Commentary – Animation Scoop

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What Lessons Have We Learned from Ghost in the Shell Flopping?

Paramount’s Ghost in the Shell film is officially a flop after pulling in $19 million on its opening weekend and on course to lose $60 million overall. Live-action adaptations of anime and manga series’ are always tough, but with this latest disappointment, what, if any, lessons have we learned? There’s no shortage of lessons, that’s […]

Would a Ren & Stimpy Movie Even Be Worth it?

Plenty of people both old and young (but mainly old!) got really excited about the prospect of a Nicktoons universe film when it was announced back in 2015. In a recent discussion though, series director Bob Camp mentioned that the show will not play a role in the forthcoming film for obvious reasons and also […]

Should We Be Upset of Coco’s Similarity to ‘The Book of Life’?

Pixar dropped the trailer for their next film Coco; the latest, twisting turn in the film’s long development. Long noted for its similarities to the 2014 Jorge Gutierrez film, The Book of Life, the trailer for Coco hasn’t assuaged fears that its a rip-off. Should we be upset at the similarity between the films or […]

Can Laika Survive Without Travis Knight?

With the news that founder and animator/director Travis Knight will be taking the reigns for the next installment of the Transformers franchise, one can’t help but speculate about the future of Laika and whether it will continue to exist. Kubo and The Two Strings failed to win an Oscar, but it did receive plenty of […]

Who Will Win the Oscar? It Depends on Who You Ask

The Academy Awards are just over a week away and with speculation reaching a fever pitch on who will take home the coveted prizes, the feature animation race is starting to look slightly more competitive than in recent years. Who will win? It depends on who you ask. Reliability is the byword for the Oscars […]

There’s One Award that Kubo Does Deserve to Win

Not withstanding Variety’s opinion that Kubo and the Two Strings is the film that justifies giving an Oscar to Laika, there’s another award that the film is nominated for that would produce a large boost for the studio in a unique way. Very very few animated films earn a nomination for the Costume Designers Guild […]

Setting a New Standard with “Hanazuki: Full of Treasures”

The traditional methods used to get animated content made and broadcast are evaporating in front of our eyes. So far, no particular replacement is obvious, but more than a few industry heavyweights are placing their chips on the table. One of those is Hasbro, and one of its chips is Hanazuki: Full of Treasures. It’s […]

When Was the Last Time a Western Animated Film Explored Interpersonal Relationships?

This just popped into my head earlier today: Western films tend to reflect the struggle of the individual. Eastern films in contrast are more likely to use interpersonal relationships as a foundation for the story. There’s a marked difference, and its one that could really enliven western animated filmmaking. There’s no doubt that many western […]

Charles Solomon’s Animation Year End Review 2016

Although he wrote them in 1859, Charles Dickens might have been thinking of animation in 2016 when he penned the celebrated lines, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the […]

Diversity in Animation: It’s A Tough Concept to Nail Down

This week’s animation roundtable in The Hollywood Reporter sparked some online ire for featuring both a group that is decidedly homogeneous (read: white and male) and for discussing the concept of diversity in animated films. There’s just one problem though: diversity in animation as a concept is incredibly difficult to define and covers far more […]

A Lack of Cultural Impact is What Holds Animated Films Back

Gone With the Wind, The Godfather, Star Wars, and The Dark Knight; live-action films lauded far and wide with critical acclaim, financial success and cultural importance. In the west (and the US in particular) films are looked to as cultural barometers that can signify which way the winds are blowing, and more importantly, the direction […]

Original Animated Films Aren’t Dead After All!

FOX is doubling-down on animated films, but the really interesting part is that many of those proposed are original adaptations of books! Such news is stunning for its notability if not for the regrettable nature for it being so. The feature segment of the animation industry has had a bad case of sequalitis for a […]

The Shocking Number of This Year’s Animated Features That I’ve Seen

The answer may surprise you. None. The answer is none. Not a single film in Variety’s list of those currently eligible for the Oscar’s so much as made it within viewing distance of my eyeballs. This isn’t necessarily a comment on the quality of this year’s films. Certainly there are some very well-received among the […]

Frederator Networks Sale Underscores the Challenges of Distributing Animation on the Internet

This week saw the announcement that Frederator Networks has been bought by Rainmaker Entertainment in a deal that combines it with Ezrin Hirsh Entertainment to create a new company called WOW! Unlimited Media. While it’s a welcome affirmation that web animation has a future, it nonetheless underscores the uphill struggle that animated content has faced […]

Is Space Jam so Bad it’s Actually Good?

Space Jam occupies an unusual place in the lexicon of hybrid animated/live-action films. Not nearly as expensive (or as polished) as Who Framed Roger Rabbit, it nonetheless became massively successful thanks mainly to its animated cast. As a kid, Space Jam was downright awesome for many reasons, yet as an adult (and fan of animation,) […]