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.

Annies

Immersed in Blu-Ray: The Good Dinosaur

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Annies, Below the Line, Blu-ray, Cinematography, Clips, Crafts, Home Entertainment, Movies, Shorts, Tech, VFX, Videogames, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Pixar’s underrated The Good Dinosaur (which took VFX prizes at the VES and Annies) was released on Blu-ray last week from Disney with a treasure trove of informative bonus features about the studio’s first prehistoric buddy comedy/adventure. Read more

Inside Out Tops Annies with 10 Wins

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Annies, Crafts, Events, Movies, Shorts, stop-motion, Tech, TV, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

The 43rd Annie Awards Saturday night at UCLA’s Royce Hall was a love fest for Pixar’s Inside Out, which grabbed 10 awards, including Best Animated Feature, and is primed for the Oscar. The Good Dinosaur, which dominated VES animator on Tuesday, took the Animated Effects prize for a Pixar sweep. Read more

How They Puppeteered Anomalisa

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

With Oscar-contending Anomalisa from Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson, stop-motion studio Starburns Industries blurs the line between animation and live-action. Caroline Kastelic, the puppet supervisor, tells us how they did it, 3D-printing 1,261 faces to go along with more than 150 puppets. Meanwhile, the Museum of the Moving Image is currently presenting “The World of Anomalisa,” an installation of two sets and puppets through March 27, 2016. Read more

How Blue Sky Rigged The Peanuts Movie

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

Given the Picasso-esque posing of Charles Schulz’s beloved characters, Blue Sky departed from its customary procedures for the Oscar-contending The Peanuts Movie. This included rigging and materials. They created hundreds of poses, but to hit all of the poses that Schulz drew and stay on model, they built a system of parts that they could move, slide, switch out and replace. When I was up at Blue Sky last summer, I spoke with Sabine Heller, character development supervisor, Justin Leach, rigging supervisor and Nikki Tomaino, lead materials tech director
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Pixar Grabs 25 Annie Noms

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Annies, Below the Line, Crafts, Events, Movies, Shorts, stop-motion, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

With two features and a short, Pixar led the Annie nominations with 25. Minions picked up 7, Peanuts 5 Home and Hotel Transylvania 2 got three each. Read more

Dragon 2 Grabs 6 Annies

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Annies, Below the Line, Events, Movies, Oscar, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

How to Train Your Dragon 2  followed up its Golden Globe win with ASIFA Hollywood’s top prize at the 42nd annual Annie Awards Saturday night at UCLA’s Royce Hall. The Oscar contender from beleaguered DreamWorks Animation won six Annies (also for director Dean DeBlois, character animation, editing, storyboarding and music by John Powell and Jonsi). Read more

Dave Walvoord Talks Dragon 2 VFX

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

Go behind-the-scenes of the VFX in DreamWorks’ Annie winner (watch three exclusive making of videos below). Read more

Immersed in Blu-ray: The Boxtrolls

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Annies, Below the Line, Blu-ray, Cinematography, Clips, Costume, Events, Home Entertainment, Movies, Music, Oscar, previs, Production Design, Sound, stop-motion, Tech, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

The Boxtrolls, the stop-motion Oscar contender from Laika, is out on Blu-ray/DVD (Universal). It’s reference quality image and sound, representing the naturalistic, tactile quality of this steampunk marvel. Read more

Takahata Talks Tale of the Princess Kaguya

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

After taking the LA and Boston Film Critics awards for best animated feature and grabbing three Annie nominations (feature, direction, and score by Joe Hisaishi), there’s definite Oscar momentum for The Tale of the Princess Kaguya (released by Gkids). Read more

Knight to Direct Samurai Kubo for Laika

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Annies, Below the Line, Blu-ray, Events, Home Entertainment, Movies, previs, stop-motion, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Laika goes samurai for its fourth stop-motion feature with Focus Features, Kubo and the Two Strings, marking the directorial debut of studio head Travis Knight (Aug. 19, 2016).

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