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2D Isn't dead, it's just mismanaged.

Share your views on the state of the Animation Industry.

2D Isn't dead, it's just mismanaged.

Postby Greg B » Sun Jun 20, 2010 4:19 pm

Again I say 2D isn't dead. I look at the latest CG movies and yes there's some great character animation and stories but to this day nothing tops the great WB toons of yore.

There are some extremely funny 2D toons out on the networks like Family Guy, Simpsons, etc. and they make more money than most major feature films.

So it's not that 2D ain't worth the money to develop, it's just not managed right. I'm getting antsy that WB will take the sound tracks and direction from their classic toons and convert them to CG and 3D.

I just scared you to death didn't I?
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Re: 2D Isn't dead, it's just mismanaged.

Postby Will Ryan » Mon Jun 21, 2010 12:43 am

I think high-quality 2D will circle back, especially as we're about to get hit with a heavy duty glut of outsourced, low-cost CG features in the next 2-3 years. A big litmus test for this was Astro Boy last year, but an even bigger one is going to be released soon in Despicable Me. I think the growing potential of shows that are conceived and boarded here in the States but are produced in Europe and Asia will be judged by that film's opening weekend. There's been a very interesting and extended marketing push on that one.

Over in the videogame world, 2D games and art styles heavily-influenced by classic traditional animation are slowly but impressively making a big comeback. Look into the newly announced Rayman and Journey games to see some beautiful design that isn't anywhere near what we're used to from CG.

If we can find a way to again tell compelling stories and create characters that people find hope and trust in, there's no reason 2D won't be a viable form of commercial storytelling alongside CG and stop-motion.
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Re: 2D Isn't dead, it's just mismanaged.

Postby Greg B » Mon Jun 21, 2010 10:58 pm

Time will tell regarding CG. Since investors who back these projects call for CG because of statistics they hedge their bets based on that.

Why was there never a Ren and Stimpy movie?

I just saw "Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs".

I didn't know what to make of it. I loved the character animation and some of the gags. I wanted to see it at the theaters but something didn't work out. Would it have worked as 2D? I don't think so. It had a clumsiness to it that didn't appeal to me and it might have been in the storyboarding. Not to say the storyboarding was bad, but somehow the attention on certain things wasn't with the story but with something else.

Maybe the direction. However there were brilliant moments of direction.

I had the same feeling with "Up!". It started out brilliantly and then a humongous continuity error popped up that said to me either someone wasn't paying attention and I just lost interest in the movie. The explorer looking younger than the lead character who was a small boy when the explorer was in his 30s. These offbeat things really throw you for a loop.

Anyhow, great characters, script, voice acting, direction, score would make any 2D feature just as profitable as a CG feature but the 2D properties must not be getting the attention of the studios and investors. Movies are still a great way of making a huge profit on an investment but investors have to realize they're just as responsible for success by demanding superior creative talent as they are demanding statistic based factors. Stats are good but genius is better.
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Re: 2D Isn't dead, it's just mismanaged.

Postby SNAKEBITE » Wed Jun 23, 2010 1:54 am

I believe the whole industry is mismanaged. This is a topic thats revisited often and apparently there's a huge reason why...because although we've evolved and new models are established every day, we still don't believe in our individual power and worth. I believe that is the crux of the over all issue.

But I have courage that this is changing everyday. Our art form and career choice are reaffirmed everyday with the overwhelming evidence of the success of the medium.

Everyday I see something new that inspires me. Maybe
the business will start to see the sense in changing their methods and nurture and utilize their relationships with the creative team instead of the short sighted behavior we seem to see much of.

Until then, the people who see will have to lead the way. In our own ways. Supporting each other as we go.
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Re: 2D Isn't dead, it's just mismanaged.

Postby Charles » Wed Jun 23, 2010 10:41 am

If 2D animation is being mismanaged, what are your suggestions and ideas for managing it properly? The question is directed to all.
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Re: 2D Isn't dead, it's just mismanaged.

Postby tstevens » Wed Jun 23, 2010 11:07 am

Most 2D animation is managed, for the most part, by the same type of folks that manage CG, live-action, and entertainment in general. What you have to consider is that certain companies have cultures that allow their productions to go in certain directions and not in others. At the moment I can't think of too many studios that are really breaking the mold in any medium and the ones that are, are not in the US or Canada. Even Pixar is in the "tried and true" mold of Hollywood storytelling. The major difference is that they have done it more consistently and better than anyone else.

If we are to break the "mismanagement" of the medium, we will likely do it through independent productions.
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Re: 2D Isn't dead, it's just mismanaged.

Postby Charles » Wed Jun 23, 2010 7:40 pm

I think something that is as mismanaged as 2D animation, if that is indeed the case, is the animation community itself. This is a topic of discussion in many face to face conversations I have concerning the biz. There's so much friggen negativity and attitudes. It's a big turnoff.

Don Bluth mentioned this at AN Night last month. The culture of complaining in our community. A cloud of cynicism, a titanic iceberg of something. I don't know, it's like a mix of jealousy, incesurity, anger, elitism, passive aggressiveness. I've experienced it first hand so I know what Don was referring to. Much of it stems from the 2D community itself I find.

The best way to help 2D animation is for those who make it or have the resources and capability to produce it, then they should do as much as they can with it. And for those that have those resources, but don't utilize them to the fullest, then they should be encouraged to do so.

As tstevens also points out, independent production.

There's more hurdles that 2D has to jump over around and through as well, especially compared to the production efficiency and visual appeal of 3D, but with so many advances in 2D production technology along those lines I see it hanging in there.

Pushing the creative envelope will also help. Projects that distinguish themselves through originality.
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Re: 2D Isn't dead, it's just mismanaged.

Postby SNAKEBITE » Thu Jun 24, 2010 12:38 am

And thats always been the success model I see in history. People who stand out and create change do so by doing so.
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