
SOUNDS LIKE A PLAN, BABY! I'M IN! CALL MY AGENT!
im on it! lets do lunch.

quote:
Wow. You know 90% of the animation industry well enough to speak for them all. All this from someone who hasn't even seen the movie being discussed yet. Well done. Must be cold up there on your high horse...
(Incidentally, just to dent your response further, the studio I work at doesn't hold up to your 90% failure rate. More like 50%. Which is about the same ratio concerning 'King Kong' and 'Chronicles of Narnia'.

i dont have a high horse my friend, but if i did, i wouldnt be riding on Shrek's coattails.

anyway, im done with this thread. i think ive said enough and vise/versa. but hey, its been fun.

>oVi

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Matthew Tardiff
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I went to see this movie recently and had pretty much the same reaction...story wasn't too weak while the visuals were.

But it seems like this is the film that so many people love to hate...a lot of ignorant dumb f**ks sitting in the nose bleed section offering opinions that sound more like a little child begging for someone to play with them in a little room behind a closed door that has a sign on the front trying to convince everyone it is an open mind.
When I watch an independent film...there is a part of me that thinks, "Well it's not Pixar or Classic Disney, etc." and then another part of me tries to appreciate it for what it is. Look at it with a critical eye and an open mind.

and. the whole "Just because you can do something...doesn't mean you should." argument is fine for certain situations...like killing someone...or giving up...or jumping off the top of the building because curiosity is nipping at your nuts... but an artist who lives by this motto is doomed to spend a great deal of time shooting holes in thier feet and wondering why it is so hard to walk straight.

Hoodwinked is what it is...a low-budget success.

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Cory Edwards
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(((You know ive been a “starving artist” for ten years too, but that doesn’t give me a license to go ahead and write/create my own “independent” shrek knock-off. Or maybe it does, and maybe I should follow the latest trend and ride shrek’s coattails.
Lets see, ill call it “INCRED-BABIES”...)))


Wow. Have you seen my film? I'm sorry if that's what it reminds you of. As far as i know, we didn't set out to make the "Muppet Babies." The "fractured fairy tale" is not a new genre, no. But if you think "Shrek" is some genius brainchild, I'm not so sure. Aside from Bugs Bunny cartoons, Jay Ward's "Fractured Fairy Tales," Muppet movies and hundreds of other films, "Shrek" is one of a long line of fairy tale parodies.

It wasn't the first, it just made the most money. Funny how that's all people seem to pay attention to.


(((And yes if I got 20mil to make a Pigtale film I would. And it would look AMAZING. Not only that, but it would be made right here in the good ol’ U.S-of-A. Imagine that?)))


Go for it. You might be able to. You have my whole-hearted encouragement to try and make that happen. But you might be surprised. The money goes so fast you can't believe it.
(and again, we did not have $20 million. Or 15. Keep going. Lower... lower...)

I also have to say that I am VERY aware of the animation shortcomings in the film. And I honestly, honestly ask very person I can if they notice. The common audience member (and I've talked to hundreds) does not. This frustrates me too. I love beautiful looking animation. Go figure.

Someone asked about the voice cast. They all did it for very, very low fees and some back-end. Yes, Harvey brought on a lot of them at the 11th hour. No, I was not happy about it at first and resisted. But at the end of it all, the cast sounds great.

And for those of you worried about studios trying to make films for $15 million, don't worry! They CAN'T! There's no way. All it will take is for a studio to try making a couple of very, very horrible low-budget films, they'll make no money, and then those budgets will go back to more realistic ones. Hang tough, the GOOD talent is always worth paying for.

Thanks for all the discussion and opinions. The debate is very healthy, and you all make good points.

Cory Edwards

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ovi nedelcu
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Its amazing that people can get upset with studio execs that try and ride the latest trend by making blatant knock-offs just in time to catch the tail end of the hype, popularity and profit of a previous hit film. But if some “independent” does it, all is forgiven.

If a studio exec started developing hoodwinked I doubt people would have the same attitude towards it as they do here.

Someone please tell me the difference between an “independent” ripping another film and shipping it overseas for a fast turn/profit and a studio (like Disney for example) doing the same?

Im just curious, someone please explain since I seem to be one of the..
“dumb f**ks sitting in the nose bleed section offering opinions that sound more like a little child begging for someone to play with them in a little room behind a closed door that has a sign on the front trying to convince everyone it is an open mind.”

>oVi

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SquarejawHero
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Last post on the subject - films like Simba Junior Goes To New York And The World Cup and The Legend Of Titanic (the ship doesn't sink and people can speak to mice) make the rest of us all look good. I'd argue that they are integral to the balance and structure of the industry... [Wink]

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SquarejawHero
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Oh, and Ovi, you're being real harsh considering the creator is here willing to talk things over with regards to how it was made and ACCEPTING (the worthwhile) criticism of his work. I'll be honest - I don't like the look or overall premise of this film... but you're being totally disrespectful.

There's a difference between speaking your mind and involving yourself in a debate and going on a rant at tangents to what's actually going on in the thread. Cory accepts his films shortcomings, it made money, he has an opportunity to better it later and he's certainly achieved more than I have. I can respect the fact he's pulled a movie out of the bag for a low budget, no matter how rough the edges might be, and respect it even more that he's making money and success out of it. Why can't you?

Criticism is oft justified. Being rude isn't.

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Graphiteman
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quote:
Nah, the latest trend is Yatta.
Answering the musical question: Is William hung?
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oogieboogie
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quote:
I can respect the fact he's pulled a movie out of the bag for a low budget, no matter how rough the edges might be, and respect it even more that he's making money and success out of it. Why can't you?
I think part of the issue here, at least to me, is that this isn't like Walt trying to scrounge up some money to get Snow White made. That was something that had never been done before, and it had to be done with what they had.

Making a cg movie in a genre that's already been exposed by Shrek (and Shrek 2 and 2 1/2 and Rapunzel) isn't really a challenge. The challenge is getting the money to do it, and not because it hasn't been ever attempted, but because yours will be better. The challenge isn't in the making of the product. And it's a personal challenge. And it is a personal success that it was finished. But it isn't something that hasn't been done before, and better.

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SquarejawHero
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Maybe, but unfortunately the world changes. No-one can really reinvent animation. We're living in a 100% different world than Walt right now, some movies are artistic "low"-budget hits, others are more commercial. Sure, it might not have fresh themes, or even jokes, but evidently Hoodwinked has entertained enough people who've seen it and it's made money. In todays climate that's great! Not every film can be a Belleville or... hell... Snow White. And yeah, I'm getting bored of snappy comedy when animation can provide much more than that (thanks be for Miyazaki). Thing is though, we've got a director here who's pulled off something he knows isn't perfect, but has succeeded. He accepts its shortcomings. No use ramming them down his throat continuously, is there? Or labour some blame on him for your own perceived problems with the industry as a whole?

a) He already knows.
b) He's moving on... and up! Hopefully! [Wink]

So don't confuse issues... Hoodwinked may represent some symptomatic issues with originality and quality in the industry, but you can't blame it for being a success if the writing works and its funny to boot. A diamond in the rough, to take a quote from Aladdin. Sure, we can wish every indie or low-budget movie to have charm but lets face it - it doesn't happen often. Save your malice and ridicule for the football-hoofing Simbas and King Kongs in Atlantis, I say.

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ovi nedelcu
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quote:
Oh, and Ovi, you're being real harsh considering the creator is here willing to talk things over with regards to how it was made and ACCEPTING (the worthwhile) criticism of his work. I'll be honest - I don't like the look or overall premise of this film... but you're being totally disrespectful.

There's a difference between speaking your mind and involving yourself in a debate and going on a rant at tangents to what's actually going on in the thread. Cory accepts his films shortcomings, it made money, he has an opportunity to better it later and he's certainly achieved more than I have. I can respect the fact he's pulled a movie out of the bag for a low budget, no matter how rough the edges might be, and respect it even more that he's making money and success out of it. Why can't you?

Criticism is oft justified. Being rude isn't.

im sure Cory appreciates you standing up for him, but dont worry he's a big boy, he can take it. he just made a freakin' feature film, OVERSEAS! im sure he delt with more crap in one day than he ever will here on this website. obviously he has the balls and dedication to make something happen, no matter what little people like me think. plus, im not being rude, just honest. you havent heard me calling anyone a "dumb f**k" yet. have you?
i suggest you rethink who is being rude, and who is being honest in this debat.

im not going to respect something just cause it makes money. what i respect is the guy in his basment who doesnt have a film, working his ass off to try and create original content and not ride the latest trend.

i respect Cory's work ethic and engery to get things done, but hoodwinked just doesnt do it for me. sorry, im not sure how else i can say it.

Cory,
look man, i dont mean ill on you. like i said, its great you got a film made. seriously. just cause i dont like it means nothing.
dont worry about me, im no one. i wish you all the best on your ventures, and i appreciate you posting here.

>oVi

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SquarejawHero
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I'm sure you can defend yourself too, Ovi. I'm (hopefully) not being rude to you, personally, but what others are saying to you isn't the issue here as far as I'm concerned. Besides, there's other ways of being rude than swearing. But there you go, feel free to take my comments as they are or ignore them. [Smile]

To note, on trailers Hoodwinked didn't do it for me either. But after reading some opinions here, learning more about the making of the movie and the general review concensus, I'll be picking it up on DVD for a no doubt entertaining rental.

BTW interesting to see Hoodwinked beating Chicken Little at Rotten Tomatoes on the ratio of reviews.

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Matthew Tardiff
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no no. your right. I apologize for letting vulgarity slip into my post. I let my fingers ride then hit reply. anyway.

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Semaj
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Ovi nedelcu isn't being rude. He's being harsh, but I think I know what he's getting at.

What people need to understand is that there's more to participating in the field of animation than just accepting that "this" film is a success. What ovi is saying is, when people look at Hoodwinked, how will that allow them to take the medium seriously? And regardless of the consequences, will this encourge the corporations to jump the bandwagon? (Keep in mind that the corporations very seldomly learn any real lessons from their mistakes.)

Animation has had notorious records of other studios copying the competition. The Fleischers only WORSENED their financial troubles when they started copying Disney. And we're still crossing our fingers that Disney's upcoming Rapunzel Unbraided is not another shallow Shrek clone. Here, this may very well encourage the big studios to try shooting for low-budgeted, outsourced films, where upon half of their inevitable failures, will only motivate their stubborn mindset of how "useless" animation is to them.

There's more to this than just the film's success, folks. It has to do with the quality of the film, in both concept and execution. In order for both the audiences AND the corporations to start viewing the animated film with more respect and dignity, we need to try harder to find our invididual styles of storytelling. There's a differences between creative inspiration and careless plagarism.

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Splatman
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Well, geez.

I wasn't going to go see it...but now I will! [funny]

Hats off to Cory. I can't imagine the work it took to actually do it.

[cheers]

Splatman [Big Grin]

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Chief Doodler
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OFFBEAT
IE # 39
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I'm a big believer in it's better to do something poorly than to never have done anything greatly.

I mean.. I could make a feature film in 2 months on a cracked copy of flash.. BY MYSELF!! ..but that's not a justification for anyone to see it, and i'd be a fool to not expect a backlash of criticism or anyone to fund my next venture.

On the other hand.. you could have the best artists/animators in the world, with a budget of $200 million making an "Ernest Takes A Dump" movie and still make a 'crappy' movie.

You can only shine a turd so much.

That said.. Is Hoodwinked a good movie? I'll never know, cause the trailer is an eyesore. It looks like a demo of a 3rd party 3d program from 1995. I could never justify paying the $$$ to see it. And if it's on TV.. I don't think i'd stop on it if I were channel surfing. I'd have to be hospitalized.. imobile.. with dead batteries in the remote to watch that film.

(And that was how I felt about it before I heard it sucked from everyone I know who has seen it.)

If studios follow the trend of Hoodwinked.. audiences will catch on.. and they'll lose money.

While studios like Pixar who care about Quality will still rake in the $$ because people equate Pixar with making good movies.

I hope he doesn't have anymore cheapimation in the works.. it really does more damage than good to this industry.

Then Again... in Hollywood, stranger things have happened. Who'd thought Peter Jackson would have a career after "Bad Taste" or "Meet the Feebles"

I believe strongly in "KEEP CREATING!"
But if you make tripe.. don't expect us to swallow it.

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"Get Rich, or Die Drawing!"

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SquarejawHero
IE # 188
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Latest headlines, folks - producers go for the cheap option 90% of the time. This has always happened, and always will. But there are always films that don't, or suprise, or.. or... well, you know what I'm saying. I don't like outsourcing away from the UK either... but the market's changed and so have production attitudes... but then, money men always aim for the cheapest. People aren't accepting any lower quality now than they did when kids lined up to see Transformers The Movie.

How is now any different than then? Since when has animation been taken "seriously" by the general public? It's entertainment, folks! Sure, there are serious animations that do well... but they also have something else to them which makes them breathe, makes them live.

Snow White isn't going to happen again, although suprises always will. Lets accept it - commercialisation of animation settled in aeons ago. Hoodwinked, however, is independent and low-budget and may even be more entertaining than Hercules - which contained a lot of artistry, but in my honest opinion (and I know I'm not alone), had no soul. How many big-budget films in animation have been released with no soul of late? Concept and execution are one thing, but you can also have an excellent concept, brilliant execution but a hole in the heart.

Films without soul are the ones people should be worried about, imho. I don't know if Hoodwinked is a Shrek-lite. I've not seen it. There's room for all in the industry, and Hoodwinked, I'm certain, isn't going to create a massive spiralling wormhole sucking original concept and good execution into it... Neither did Valient. Or Robots, which wasn't well received here either.

Where's my Hitchikers Guide? BTW this was written by a man who's striking out looking for work again. I'm shocked by my own positivity. [Big Grin]

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Bowendesign.com

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SquarejawHero
IE # 188
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BTW I brought up Chicken Little as that was a big budget, animal-based comedy which apparently on the reviews front is having a harsher time. Despite having beautiful animation and character designs.

A good film is a balance of everything. Not every film is going to have that balance. No one film is going to be responsible for the failiure of an industry. The failiure of an entertainment industry will be when it fails to entertain. Art is art, entertainment is entertainment - they can co-exist, but this isn't always the case... time to accept that and move on.

Saying that, criticism is always justified. I don't think Cory or anyone else working on a film is going to mind people striking off their problems with a movie they created, it's all part of the job. The problem is when that criticism becomes a rant... I've done it before, I will do again!

But in this case, I don't think the rants are justified. [Smile]

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Bowendesign.com

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Semaj
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quote:
I believe strongly in "KEEP CREATING!"
But if you make tripe.. don't expect us to swallow it.

Amen to that.
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eboles
IE # 266
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I haven't seen Hoodwinked(and I will when I can), but when I saw the trailer the first thing I thought was that it was hopping on the Shrek bandwagon. That may be more of a reflection on the advertising than the film, I don't yet know. I don't see that Ovi's said anything so objectionable. There certainly are some films where it would have been better if they had been passed on. I don't know if this is such a one, but I do know that in practice it is much easier to know mistakes in retrospect, and much harder to pick the right opportunities without some kind of crystal ball.

I suspect your decision to go ahead with this film probably was the right one. That kind of box-office is sure to lead to more opportunities. Personally, I suspect you are benefitting somewhat from a pre-sold audience(the shrek crowd). But what really matters is what the audience sees once you get them inside the screenings. Joe Dante kicked-started his career with a Jaws-ripoff. James Cameron kicked off his with a sequel to that Jaws-ripoff. If that's the case, then there's no shame in acknowledging it.

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Durrien
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For what it's worth, Mr. Edwards, congratulations to you and everyone who worked on the movie. Getting something to the silver screen is an accomplishment that few know.

I had no real intention of seeing Hoodwinked -- mostly because the trailers and "look" didn't appeal to me -- but because of all of the hubbub within animation circles, I made a point to catch a screening this last weekend. Me and my girl.

I guess the ole adage proves true: any publicity is good publicity.

Now, my girl isn't in the animation biz. She knows nothing of animation technique, animation history, or animation anything. God bless her heart. And when the lights came up, I turned to her for her opinion, and her face was smiling with child-like enjoyment. That's pretty much the same reaction I gleaned among the rest of the non-critical masses. They liked your movie.

Me, too. I found myself smirking and giggling throughout.

Like others, (perhaps yourself), I am not enamoured with the animation, per se, and I was half-expecting the visuals to detract from the movie. But it didn't happen. The story carried it through.

It's funny, because everyone blathers on about "story is king," blah blah. It's not that the movie is going to win a Nobel prize for literature, but it was entertaining. Who can fault you for that -- or, for that matter, what our culture finds amusing?

The South Park movies are some of the worst in terms of "execution," but goddam if they aren't funny. They work on that level, as they are.

But back to the point at hand. First of all, there should be a polite rule of conversation. Folks shouldn't talk about what they have not experienced for themselves. It doesn't make sense to talk about a movie outside the context of having seeing it. There's nothing meaningful in what they say. So, please, don't take too much offense.

The critical condemnation you are reading (here and elsewhere) is coming from the artist's perspective... or those who supposedly lobby for the artist's perspective. People are complaining of shoddy quality, and the implications for the art form. Two words (in the parlance of Southern California): what, ever.

Walt Disney tried to instill in the minds of American audiences that animation was an art as deserving of praise and respect as ... all of the other so-called "high arts." He quickly learned that folks weren't buying. And so has Jeffrey Katzenberg in recent years. As much artfulness as he tried to encourage in DreamWorks' traditional animation, folks weren't buying. (Let us not forget that Snow White was not a huge financial windfall for the Disney studio when it first came out. And, correcting for inflation, the budget on Snow White would probably be $30-$40 million by today's dollar.)

Story always wins, in the end, no matter how pretty a picture is -- or isn't.

Alright, enough yammering. Kudos to you for pursuing your picture, while others hoot and holler from the sidelines. Given its success (read: profit margin), no doubt more opportunities are on your horizon. And no doubt you will make good on them. Building on your earlier efforts...

Finding money to make a movie is really the Great Limiting Ingredient that distinguishes one person's dream from another person's dread.

My only question to you is this:

How come artists, like voice actors, can't also work for initial low wages with the promise of back-end compensation? To keep productions home grown, we need to have a little more fiscal imagination. Surely, there are state-side animation artists who would be willing, like yourself, to take some risk... to sweat blood and tears... to help an indie feature make the light of screen. Most of us are already sitting on lean wallets and purses. But if contractually we are guaranteed to see proper compensation from the gross receipts (or whatever ancillary revenue streams there may be... DVDs, licensing, etc.)... well, that seems fair enough.

I would bet my lucky rabbit's foot that such brave souls exist. All you got to do is ask. [Smile]

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OFFBEAT
IE # 39
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Apologies from my previous post. I didn't emphasis that The MOST important thing is TO DO IT. and they did it.

Kudos to everyone that had anything to do with Hoodwinked. I didn't mean to take anything away from that.

Making a movie is an extremely difficult thing to do. Just making one, is a great achievement all by itself.

There will be many that wll be entertained by it.

I have to keep my mouth shut.. I think 98% of what's on TV sucks. I keep forgetting that i'm not part of "an audience" anymore. I don't have a popular opinion.

The focal point shouldn't be whether it's Citizen Kane or Ernest Goes To Camp.. it should be that it was made in the first place.
Kudos. Kudos. Kudos.
[bow] [bow] [bow]

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"Get Rich, or Die Drawing!"

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Allen K.
IE # 144
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I don't see what the big deal is, I think we're talking about two different issues.

Issue #1 -- He made a succeessful independent animated feature on what sounds like an impossibly tight budget.

Issue #2 -- The quality of the animation/production what have you, is not as high as people would have liked.

I think he should be congratulated if not slightly worshipped for Issue #1, and even he recognizes the problems in Issue #2, and has addressed them.

Two different things, congratulations Cory.

For full disclosure, I have not yet seen the film, but am now looking forward to it.

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www.akstevenson.com

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SoleilSmile
IE # 120
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Good for you for defending your film Mr. Edwards! Some of the people on this board are just plain MEAN! I could just shake pepper in their tea!
A person can't even post a thread about their favorite cartoon in here without it being blown away by the elitists. Or even work on the project of their choice without ridicule. Given the opportunity, if Pixar or the ILM( who's woking on Transformers the Movie) called me, I would choose Transformers--because I LOVE the Transformers. However, there are many in the industry who would consider me foolish and condemn my status and pigeon hole me as a "B" animation artist for not choosing thier favorite studio Pixar.
Sick huh? Anyhoo...you keep creating and working on what you love o.k.?

Yay!

Kittens and Unicorns,

Soleil Smile

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HipChick Comics and Animatress Blog

www.hipchickcomics.com
http://www.animatress.blogspot.com/

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will_w
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Hi Cory! I want to thank you for what you wrote. I really appreciate your perspective and what you've accomplished. I think that with the powerful corporate influence on popular cg animation, like disney, sony, dreamworks, etc it was easy for me to be cynical about a cheaper production... without even considering that it was such an independent venture as you describe! In Thomas Friedman's book "The world is flat: A brief history of the 21st century", he describes a new globalization that is driven not by major corporations or giant trade organizations like the World Bank, but by individuals- desktop freelancers and innovative startups all over the world. I think he's right... and even though globalization opens us up to a lot more competition, it can also give us tremendous opportunity, which is what you have proved with your successful undertaking. I think the lesson to be learned is that we must constantly strive to be the best at what we do... continue lifelong learning, and be ready to adapt when need be. Kudos to you for doing just that, and best of luck with your sequel! And hopefully you're not a starving artist anymore, I know the life well and though a powerful motivator, it's not fun. [Wink]
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