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Archive for the ‘Filmmakers’


“Q. Do you think audiences are ready to see grown-up stories told through animation again?”

February 27th, 2011

A. I’m dying for the PG-13 animated movies and the R-animated movies. Come on, let’s go. The Ralph Bakshi stuff. “Pirates,” in a way, was a PG-13 animated movie. It’s very Harryhausen [Ray Harryhausen, the legendary special-effects creator]. But I think that ‘70s animation was really fantastic. Imagine what we could do now.”

Gore Verbinski (Director: Rango)
in the New York Times, Sunday, February 27, 2011, “Where the Deer and the Chamelon Play”

A Kickstarter jazz documentary. “The Life and Death of Henry Grimes”

July 21st, 2010

A trailer for The Life and Death and Life of Henry Grimes

Some of you who follow my blogs know that I started out as a producer of avant garde jazz albums. So, I was particular taken when I came across a Kickstarter documentary on a relatively obscure bassist I used to play on my college radio show, Henry Grimes. If there’s any of you who can help filmmaker Hank Cherry cross the finish line on his goal…

Henry Grimes played with John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Albert Ayler, Charles Mingus, Sonny Rollins, Don Cherry, and Ornette Coleman, each one an acknowledged giant of jazz. Then, at the age of 31, he stopped playing music, and disappeared. In 1984 Cadence magazine reported the vibrant bassist had died, an early end to a brilliant career.

Thing is, Grimes wasn’t dead.

(Continued here)

Tonight! CalArts in North Hollywood!

May 14th, 2010

Mountain from Kirsten Lepore on Vimeo.

From FOF Kirsten LePore:

Hi err’body!

You should come out to the CalArts Experimental Animation Showcase if you’re free tonight (Fri May 14th) at 8pm at the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, Leonard H. Goldenson Theater, 5220 Lankershim Blvd. in North Hollywood. It’s free and there will be some cool films, and a nice reception afterwards! My short piece “Mountain” will be screening in the program if you want to see that baby on the big screen.

Hope to see you there!!!

@ Jon Kane’s house.

January 26th, 2010

Jon Kane

Optic Nerve’s Jon Kane and I met because I really loved the pioneering mix “No Sell Out” by Malcolm X & Keith LeBlanc, on Tommy Boy Records. (It’s too long a story to recount here right now.) After a bumpy start we’ve worked together awesomely ever since.

Carrie and I visited Jon at his Red Hook (Brooklyn) HQ yesterday. We canceled the project that had initiated the visit to begin with, so I thought we’d just be BS’ing about this and that. But as usual with a great creative collaborator we ended up agreeing to work on a project together. Can’t wait to get started.Malcolm X & Keith LeBlanc

Mike Johnson in the house.

December 18th, 2009

Mike Johnson

You might know Michael Johnson from some of his work at Indy Mogul; I love his collaborations with Justin Johnson (famous in his own right for his tumblr engagement and Channel Frederator) on Sometimes Funny. He was at Frederator/NY yesterday with some awesome ideas for animated features. Thanks Mike.

A Christmas Story - “Payback for the Fat Man”

December 14th, 2009

Our friend Fred Stroppel is the head writer and story editor for our production of Wow! Wow! Wubbzy! But, in his real life, he’s a playwrite and screenwriter.

Here’s his take on another side of Christmas. (And, you can see some of his other Suburban Legends short films here.)

Marv Newland Takes Festivals by Storm

November 9th, 2009

A Letter from Marv Newland

Marv Newland really gets around! Postalolio, the short that Marv produced with Frederator will be screening all over the world over the coming months. If you’re in any of these countries or states, make sure you come out to support this great film.

04 - 08 November 2009
Holland Animated Film Festival
Utrecht

11 - 15 November 2009
15th Cucalorus Film Festival
Wilmington, North Carolina

03 - 06 November 2009
Les Sommets Du Cinéma D’Animation
Montreal, Canada

25 - 29 November 2009
I Castelli Animati
Italy

01 - 04 April 2010
11th Dawson City International Short Film Festival
at the Klondike Institute of Art
Dawson City, Yukon, Canada

21 - 27 June 2010
Melbourne International Animation Festival
Australia

Congratulations to Marv on gaining entry to these prestigious festivals and best of luck!

A Still from

The beast in him.

July 28th, 2009

Sing Beast Sing (excerpt) Directed by Marv Newland from fredseibert on Vimeo.

Regular readers aren’t at all surprised by the affection director Marv Newland inspires in animation fans. Like me. What most people don’t know is how much Marv loves blues and jazz. An affliction we share.It shouldn’t be surprise to close Marv watchers though. In addition to his award winning short Sing Beast Sing (excerpted above) featuring Willie Mabon (it’s actually where I first heard of Mabon), his film Tales from the Far Side (Gary Larson’s another huge jazz fan) is scored by guitarist Bill Frisell.And anyone who’s caught Marv’s Anijam (an early cartoon jam featuring 22 world famous animators) should know that he’s incorporated the lessons of improvisation are woven deeply into the core of his filmmaking ethos.

So, when I started thinking about producing a jazz documentary entirely in animation I immediately thought of Marv. He been incorporating the lessons of improvisation deeply into his filmmaking ethos from the very beginning (front and center in his film Anijam), and his generosity to other animators reminds deeply of the best jazz band leaders I’ve witnessed.

Here’s hoping I can figure out how to get this thing made.

Jon Kane gets picked and tugged.

July 28th, 2009

McAllister Tug Film - Now In HD! from Jon Kane on Vimeo.

I’m always inspired by the work that artists do for themselves, especially when they’re filmmakers (as many of you have grown tired of my exhortations to please make your own films). And, then when it’s a friend of mine doing to work, I’m doubly moved.

Like Jon Kane. Jon’s done a bunch of work with us over the years, but his own films just keep getting better and better. His latest was just staff picked by the eagle eyes at Vimeo, which caused the New York Times to put in on their Videos Worth Watching column.

If you’re in France tomorrow…

June 23rd, 2009

A Marv Newland postcard

There’s a ton of Marv Newland news in the hopper.

Postcard from Marv Newland

Tomorrow night, Marv’s got a gallery opening of postcards in Serignan, France. If you can’t make it, you can check out some of the cards at his Marvcards site (and those who know Marv best can marvel at the fact that there’s a website!).

Marv Newland
We’ve mentioned before that Frederator was producing a short film of Marv’s over the last couple of years, and, lo and behold, the subject matter is… postcards! Well, Postalolio is finished (complete credits are below the fold) and started it’s festival run. It started at the Edinburgh International Film Festival this past Saturday, and continues on to Brazil’s Anima Mundi Festival throughout July.

Postalolio (sample #1), by Marv Newland from fredseibert on Vimeo.

I wanted to give a taste of what you’re missing, and assure you I’ll let you know the rest of the worldwide screening schedules where you might see the film yourself in person.

Go Marv!

Postcard from Marv Newland

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