Di­ver­sity, Tal­ent eXpo’s Fo­cus

Animation Magazine - - Spotlight -

TThe CTN an­i­ma­tion eXpo re­turns to Bur­bank Nov. 20-22 with an­other fresh ex­pe­ri­ence.

he CTN an­i­ma­tion eXpo re­turns to Bur­bank, Calif., Nov. 20-22, for its sev­enth edi­tion with plenty of up­dated fea­tures sure to please the an­i­ma­tion tal­ent the event is geared to­ward.

We caught up with Tina Price, founder of the Cre­ative Tal­ent Net­work and host of the CTN an­i­ma­tion eXpo, to get the scoop on this year’s event, which again will be held at the Bur­bank Mar­riott and Con­ven­tion Cen­ter. What dif­fer­ent events?

CTN is a grass-roots startup whose fo­cus is about the tal­ent. Cre­ated by in­dus­try artists for in­dus­try artists, we put the tal­ent cen­ter stage year af­ter year and do not de­vi­ate from our mis­sion. What are the new­est, most ex­cit­ing ad­di­tions or changes to this year’s event?

We are com­mit­ted to bring­ing a fresh new CTN ex­pe­ri­ence ev­ery year. Our theme this year is “One of a Kind!” New this year, CTN is host­ing an open house on Thurs­day, Nov. 19, start­ing at 7 p.m. and open to the pub­lic. There will be cos­tumed draw­ing, mu­sic and screen­ings all de­signed to give peo­ple a sneak peek at our new lay­out and a chance to meet up early. They can pick up their badges, too, and avoid the lines. We’re also ex­cited about the new pav­il­ion that will be the main en­trance to the event and the new CTN Lounge this year. We’ve also added more shut­tles that now bring peo­ple to the event from seven dif­fer­ent ho­tels. We will also be stream­ing live from two lo­ca­tions at the event. You can watch live at tv.cre­ative­tal­ent­net­work. com. What spe­cial guests do you have lined up?

Ev­ery year CTN brings to­gether the best tal­ent from around the world. We’ll be an­nounc­ing our sched­ule soon, but I can tell you that it in­cludes tal­ent from France, Eng­land, Korea, New York, Ar­gentina and more. What are some of the high­lights of this year’s pro­gram­ming?

Whether the live demon­stra­tions, in­ter­view pan­els, screen­ings or in­ti­mate con­ver­sa­tions, the high­light will be the sheer di­ver­sity of the tal­ent com­ing this year. It is go­ing to be a once-in-a-life­time op­por­tu­nity as this group will never be as­sem­bled un­der one roof ever again. We are also cel­e­brat­ing the 150th an­niver­sary of Alice in Won­der­land in con­junc­tion with the eXpo, with a group ex­hi­bi­tion at CTN’s Cen­ter Stage Gallery and a con­test to de­sign The Jab­ber­wocky spon­sored by Copic Mark­ers. Any ex­cit­ing ex­hibitors?

Along with our amaz­ing re­turn­ing ex­hibitors, we’d like to wel­come artists from Italy, Por­tu­gal, Korea and the Nether­lands along with new ad­di­tions of ILM, DreamWorks and Pixar an­i­ma­tion stu­dios to the ex­hibit floor. We also have a lot of new tal­ent ex­hibit­ing for the first time this year. What ad­vice do you have for at­ten­dees to best nav­i­gate the pan­els and events?

Ev­ery­thing is first come, first served so plan your days. It’s only 2½ days, so have a plan and work your plan. If it is some­thing that is im­por­tant to you, get there early. And down­load the CTNX app to stay in­formed and con­nected. How many peo­ple do you ex­pect will at­tend this year? Is it up from last year?

CTN isn’t about quan­tity as much as qual­ity, and I can say the show this year is go­ing to be up in qual­ity from last year and will be a on­cein-a-life­time op­por­tu­nity. [

In­dus­try movers and shak­ers pre­pare to as­sem­ble at the fourth an­nual World

An­i­ma­tion and VFX Sum­mit, set for Nov. 2-4 in Ma­rina del Rey, Calif.

Few things are more valu­able in to­day’s busi­ness en­vi­ron­ment than the abil­ity to in­ter­act di­rectly with the peo­ple who have the ex­pe­ri­ence and re­sources to make things hap­pen.

And that’s why the World An­i­ma­tion and VFX Sum­mit — now in its fourth year and sched­uled for Nov. 2-4 at the Cal­i­for­nia Yacht Club in Ma­rina del Rey, Calif. — has grown into one of the must-at­tend events for an­i­ma­tion and vis­ual-ef­fects pro­fes­sion­als from around the globe.

The sum­mit of­fers two full days of in-depth pro­gram­ming, in­clud­ing pan­els, dis­cus­sions and key­note ad­dresses fea­tur­ing the peo­ple whose cur­rent projects are de­ter­min­ing the fu­ture of the in­dus­try. It also of­fers plenty of net­work­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties with pro­fes­sion­als in all as­pects of the in­dus­try from all over the globe who are ex­perts in ev­ery­thing from new in­dus­try stan­dards, global co-pro­duc­tions and the ground­break­ing tech­nolo­gies defin­ing the rapidly chang­ing world of an­i­ma­tion and vis­ual ef­fects.

Some of this year’s dis­tin­guished pan­elists in­clude: Greg Agostinelli, VP and man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of Epica USA Roger Allers, di­rec­tor of The Prophet Ri­cardo Ar­naiz, writer, pro­ducer and di­rec­tor at An­imex Delna Bh­e­sa­nia, CEO and co-founder of Bardel Michael Car­ring­ton, Stu­dios Sarita Chris­tensen, owner and CEO of Copen­hagen Bom­bay Pro­duc­tions Rick Clod­fel­ter, con­tent strate­gist Fred­er­ick Faubert, founder, pres­i­dent and CEO of Hibur­num Peter Gal, head of TV de­vel­op­ment at DreamWorks An­i­ma­tion Michael Hirsch, chair­man of The En­ter­tain­ment and Me­dia Fi­nance Group Eric Homan, VP of de­vel­op­ment at Fred­er­a­tor Ken Kat­sumoto, ex­ec­u­tive VP at Lionsgate Joel Kuwa­hara, co-founder and prin­ci­pal at Bento Box Cort Lane, VP an­i­ma­tion de­vel­op­ment and part­ner­ships at Marvel Tele­vi­sion Wang Lei, se­nior VP of Uy­oung Me­dia Group and CEO of Mr. Car­toon Olivier Le­lar­doux, VP an­i­ma­tion at Cy­ber Group Cur­tis Le­lash, VP com­edy and an­i­ma­tion at Car­toon Net­work A. K. Mad­ha­van, founder and CEO of As­sem­blage En­ter­tain­ment Ale McHaddo, founder and part­ner of 44 Toons Chuck Peter­son, pro­ducer of Gi­bran’s The Prophet Com­pa­nies set to par­tic­i­pate as spon­sors in­clude: Atomic Car­toons, CelAc­tion, DreamWorks An­i­ma­tion Tele­vi­sion, Blue Sky Stu­dios, Nat­u­ral Tal­ent, Sony Pic­tures An­i­ma­tion, Ilion An­i­ma­tion Stu­dios and Wizart An­i­ma­tion. More spon­sors will be an­nounced shortly.

An­i­ma­tion projects set to be high­lighted with film­maker ap­pear­ances in­clude Blue Sky Stu­dios’ The Peanuts Movie and Aard­man An­i­ma­tions’ Shaun the Sheep Movie.

The first night of the sum­mit is capped by a star-stud­ded gala event that will honor the achieve­ments of the best and bright­est in­no­va­tors in an­i­ma­tion and vis­ual ef­fects. This year’s award re­cip­i­ents and hon­orees, ad­di­tional key­note speak­ers and pan­elists will be an­nounced soon.

The third day of the sum­mit will fea­ture mas­ter classes, with Jose San Román of Ilion An­i­ma­tion Stu­dios in Spain the first to be an­nounced. Román’s class will speak to an­i­ma­tion be­ing a new as­set class in the fi­nan­cial com­mu­nity and to is­sues that most in­vestors and stu­dio ex­ec­u­tives are un­aware of.

The class will ben­e­fit from Román’s ex­pe­ri­ence speak­ing to a wide global fi­nan­cial com­mu­nity and turn­ing Ilion into a suc­cess­ful world­wide an­i­ma­tion stu­dio that pro­duced the 2009 fea­ture Planet 51. Cur­rently part­nered with Para­mount, Ilion has evolved into a mul­ti­pro­duc­tion stu­dio, aim­ing to pro­duce var­i­ous fea­ture films con­cur­rently to meet the grow­ing global de­mand for topqual­ity dig­i­tal con­tent.

Michael Hirsch, chair­man of The En­ter­tain­ment and Me­dia Fi­nance Group, also will teach a mas­ter class, ti­tled World Dom­i­na­tion Through An­i­ma­tion.

Keep an eye on the sum­mit site at www. an­i­ma­tion­magazine.net/sum­mit for de­tails on pro­gram­ming and on at­tend­ing the sum­mit.

A lim­ited num­ber of tick­ets are avail­able at $150 off to cur­rent mem­bers of WIA, VES, ASIFA, An­i­ma­tion Guild, WGF and the WGA. Due to the lim­ited ca­pac­ity of the venue, this three-day event usu­ally sells out quickly, so it’s highly rec­om­mended to pur­chase tick­ets in ad­vance. [

Some­times we may not need the ro­bust in­ter­ac­tion with Shot­gun, or the se­cu­rity of a Marvel movie or the next Star Wars. Some­times we need it sim­ple, straight­for­ward, and con­ve­nient. Some­times, we are work­ing with a di­rec­tor who doesn’t have the lux­ury of a team of peo­ple who can set up an FTP, down­load and at­tach files, and re­trieve ses­sion keys. Some­times, we just need to be able to send a link to the di­rec­tor and he just opens the re­view ses­sion and ev­ery­thing is up and run­ning. This is where Frankie fits in. Frankie is the on­line, pared-down version of Ci­nesync. And it’s meant for those small bou­tiques that don’t have, need or want the in­fra­struc­ture to sup­port a Ci­nesync pipe­line.

Frankie opens up through the web browser. There is noth­ing to in­stall. No ses­sion keys to gen­er­ate and send around. You share a bit link with your clients and they open things in their browser. All the me­dia for your ses­sion is up­loaded to the Frankie cloud, where it is ap­pro­pri­ately transcoded. The me­dia then syncs in the ses­sion be­tween you and the client. Like Ci­nesync, draw­ings can be made, a con­ver­sa­tion of notes is recorded. And the whole ses­sion is stored within your Frankie cloud so you can re­fer back to it at any time.

If I were to get really nit­picky, I’d say that I’d love to be able to sim­ply drag me­dia into the Frankie win­dow and add it to the cur­rent ses­sion in­stead of open­ing a dia­log box. But that’s su­per nit­picky.

Like Ci­nesync, Frankie isn’t the cheap­est ex­pense for your pro­duc­tions. Fifty dol­lars a month gets you in with one project at a time, some cloud stor­age and a few si­mul­ta­ne­ous users. One hun­dred dol­lars per month gets you more users, more stor­age, more con­cur­rent projects and the abil­ity to save out ses­sion notes into a PDF file. And $250 per month gets you 10 users, 10 projects, 50 GB of stor­age, PDF out­put and then lots of fancy stuff like zoom­ing, down­load­ing orig­i­nal files, guest up­load­ing and other such things. Again, you have to sim­ply bal­ance out the cost of how much it would cost you if you didn’t have it, and then build it into your bud­get.

Akira Toriyama’s mar­tial-arts com­edy-ad­ven­ture Dragon Ball ranks among the most pop­u­lar fran­chises in anime history. It be­gan as a manga in the boys’ mag­a­zine Sho­nen Jump in 1984. Two years later, the first TV adap­ta­tion ap­peared, fol­lowed by Dragon Ball Z (1989) and Dragon Ball GT (1996), to­tal­ing more than 500 episodes; a fourth se­ries, Dragon Ball Su­per, de­buted in Ja­pan in July. The 15th and lat­est fea­ture, Dragon Ball Z: Res­ur­rec­tion “F,” has been the top-seller on Ama­zon’s anime list since its release was an­nounced.

Dragon Ball has sold an as­ton­ish­ing 30 mil­lion discs, 45 mil­lion games and 240 mil­lion books (about half as many as the Harry Pot­ter se­ries). Yet there was no new con­tent for 17 years, a sur­pris­ing gap for the Ja­panese an­i­ma­tion in­dus­try.

In 2013, Toriyama de­lighted fans when he tied his new manga Jaco the Ga­lac­tic Pa­trol­man into the Dragon Ball con­ti­nu­ity. The fea­ture Dragon Ball Z: The Bat­tle of the Gods, which also de­buted in 2013, sold more than 1 mil­lion tick­ets in six days in Ja­pan — which has about one-tenth as many screens as the United States. Res­ur­rec­tion “F” scored a hit ear­lier this year, pass­ing Hayao Miyzaki’s The Wind Rises to reach ninth place on the list of top-gross­ing the­atri­cal anime re­leases in Amer­ica.

In Res­ur­rec­tion, Toriyama (who wrote the script) and di­rec­tor Ta­dayoshi Ya­ma­muro re­unite the beloved hero Son Goku and his friends with Freeza, the vil­lain fans love to hate.

For read­ers over age 40, a lit­tle back­ground in­for­ma­tion may in or­der. Goku is a Saiyan war­rior from the planet Vegeta (which Freeza de­stroyed) who pos­sesses su­per-hu­man strength. He ap­plies that strength to his fu­ri­ously in­tense mar­tial-arts train­ing. Goku didn’t even let dy­ing in sea­son six slow him down: He trained in the Next World dur­ing much of sea­son seven — be­fore be­ing brought back to life with the magic Dragon Balls.

Over time, Toriyama ex­panded the cast to in­clude an­other Saiyan, Vegeta; Goku’s wife, Chichi, and his sons, Go­han and Goten; mar- tial-arts teacher and dirty old man Mas­ter Roshi; and an as­sort­ment of hu­mans, aliens and hu­man-alien mixes who form the mighty Z Fight­ers. Goku and the Fight­ers de­stroyed Freeza, an ex­tremely pow­er­ful and nasty alien, in sea­son four.

Sor­bet (Jeremy Schwartz), a for­mer lieu­tenant of Freeza’s, uses the Dragon Balls to res­ur­rect the soul of the long-dead tyrant. As his body was hacked to bits, Sor­bet needs the new re­gen­er­a­tion tech­nol­ogy to re­store Freeza (Chris Ayres) phys­i­cally. The re­born Freeza is ea­ger to avenge his demise — and the time he spent in a hi­lar­i­ously ironic hell — on Earth and its in­hab­i­tants. Only Goku stands in his way.

But Goku (Sean Schem­mel) and Vegeta (Christopher R. Sa­bat) are in a re­mote di­men­sion, train­ing with Beerus (Ja­son Dou­glas), the fe­line God of De­struc­tion, and his ser­vant Whis (Ian Sin­clair), char­ac­ters Toriyama in­tro­duced in Bat­tle of the Gods. Beerus may be a for­mi­da­ble de­struc­tive force, but he has a no­to­ri­ous sweet tooth. Bulma (Monica Rial) uses an elab­o­rate straw­berry dessert to sum­mon him and the Su­per Saiyans be­fore Freeza can de­stroy the planet.

The Z Fight­ers and Jaco can dis­pose of the alien sol­diers Freeza brought. But only Goku can take out Freeza him­self, al­though Vegeta in­sists on try­ing. In the en­su­ing duel, Goku ramps up to a stag­ger­ing level of power, be­com­ing a Su­per Saiyan God with a turquoise man­dala (a feat that drew loud cheers from the au­di­ence at the film’s pre­miere at Anime Expo in July).

In the best su­per­hero tra­di­tion, Goku re­duces Freeza to so much an­noy­ing dust at the last pos­si­ble mo­ment, saving his fam­ily, friends and the Earth. It’s a typ­i­cally ti­tanic bat­tle in­volv­ing blasts of power that blow en­e­mies through solid rock.

Ya­ma­muro wisely lim­its the CG to Freeza’s space ship, the alien army, the gar­gan­tuan ex­plo­sions and some com­plex cam­era moves the lim­ited bud­get of the TV se­ries wouldn’t per­mit. But the main char­ac­ters are un­apolo­get­i­cally hand drawn and two-di­men­sional, as they should be.

Dragon Ball Z: Res­ur­rec­tion “F” gives fans ex­actly what they want. The film­mak­ers scrupu­lously pre­serve the char­ac­ters and re­la­tion­ships that won the fans’ en­dur­ing loy­alty. Res­ur­rec­tion “F” may not be a great an­i­mated fea­ture, but it’s a lot of fun, and the more you like the orig­i­nal se­ries, the more fun it is. [

This YA novel adap­ta­tion from sopho­more Stu­dio Ghi­bli di­rec­tor Hiro­masa Yonebayashi ( The Se­cret World of Ar­ri­etty) is a gen­tler sort of an­i­mated tale. Based on the story by Joan G. Robin­son, the film fol­lows 12-year-old Anna as she moves from her foster home in the city to a sleepy sea­side town in Hokkaido. Feel­ing like an out­sider, Anna never expects to meet a friend like the beau­ti­ful, mys­te­ri­ous Marnie — some­one who ac­cepts her com­pletely. But the girls’ friend­ship is soon threat­ened by unan­swered ques­tions.

Re­leased in North Amer­ica by GKIDS, the English dub version of this “Ghi­bli Gothic” fea­tures Hailee Ste­in­feld, Kier­nan Shipka, Geena co­me­dian Robin Wil­liams as Ge­nie, this 2D take on the age-old Arab folk­tale re­mains an en­chant­ing clas­sic two decades later, and gets the Di­a­mond shine-up just af­ter Dis­ney has an­nounced plans for a live-ac­tion pre­quel and re­make.

Aladdin’s char­ac­ters were brought to life by Wil­liams as Ge­nie (an­i­ma­tion su­per­vised by Eric Gold­berg), Scott Weinger and singer Brad Kane as Iron Mike voic­ing his car­i­ca­ture coun­ter­part, Rachel Ram­ras as his long­suf­fer­ing adopted daugh­ter Yung Hee, Norm Macdonald as a sar­cas­tic Pi­geon who was once a man and Jim Rash as the flam­boy­ant ghost of the Mar­quess of Queens­berry, the show fol­lows Mike and the team as they an­swer pleas for help with full hearts and strong right hooks. The 10 episode first sea­son sees the gang tak­ing on Cor­mac McCarthy’s chu­pacabra prob­lem, gam­bling with Rus­sian mob­sters, fac­ing ly­can­thropy in the fam­ily and ac­ci­den­tally killing Buzz Aldrin. [Release date: Oct. 20] +Re­mem­ber­ing the Fu­ture +Cast­ing To­mor­row­land +A Great Big Beau­ti­ful Scor­ing

Ses­sion +The World of Tomorrow

Science Hour + The Ori­gins of Plus Ul­tra

an­i­mated short +Brad Bird Pro­duc­tion Diaries +Blast from the Past com­mer­cial +Deleted Scenes [Oct. 13]

Paul Babb of Maxon.

Ellen Gold­smith-Vein of The Gotham Group.

(FUNi­ma­tion: $34.98; 2 discs Blu-ray + DVD)

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