Angelique Yen & Eddie Gamarra Tapped to Head Nickelodeon Studio Biz

Nickelodeon announced that Netflix animation alum Angelique Yen and Eddie Gamarra, formerly of The Gotham Group, are joining Nickelodeon to oversee its burgeoning studio model business, producing content for long-form movie content and SVOD services. Yen and Gamarra will report to Nickelodeon’s Executive Vice President of Animation, Ramsey Naito, and will be based in Burbank.

Yen joins Nickelodeon as Senior Vice President, Physical Production, Nickelodeon Movies, overseeing production for all original long-form movie content including TV movies and SVOD. Eddie Gamarra has been named Vice President, Studio Business Development, Nickelodeon, in charge of developing animated and live-action content for SVOD platforms and third party players.

“Nickelodeon’s studio business gives us the opportunity to create different stories and let our IP live on beyond the network, while growing our audience and our creative-led culture,” said Naito. “The addition of Angelique and Eddie to the team will help bolster this division by finding new ways to reimagine our shows and characters, in new formats and with new partners, while feeding the demand for our content with kids and families everywhere.”

Yen began her career at Disney in 1991 in production where she worked on Aladdin, Pocahontas and Fantasia 2000, as well as Brother Bear and the shelved CG project Wild Life in development. Yen joined DreamWorks Animation in 2009, where she worked in both production and held studio roles managing films in the U.S. and internationally including How to Train Your Dragon, Shrek Forever After,Megamind, Madagascar 3 and William Salazar’s 2D short Bird Karma, the soon-to-be-released Abominable and unreleased titles Me and My Shadow and Bureau of Otherworldly Operations. In 2018, Yen joined Netflix to oversee their animation production and pipeline for 16 slated productions, including Klaus, Over the Moon and Wendell and Wild. Recently, Yen has been a consulting producer working on several feature initiatives, budgeting and scheduling feature front end start-ups.

A former college professor, Gamarra was most recently a literary manager at The Gotham Group, a multifaceted management and production company representing screenwriters, directors, animators, authors, illustrators, publishers and animation studios globally. With a primary focus on kids’ and family entertainment, Gamarra worked with numerous New York Times best-selling authors and illustrators, as well as Oscar, Emmy, Caldecott and Newbery winners and nominees. Gamarra also served as an Executive Producer of The Maze Runner trilogy from 20th Century Fox, based on the New York Times best-selling book series; Disney+’s production of Jerry Spinelli’s iconic love story Stargirl; and Henry Selick’s stop-motion feature collaboration with Jordan Peele, Wendell and Wild, for Netflix.

Yen and Gamarra are the latest additions to the executive team under network head Brian Robbins, joining Naito, Programming Head Paul DeBenedittis, Head of Live-Action Scripted Content Shauna Phelan, Chief Marketing Officer Jenny Wall and Head of Nickelodeon Preschool Eryk Casemiro.

Animation Magazine

Fox Acquires ‘Bob’s Burgers’ Studio Bento Box

Fox Entertainment has acquired Emmy Award-winning production company Bento Box Entertainment, the animation studio behind the channel’s hit series Bob’s Burgers and upcoming animated comedies Duncanville and The Great North.

The move was announced today by Charlie Collier, Chief Executive Officer, Fox Entertainment.

“You can’t walk around the Fox lot without noticing a decades-long passion for animation. It is in the Fox DNA and has served legions of fans, partners and investors,” said Collier. “As we grow Fox for the next generation, it only makes sense we would expand our animation capabilities by bringing on board the best in the business: Bento Box. The Bento-Fox combination brings Fox front-door access to the next wave of the genre’s creative leaders, while still maintaining Bento Box’s focus on all that makes them a terrific partner for outside producers. We’re thrilled to work with Scott, Joel, Brett and their amazing team to take all they’ve so capably built to new heights.”

Bento Box will operate as a stand-alone entity under the Fox Ent. banner and produce content for all platforms. Its leadership team will remain in place, including co-founders Scott Greenberg (CEO) and Joel Kuwahara (President of Production), and senior executives Brett Coker (COO), Ben Jones (Creative Director), Craig Hartin (GM of Bento Box Atlanta), Janelle Momary (Supervising Producer) and Andi Raab (Supervising Producer).

“Ten years ago, we launched Bento Box to create a home for the best talent in the business. Today, we’re the world’s leading studio for primetime animation, and this acquisition will provide us with the unique opportunity to build, to grow and to better service our current partners,” said Greenberg and Kuwahara. “While we’ve always had a special relationship with Fox, we’re so excited to officially be part of the family. We’re looking forward to working closely with Charlie, Michael Thorn and their team to develop and produce amazing content together.”

Fox’s Animation Domination programming lineup will welcome the all-new animated comedy Bless the Harts this fall. Created by Emmy winner Emily Spivey, executive-produced by Academy Award winners Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, and featuring the voices of Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Jillian Bell and Ike Barinholtz, the show will air Sundays, alongside The Simpsons, Family Guy and Bob’s Burgers.

Additional upcoming animated series include two new shows animated by Bento Box: Duncanville (from 20th Century Fox Television, Universal Television and Fox Ent.); and The Great North (20th Century Fox Television and Fox Entertainment).

From Golden Globe Award winner Amy Poehler and Emmy winners Mike and Julie Scully, and set for a midseason premiere, Duncanville features Poehler voicing the series’ two leading characters, alongside Emmy winner Ty Burrell, Riki Lindhome, Betsy Sodaro, Zach Cherry and Yassir Lester, as well as guest voices Rashida Jones and Wiz Khalifa.

The Great North, from Bob’s Burgers creator Loren Bouchard and executive producers Wendy Molyneux, Lizzie Molyneux and Minty Lewis, features the voices of Nick Offerman, Jenny Slate, Megan Mullally, Paul Rust, Aparna Nancherla, Will Forte and Dulcé Sloan.

Bento Box’s kids and family investment, Sutikki, and its related assets, are not part of the acquisition.

Animation Magazine

Studio Trigger’s ‘Promare’ Is Snapped Up By GKIDS

For the third day in a row, GKIDS has announced the acquisition of an international independent feature. Today the U.S.-based animation distributor and producer announced that it has picked up the Japanese feature Promare from Studio Trigger. GKIDS will release both a Japanese and an English-lingo version in theaters in 2019. The distributor picked up China’s White Snake and Euro co-pro Marona’s Fantastic Tale earlier this week.

Promare is the first animated feature by Studio Trigger, which was founded by former Studio Gainax animator and helmer Hiroyuki Imaishi (Gurren Lagann, Kill la Kill). The film’s global rights are being sold by Toho. GKIDS and Fathom Events will present a special premiere of the move in September 17 and 19.

Promare uses a bold cel-shaded visual style to tell a high-energy action-adventure story, and is seen as the spiritual successor to many of director Imaishi’s former works. The official synopsis is as follows: Thirty years has passed since the appearance of Burnish, a race of flame-wielding mutant beings, who destroyed half of the world with fire. When a new group of aggressive mutants calling themselves Mad Burnish appears, the epic battle between Galo Thymos, a new member of the anti-Burnish rescue team “Burning Rescue,” and Lio Fotia, the leader of “Mad Burnish” begins.

“Studio Trigger has proved to be the ultimate risk-takers, pushing the limits of visual storytelling time and time again,” says GKIDS president David Jesteadt. “GKIDS is thrilled to bring their feature film debut to North American audiences.”

You can watch the trailer here.

For more info, visit PromareMovie.com

Animation Magazine

Studio 100 Group Expands International Business & Production Capabilities

Studio 100 has reported record figures for 2018 with a turnover of €179.7 million, supported by strong theme park results and stunning performance of its latest live show production, the World War II musical 40-45. This success has paved the way for further expansion of the company’s international business and creative capabilities.

New growth begins with the appointment of Barbara Stephen as CEO of Content for Studio 100 International. She will assume executive management of all development, investment and animation production across the creative businesses including Studio 100 Animation (Paris), Studio Isar Animation (Munich), Little Airplane Productions (New York) and will continue in the role of CEO for Flying Bark Productions (Sydney).

“We are extremely happy with the results of our group, feeling confirmed in the way we are developing as a corporate group within the entertainment business. To continue this path, we constantly must adapt to the changing market situations,” commented Hans Bourlon, CEO of Studio 100 Group. “We absolutely trust in Barbara to lead our content and production teams across the globe. The Board and I are very optimistic about the future, while being grateful for the hard work of our staff and what was achieved so far. And we believe that the best is yet to come!”

Studio 100 will continue to invest significantly in original independent animated movies, series and brand activities, as well as the diversification of its technical and animation services.

The company has backed the major expansion of Flying Bark’s in-house animation capabilities which now includes the new appointment of Alexia Gates-Foale as Head of Animation Production. Current projects include the feature film and television series 100% Wolf due at the end of the year, which joins successful family originals including the CG reimaginings of Maya the Bee and Blinky Bill.

“Flying Bark has worked hard to develop a strong culture of creativity and inclusiveness with a focus on delivering world-class content across hand-drawn 2D and CGI character animation. Alexia has been pivotal in shaping the modern studio and will continue to provide strong leadership and creative vision for our future direction,” said Stephen, Content CEO of Studio 100 International and CEO of Flying Bark Productions.

Studio 100 is also investing in the diversification of its Studio 100 Animation business (Paris). The company has been developing a virtual Reality service to re-invent CGI animation pipelines using real-time technologies that will reduce the overall cost-per- minute of animation. Studio 100 Animation will be launching a professional demonstration of the service at Annecy International Film Festival Market next week.

Katell France, Managing Director of Studio 100 Animation, said, “We are thrilled to offer this new virtual reality service to other productions. Directors, artists and producers immediately see the productivity, quality and cost efficiency of this innovative production tool.”

Outside of animation, Studio 100 continuously produces new live-action movies and series. This activity is based in the Belgian studios of Studio 100 (Schelle). Anja Van Mensel, CEO of Studio 100 Benelux, leads the live-action content production. This content is produced in-house, from concept to filming, right through to post-production. Series include the international rating winner House of Anubis and, more recently, the adventure series Ghost Rockers, Night Watch and Campus 12.

In 2012, Barbara Stephen joined Flying Bark Productions, which has been a part of the Studio 100 group since 2007. A decade of producing successful, award-winning titles lead to her appointment as CEO in 2014/15. The company has won the State Premier’s award for Women in International Business Award of the year (2016) and a highly commended Innovation in Export Award in 2017. Stephen leads a team of about 250 in the Sydney studio, increasing to 300 by year end.

Alexia Gates-Foale has worked in children’s animation for over 10 years, and is credited across a number of titles, including the award-winning Erky Perky, Zeke’s Pad, The Woodlies and The Adventures of Figaro Pho. Gates-Foale produced on the highly successful feature films Maya the Bee Movie, Blinky Bill: The Movie and the AACTA-nominated television series, The Wild Adventures of Blinky Bill. As Flying Bark’s recently appointed Head of Animation Production, Alexia is currently producing Flying Bark’s latest feature film 100% Wolf, along with several titles in development.

Animation Magazine

Kong Studio Animates ‘Shazam!’ Spot for IMAX

London-based Kong Studio is flexing its animation muscle in a new digital animation spot created for IMAX in support of its release of superhero origin pic Shazam!, from Warner Bros. and New Line Cinema, based on the DC Comics series.

The video tells the story of a huge Shazam comics fan who is eagerly anticipating the start of the movie in a standard cinema. When she excitedly shouts “Shazam!” like her favorite hero, she is transported in an explosion of effects to an IMAX cinema to experience the big-screen adventure to the fullest with IMAX’s giant screen, customized immersive audio and more.

Produced in collaboration with IMAX from Kong’s new East London studio in Walthamstow, the spot was traditionally animated using TVPaint and composited in After Effects. The look draws on classic comic-book halftone coloring and action effects. Father Ltd. provided the sound design. The spot emphasizes the immersive, premium experience provided by IMAX cinemas when seeing Shazam!, and was versioned in several languages for distribution across IMAX’s global social media platforms.

Directed by David F. Sandberg, Shazam! tells the story of foster kid Billy Batson (Andi Mack‘s Asher Angel) who ends up chosen by a powerful Wizard (Djimon Hounsou) to become his new champion, imbued with the power to transform into an adult superhero by shouting out the magical acronym, “SHAZAM!” Together with his new pal Freddy (Jack Dylan Grazer), Billy brings a kids’ glee to learning his new powers — but a sinister enemy with powers of his own (Mark Strong) will put him to the ultimate test.

Kong previously collaborated with IMAX to hype the release of Disney-Lucasfilm’s Solo: A Star Wars Story with a spot celebrating the generations of fans who have loved the franchise; watch it here.

“I grew up besotted with the world of Star Wars, and spent my childhood taking a pilgrimage to my local comic-book shop at every conceivable opportunity,” said Bill Elliott, Co-Founder of Kong Studio. “So, for Kong have the opportunity to partner with IMAX to create an accompanying piece to Solo: A Star Wars Story was an utter joy. For Kong then to be asked to create a piece of animation that pays homage to the beautiful half-tone quality of comic-book art, for the purpose of supporting the IMAX film release of a classic DC title, is a dream come true. SHAZAM!”

Shazam!, released April 5, maintained its No. 1 box office rank in its second weekend, with a domestic total of $ 94.9 million (plus $ 126.3M foreign).

Learn more at www.kong-studio.com.

Shazam! Spot for IMAX

Shazam! spot for IMAX

Shazam! Spot for IMAX

Shazam! spot for IMAX

Shazam! Spot for IMAX

Shazam! spot for IMAX

Shazam! Spot for IMAX

Shazam! spot for IMAX

Animation Magazine

VFX Legion Opens BC Studio

VFX Legion, a full-service Burbank-based visual effects company, has launched a studio in British Columbia, Canada. The new division accesses the province’s substantial tax rebates, and the diverse roster of senior artists needed to efficiently craft the high-quality photo-realistic visual effects that feature films and episodic television shows demand. The Kelowna outpost will be a powerful creative hub offering a next-generation pipeline, bolstering the global reach of the studio founded by Creative Director James David Hattin in 2013.

The company kicks off the new venture with a skilled roster of in-house talent, along with a scalable collective of specialized visual effects artists based beyond commuting distance to its studio. Hattin is currently finalizing the signing of a head of production/senior VFX supervisor to helm the B.C. operation as Legion continues to solidify new relationships with top-tier talent based throughout the whole of the province.

“British Columbia’s dense pool of experienced artists makes it an ideal location for VFX Legion’s first foray into a tax haven. It enables us to take optimum advantage of our infrastructure’s capabilities and bring some of B.C.’s most creative and experienced visual effects artists into our fold,” said Hattin. “The impetus behind the launch of VFX Legion was the need for a new generation of visual effects companies with state-of-the-art capabilities, ensuring that establishing a presence in B.C., or any region offering tax incentives, doesn’t come at the cost of limited access to top-tier talent.”

VFX Legion’s capabilities build on Hattin’s 20-plus years of experience as a tech-savvy lead talent helming visual effects teams for Hollywood’s episodic television shows and blockbuster films. The hands-on creative supervises and collaborates with the company’s LA and B.C.-based artists, as well as its worldwide network of talent, working in real-time as a single unit through every phase of production.

Hattin is also the architect of Legion’s pipeline, which breaks with the traditional visual effects business model, untethering artists from the company’s brick and mortar studios. Its reach and seamless digital connectivity enable Hattin and his LA facility’s veteran management team to guide its select pool of geographically diverse artists with the efficiency of a VFX company that houses its entire team under its roof.

Legion’s team is equipped to deliver a variety of high-quality VFX, from photorealistic environments, set extensions, compositing, look development, lighting, matte painting, and dynamics to cleanups and any other services a project may require.

Shonda Rhimes’ high-profile series Scandal (ABC) entrusted Legion to handle all its visual effects needs for three seasons, through last year’s finale. Currently, How to Get Away with Murder (ABC), Madam Secretary (CBS) and DC’s Legends of Tomorrow (CW), are a few of the shows that continue to return to work with the company’s team season after season. Hardcore Henry, Sinister 2, Insidious 3, Asura, 12 Strong and Superfly are among Legion’s feature film credits.

The recent expansion into B.C. enables the company to meet the budgets of a broader range of projects.

“Our LA company is fortunate to be called on by a steady flow of films and episodic television shows,” said VFX Legion’s Head of Production, Nate Smalley. “We’ve also had great meetings with a long list of producers who were wowed by the quality of our work, but ultimately the impact of tax incentives and exchange rates on the bottom line has been a deciding factor. The addition of our B.C. studio positions Legion competitively in the visual effects arena, leveling the playing field.”

“Whether our B.C. studio steps in during the production, editorial or the pre-production phase of a project, Legion provides feature films and TV show with a unique new creative resource,” added Hattin. “Our managers’ shared LA aesthetic and standard and quality guide a talented team of artists committed to enhancing every visual story with VFX that consistently exceed clients’ expectations.”

Further expansion into new regions with tax incentives on offer are on the horizon for VFX Legion, as Hattin is currently assembling a core team of artists in New York in anticipation of launching a division in that state.

Learn more at www.vfxlegion.com.

Madam Secretary

Madam Secretary

Legends of Tomorrow

Legends of Tomorrow

Legends of Tomorrow

Legends of Tomorrow

Animation Magazine

Duncan Studio Reveals Launch Originals Slate

Duncan Studio, which delivered the 2D animation interlaced through Disney’s Annie Award-winning sequel Mary Poppins Returns, is ready to launch its new in-house development and production division Duncan Originals. Headed by studio founder and Disney alum Ken Duncan, the shop is developing a slate of animated features, series and short-form content.

The launch slate includes:

Nature’s End (live-action/animation/gaming hybrid feature film) – A sci-fi/fantasy adventure starring a female hero who finds a way to overcome an ecological crisis without resorting to violence or imitating her male counterparts.

R.E.D. (six-part series) – A humorous sci-fi detective story inspired by 1950s pulp novels, which centers on a machine which is questioning its value as a “living” being.

“Our development division has created a slate of unique, inclusive, gender balanced and visually compelling stories, that will engage and resonate with audiences globally. Our mission is to work with culturally diverse established and emerging new talent to expand the creative boundaries of the animation art form,” Duncan told Deadline.

Founded in 2007, Duncan Studio has worked talented filmmakers including Mary Poppins Returns director Rob Marshall, Brad Bird, Tom Hanks and Katherina Bigelow, and with top studios like Illumination, Disney, Warner Bros. and Universal.

[Source: Deadline]

Animation Magazine

Studio 100’s ‘Princess Emmy’ Will Bow in NorAm with Shout! Factory

Multi-platform media company Shout! Factory has inked a deal with international feature film sales agency Studio 100 Film to distribute Princess Emmy – The Movie in the U.S. and Canada. Shout! has secured all North American distribution rights, including digital, video-on-demand, home entertainment, theatrical and broadcast, and is planning a strategic launch across multiple entertainment platforms through its Shout! Factory Kids imprint.

The announcement was made Thursday by Melissa Boag, Shout! Factory’s Senior Vice President of Kids & Family Entertainment, and Thorsten Wegener, Director of Operations at Studio 100 Film.

Produced by Studio 100 Media, Talking Horse, Witebox and Animationsfabrik, Princess Emmy – The Movie boasts an all-star international voice cast of Ruby Barnhill (The BFG, Mary and the Witch’s Flower), Bella Ramsey (Game of Thrones, Netflix’s Hilda), Franka Potente (Run Lola Run, Bourne Identity) and John Hannah (Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., The Mummy). The film is directed by Piet de Rycker (Laura’s Star, Little Polar Bear).

“This fun-filled movie is a terrific addition to our library of exciting new family films. We look forward to presenting this delightful family adventure to North American audiences through a wide variety of entertainment distribution platforms and on family home entertainment shelves,” said Boag.

Wegener commented, “We are delighted to partner with Shout! Factory for Princess Emmy – The Movie again. Together we successfully brought iconic character Maya the Bee to the North American territories and we are convinced, that our little princess will win over her audiences as well.”

Synopsis: Princess Emmy has a secret gift – she is the only one in the kingdom of Kandis who can speak to horses. She has a wonderful time with her best friends, a stable full of amazing horses. When her scheming cousin, Gizana, appears, Emmy’s chance to become an officially inaugurated princess is threatened. Additionally, she must undergo a test for the right to keep her special gift. A lot is at stake for the little princess…

Animation Magazine

9 Story Media Group Acquires BASE Animation Studio in Indonesia

9 Story Media Group has acquired PT Bali Animation Studio and PT Bali Animasi Solusi Ekakarsa (collectively known as “BASE”), a full-service CGI animation studio located in Bali, Indonesia. Founded in 2015 by Lily Wang and Daniel Harjanto Setyawan, BASE provides high-quality animation work for clients around the world and employs 270 personnel. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Known for its full-scale creative, production and international distribution capabilities, 9 Story Media Group employs more than 800 staff with operations in Toronto, New York, Dublin and Manchester. Its award-winning animation studio, Brown Bag Films, is recognized internationally for hit children’s series such as Doc McStuffins, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, Top Wing, Octonauts and The Magic School Bus: Rides Again.

Since its inception, BASE has established a solid reputation as a high quality and reliable animation studio. BASE’s production portfolio includes the popular animated television series Sonic Boom and Luna Petunia. In addition, BASE and Brown Bag Films have previously partnered together on the hit Disney series Vampirina.

The acquisition of BASE will enhance 9 Story’s production capabilities, expand its global footprint and increase its worldwide headcount to more than 1,000 personnel. Co-founders Lily Wang and Daniel Harjanto Setyawan will stay on to lead BASE going forward and will report to 9 Story’s Chief Operating Officer Cathal Gaffney.

“Our top priority has always been, and will continue to be, producing the best quality animated content across all our studios,” said Vince Commisso, President & CEO of 9 Story Media Group. “Acquiring BASE bolsters our existing studio capacity in Toronto, Dublin and Manchester and enhances our ability to meet the production needs of our clients. We have been extremely impressed with BASE’s caliber of work and are thrilled to welcome the entire BASE team into the 9 Story family.”

“We are delighted to be joining forces with 9 Story Media Group,” said Wang and Setyawan. “9 Story has established itself as a global leader in kids’ entertainment with tremendous strength in production and distribution. We are incredibly proud of the animation we have produced with our talented team in Bali. By joining forces with 9 Story and their studio Brown Bag Films we will benefit from their creative expertise and international infrastructure and continue to produce top quality programs for kids and families around the world.”

Learn more about 9 Story Media Group at www.9story.com.

Animation Magazine

Shout! Factory & Eleven Arts Anime Studio Bring ‘A Silent Voice’ Home

The tender, captivating anime feature A Silent Voice will make its home entertainment debut in the U.S., as ELEVEN ARTS Anime Studio and Shout! Factory release both the English subtitled and dubbed versions on Blu-ray combo, DVD and digital on April 2. Directed by Naoko Yamada (Liz and the Blue Bird) from a screenplay by Reiko Yoshida, the film won the Japan Academy Prize for Animation of the Year, as well as Best Film and Best Screenplay at the Tokyo Anime Awards, and the Japanese Movie Critics Award for Best Animation.

Based on the critically acclaimed manga by Yoshitoki Oima, A Silent Voice is a gorgeous coming-of-age drama with a powerful message about bullying, depression and forgiveness. When a deaf elementary school girl named Shoko is forced to transfer to a new school after a boy named Shôya constant bullies her, Shôya suffers over the consequences of his guilt for years. Upon entering high school, Shôya finally decides he must find Shoko, to make amends for what he did in elementary school and to become her friend. Along the way, he meets new and old faces, and struggles with many complicated relationships and feelings.

Animation Magazine

Aardman Studio to give 75% Ownership to Employees

Add this to the long list of why we all love Aardman Animations studio so much. The Bristol based shop’s owners Peter Lord and David Sproxton are giving a 75% ownership of the studio to their 140 employees. The company founders, who started the prolific studio when they were still at school, want to protect the studio’s independence.

Lord and Sproxton will be receiving a multi-million pound payout as the result of the deal and will continue to own a quarter of parent company Aardman Holdings, reports The Guardian. Aardman Holdings is protected to make sales of £30 million ($ 38.9 million) this year and profits of about £2.5 million ($ 3.25 million) similar to last year, thanks to income from selling the rights to Shaun the Sheep, which now appears on theme parks in Japan and Sweden.

“We are balancing what we are comfortable taking out and what doesn’t stress the company out,” Sproxton told The Guardian. “We have been thinking about this a long time and built up considerable cash reserves so we could do this without borrowing any money.”

The studio has produced a long list of beloved stop-motion animated features, TV series, specials and shorts since its founding its 1972. It’s best known for Nick Park’s Wallace and Gromit characters, which starred in their own 2005 Oscar-winning feature The Curse of the Were-Rabbit. The studio’s Early Man made $ 44 million globally when it was released in early 2018. Most recently, Aardman introduced its first major console game 11:11: Memories Retold (about two characters on opposing sides of WWI). Fans are looking for ward to the new Shaun the Sheep movie Farmageddon, when it hits theaters in May of 2019.

The company is aiming to appoint a replacement for Sproxton, who acts as managing director, within the next year after which he will step back to become a consultant to the business. Lord will remain in his role as creative director for the company for up to five years, but a new creative head of feature films will be hired.

Lord added, “We’re not quitting yet. We are doing this because we love the company and because we love it we think this will be the best things for it. This is not about David and I leaving. It is a continuity deal. We always believed that independence was our strong suit. We didn’t have to dance to anybody else’s tune and could make our own decisions.”

Nick Park will keep a key role in the company sitting on a new executive board. He will also continue to receive dividends and royalty fees related to his creations from subsidiary companies such as Wallace & Gromit Limited, of which he is a co-owner with Aardman Holdings.

“In an age of uncertainty there is a sense of security as [our staff] know their job is safe as long as they come up with ideas,” Sproxton noted. “If we sold Aardman [to a big studio] it would just become an asset on the balance sheet to be traded. They could say, let’s turn it all over to CGI and shoot it in Singapore.”

Here is the trailer for Nick Park’s Early Man, which is one of the big animated features eligible for the Animated Feature Oscar this year.

Source: The Guardian

Peter Lord and David Sproxton

Peter Lord and David Sproxton

Early Man

Early Man

Animation Magazine

Netflix Sets Up Animation Studio; Re-Ups ‘Castlevania,’ ‘BoJack’ & ‘Paradise PD’

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Streaming giant Netflix continues to lead the accelerating charge for original adult animation, with sources telling The Hollywood Reporter that an in-house animation studio is in the works, in order to better monetize its programming. The news comes as Netflix announces renewals for its Emmy-nominated BoJack Horseman (for a sixth season), hit video game adaptation […]

Animation Magazine

AFM: Studio 100 Kicks Off Production of ‘Maya the Bee 3 – The Golden Orb’

Studio 100 Media has announced the start of production on it’s latest buzz-worthy family CG feature: Maya the Bee 3 – The Golden Orb. The threequel is set to hit cinemas in 2020/2021. The Golden Orb will be produced by Studio 100 Media in coproduction with Studio B Animation (Australia) and in association with Flying Bark Productions.

Munich-based Studio 100 Film is the international sales agency for the worldwide rights and presents first designs and details at AFM 2018, at Loews Office #653.

“We are delighted to add yet another chapter to Maya the Bee’s success story. We sold our first two Maya movies to more than 170 countries worldwide and already have presales of Maya the Bee 3 – The Golden Orb’ to the U.S.A., France and Poland. For this new movie we renew our successful collaboration with our previous partner Universum Film and hope that Maya’s next theatrical adventure will entertain children and families worldwide just like the first movies have done and still do,” said Ulli Stoef, CEO of Studio 100 Media.

Brian Rosen, founder of Studio B Animation, added: “My co-producer, Tracy Lenon, and I are very excited to be making another Maya the Bee film. It is such an iconic title that has been entertaining young children for more than 100 years.”

“Flying Bark are proud to be collaborating on our third Maya feature film,” said Barbara Stephen, Managing Director and Executive Producer, Flying Bark Productions. “We believe in the importance of our young audience seeing inspirational female protagonists who deal with challenges, find solutions and approach obstacles with good natured tenacity. Maya is the kind of relatable character who can be both fun, and a great role model, helping kids make sense of the world around them.”

Synopsis: When Maya and Willi bust out of winter lock down early they are catapulted headfirst into a top secret mission! Entrusted with the care of a sacred seed, Maya and Willi team up with the loveable but clumsy ants Arnie and Barney to deliver the seed to its new home atop the mysterious Bonsai Mountain. But when their “seed” hatches, Maya and Willi come face to face with their biggest responsibility yet: a smooshy, squishy little princess! They have to take on bounty hunters, thugs and ruthless enemies to return the lost princess to her mountain colony, only to find it hanging in the balance of a turf war and remorseless predators. Willi discovers a side of himself that he never expected as he becomes protective of the tiny princess. In this new adventure Maya’s curiosity and charisma will again engage and delight audiences as Maya has done so for many years.

Maya the Bee 3 – The Golden Orb

Maya the Bee 3 – The Golden Orb

Animation Magazine

U.K. Kids’ Entertainment Vets Form One Good Fox Studio

Daniel Good (creator of CBeebies’ Waybuloo) and James Fox (creator of Cartoon Network’s Skatoony) are putting their 30 years of combined experience in kids’ entertainment into a new development and production studio dubbed One Good Fox. The outfit offers expert know-how, development and production services for content aimed at preschoolers to teens.

Based in Worthing, West Sussex, the studio is a hub for writers, designers and producers where Good and Fox develop their own IP and as well as projects for third parties, write scripts, storyboard, consult and produce content.

“Opening the studio in Worthing is really exciting; Worthing is a very up and coming town with many creative businesses now choosing to be here as opposed to Brighton. And when we need a break, we can go and sit on the beach!” said Good.

Fox said, “We’re both really excited about our new venture. We share the same enthusiasm for creating quality kid’s content and have a really special and complementary working relationship. We also happen to be having a really fun time!.”

Daniel Good is a seasoned development producer and showrunner. After creating the BAFTA-nominated CBeebies series Waybuloo (150 x 20’), he went on to create and produce two seasons of Wissper (104 x 7’) for Channel 5 / Nickelodeon, and Floogals (52 x 11’) for Channel 5 / Sprout. Good now lives on Shoreham Beach, where he cooks up both delicious vegan food and brand-new, exciting kids entertainment concepts.

While at Turner Broadcasting, James Fox found success both online and on-air, picking up a BAFTA for Best Entertainment Website as creative lead at Cartoon Network’s EMEA Interactive department. As Turner EMEA’s on-air Director of Original Production & Development, he earned a further BAFTA nomination for live-action/animation quiz-style sitcom Skatoony (104 x 22’), which he produced, directed and exec produced. Since leaving Turner, Fox has focused on creating, developing and producing content as an independent in Sussex, with the support of his wife, Nina and their three very creative children.

Visit One Good Fox online at www.onegoodfox.com.

One Good Fox

One Good Fox

Animation Magazine

Studio Gale, August Media & Synergy88 Prep Pre-K Series ‘Tish Tash’

South Korean animation shop Studio Gale has joined forces with Singapore-based August Media Holdings and Philippines media group Synergy88 Entertainment to produce a new, 2D-animated preschool series Tish Tash (52 x 5’). BAFTA- and Emmy Award-winning U.K. company Karrot Entertainment has also come on board as a development partner.

The series centers on young and hugely imaginative Tish, her bear family, and her larger-than-life imaginary friend, Tash. No matter what troubles they face — be it the age-old terror of long, boring car trips or helping Tish’s baby brother not be sad about losing his favorite toy — these special friends can create new worlds around themselves, embarking on imaginative adventures and finding their own creative angle to help solve any problems that life throws at them.

Tish Tash is created by Studio Gale, and set to enter production in Q1 of 2019. Global distribution duties will be shared by August Media Holdings’ August Rights and by Studio Gale.

Tish Tash will introduce a fantastic and entertaining world through children’s imagination in everyday life which can only be expressed in animation,” said Chang Hwan Shin, CEO of Studio Gale. “As one of the best creative studios in Korea, I am excited to collaborate with August Media, Synergy88 and Karrot Entertainment and guarantee that Tish Tash will fascinate children all over the world!”

Jyotirmoy Saha, CEO of August Media Holdings said, “Tish and Tash are great characters whose beauty lies in the simplicity of the characters and stories. Our partners in this project have a fantastic record of creating and producing quality and award-winning programs that appeal to an international audience, so it was a natural step for us to join forces on such an endearing project.”

“We are thrilled to collaborate with Studio Gale, August Media and Karrot Entertainment in bringing Tish Tash to television. This series promises to entertain and educate and for us it’s another important collaboration to add to our portfolio,” added Jackeline Chua, Managing Partner of Synergy88 Entertainment Media Inc.

“Collaborating with Studio Gale and August Media on Tish Tash has been an exceptionally exciting and rewarding process,” said Karrot Ent. Creative Director Jamie Badminton. “I’m confident that together we’ve developed a truly global show with a very real and relatable family at the centre of it. The show has fresh energy, led by the mind of our main character, Tish; her partnership with her imaginary friend, Tash propels the stories into wild and fantastically charming directions, and provides perfect five-minute bursts of adventure and humor.”

Animation Magazine