Getting More Immersed with Indiewire


  The Penske Media purchase of Indiewire has resulted in an expansion of my role as crafts and awards season contributor.  Beginning this week, I begin Emmy coverage of below-the-line contenders along with my usual Oscar season crafts reporting, working closely

Immersed in Blu-ray: Hitchcock and Bogart


The WB Archive Collection gets Hitch and Bogie on Blu-ray and they've never looked better for home viewing. In Kent Jones' indispensable doc, Hitchcock/Truffaut, he reminds us that Truffaut was on a mission to correct misconceptions about Hitch as a lightweight

Immersed in Books: Farber on Film


For the first time, the complete writings of film critic Manny Farber is available from Library of America, edited by Robert Polito (Savage Art: A Biography of Jim Thompson). Manny Farber (1917-2008) was the first modernist film critic to write like a modernist.

Animation

Going Inside Out with Pixar Designer Ralph Eggleston

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Clips, Crafts, Movies, Production Design, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Production Designer Ralph Eggleston has taken us undersea (Finding Nemo) to outer space (WALL·E) and to other imaginative Pixar places, but nothing compares with going inside the mind of 11-year-old Riley in Pete Docter’sInside Out (screening out of competition at Cannes ahead of its June 19th release). Read more

Clipping Deleted Animation from Tomorrowland

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Animation, Below the Line, Clips, Movies, Tech | Leave a comment

Watch cut animation from Tomorrowland in the style of Walt Disney’s educational films from the ’40s and ’50s. Read more

Eerie Connection Between Force Awakens, Tomorrowland

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Crafts, Movies, previs, Production Design, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Thursday seemed eerily surreal in Anaheim, between The Force Awakens panel at Star Wars Celebration to the new Tomorrowland exhibit in Disneyland. It was like journeying through some inter-dimensional transport much like the one in Tomorrowland. And what was even stranger was discovering some striking similarities between J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars reboot and Brad Bird’s fantasy/adventure. Read more

IMAX and Dolby Play Laser Tag with Rival Projection

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Clips, Crafts, Movies, previs, Sound, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

IMAX launched its next-gen laser projection system at the TCL Chinese last week, while rival Dolby Vision gets Disney on board with Tomorrowland and Inside Out. Read more

FMX Celebrates 20th Anniversary with Special Tie-Ins

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Events, Movies, previs, Production Design, Tech, Trailers, TV, VES, VFX, Videogames, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

As part of FMX’s 20th anniversary celebration, there will be several anniversary tie-ins, including Toy Story, ILM and Weta. The FMX 2015 conference on Animation, Effects, Games and Transmedia will take place May 5-8 in Stuttgart, Germany. Read more

Going Inside Out with Pete Docter

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Crafts, Movies, previs, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Pixar is back at the top of its game with Inside Out, taking us inside the mind of 11-year-old Riley (Kaitlin Dias), where we explore her five very animated emotions: Joy (Amy Poehler), Sadness (Phyllis Smith), Anger (Lewis Black), Disgust (Mindy Kaling), and Fear (Bill Hader).  I saw the first two-thirds at Pixar early this month, and got the chance to interview Pete Docter and several key collaborators, who I will cover separately in the lead up to the June 19th release. Read more

Tim Reckart on The Lamb for Sony

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Animation, Below the Line, Clips, Crafts, Movies, Oscar, Shorts, stop-motion, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Oscar-nommed Tim Reckart (Head Over Heels) will make his feature directorial debut with The Lamb for Sony Pictures Animation. Read more

Final Trailering of Age of Ultron

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Crafts, Movies, previs, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

The final trailer for The Avengers: Age of Ultron (May 1st) has arrived and it features Black Widow. Read more

How They Did It: The Bolero Scene in Cheatin’

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Animation, Below the Line, Clips, Crafts, How They Did It, Movies, Tech | Leave a comment

Bill Plympton’s Cheatin’ opened theatrically Friday in NYC and I thought it would be fun to explore one of my favorite scenes: the hit man getting ready to the beat of BoleroCheatin’ represents a sizable investment of around $400,000 and yet Plympton still required $100,000 from a successful Kickstarter campaign to finish the digital watercolor work that was essential to the aesthetic. But this colorful and hyper-real depiction of hardboiled lust and violence represents Plympton’s masterpiece. Recalling James M. Cain with plenty of shadows and sleaze, it’s also very operatic and even balletic. Plympton admits that it took him to a whole new artistic place and it shows. Like Idiots and Angels, there’s no dialogue, but this is a much more ambitious panto with flashbacks and fantasies that seamlessly meld together like a surreal dream. Read more

The Return of All Hail King Julien on Netflix

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Animation, Below the Line, Clips, Tech, TV, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Netflix offered five new episodes of All Hail King Julien from DreamWorks Animation this week, coinciding with five Daytime Emmy Award nominations this week: Outstanding Children’s Animated Program, Outstanding Performer in an Animated Program (Danny Jacobs), Outstanding Casting for an Animated Series or Special (Ania O’Hare), Outstanding Directing in an Animated Program (Christo Stromboliev), and Outstanding Original Song/Main Title & Promo (“Who’s Da King”). I spoke with exec producer Mitch Watson about the challenges of putting the spotlight on the wild and crazy lemur (Danny Jacobs). Read more