10 Animated Shorts Move Ahead in 2010 Oscar® Race
December 1st, 2010

Beverly Hills, CA – The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences today announced that 10 animated short films will advance in the voting process for the 83rd Academy Awards®. Thirty-three pictures had originally qualified in the category.

The 10 films are listed below in alphabetical order by title, with their production company:

The Cow Who Wanted to Be a Hamburger, Bill Plympton, director (Bill Plympton Studio)

Coyote Falls, Matthew O’Callaghan, director and Sam Register, executive producer (Warner Bros. Animation Inc.)

Day & Night, Teddy Newton, director (Pixar Animation Studios)

The Gruffalo, Jakob Schuh and Max Lang, directors (Magic Light Pictures)

Let’s Pollute, Geefwee Boedoe, story-design-animation (Geefwee Boedoe)

The Lost Thing, Shaun Tan and Andrew Ruhemann, directors (Passion Pictures Australia)

Madagascar, Carnet de Voyage (Madagascar, a Journey Diary),” Bastien Dubois, director (Sacrebleu Productions)

Sensology, Michel Gagne, director-producer (GAGNE International LLC)

The Silence beneath the Bark, Joanna Lurie, director (Lardux Films)

Urs, Moritz Mayerhofer, director (Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg)

The Short Films and Feature Animation Branch Reviewing Committee viewed all the eligible entries for the preliminary round of voting in screenings held in New York and Los Angeles.  

Short Films and Feature Animation Branch members will now select three to five nominees from among the 10 titles on the shortlist. Branch screenings will be held in Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco in January 2011.

The 83rd Academy Awards nominations will be announced live on Tuesday, January 25, 2011, at 5:30 a.m. PT in the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater.

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2010 will be presented on Sunday, February 27, 2011, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center®, and televised live by the ABC Television Network. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 200 countries worldwide.

The Saga of Rex reviewed on G4's Fresh Ink
November 26th, 2010

The review begins at 5:30. Click here to view.

List of 33 Oscar-Qualified Animated Shorts
November 20th, 2010

Cartoon Brew has published the list of the 33 animated short films that have fulfilled the qualifications necessary to be considered in the category of Best Animated Short for the 2010 Academy Awards.

From their website: "Members of the Short Films and Feature Animation Branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will vote on a shortlist of ten films from this list. A second round of voting, also restricted to members of the Short Films and Feature Animation branches, will narrow it down to the five nominees for Best Animated Short Film Oscar. The final vote, which determines the winner, is open to all Academy members provided that they have watched every nominated short."

The competition looks very stiff with most of the films on the list having garnered several major awards, whereas my film, Sensology, has not played or been entered in any festival thus far. It's also interesting to notice that it is the only abstract film on the list. I don't know if this is a good or a bad thing, but it should at least help it stick out.

Let's keep our fingers crossed.

On a different note, we got our first snow fall of the year, last night. When we woke up this morning, the view from our windows was absolutely stunning. Nancy took the opportunity to snap a few pictures.

The Saga of Rex Reviewed @ CBR
November 8, 2010

Click to read.

The Saga of Rex - Signed Copies
October 29th, 2010

I finally received a bunch of copies of The Saga of Rex to sell through my website and at conventions. The book looks really nice, thick and sturdy. For a limited time (until supplies last), I'll be offering signed copies through my website at retail cost and as usual, orders within the US ship for free. Makes a great Christmas present! You can order here.

If you live in the Pacific Northwest, you might want to check out the Bellingham Comicon on Saturday, November 6. I'll be a guest and will be signing books, and other goodies.

Videogames as Art
October 14th, 2010

I recently became aware that the famous movie critic Roger Ebert wrote, "videogames can never be art". I find it puzzling that he could make such a statement, since what attracts me to videogames, as an artist, is the unlimited potential for art. The cinematics are one of the many aspects that get my creative juice flowing.

While building the cinematics for ITSP, I've been forced to constantly use my imagination to solve creative and technical problems while remaining on target for our milestones. It has been challenging and exhilarating at the same time.

One of the thing that Joe and I agreed upon right off the bat was to keep them short and sweet - focus on quality rather than quantity. I'll take two great minutes of animation over twenty minutes of average any time. We want the cinematics to feel like rewards, not something you want to fast-forward through.

The next challenge will be to make the transition between cinematics and game play completely seemless. I look forward to that!

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