'The Goon' - on the way from Blur Studios

There's a fun looking film in the works at Blur Studios. It's called "The Goon", based upon the Dark Horse comic book created by Eric Powell. Paul Giamatti is the voice of Franky, the Goon’s sidekick, as they take on gangs of evil zombies. You can see all the projects happening at Blur by following this link. Here's the topic on the Forums.

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A Short History of CG Characters in Movies

I discovered this video through the blog of Sachin Kumar Mohanty, a recently registered member of AN. It's a concise yet accurate account of some of the most significant developments in CG character based animation over the years, and is well worth featuring here on AN's homepage. Take a moment to watch this and catch up on a little CG history. The topic on the Forums can be found here.

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Visual Effects Society 'Bill of Rights'

AnimationNation, since its beginning in early 1999, has been dedicated to industry reform in regards to the interests of animation artists. So subjects like this one are very important to us. For years, and increasingly over time, there has developed a situation for Visual Effects animators and studios in the Los Angeles area a situation which has become so chronic, the Visual Effects Society had to step in and address the matter. This sector of entertainment production, once a cottage industry and now globally competitive, is vital to motion pictures. Yet as successful as effects driven content has become, the industry in Hollywood is suffering. Underbidding, outsourcing, abuse in the workplace, has contributed to a situation so unstable that the VES, which is not a union, labor group or a labor relations board, found it necessary to step in with a "Bill of Rights" in hopes that some improvement can be made. To learn more, please follow this link to the topic on the AN Forums where you can read the VES Bill of Rights and find additional information about upcoming events intended to promote discussion and long term resolution for the betterment of all aspects of the animation community in the Los Angeles area.

'Larva' - Korean cartoon

When people in the animation business think of Korean animation, odds are they may have in mind a show that was animated in Korea but originated someplace else. Korea has for years been a major production source of animation content for studios and broadcast networks all over the world. But more and more, Korea is emerging as a creator of original content as well. Take into consideration this funny cartoon that came our way. It was showcased in the Forums by Skynet, AN's webmaster. It's called 'Larva' and is an ongoing series of short cartoons featuring two little bugs who are never at a loss for comedy as they scavenge for the next bit of refuse to dine upon. Produced by Tuba Entertainment and Synergy Media, here's a look at Larva. For more episodes to view, follow this link to the Forums.

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DGA looking for Independent Directors who have money coming

The Directors Guild of America is attempting to contact directors who've worked on independent animated productions and who are owed financial disbursements. If you know of anyone who is on the list of directors at the link below, please help make them aware of this and have them contact the DGA.

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The Directors Guild of America Inc. (DGA) is seeking contact information for many independent Animation Directors.

The DGA is the American Disbursing Agent for Foreign Levies made payable to Directors whose work has broadcast or rented in mainland Europe.

What this means is that the DGA must find and pay all Directors whose work has collected Foreign Levies from mainland Europe.

There are two lists of Directors for whom the DGA is seeking contact, many of whom are Animation. The list can be found here.

EasyCap Studio's 'Facemotion' technology

EasyCap Studios has a specialized technology called Facemotion. It's an easy-to-use facial motion capture system, which produces some pretty impressive results.

EasyCap has made it possible to use their system with lower hardware requirements, getting professional quality facial mocap animation at a lower price point than before, including recording rates of 100 frames per second among many other high end features.

Here's a demonstration of Facemotion in action. It's a bit surreal watching the actor and following her facial movements while they're replicated in real time on the animated character. For more info on Facemotion follow the link to EasyCap's site. Here's the link to the Forum Topic.

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More Concept Art from 'Pixar's Brave'

Three weeks ago on September 2, I posted both on AN's homepage and in the Forums the most recent artwork I've been able to find from Pixar's upcoming feature animated film "Brave". Turns out a couple of days after that post, another video was uploaded with even more great artwork to enjoy from this highly anticipated movie. The forum topic has all I've accumulated so far. Brave is scheduled for release on June 22, 2012.

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'Oblivion Island' aka 'Haruka and the Magic Mirror'

There's so much great animation being produce worldwide, something new comes along every day even though it's been out for a while. That's the case with this film, "Oblivion Island" which also goes by the title "Haruka and the Magic Mirror". Adrian Foster brought it to our attention with a topic on the Forums. Oblivion Island is directed by Shinsuke Sato and produced by Production I.G. which premiered their latest film "A Letter to Momo" at the 36th Toronto International Film Festival this past weekend. The film has won several major awards since its release in 2009. Here's a trailer with English subtitles for Oblivion Island.

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Kaeloo - Animated series in France

I discovered an animated TV series that been airing in France since June of last year. It's called "Kaeloo" and it features a frog who turns into something different when things aren't going his way. Created by Rémi Chapotot, designed by Rémi Chapotot and Jean-François Henry and produced by Cube Creative in association with Blue Spirit Animation, Kaeloo looks to be fun with high production standards. Here's an English version of the cartoon. I'll be developing the topic on the AN Forums with more animation from Blue Spirit.

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Netflix announces Qwikster - DVDs and video streaming

AN's webmaster Adrian Foster, whose moniker on the forums is Skynet, has been following developments concerning Netflix over the past few weeks ever since the company announced it was raising its fees. There's been a lot of disappointment in Netflix lately for several reasons, the price increase certainly high among those concerns. Skynet posted a topic about this subject in the Current Events Forum on July 12, 2011 and has been keeping us updated since. He's also added another forum topic today as Netflix announces Qwikster, a new aspect to their operations. So Netflix will be video streaming only, and Qwikster will handle DVD rentals. Skynet also explains some of the problems users may encounter with their streaming service. Here's a video released today of the founder of Netflix explaining what their customers can expect from the changes they've made, and apologizing for the miscommunication involved in their recent price increase.

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