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Tuesday - May 22, 2001
- Nintendo Undercuts Xbox's Price
- Spy Kids Goes Up Against Osmosis Jones in August!
- Disney: "That's Just Life, Isn't It?"
- News Link of the Day - Ogre Easy

Nintendo GameCubeNintendo Undercuts Xbox's Price
(by Nintendo says that it will sell its GameCube console for $199, which is $100 cheaper that its main rival, the Xbox. Furthermore, Nintendo will release the GameCube three days before Xbox is released. GameCube will be released on November 5, 2001 while the Xbox, made by Microsoft, will be released on November 8, 2001 at $299 per unit.

Nintendo is also trying to gain market share by keeping a number of its strongest titles exclusive to the GameCube. These are mostly titles related to Pokemon and Super Mario Bros. In a press release, Nintendo tried to push its position:

"At the heart of the Nintendo difference, we have the best development team lead by Mr. Miyamoto and an unrivaled number of superior partner companies around the world whose game designers and engineers are working exclusively for Nintendo," says Peter Main, executive vice president, sales and marketing, Nintendo of America Inc. "Together, we will deliver on our promise -- a dedication to innovation, the highest in game quality, and our heritage of creating the most loved franchise characters in the universe."

Nintendo needs all the advantages it can get as analysts say that the Xbox is a stronger console that is backed by Microsoft, which is pumping hundreds of millions of dollars into the launch in order to gain a strong market share of the gaming community.

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Spy Kids: Special EditionSpy Kids Goes Up Against Osmosis Jones in August!
(by Osmosis Jones is about to receive some more competition on August 10, 2001. Miramax Films is planning on releasing Spy Kids: Special Edition into theaters on August 10, making a packed weekend even more crowded. Spy Kids: Special Edition is the same Spy Kids movie released in March, except with new footage that didn't make it into the original movie. Some of the visual effects for Spy Kids were too expensive at the time and thus ended up on the cutting room floor. Those sequences are now being restored for the special edition.

This news does not bode well for Osmosis Jones, which is having trouble finding an audience. Osmosis Jones was originally rated PG-13 then later edited down to PG. The release date has already been changed twice. Originally, it was to be released on July 27, then it was moved to August 3, then finally August 10. The last date will put it up against Spy Kids: Special Edition, American Pie 2, and The Curse of the Jade Scorpion. In addition, it will be competing against holdovers from the previous weekend including Rush Hour 2 and The Princess Diaries.

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Disney: "That's Just Life, Isn't It?"
(by Yesterday's New York Times reported on Disney's economic movie problems and its decision to slash 4,000 jobs while cutting in half the salaries of its remaining animators.

When asked about the salary cuts and changes in the animation division, the head of Walt Disney Studios, Peter Schneider, said, "I'm not saying it's pleasant or easy, but that's what's happening. That's just life, isn't it?"

The animation cuts will greatly reduce the cost of future Disney animated films. Recently Disney films, including Atlantis, have cost over $100 million to make. Under the new structure the costs should drop to the $70 - $80 million range, leaving room for greater profits.

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News Link of the Day - Ogre Easy

According to the Philadelphia Daily News:

"The title character Shrek is a surly green ogre who may be just mean enough to knock Disney off its pedestal as the unquestioned king of animation.

When the analysts get done picking over the box office data for DreamWorks' "Shrek" and Disney's Atlantis: The Lost Empire (due June 15), "Shrek" is almost certain to be judged the bigger hit. (I've seen both, and Shrek is the more commercial picture)…"

Click here for the full story.

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