It’s December 1st, and that can mean only one thing: time to hand out awards! As we get closer to the end of the year, the more substantial the awards being handed out and announced are, but for animators, and those that produce animated works, the biggest prize of their art form is The Annie. The International Animated Film Society, ASIFA-Hollywood’s Annie Awards will be handed out for the 42nd year on January 31, 2015 at UCLA’s Royce Hall, and whether you’re interested in either film or TV production, this year has produced a very competitive race for the best in animation. So who all is up for Annies’ glory, and who is likely to start the year 2015 listening to “We are the Champions” on repeat? Read on. (more…)
Well folks, it looks like two of the world’s biggest animated stars may be coming back to the big screen, and it looks like they might be doing it together. Mickey Mouse and Roger Rabbit are the subject of a recent proposal entitled The Stooge and, if Roger Rabbit creator Gary K. Wolf’s words are to be believed, Disney is looking at the project pretty seriously.
Apparently the concept art is already being worked on and producer Erik von Wodtke is involved as well, having developed both a story and a treatment for the potential flick.
Or perhaps it’s best to just let Wolf say it in his own words:
The movie is called The Stooge. It will be based on the classic Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis movie of the same name. The story has the emotional empathy and sensibilities of Wall-E and Toy Story. It will be a (G) Rated Pixar type animated musical buddy comedy. Mickey takes on the Dean Martin role, Roger, who is already regarded as a comic genius in France, takes the Jerry Lewis part.
The film incorporates five specific locations from the Disneyland park. It also introduces the Toon Train, an exciting and interesting way to travel through Toontown.
The film features real-life people. Walt Disney costars. Orson Welles makes an appearance.
The packaged Development Proposal is currently being evaluated by Disney and Pixar. Meetings are happening! Directors and writers are being evaluated.
And some more of Wolf’s words:
The Stooge is a real development proposal for a Disney/Pixar movie. It has the same title as the Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis film and some of the same plot elements, but it’s not a remake. The storyline in this Stooge is quite different.
This movie, which will be all animated, has nothing to do with the sequel to Who Framed Roger Rabbit. They are totally different concepts and projects. It’s not a case of making one instead of the other. In an ideal, rabbit-centric world, Disney will make both.
The Stooge development producer Erik von Wodtke came up with the story and wrote the treatment. He showed it to me hoping that I would see how special it was and would be interested in coming in on the project. With that, he did succeed. I love the idea of a Mickey Mouse and Roger Rabbit musical buddy comedy. This is a co-star pairing made in cartoon heaven. Two iconic cartoon characters playing off one another in a story that has the heart and emotional soul of films like Wall-E and Toy Story. What Disney fan wouldn’t want to see that?
If this film makes it into full production and the rumored Roger Rabbit sequel also comes through, audiences could be looking at a giant pile of gibbering rabbit in the near future.
What do you folks think? Roger and Mickey plus music equals good idea? Or is Disney just looking for yet one more franchise to milk?
Thanks to /film for the heads-up.
That Disney now controls Lucasfilm and thus the entirety of the Star Wars franchise is by no means news. In fact, this little development of the year 2012 may have been old news more than 30 years ago. If one takes a brief look at some of the background elements in the following collection of stills from Empire Strikes Back (1980), one can see what appears to be the surreptitiously placed head of the Mouse Overlord himself. Take a look and see what you think:
So, just a strange coincidence? Or a message from the past that Disney was destined to take over the franchise? Perhaps they are the ones who will bring (re-)balance to the force and make up for the sub-par Episodes I-III, just as the prophecy has foretold!
Well, we can always hope. In the meantime, keep watching the old films and finding more clues.
Thanks to /film for the heads-up.
During NYCC our Anne Sisk got a chance to spend some time with Epic Mickey 2 and some of the behind the scenes talent that is working to make it a reality. This is her report:
Disney follows up their Wii hit, Epic Mickey, with the multi-platform Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two, available November 18th. This time Mickey and Oswald the Lucky Rabbit team up for more adventures, bringing new features to the franchise.
The most notable difference this time around is that the characters actually talk. Oswald (voiced by Frank Welker) and Mickey (voiced by Bret Iwan) are joined by Gremlin Gus (Carey Elwes), Yen Sid (Mike Himselstein) and the Mad Doctor (Dave Wittenberg). Finding the right voice for the Gremlins, based on the abandoned Roald Dahl/Disney collaboration, was important as Gremlin Gus serves as a guide through the game.
Expanding on the demographic-crossing appeal of Epic Mickey (the audience split evenly across gender and age ranges), Epic Mickey 2 hopes to foster further engagement by introducing a co-player option. There are tasks within the game that require character-specific skills (like Mickey’s paintbrush wielding or Oswald’s ear-powered flight), so be prepared to play with a friend or switch between characters to make it through the levels.
Epic Mickey 2 also offers a more customized game, adapting based on the style of play. Inkwells that help Mickey and Oswald along fill with invisible or indelible ink, depending on the way each player tackles challenges. Running through levels on the lookout for a fight? Inkwells fill with indelible ink, helping you make it through unscathed. More of a lover, less of a fighter? You’ll probably get invisible ink instead, letting you sneak through the tough spots. The ink does eventually wear off, through both time and damage.
This time, you can also outfit your characters in different, collectible costumes. Costumes, once assembled, add advantages to gameplay – in addition to looking quite snappy. You can take advantage of costumes at the various Photo Op Areas throughout the game.
Want something more out of your gaming experience? Keep an eye out for the 150 pins hidden throughout the Epic Mickey 2 world. All pins are available on a single play-through (though it might take a very observant and very obsessive single play-through to get them all). Collect pins and show them off in your main gallery – or use them for their (rumored) influence within the game.
Epic Mickey 2 also brings you an improved camera system and a better mapping system, resolving some player complaints from the original game. There are new worlds to explore, including Nature’s Wonderland and the Rainbow Caverns. And this time, the world has gone musical. Musical cut-scenes make the game feel just a bit more like a classic Disney production.
Having had the opportunity to play through a bit of the game, it looks fantastic. The co-op seems natural, playing to each character’s strengths. The worlds are vibrant with a hint of the slightly-askew (understandable because this is Oswald attempting to recreate a world he’s never actually seen). The game is tricky enough to be interesting, but not so fidgety as to be disheartening.
I asked about the possibility of a shared component – some co-operative system, or at least a way to share those pins that we kept hearing about. That’s not in the plan for this game, unfortunately, so I started to worry about the longevity of the gaming experience. Make it through the levels and, well, that’s it. The team behind Epic Mickey 2 has taken that into consideration it seems, creating boards rich in detail, full of hidden elements to find and areas to explore. Add to that the collecting drive for both the pins and the costumes and it feels like Epic Mickey 2 is a game that can last beyond the initial play-through.
Launching in concert with Epic Mickey 2 is the standalone Power of Illusion, available only on the Nintendo 3DS. Based on Disney’s Castle of Illusion, The Power of Illusion presents a bit of forgotten video game history while embracing the pure joy and simplicity of the 16 bit, side-scrolling game. Defeat Mizrabel by rescuing more than thirty classic characters from her traps. Once you rescue a character, he shows up in your fortress. Help that character out and he’ll update your fortress for you. The goal is to free all of the characters and end with a fully-restored castle.
What aren’t we getting with the release of Epic Mickey 2? Unfortunately, a few things. There won’t be a collectors’ edition of the game released in North America – though, there is one planned for other markets. Likewise, the Epic Mickey 2 graphic novel will not be released to North American markets, making Peter David’s adaptation a must-find-on-eBay release.
Nerdy Bits: ‘Star Trek’ Uniforms go Latex, Body-Painted Dr. Mrs. The Monarch, Imperial March From a Washing Machine, Mickey Mouse in ‘GTA’, and MOAR!
Every day the internet produces an astounding amount of goodies and gems. Most hilarious, some amusing, but all worth at least a few seconds of your time. We here at Nerd Bastards try to bring you the best bits of news and nerdery the webz has to offer, with a bit of snark thrown in. But sometimes not everything makes the cut. Monday through Friday we’ll be bringing you our inbox leftovers, our forgotten bookmarks, the nerdy bits that simply slipped through the cracks. You can submit items to Nerdy Bits by emailing us at email@example.com
Above: Had the crew of the Enterprise in TNG worn latex uniforms, there’d have been no need for the Picard manuever. Though, I cringe at the thought of Worf in skintight latex, as I’m sure so does he. These Star Trek latex costumes from Poison Candy Latex will be premiere at Montreal Comic Con as part of their new line of pop culture latex outfits. Pricing info coming soon. (Fashionably Geek)
Everyone is patiently waiting for next year, when Joss Whedon brings us the much anticipated super hero epic The Avengers. If you missed the news earlier today, Walt Disney Pictures announced they will be releasing the Marvel action film in Digital Disney 3D. Shit!
The problem here is that The Avengers wasn’t shot in 3D, meaning that the film will be converted into 3D in post-production — just like what they did with Thor and Captain America. If you’re an optimist and you’re thinking it will go the way of Clash of the Titans, then perhaps there’s some value in that because Joss claims that it won’t be “obnoxiously 3D”.
While talking exclusively with JoBlo, the Avengers director reassured his fellow nerds, saying:
“There’s no, ‘Oh look, we’re going to spend 20 minutes going through this tunnel because it’s in 3D!’ And no one is pointing at the screen the entire time. But it’s an action movie. Things tend to hurtle toward the screen anyway.” … “I’m not a big fan of extreme long lens, talky movies – I like to see the space I’m in and relate to it, so 3D kinda fits my aesthetic anyway. And the technology has advanced so far in the past couple years.”
MORE AFTER THE JUMP
Nerd Art Stock Pile: Our Web Browsers As Sexy Ladies, Embryonic Superhero Statues (WTF?), Obama ScarletJohanssoning, Muppet Fairy Tales, And More!
The Interwebz is a great place for nerdy art and the like. A lot of the time it’s fuckin’ weird shit like Bert and Ernie comparing dildos and shit like that. But there are a lot of awesome things that we see on a daily basis, and we’re lazy nerd bastards so we just round them all up once a week for your nerdgasm glory.
I love this! Click the picture for a full-sized version. Ever wondered what the top ‘net browsers, Firefox, Opera, Internet Explorer, Chrome and Safari would look like as chicks in hawt dresses? Probably not. But here you have it, anyway! Credit goes to the very talented Moie “Eskimoie” Preisenberger.
There isn’t much to be said as an introduction of this next video clip. It’s hilarious and I cannot stop watching it. This is what it would be like if Donald Duck and Mickey Mouse were the two characters talking to each other in this famous scene from Pulp Fiction when Samuel L. Jackson asks the wormy guy if Marsellus Wallace looks like a bitch. The world would be much more interested in Christianity these days if Donald Duck read more passages out of the Bible.