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- November 24, 2001
Nears Mega-Blockbuster Status
New Animation Festival
Hits Michigan Area Next Year
The Kalamazoo Animation Festival International (KAFI), organized by the Kalamazoo Valley Community College's (KVCC) Advanced Technology Center for New Media, will feature the Cartoon Challenge, 24 levels of competition, seminars and workshops by outstanding professionals and public screenings of the festival's best animated submissions.
"Our goal is to provide a public forum for animation screenings, encourage and showcase animation artists, promote animation as an art form, and offer educational outreach to both media artists and the public," says KVCC President Marilyn Schlack. "We're especially pleased to create the Midwest's first animation festival -- filling a void in the region."
Judging will be a two-tiered process. A screening panel of professionals and students will review the entries and determine the Top 100 to advance to the festival -- by April 23. Then a team of second-level judges will review the Top 100 to determine the winners of the cash awards.
Those who decide to test their animation talents in the Cartoon Challenge will bring their five person creative teams -- as many as 10 such groups -- to Kalamazoo prior to the festival to produce their 30-second entry under deadline pressure. The teams won't know the topic until the weeklong competition begins. The competition begins May 12 and concludes with a public screening and awards presentation May 19.
Separate from the Cartoon Challenge will be four units of festival competitions: student films, non-commissioned films, commissioned films and a school competition -- each having various sub-categories. The non-commissioned films unit, for example, features sub categories such as independent short works, films for children, commercials, public service announcements and first films.
The seminars and workshops will feature topics on early production of animated films, animation classics, current techniques and technologies, the role of animation in the greater context of American culture, career prospects, and violence in animated games.
Other KAFI events
include public screenings of the top juried entries and an old-fashioned
excursion to a venerable downtown movie house for a showcase of pre-Talkies
cartoons -- complete with an organist providing mood music, and some of
the most unique cartoons produced up until the 1960s.
Movie Being Released January 25, 2002
A motion picture production
based on one of the most popular anime titles, Escaflowne is celebrated
animator Shoji Kawamori's vision of a world where good and evil hinge
on a girl's ability to find meaning for her own life.
has its roots in the acclaimed anime television series "The Vision
of Escaflowne," which aired in the U.S. on the Fox Kids Network and
YTV in Canada. Since the series' successful telecast, fans nationwide
seem to have embraced the story of Hitomi, Van Fanel -- prince of the
ravaged kingdom -- and the legendary god of protection, Escaflowne.
"Escaflowne epitomizes Japanese anime, providing a compelling film that breaks down the barrier of animation as an entertainment genre for children only," says Ken Iyadomi, Executive Vice President, Bandai Entertainment. "For fans of anime, as well as for all moviegoers, Escaflowne is a visual feast, and an exciting story brilliantly told with battle scenes and breathtaking displays of supernatural power that unfolds on the screen."
The Director of Escaflowne is Kazuki Akane, who also directed "The Vision of Escaflowne" television series; Cast includes Kelly Sheridan, Kirb Morrow, Paul Dobson, Andrew Francis, Brian Drummond and Venus Terzo.
The producers are Masuo Ueda, Minoru Takanashi, Masahiko Minami and Toyoyuki Yokohama. The movie was written by Ryota Yamaguchi and Kazuki Sekine.
Hajime Yatate and Shoji Kawamori. The movie score is being composed by
Yoko Kanno and Hajime Mizoguchi.
News Link of the
Day - Cinar Cuts 54 Staff
"Cinar Corp. the children's television producer, which has been plagued by a string of financial scandals said on Friday it had cut 54 staff and appointed new auditors.
The troubled Montreal-based
firm said the cuts would take place in its corporate offices and entertainment
division, reducing its staff in the city from 164 to 110..."
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