Sunday, November 19, 2006

16 Animated Movies In Oscar

Posted: Fri., Nov. 3, 2006, 1:49pm PT

Acad toons in to 16 pix
'Flushed,' 'Scanner,' 'Cars' among titles eligible for animated feature Oscar


By JUSTIN CHANG
This story was updated at 5:59 p.m.


'Flushed Away'

'Flushed Away' is one of the 16 pix eligible for this year's Animated Feature Oscar.

Sixteen toons are expected to compete for this year's animated feature Oscar, which will likely boast five nominees for the first time in four years.

The pics deemed eligible by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences are "The Ant Bully," "Arthur and the Invisibles," "Barnyard," "Cars," "Curious George," "Everyone's Hero," "Flushed Away," "Happy Feet," "Ice Age: The Meltdown," "Monster House," "Open Season," "Over the Hedge," "Paprika," "Renaissance," "A Scanner Darkly" and "The Wild."

In recent years, the animated feature race has fallen short of the 16 films required to trigger a five-nominee slate. The last time the category maxed out was 2002, when a record 17 pics were eligible. The Oscar went to Hayao Miyazaki's "Spirited Away."

Three of this year's contenders have not yet had their required Los Angeles releases, though they are scheduled to do so before the end of the year: Warner Bros.' "Happy Feet" hits theaters Nov. 17; Sony Pictures Classics will unspool "Paprika" for an Oscar-qualifying run on Nov. 20; and The Weinstein Co. will release "Arthur and the Invisibles" on Dec. 15.

In the unlikely event that one or more of the three pics fails to open, the category would shrink to three nominees.

While most of the contenders are CG-animated kidpics, some are unusual media hybrids.

"Paprika," the latest anime from "Tokyo Godfathers" helmer Satoshi Kon, blends hand-drawn animation with computer enhancements; "Arthur and the Invisibles," director Luc Besson's adaptation of his own children's book, combines live-action and CGI; and "A Scanner Darkly," Richard Linklater's dystopic adaptation of the Philip K. Dick novel, was shot in live-action and then rotoscoped.

Two of the pics deploy motion-capture technology: "Monster House," produced by "The Polar Express" director Robert Zemeckis; and Miramax's French-language "Renaissance," a black-and-white futuristic noir.

"Flushed Away," from DreamWorks Animation and Aardman Features, uses CG to reproduce the claymation look of Aardman's "Wallace & Gromit" pics.

Universal's "Curious George" is the lone pic to feature traditional 2-D animation.

Paramount distribbed DreamWorks productions "Flushed Away" and "Over the Hedge," as well as "Barnyard." Sony boasts "Monster House" and "Open Season," the first offering from its fledgling animation division, in addition to Sony Classics' "Paprika"; Warner is behind "The Ant Bully" and "Happy Feet" as well as Warner Independent's "A Scanner Darkly."

Disney is repped by "The Wild" and Pixar's "Cars," while 20th Century Fox has "Ice Age: The Meltdown" and baseball adventure "Everyone's Hero."

Nominees will be announced on Jan. 23.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Animation Lecture

Shawn Kelly + Delio Tramontozzi Animation Lecture:

April 9th, 2004
Ringling School of Art + Design
Transcribed by: Jeremy Collins


-Carefully choose gestures.
-Gestures should hit on vowels.
-Choose 1 or 2 of the most important poses and make sure they carry emotion and read.
-Avoid clich├ęs at all costs. (i.e. using the first pose that comes to mind.)
-Watch out for “showing” in your animations instead of “doing”.
-Use gestures from NOW, not 1950.

Shoulders:

-Essential but commonly overlooked in animation.
-They have a wide range of motion and “emotion” in them.
-The shoulders often lead many actions.
-When your arm is completely extended your shoulders touch your ears. Their range is very wide.

Inbetweening:

-Computers inbetween with math, not with the principals of animation.
-Specify exactly what the pose needs.
-You must define the timing from ears to toes in your animation.
-“The computer is the dumbest inbetweener there is”.
-Watch for twinning in your poses.
-Try working with curves other than the default splines to develop your inbetweening.
-Spend the most time on the first post. It is the most telling in your whole animation.
-Use all of the controllers provided. There should be animation on every possible curve.
-Nothing truly is ever at rest.

Facial:

-The ocular muscles usually move before anything else. Brows lead the action and the mouth typically comes last.
-Avoid changing facial expressions in the middle of big movements. Do it before or after.
-There shouldn’t be any expression changes at all in the first or last 6 frames of an animation.

Arcs:

-Start with the core of the motion and move outward from there.
-Arms and often legs move in figure 8 patterns.
-When in FK, do the arms last. The motion of the arms is almost always dictated by the torso.
-Be aware of the orientation of the wrist to the elbow.
-Apply the waves principal (add overlap to all joints.)

Eyes:

-Plan when and why your characters eyes dart.
-Too many eye darts = spastic characters.
-Allow the eyes time to focus on the objects they’re pointing at.
-Unanimated eyes = doll eyes.
-The eyes always convey the emotion and truth of a character’s performance.

Blinks:

-Blinks are never random.
-Plan when and why your character is blinking.
-Blinks:
Convey a shift in thought.
Sell the emotional state of a character.
We blink to change a shift in thought or emotion.
When we blink we are “cutting the film of life”. Our eyes are the cameras.
Blinks always occur on quick head turns.

Jaw:

-The jaw doesn’t always open on every syllable or word.
-Get a mirror and keep it by your desk. Place your hand in a stationary position under your jaw and feel how many times it opens and closes per line of dialogue.


Feature Animation Demo Reel Tips:

  1. Keep it under 2.5 minutes.
  2. LABELS!
  3. Always use a NEW VHS tape. (Always label the spine!)
  4. Include a log sheet (breakdown sheet). Show thumbnails of the shot on the log and mention what you contributed to each shot.
  5. Include a resume and cover letter. Always spell check these two docs.
  6. Only use your best stuff.
  7. Short film? Show your best shots first. Include the full film at the end.
  8. Tailor your reel to the studio and position your applying for.
  9. No offensive content.
  10. Avoid cycles in your reel.
  11. Reel Order:

-Second best shot – FIRST.
-Weakest shot (but still good work) – MIDDLE
-Best shot – LAST
-Full short film (if applicable) – at the end.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Light a Million Candles

Light A Million Candles is a website organization that is trying to raise awareness for child pornography and online child abuse. You don't have to make a donation or anything, it's not what they're asking for. They're asking you to virtually light a candle, as they are trying to have one million lit by December 31st of this year. They want to raise awareness to the government and politicians. Please follow the link below and light a candle. It only takes a minute.

http://lightamillioncandles.com

Light a candle for the innocent victims of online child abuse.

Thank You