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Saturday - May 12, 2001
- The Mummy Returns and Pearl Harbor Bootlegs Invade Internet
- Maya Used for Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within
- Negative Trumpet of the Swan Reviews Continue
- News Link of the Day - Offensive Bugs Bunny 'toons Pulled


Pearl HarborThe Mummy Returns and Pearl Harbor Bootlegs Invade Internet
(by digitalmediafx.com) The film industry is in a hefty online battle to stop bootleg copies of their blockbuster FX films from being distributed online even before the movie is released in theaters!

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, bootleg copies of The Mummy Returns showed up online four days before the movie was released in U.S. theaters and already bootleg copies of Pearl Harbor are showing up. Most of the bootleg copies utilize a coding and delivery function called DivX (no relation to the failed Circuit City Divx technology).

Hundreds of thousands of copies of the bootleg movies are being downloaded daily as the Motion Picture Association of America fights to get the movies removed.

Pearl Harbor is being released in theaters on May 25, 2001.

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Maya Used for Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within
(by digitalmediafx.com) One animation software company - Alias/Wavefront - will be receiving a lot of good publicity when Square Pictures Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within hits theaters on July 11, 2001. Alias/Wavefront's Maya was used for the majority of animation in Final Fantasy. This includes a group of Square engineers spending 18 months in the creation of special Maya plug-ins to add photo-realistic skin and hair to the characters.

Square also believes that Columbia Pictures (the distributor of the film) will market Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within as an "event" film, but so far that status has failed to materialize with the film just two months away. In contrast, Disney's Pearl Harbor earned its event status as a "must see film" over five months ago.

Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within opens on a Wednesday (July 11) and is rated PG-13 for "sci-fi action violence."

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Negative Trumpet of the Swan Reviews Continue
(by digitalmediafx.com) Tristar Pictures may be having second thoughts about the decision to give The Trumpet of the Swan a limited release in Los Angeles and New York. The animated film, which was originally suppose to go direct to video, has received consistent negative reviews. Here are some quotes from recent reviews:

Pam Sitt of the Seattle Times - "...The lesson? Don't steal. The rest of the movie's message gets lost in flat musical numbers and Saturday-morning-cartoon-quality animation. There's not much here for adults - no Disney-movie-style humor aimed at teens and parents - and kids might not find it entertaining enough to sit through at the theater. Wait for this one to come out on video."

Lou Lumenick of The New York Post - "Fodder for only the most undemanding rugrats, The Trumpet of the Swan is a brightly colored but terminally dull cartoon adaptation of E.B. White's classic 1970 book... The animation, executed mostly in Korea, is as flat and lackluster as the half-dozen forgettable songs."

Liz Braun of The Toronto Sun - "Trumpet Of The Swan was created in an animation style that looks dated in these times of CG wonder, but that's the least of the movie's problems, especially as little kids rarely notice that aspect. The real difficulties lie with a vocal cast inclined to overdo it, the absolute dullness of the story..."

The Trumpet of the Swan is currently playing on 125 movie screens, mostly in Los Angeles and New York.

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News Link of the Day - Offensive Bugs Bunny 'toons Pulled

According to The Atlanta Journal Constitution:

"A retrospective by the Cartoon Network initially intended to feature every Bugs Bunny cartoon will fall just short of complete. Network executives have decided not to air a dozen of the animated shorts deemed too racially charged…"

Click here for the full story.

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