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Monday - March 19, 2001
- The Matrix: Battle of the FX Companies
- Release Charts: Animated, FX, and Anime DVDs
- Pokemon 3: WB to Give Away Trading Cards
- News Link of the Day - Pinocchio Voice Actor to Receive Buffalo Bill Award

The Matrix: Battle of the FX Companies
(by Manex Visual Effects, the company behind the special effects in 1999's blockbuster movie The Matrix, is taking Warner Bros. to court after Warner Bros. dropped the visual effects company from The Matrix 2 & 3. In a surprise move, the visual effects contract, valued at $30 million, has been given to a brand new company (just formed this month) called ESC Entertainment. To further complicate matters, many of the ESC Entertainment founders are people who departed from Manex Visual Effects parent company, Manex Entertainment.

The contract was considered a "shoe-in" for Manex Visual Effects, which had already done numerous pre-visualization and pre-production projects associated with The Matrix sequels.

John Gaeta and Joel HynekThe legal proceeding by Manex is to try and assure that the company remains involved with The Matrix sequels because of the amount of work it has already put into the sequels, including the development of proprietary software.

The parting of Manex and Warner Bros. over The Matrix sequels comes as a shock to many in the industry. Manex won an Academy Award for "Best Visual Effects" last year for its FX work in The Matrix. In winning the award, Manex beat out ILM for its effects work in Star Wars: Episode One - The Phantom Menace.

The Matrix was produced by Joel Silver who called Manex's visual effects work for the first movie "groundbreaking."

Image: John Gaeta, visual effects supervisor for The Matrix and Joel Hynek, senior visual effects supervisor for Manex Visual Effects show off the "Best Visual Effects" Oscars for The Matrix.

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The Sword in the StoneRelease Charts: Animated, FX, and Anime DVDs
(by This week the animated Bedknobs and Broomsticks is being released as well as several other animated/anime/fx DVDs. For people with widescreen TVs, you may be interested in the widescreen anamorphic versions of Toy Story and Toy Story 2. Here are this week's releases:

The Animated Bedknobs and Broomsticks (1971)
Farscape #2: Exodus from Genesis/Throne for a Loss (1999)
Gundam Wing - Operation 6 (2000)
Monster Rancher Vol. 4 - The Problem With Pixie (1999)
The Sword in the Stone (1963)
Toy Story - Widescreen Anamorphic (1995)
Toy Story 2 - Widescreen Anamorphic (1999)
VeggieTales - Lyle the Kindly Viking (2000)

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Pokemon 3: WB to Give Away Trading Cards
(by In a not so surprising announcement, Warner Bros. has issued a press release saying it will hand out an exclusive new Pokemon trading card during the April 6 opening weekend of the new Pokemon 3 movie.

"The opening of each of our Pokemon films has been associated with an exclusive game card giveaway, and these have been among our most popular promotions," said Brad A. Ball, president, Domestic Marketing, Warner Bros. Pictures. "We're happy to continue the tradition with Pokemon 3 and enhance the movie going experience for Pokemon fans."

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News Link of the Day - Pinocchio Voice Actor to Receive Buffalo Bill Award

According to The North Platte Telegraph:

"A man with extensive credits on the small screen and the silver screen, including as the voice of the title character in Walt Disney's Pinocchio, is the 2001 recipient of the Buffalo Bill Award.

The Nebraskaland Days Board of Directors announced Friday that Dick Jones will receive the award, presented annually to a representative of the entertainment field with an emphasis on western themes..."

Click here for the full story.

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These news articles and all content are ©copyright 2001 by Joe Tracy and may not be reused for any purpose without expressed written consent of the author and Digital Media FX. All rights reserved.

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