‘Cartoon Forum’ Europe’s Premiere Animation Pitching Conference Celebrates It’s 25th Year


Over the last 25 years, European animation found a firm supporter in Cartoon, an international non-profit organization based in Brussels, dedicated to helping animation professionals through the creation of several year-round events and seminars.  Cartoon Forum is one such event, slated to run from September 23-26 in Toulouse.

According to their website, “Cartoon Forum is a unique event focusing on pitching sessions of pre-selected TV projects, where animation producers can find cross-border partners and speed up financial arrangements.  It allows co-productions to be finalized, pre-buys agreed, negotiation of distribution agreements, options discussed on every type of right, and licensing of secondary rights.”

This year boasts the largest submissions numbering nearly 150, up nearly 50% and out of those 150 submissions 79 animation projects will be showcased.  Each project will be given 30 minutes to convince buyers, the website continues, “The pitching sessions are the core element of the Cartoon Forum; each project is presented in 30 minutes to all potential partners gathered in the same room.  A new category has been created: Short Pitch sessions, where several projects will be pitched in 10 minutes.  The screening of trailers in front of all participants during the traditional breakfast, Croissant & Coffee Shows gives a taste of the project and encourages people to attend the pitching sessions. ”

With a track record of 1 out of 3 projects gaining funding, this is an exciting and integral avenue for creators of animated works.  Check out Cartoon‘s website for complete details, here.


Warner Bros. To Release Deluxe Uber-Editions of Library Titles


For those completist folks out there, Warner Bros. announced they will be repackaging some not-so-old classics as Diamond Luxe Editions.  These Blu-ray editions boast swanky new slim-case packaging, new bonus features and a list price of $24.98.  Some of the films slated for the packaging makeover are The Green Mile, Ben-Hur, Natural Born Killers, Forrest Gump and Gremlins.

The titles will begin hitting stores on September 30th.  Here’s a breakdown of the bonus features:

The Green Mile: 15th Anniversary Edition

  • Walking the Mile (New Extended Version): High-def documentary feature with Tom Hanks, Frank Darabont, Stephen King, and Mr. Jingles, the mouse
  • Audio Commentary by Frank Darabont
  • The Teaser Trailer: A Case Study
  • Walking the Mile: The Making of The Green Mile
  • Miracles and Mystery – Creating the Green Mile:
    • Stephen King: Storyteller
    • The Art of Adaptation
    • Acting on the Mile
    • Designing the Mile
    • The Magic of the Mile
    • The Tail of Mr. Jingles
  • Deleted Scenes with Optional Commentary by Frank Darabont
  • Michael Clarke Duncan’s Screen Test
  • Tom Hank’s Makeup Test
  • Teaser
  • Trailer

Natural Born Killers: 20th Anniversary Edition

  • Natural Born Killers: Method In The Madness (New)
  • Audio Commentaries by Oliver Stone (Theatrical version and Director’s Cut)
  • Introduction by Oliver Stone (2009)
  • Natural Born Killers Evolution: How Would It All Go Down Now?
  • Chaos Rising: The Storm Around Natural Born Killers
  • “The Charlie Rose Show”
  • Alternate Ending With Optional Commentary by Oliver Stone
  • Alternate Ending
  • Deleted Scenes with Optional Commentary by Oliver Stone
  • Trailer

Forrest Gump: 20th Anniversary Edition

  • Greenbow Diary
  • The Art of Screenplay Adaptation
  • Little Forrest
  • An Evening with Forrest Gump
  • Easter Egg: Groom on Gump
  • The Make-up of Forrest Gump
  • Through the Ears of Forrest Gump – Sound Design
  • Building The World of Forrest Gump
  • Seeing is Believing – The Visual Effects of Forrest Gump
  • Screen Tests
  • Theatrical Trailer
  • Remember Trailer

Gremlins: 30th Anniversary Edition

  • From Gizmo to Gremlins: Creating the Creatures (New) – Special effects wizard Chris Walas plus the filmmakers and cast guide us through the art of creating Gremlins, Gizmo and Stripe, how the puppets worked (or didn’t!) and how their voices came to be.
  • Cute. Clever. Mischievous. Intelligent. Dangerous: Making Gremlins (New) – Steven Spielberg tells how he found the screenplay for Gremlins and why it was perfect for his then-new company Amblin Entertainment. Dante, Marshall and Finnell also participate.
  • Motion Comic of the 1984 Book “Gremlins: The Gift of the Mogwai” (New)
  • Motion Comic of the 1984 Book “The Last Gremlin” (New)
  • Hangin’ With Hoyt on the Set of Gremlins (New)

Ben Hur: 55th Anniversary Edition

  • Commentary by film historian T. Gene Hatcher and Charlton Heston
  • Feature Length Documentary: Charlton Heston & Ben-Hur: A Personal Journey – Retrospective on the Ben-Hur star, written and directed by his son Fraser C. Heston, featuring never-before-available images and footage from the Heston family archives
  • The 1925 Silent Version: Thames Television
  • Restoration with Stereophonic Orchestral Score by Carl Davis
  • The Epic That Changed Cinema
  • The Making of an Epic
  • A Journey Through Pictures: Audiovisual recreation via stills, storyboards, sketches, music and dialogue
  • Screen Tests
  • Highlights from the 1960 Academy Awards® Telecast
  • Newsreels

Grand Lyon Film Festival to Present Pedro Almodovar with 2014 Lumière Award

Pedro Almodovar Broken Embraces Penelope Cruz-439107

Thierry Fremaux, Director of the Institut Lumière announced today that on Friday October 17th, the Grand Lyon Film Festival will be honoring Spanish film director Pedro Almodovar with the 2014 Lumière Award.  Almodovar is the controversial director of films such as All About My Mother, Bad Education, Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! and Volver.  The Spanish director’s work has earned him considerable respect the world over, even earning him a Oscar nod for Best Original Screenplay for his 2002 piece, Talk To Her.

According to the Grand Lyon Film Festival press release, “The Lumière Award was created by Thierry Frémaux to celebrate a filmmaker or personality of the cinema in Lyon, the very place where the Cinematograph was invented by Louis and Auguste Lumière, and where they shot their first film,Workers Leaving the Factory, in 1895. Because we must express our appreciation to the directors and artists of the cinema who fill our lives, the Lumière Award is a distinction reflecting time, gratitude, and admiration.”

This is only the 6th time the award has been presented, earlier recipients include Gerard Depardieu, Clint Eastwood, Ken Loach, Milos Foreman and Quentin Tarantino.

The Grand Lyon Film Festival is slated to run from October 13th – 19th.  Get all of the festival details at their website, here.

New Trailer For Steven Soderbergh’s Upcoming Series ‘The Knick’ Starring Clive Owen


Where is Steven Soderbergh these days?  It appears he’s been directing a ten episode series for Cinemax entitled The Knick, based on the downtown New York hopsital, the Knickerbocker.  Set in the early 1900’s, the narrative follows a group of revolutionary doctors and nurses who were breaking new ground in the field of medicine without the aid of antibiotics.

The series stars Clive Owen, Juliet Rylance, Andre Holland and Eric Johnson and will premiere on August 8th.

Check out the NSFW trailer below:

Film Preservation and Silents are Showcased with Flicker Alley’s Blu-Ray Release ‘We’re In The Movies’

were in the movies

Flicker Alley has impressed me yet again with the announcement of their Blu-Ray/DVD combo entitled We’re In The Movies: Palace of Silents and Itinerant Filmmaking.  The two-fer release includes the 2010 documentary Palace of Silents: The Silent Movie Theater in Los Angeles and the 1983 documentary When You Wore a Tulip and I Wore a Big Red Rose.  Slated for release on July 22nd, the combo also includes 5 bonus movies from itinerant and local filmmakers.

From Flicker Alley:

“Palace of Silents: The Silent Movie Theatre in Los Angeles (2010)

On Fairfax Avenue in Los Angeles there is a 150-seat movie theater that for over sixty-eight years has doggedly dedicated itself to the exhibition of silent films. Built in 1942 by maverick film preservationist and collector John Hampton, the theater championed silent film at the very moment when the Hollywood studios across town were busily destroying their nitrate inventories. With hard chairs, phonograph-record accompaniments, and mostly original vintage prints, the dingy mom-and-pop operation was nonetheless a palace to the fanatical few who became its loyal audience. Through the theater’s tumultuous years of operation, its owners and employees have struggled to keep a cherished art form alive, often paying a heavy price in the personal tragedies that have stemmed from this struggle: obscurity, financial ruin, and even murder.

Through interviews, archival footage and detailed research, Palace of Silents reveals the touching, twisted, and bloody history of one independent theater’s successful attempt to stubbornly buck every cinematic trend in the hometown of American cinema.

When You Wore a Tulip and I Wore a Big Red Rose (1983)

In the early 1980s, documentary filmmaker Stephen Schaller was instrumental in the rediscovery and restoration of The Lumberjack (1914), the oldest surviving film made in Wisconsin, and produced by a group of itinerant filmmakers who traveled from town to town making “local talent” pictures. Schaller’s lovely and sometimes deeply emotional, 63-minute journal/essay film offers a look at the making of the Wausau, Wisconsin classic, including interviews with the one surviving cast member and the relatives of others who appeared in the movie. His investigation includes moving remembrances of the people and town of Wausau as it was, and even reveals the on-set accidental death of one of The Lumberjack‘s top cameramen. More than just a piece of local history, When You Wore a Tulip is also of interest to anyone who cares about film history and preservation. Discovering Schaller’s gentle, artful movie is just as exciting as finding a lost family album.”

Be sure to pre-order your copy through the Flicker Alley website, here.  Also check out the trailer for the release below.


‘The Texas Chainsaw Massacre’ Turns 40, Watch NSFW Trailer For New 4K Restoration


40 years ago, a group of Austin film students gathered to film one of horror’s most enduring classics, Tobe Hooper’s grotesquely glorious The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.  To celebrate this milestone, the 70’s horror phenomenon got a 4K makeover, Blu-ray birthday and a nationwide theatrical release.

View the NSFW trailer for the restored edition here:

Although it might seem that this is just one in a long list of aging classics to hit the restored and released circuit, the original Massacre still throws a mighty punch and is well worth the price of admission.

Check the dates below to see when it’ll be courting an area near you:

June 21
New York, Film Society of Lincoln Center

June 27
New York, IFC Center

June 27
Boston, Coolidge Corner

July 4
Richardson, TX, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema

July 11
Portland, Hollywood Theatre
Houston, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema
Kalamazoo, MI, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema
Winchester, VA, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema
Washington, DC, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema

July 18
Austin, TX, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema (Slaughter Lane)
Littleton, CO, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema
Winston-Salem, NC, a/perture
Eugene, OR, Bijou Metro
Tulsa, OK, Circle Cinema

July 19
Yonkers, NY, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema

July 25
Kansas City, MO, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema

July 25
Lubbock, TX, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema
New Braunfels, TX, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema
San Antonio, TX, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema (Westlakes)
Nashville, TN, Belcourt

August 1
Seattle, WA, SIFF Cinema


Released On This Day: How Hitchcock Marketed ‘Psycho’


Released on this day back in 1960, Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho broke new ground not only in the development of film’s narrative structure but also in how a film is marketed.

Hitchcock’s direction exceeded far beyond the editing room and into the movie theaters where Psycho was shown.  More specifically, each theater was given precise instructions on how to screen his film, from box office procedures to crowd control, changing the way moviegoers experienced their beloved pastime.

These innovations might have been shocking to theater patrons but they proved potent resulting in plenty of buzz and massive box office receipts.

Watch this awesome clip that explains his revolutionary process: