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Oscars: Can Anyone Break Disney & Pixar’s Animated Feature Streak In 2019?

  • Deadline
In the competitive world of feature animation, it takes more than an entertaining yarn and a bit of slapstick comedy to cut through the noise. To make an impact at the box office in 2018—and at the Oscars, heading now into its 91st go-round—filmmakers are called upon to pursue a new standard of excellence, going back to the drawing board with each new effort, and finding exciting ways to break the mold.

Leading the charge as regular contenders for Best Animated Feature since the category was created in 2001, Walt Disney Studios, and its Bay area subsidiary Pixar, once again enter the field of 25 films, with two projects that embody the category’s ideals. First, there’s Incredibles 2, Brad Bird’s return to the groundbreaking superhero world he established in 2004. Sending the Parr family off on new adventures, the film easily achieved hard-to-get hit sequel status, setting a record for best debut for an animated film—with a gross of $182.7 million in its opening weekend—on the way to becoming the second highest-grossing animated pic of all time, second only to Disney’s own Frozen, in fact.

Bowing just a few weeks ago, Ralph Breaks the Internet transcended that same sequel challenge. A follow-up to the beloved Wreck-It Ralph, this iteration from Phil Johnston and Rich Moore (the writer and director behind the Oscar-winning Zootopia) capitalizes on the boundless world the original set up, following compelling video game characters (and best friends) Ralph and Vanellope into the Internet. Impeccably designed, the film visualizes the web as it’s never been seen before, offering up thoughtful satire on the culture embedded within the information superhighway, with a timely critique of Disney princess tropes and the ideas about gender that have circulated for as long as stories have been told.

Bearing in mind that Disney-produced offerings have won the Animation Oscar in 10 out of the last 11 years—in an unprecedented stretch—competing studios are working tirelessly to up their game, in hopes of breaking the behemoth’s spell. The top candidate to do so this year would have to be Fox Searchlight, with Wes Anderson’s Isle of Dogs. The second stop-motion outing from the critically praised auteur, the film follows a Japanese boy living in the retrofuture, on a quest to find his missing dog. Lovingly crafted by hand, the film features an astonishing assortment of environments and gorgeously sculpted characters, pushing the medium of stop-motion and bending towards Anderson’s signature stylings. It opened the 68th Berlin International Film Festival, where its director was awarded the Silver Bear.

Another pillar of stop-motion—behind such classics as Chicken Run and Wallace and Gromit—Nick Park has won four Oscars to date, and looks to compete again with Aardman Animations’ Early Man. Set at the dawn of time, the comedy takes an altogether new angle on history, following a group of cavemen as they face off against the powers of the Bronze Age in a football match, with life as they know it at stake.

Four other studios are also making a run at Oscar. A major presence in the animation conversation since its inception in 2007, Illumination Entertainment is back with Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch, directed by Yarrow Cheney and first-timer Scott Mosier. The third adaptation of a classic 1957 tale by the beloved children’s author, this version sees Benedict Cumberbatch tap into the withered spirit of the iconic green curmudgeon, setting out to ruin Christmas for those poor Whos of Whoville yet again. Also featuring the voices of Rashida Jones, Kenan Thompson, Cameron Seely and Angela Lansbury—with narration by Pharrell Williams—Illumination’s film sought to pay reverential homage to Seuss’ work, while making it feel fresh, introducing the Grinch to a new generation of viewers.

From Sony Pictures Animation, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse really shakes things up. A postmodern take on Spidey—and the first-ever animated film centering on Stan Lee and Steve Ditko’s iconic creation—the immersive, action-and-laugh-packed flick brings the style of vintage comic books to CG animation, playing with form, and employing meta-level self-awareness. From innovative producers Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, this Spider-Man film is the first to star Miles Morales—an Afro-Latino version of the character existing within a Marvel multiverse. The film introduces the viewer to parallel dimensions and several Spider-people, demonstrating that there’s no single definition of a superhero. Anyone can wear the mask, so long as they’re willing to stand up for what’s right.

Also on the Sony slate is Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation, the latest installment in a franchise from Genndy Tartakovsky, which takes Dracula away from the comforts of his hotel, and out onto the sea, where new characters including Van Helsing (voiced by Jim Gaffigan) emerge.

At Paramount, John Stevenson brings his skill to Sherlock Gnomes, a sequel to 2011’s Gnomeo & Juliet. It sends a band of garden gnomes out into a different genre and setting, as Sherlock Gnomes investigates the mysterious disappearance of garden ornaments in contemporary London. Executive produced by Elton John, the film even features some captivating Elton originals.

Rounding out the studio offerings this year is Warner Bros., with Smallfoot—centered on a Yeti who is convinced humans don’t exist—and Teen Titans Go! To The Movies, based on a popular television series, involving the exploits of DC superheroes.

On the international front, it can take even more craft to draw Oscar’s attention—and yet in 2018, the animation shortlist is as diverse as it’s ever been, with submissions from Mexico (Ana y Bruno), China (Have a Nice Day), and Taiwan (On Happiness Road). One of three particular stand-outs is Ruben, Brandt Collector, Sony Pictures Classics’ R-rated art and cinema pastiche from 66-year-old first-time director Milorad Krstić, who weaves a tapestry of all of the works of art that have consumed him over the years. From Gkids, Mfkz is based on a comic series of the same name and follows one of many deadbeats making his way through the violent Dark Meat City. Also on the dystopian front, Shout! Factory’s Tito and the Birds (Brazil) paints a picture of a world where fear manifests as a disease, and a villain (inspired by President Donald Trump) weaponizes mass hysteria for his own malevolent purposes. Notably, this season’s list features a record eight films produced in Japan, many of which strive to take anime to new heights. These include Fireworks, The Laws of the Universe – Part I, two films from Masaaki Yuasa, Mamoru Hosoda’s Mirai, Maquia: When the Promised Flower Blooms from first-time director Mari Okada, and Liz and the Blue Bird from Naoko Yamada.

Completing the list of contenders this year are Tall Tales, coming out of France, and Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero, from director Richard Lanni. Providing some resolution in a season with an overabundance of solid works, the Oscar nominations will be announced on January 22, 2019.
See full article at Deadline »

‘Hotel Transylvania 3′ DVD Review

Features the voices of: Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, Selena Gomez, Kevin James, Fran Drescher, Steve Buscemi, Molly Shannon, David Spade, Keegan-Michael Key, Jim Gaffigan, Kathryn Hahn, Chris Parnell, Joe Jonas, Chrissy Teigen | Written by Genndy Tartakovsky, Michael McCullers | Directed by Genndy Tartakovsky

In Hotel Transylvania 3, Mavis surprises Dracula with a family voyage on a luxury monster cruise ship so he can take a summer vacation from providing everyone else’s vacation at the hotel, and the rest of Drac’s Pack cannot resist tagging along. The monsters are all having a great time, indulging in all of the shipboard fun the cruise has to offer, from monster volleyball to colossus sized buffets and exotic excursions, but then the unexpected happens as Drac falls for the intriguing-yet-dangerous captain of the ship. Balancing family, friends, and a budding romance might just be too much, even for the most powerful vampire…

Two minutes
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

‘Incredibles 2,’ ‘Ralph Breaks the Internet’ Top Annie Awards Nominations

  • Variety
Pixar’s “Incredibles 2” and Disney’s “Ralph Breaks the Internet” topped the 46th annual Annie Awards nominations with 11 and 10, respectively. All told, the Walt Disney Company, which owns Pixar, snapped up a total of 42 nominations among a wide array of film and TV projects.

Joining “Incredibles 2” and “Ralph” in the contest for best animated feature are Aardman Animations’ “Early Man,” Wes Anderson’s stop-motion “Isle of Dogs” and Sony Pictures Animation’s “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.”

In addition to its bid for animated feature, “Incredibles 2” picked up nominations for director (Brad Bird), animated effects, character animation, character design, music, voice acting (Holly Hunter); writing (Bird), editorial and two for storyboarding.

Additional nominations for “Ralph” include director (Rich Moore and Phil Johnston); animated effects, character animation, character design, music, storyboarding, voice acting (Sarah Silverman), writing (Johnston and Pamela Ribon) and editorial.

In addition to Bird, Moore and Johnston,
See full article at Variety »

‘Hotel Transylvania 3’ Helmer Genndy Tartakovsky Confronts Studio Notes, Striving To Break Out With Original Works

  • Deadline
‘Hotel Transylvania 3’ Helmer Genndy Tartakovsky Confronts Studio Notes, Striving To Break Out With Original Works
Asked to direct Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation—following his work on two prior installments of the franchise—the biggest obstacle Genndy Tartakovsky faced was that he didn’t want to make the film in the first place. Seeing installments one and two snowball to major commercial success, the director was nonetheless loathe to repeat himself, continuing the story of Dracula—played by Adam Sandler—and the castle to which he is bound.

Breaking out in television, through the creation of hit Cartoon Network series including Dexter’s Laboratory and Samurai Jack, Tartakovsky was used to the creative control that came with this arena, which presented an altogether different creative experience, still informing his work to this day. When he was approached by Sony Pictures Animation to make his feature debut with the original Hotel Transylvania, Tartakovsky couldn’t have anticipated the internal conflict that would result. Seeing major results
See full article at Deadline »

Some Familiar Faces Miss Oscar Race as Toons Face Off

  • Variety
As the year winds down, it’s clear that 2018 was an atypical time for animated features vying for Oscars and other awards. Not all big-name studios fielded contenders: Pixar/Disney had the billion-dollar baby “Incredibles 2,” while Disney Animation’s holiday entry — “Ralph Breaks the Internet” — is poised to repeat the box office and critical success of its 2012 Oscar nominee “Wreck-It Ralph.” Sony cruised to strong B.O. with “Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation” and in December, Columbia/Sony will launch “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-verse.” But familiar competitors, including DreamWorks Animation, Laika and Blue Sky Studios sat the game out.

Universal’s Illumination Entertainment had no Minions scurrying around, though it will unveil a 3D-animated take on Dr. Seuss’ Christmas classic with “The Grinch.” Warner Animation Group built on the studio’s storied animation rep with the musical-comedy “Smallfoot” — a man-meets-bigfoot tale. Finally, Fox Searchlight is showcasing Wes Anderson’s
See full article at Variety »

‘Hotel Transylvania 3’ Blu-ray Features a Ton of Frightful Family Fun

Arriving just in time for the Halloween holiday season is the home video release of Sony Pictures Animation's fright-filled family feature, Hotel Transylvania 3, available now on Digital HD, Blu-ray combo, and DVD. In this trilogy capper from animation legend Genndy Tartakovsky, the Drac Pack goes on a "Summer Vacation" by taking advantage of a special cruise ship made just for monster-kind. But what Dracula & Co. don't know is that an enemy who's been hunting monsters for generations is also aboard the vessel and will stop at nothing to put an end to …
See full article at Collider.com »

‘Star Wars: The Clone Wars’: 5 Plotlines the Final Season Should Resolve

  • Indiewire
‘Star Wars: The Clone Wars’: 5 Plotlines the Final Season Should Resolve
How did Darth Maul survive being cut in half by a Jedi lightsaber at the end of “Episode I: The Phantom Menace” and then pop up for a cameo in “Solo: A Star Wars Story”? Well, the answer to Maul’s survival is found in the 2008 “Star Wars” CGI-animated series “Clone Wars,” and Maul’s tale was far from done when the show was canceled on Cartoon Network in 2014. There’s a 99 percent chance this iconic red-and-black Sith will resurface in the final season of “Clone Wars” in 2019 since he was affirmed by showrunner Dave Filoni to have an integral role in the intended finale Mandalore Arc. And Maul’s story isn’t the only story thread fans are curious about.

For six seasons, the Emmy-winning “Clone Wars” Lucasfilm television series unraveled an expansive lore of “Star Wars” prequel-era canon: resurrecting Maul, fleshing out Anakin Skywalker’s downfall, and
See full article at Indiewire »

‘Hotel Transylvania 3’ Now Sony’s Biggest Animated Title; Franchise Tops $1.3B Ww

  • Deadline
‘Hotel Transylvania 3’ Now Sony’s Biggest Animated Title; Franchise Tops $1.3B Ww
Exclusive: The Drac Pack has reached a new milestone as Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation becomes Sony’s biggest animated film of all time globally. At $476.3M worldwide, it sailed past Hotel Transylvania 2 ($474.8M) on Friday. Combined, the three Ht movies have now grossed in excess of $1.3B global.

Through Friday, HT3 cruised to $316M at the international box office, topping HT2. Domestically, it’s tallied $160.3M, about 6% off the previous movie.

The first two installments were released in the fall, so HT3 (efficiently budgeted at a reported $80M before P&A) was the first summer tryout for the series.

In Latin America, notably, HT3 is Sony’s 2nd biggest title of all time for the region behind Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle. It is also the studio’s biggest grosser ever in Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Slovakia, Lithuania and Ethiopia.

The Top 5 markets through Friday are China ($28.7M), Mexico
See full article at Deadline »

‘Hotel Transylvania 3’ 4K, Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Bound: Get the Details

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment is bringing Hotel Transylvania 3 to Digital HD on 25th, followed by a 4k Ultra HD, Blu-ray and DVD release on October 9th.

Genndy Tartakovsky directed Hotel Transylvania 3 with a strong ensemble voice cast including Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, Selena Gomez, Kevin James, David Spade, Steve Buscemi, Keegan Michael Key, Molly Shannon, Fran Drescher, Kathryn Hahn, Jim Gaffigan and Mel Brooks.

There are plenty of included bonus features aimed at kids and adults alike as outlined below:

Three All New Scary-Oke Sing Alongs: Sing along to three Hotel Transylvania 3 inspired songs with your favorite characters!

“Dennis Had a Giant Dog” – Sung by Dennis & Winnie

“Monsters Like to Party Down” – Sung by Johnny

“Oh These Wolf Pups” – Sung by Wanda Werewolf

Plan Your Own Spook-tacular Sleepover: This feature will give you all details on how to make your own sleepover spook-tacular! From snacks to crafts to games and more,
See full article at TheHDRoom »

‘Hotel Transylvania 3′ Review

Features the voices of: Adam Sandler, Andy Samberg, Selena Gomez, Kevin James, Fran Drescher, Steve Buscemi, Molly Shannon, David Spade, Keegan-Michael Key, Jim Gaffigan, Kathryn Hahn, Chris Parnell, Joe Jonas, Chrissy Teigen | Written by Genndy Tartakovsky, Michael McCullers | Directed by Genndy Tartakovsky

In Hotel Transylvania 3, Mavis surprises Dracula with a family voyage on a luxury monster cruise ship so he can take a summer vacation from providing everyone else’s vacation at the hotel, and the rest of Drac’s Pack cannot resist tagging along. The monsters are all having a great time, indulging in all of the shipboard fun the cruise has to offer, from monster volleyball to colossus sized buffets and exotic excursions, but then the unexpected happens as Drac falls for the intriguing-yet-dangerous captain of the ship. Balancing family, friends, and a budding romance might just be too much, even for the most powerful vampire…

Two minutes
See full article at Blogomatic3000 »

Exclusive: Genndy Tartakovsky on making a monster hit with Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation

Earlier this year the Cannes film festival played host to the cinematic oddity that is Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation. It’s an oddity because threequels, and in particular sequels which send the main cast of characters off on holiday, are usually cinematic puff on the last dying embers of a once enjoyable franchise. However what director Genndy Tartakovsky has done with Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation is remarkable. He has made a third film in a series which took its time, but which now has finally found is feet with a heart-warming family tale that is an affectionate take on a dysfunctional family.

Jo-Ann Titmarsh conducts the interview for HeyUGuys, and the film stars Adam Sandler, Selena Gomez, Andy Samberg, Mel Brooks, Keegan-Michael Key, Steve Buscemi, Kevin James and Fran Drescher.

Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation is out in the UK today. You can read our review here.

The
See full article at HeyUGuys »

Daily Podcast: Netflix shows on Cable, Buffy, Frasier, Stoned Alone, Deadwood, Genndy Tartakovsky, Charlie’s Angels

Daily Podcast: Netflix shows on Cable, Buffy, Frasier, Stoned Alone, Deadwood, Genndy Tartakovsky, Charlie’s Angels
On the July 26, 2018 episode of /Film Daily, /Film editor-in-chief Peter Sciretta is joined by /Film writers Hoai-Tran Bui and Chris Evangelista we’ll discuss the latest news, including Netflix shows on Cable, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Frasier reboots, Stoned Alone, the Deadwood movie, Genndy Tartakovsky’s R-rated animated comedy, and a new Charlie’s Angels. […]

The post Daily Podcast: Netflix shows on Cable, Buffy, Frasier, Stoned Alone, Deadwood, Genndy Tartakovsky, Charlie’s Angels appeared first on /Film.
See full article at Slash Film »

Samurai Jack Creator Genndy Tartakovsky Will Direct an R-Rated Comedy Called Fixed and a Film Called Black Knight

Samurai Jack creator Genndy Tartakovsky just had another big hit with the release of Hotel Transylvania 3. Sony Pictures obviously enjoyed working with him because they just locked him down to helm to original animated films for Sony Pictures Animation.

There aren't a lot of details on these films that he's developing but what we do know is that one if an R-rated comedy called Fixed and an epic action-adventure film called Black Knight. Black Knight is said to be in the vein of Samurai Jack, so that should get fans excited! Tartakovsky had this to say in a statement:

"I’m very excited to start this next adventure with my Sony family. With their trust and support we are going to do something unique and different, and push animation to the next level."

Kristine Belson, President of Sony Pictures Animation had this to say in a statement:

"Genndy is one
See full article at GeekTyrant »

‘Hotel Transylvania’ Director Genndy Tartakovsky to Helm R-Rated Comedy for Sony

Sony is venturing into R-rated animation under the guidance of Samurai Jack creator and Hotel Transylvania director Genndy Tartakovsky. The Russian-American animator best known for creating the acclaimed Cartoon Network series Samurai Jack has signed on to helm two new feature films for Sony following the box office success of Hotel Transylvania 3. Tartakovsky has signed on to direct two […]

The post ‘Hotel Transylvania’ Director Genndy Tartakovsky to Helm R-Rated Comedy for Sony appeared first on /Film.
See full article at Slash Film »

Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation Review

One cannot help but flinch when seeing the number 3 lurking cumbersomely at the end of the title of a children’s feature film. The sprawl of an original concept beyond a single sequel too often diluting the core charm beyond recognition. So too comes that flinching recoil at the notion of a ‘fish out of water’ plotline to shake things up. Hotel Transylvania 3 is guilty of both these crimes against animated features. And it is a tentacular spectacular!

No mere fish out of water scenario could unsettle Drac (Adam Sandler) and his monstrous pack. So Genndy Tartakovsky and his writing team upped the ante and went full-blown Kraken out of the deep for their threequel. And boy do those thousands of leagues of sea water refresh the franchise.

Wednesday Adams-alike vampire daughter Mavis (Selena Gomez) and her human hubby Johnny (Andy Samberg) are growing concerned about Drac. Yes, he dotes
See full article at HeyUGuys »

Film News Roundup: ‘Hotel Transylvania’ Director Genndy Tartakovsky Signs on for Two Projects

  • Variety
Film News Roundup: ‘Hotel Transylvania’ Director Genndy Tartakovsky Signs on for Two Projects
In today’s film news roundup, Genndy Tartakovsky unveils two new projects, Bailey Chase boards a rodeo project, and Cinedigm hires a human resources director.

Projects Announced

Sony Animation has signed “Hotel Transylvania” director Genndy Tartakovsky for a pair of projects — the R-rated comedy “Fixed” and the adventure movie “Black Knight.”

“Genndy is one of the most singular voices in animation today and we are overjoyed to have him develop his next original features at Sony Pictures Animation, where he began his theatrical career nearly a decade ago,” said Kristine Belson, president of Sony Pictures Animation. “His imagination and talent have no boundaries, which will be made abundantly clear by the two wildly different movies he’ll be directing next.”

Tartakovsky directed all three “Hotel Transylvania” movies, which have combined to gross more than $1 billion worldwide. “Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation” has taken in more than $100 million domestically in its first 12 days.
See full article at Variety »

‘Hotel Transylvania’ Helmer Genndy Tartakovsky Sets New Projects At Sony Pictures Animation

  • Deadline
‘Hotel Transylvania’ Helmer Genndy Tartakovsky Sets New Projects At Sony Pictures Animation
Exclusive: Fresh off of the release on of Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation, Director Genndy Tartakovsky, has signed on to direct two original animated features for Sony Pictures Amination. Details on the future projects are scarce but what is known is that the film’s titles are Fixed, an R-Rated comedy, and Black Knight, an epic action-adventure in the vein of Tartakovsky’s popular series Samurai Jack, which he will also write.

“I’m very excited to start this next adventure with my Sony family,” said Tartakovsky. “With their trust and support we are going to do something unique and different, and push animation to the next level.”

Tartakovsky directed all three Hotel Transylvania films (and co-wrote the third), which have collectively raked in over $1 billion at the worldwide box office. The third installment, currently playing in theaters, opened at $44 million domestically and currently has a worldwide tally of $227 million.
See full article at Deadline »

Hotel Transylvania 3 Review

Imagine a concoction mixing  "Dracula", "The Adams Family", "National Lampoon's Vacation", "L'Atalante", and "The Lady Eve". And why not while were at it, add in Adam Sandler and his crew of genial cockeyed buddies who have made a living off jokes on the subject of, well you know, the first half of the term "cockeyed". Sound like a forgone titanic disaster? You may have been on to something, if it wasn't for the puerile urgency , not to mention bliss, director Genndy Tartakovsky brings to the enterprise. That isn't to say his commentary on the alienated monsters doesn't come without its fare share of target audience pollution. However, the message on equality and family is as pure as ever--with the exception of a few fart jokes. But it's the vibrant and...

[Read the whole post on screenanarchy.com...]
See full article at Screen Anarchy »

10 Things You Didn’t Know about Genndy Tartakovsky

The funny thing about Genndy Tartokovsky is that he fully admits as a kid that he couldn’t draw to save his life. He was highly interested in it, but he couldn’t do it. Of course that’s were practice and desire come in as they can very easily take over for a lack of natural skill and train the body and mind to come up with designs and pictures that are believable and altogether real since the artis will have finally learned how get around the idea not having natural talent by building talent instead. It’s a much longer and arduous

10 Things You Didn’t Know about Genndy Tartakovsky
See full article at TVovermind.com »

‘Hotel Transylvania 3: A Monster Vacation’ Review: Dir. Genndy Tartakovsky (2018)

Hotel Transylvania 3 Summer Vacation review: This third installment cruises its way to a franchise best.

Hotel Transylvania 3 Summer Vacation review by Andrew Gaudion.

Hotel Transylvania 3 Summer Vacation review

The Hotel Transylvania franchise may not have ever been graced with the critical acclaim of Pixar, or the box-office billions of Despicable Me and its Minions, but that hasn’t stopped them from having a charm all their own. The first two installments aren’t exactly classics of the genre, but they more than demonstrate Genndy Tartakovsky’s visual imagination and flare. The man behind Dexter’s Laboratory and Samurai Jack has a very distinct style, one that does echo the likes of Looney Tunes, Hanna Barbara and classic MGM cartoons from the 60’s (it should come as no surprise that a stalled Popeye feature has been a passion project of his). With the third installment in the Transylvania franchise, Tartakovsky’s
See full article at The Hollywood News »
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