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Animation Scoop

Immersed in Movies: Anatomy of a Scene for the Oscar-Nominated Animated Shorts

  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • February 17, 2014 3:00 PM
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What were the most challenging scenes to animate in the Oscar-Nominated shorts? I posed this to all five directors: Lauren MacMullan (Get A Horse!), Daniel Sousa (Feral), Shuhei Morita (Possessions), Laurent Witz (Mr. Hublot), and Max Lang (Room on the Broom).

Immersed in Movies: Talking 'The LEGO Movie' with Chris McKay

  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • February 15, 2014 12:01 AM
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Now that The LEGO Movie is already a hit going into its second weekend and "Everything Is Awesome" (with a likely sequel in the works), let's chat with Chris McKay, the animation supervisor. He worked with Animal Logic on a particularly fitting stop-motion vibe in CG (what they called seven points of articulation).

Immersed in Movies: Anatomy of a Scene: 'Let It Go' and 'Family Maze'

  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • February 10, 2014 3:22 PM
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Both Frozen and The Croods contain transcendent moments that summarize the visual and thematic essence of these two Oscar-nominated movies: the powerful "Let It Go" song and the beautiful "Family Maze." I dig deeper with the directors and filmmakers to better understand and appreciate their context and significance.

Immersed in Movies: Master Building 'The LEGO Movie' with Phil Lord and Chris Miller

  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • February 7, 2014 3:30 AM
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There's more than meets the eye in The LEGO Movie. It's not only smart and witty but it also explores the essence of LEGO and Master Building and, finally, storytelling in a Pirandello-like way. I spoke with directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller (at LEGOLAND, of course) about making a subversive movie at Warner Bros. that pokes fun of studios, franchises, and safe storytelling.

Immersed in Movies: Laughing it Up at the 'LEGO Movie' Press Conference

  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • February 4, 2014 5:56 PM
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Maybe it was the wacky LEGOLAND backdrop (with the marvelous miniature set behind them), or the funny nature of the movie itself, or the fact that Morgan Freeman was such a hoot, but the LEGO Movie press conference was even more fun than expected. Among the participants were directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller; voice talent Chris Pratt, Freeman, Will Arnett, and Elizabeth Banks; producer Dan Lin; and animation supervisor Chris McKay. Here are a few of the highlights:

Immersed in Movies: Talking with the Shorts Oscar Nominees

  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • February 3, 2014 2:30 PM
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I recently chatted with the Oscar nominees for Feral (Daniel Sousa), Get a Horse! (Lauren MacMullan), Mr. Hublot (Laurent Witz), Possessions (Shuhei Morita), and Room on the Broom (Max Lang). We discussed personal connections and challenges. Interestingly, all five of the films explore the theme of adjusting to change in our lives.

Immersed in Movies: Talking with the Best Animated Feature Oscar Nominees

  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • January 27, 2014 3:19 PM
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I recently chatted with the Oscar nominees for The Croods (directors Chris Sanders and Kirk DeMicco), Despicable Me 2 (Chris Renaud), Ernest & Celestine (Benjamin Renner), Frozen (Chris Buck and Jennifer Lee), and The Wind Rises (producer Toshio Suzuki). We discussed what makes their work personal, challenging, and relatable.

Immersed in Movies: Adam Green Talks Oscar-Nominated 'Get A Horse!'

  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • January 20, 2014 1:30 PM
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Quite simply, if the CG Mickey couldn't match the hand-drawn model refashioned to look like the 1928 original, the Oscar-nominated Get A Horse! short wouldn't have worked. And that was the responsibility of CG supervisor Adam Green (Frozen, Wreck-It Ralph, Tangled), who worked side-by-side with 2D supervisor Eric Goldberg. Indeed, Green was mentored by Goldberg during this unique production that brilliantly encapsulates the history of Mickey and Disney.

Immersed in Movies: Getting Animated About the Oscar Nominations

  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • January 13, 2014 2:00 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Will the studios totally dominate the best animated feature category or will there be room for one or two indies? And how many surprises will there be for animated short? Let's look at my predictions for Thursday's Oscar nominations.

Immersed in Movies: Director Bolognesi Talks "Rio 2096"

  • By Bill Desowitz
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  • January 6, 2014 2:00 PM
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Rio 2096: A Story of Love and Fury, winner of Annecy's top prize, is among the more adult and arty Oscar contenders for best animated feature. Mixing ideology with fantasy, Rio traces the history of Brazil through six centuries of colonization, slavery, and war through the love story between an immortal warrior and his reincarnated soul mate. First-time director Luiz Bolognesi discusses the making of his $2.5 million Brazilian feature in the following email exchange.