Trailers have begun to show up in the theaters for The Nut Job, a new animated GCI feature coming out this January. It’s based on a 2005 original animated short by director Peter Lepeniotis (Disney’s Dinosaur, Fantasia 2000) called Surly Squirrel (which you can still view on YouTube). The Nut Job tells the story of Surly (now here voiced by Will Arnett) and how he gathers together a rag-tag band of rodents with the intent of knocking over a local nut store. Needless to say, things become much more complicated — as you can see in the trailer. Interestingly, this project has been brought about almost entirely by independent studios and smaller companies. The film was produced by Toonbox Entertainment, Red Rover International, and Gulfstream Pictures, and is being distributed by Open Road Films.
… on an alien planet. That’s the basic concept behind B + F, a full-color illustrated book for adults that’s coming in hardcover from Adhouse Books this October. “B+F, Gregory Benton’s MoCCA Award of Excellence-winning fable, explores an otherworldly forest with a woman and a dog as they encounter its denizens, both benevolent and malicious. A wordless meditation on goodwill, hostility, and isolation.” Order it at the Adhouse web site, and check out Gregory Benton’s web site while you’re at it.
Coming this November from Top Shelf Productions: “Sam Henderson — Ignatz-nominated creator of Magic Whistle, Emmy-nominated writer and storyboard artist for SpongeBob SquarePants… and also the nutty mind behind Scene But Not Heard, the longest-running feature in the history of Nickelodeon Magazine! Now all those strips — the hilarious, wordless adventures of a man and a bear — are collected all in one handsome hardcover. Just try and keep up with Sam’s wild imagination! A full-color hardcover, 6″ x 9″, 128 pages, co-published by Top Shelf Productions and Alternative Comics.” You heard ’em. Order Scene But Not Heard at Top Shelf’s web site.
Unless you live in the UK, you might not be aware that the multi-award-winning Wallace and Gromit animation series has been adapted into a full-colour weekly comic strip. Well it has, and now the folks at Titan Comics have collected the strip series (so far) into a new hardcover book coming out this October. “The strip, which appears daily in The Sun, the UK’s most popular daily newspaper, is read by an audience of 2.3 million readers. The full-colour strip features a self-contained, weekly-continuity that sees our plucky, bald inventor race from one hair-brained invention to the next with gusto, extreme silliness and more puns than you can shake a stick at!” Check out Wallace and Gromit: The Complete Newspaper Comic Strip Collection, Volume 1 at Amazon. The strip features stories from a gaggle of writers, all of it illustrated by Jimmy Hansen and Mychailo Kazybird.
We’ve mentioned the anthropomorphic works of write and artist Renaud Dillies before — things like Bubbles & Gondola and Abelard. Well now he’s back with Betty Blues, a new hardcover graphic novel coming this November from NBM Publishing. “Little Rice Duck has built himself quite the reputation around the West Wood, playing his trumpet in bars with their smoky, sweaty ambience, tequila sunrises, and jazz. But between his trumpet and his flame Betty, things are going astray. Betty is drowning her need of him in expensive champagne, something someone else is more than happy to provide… something he’d much prefer, like her, would just stay chilled.” NBM has more, including a preview.
RedSilver: Nature’s Evolutions is a new anthropomorphic fantasy novel written by Steve Alford. It’s available now at Lulu.com. “When Red Sunset, an ordinary vixen from Devon, is chosen by Mother Gaia to defend the Heart Forest from attack, she can hardly believe what is happening to her. As one of the legendary Animentals, she can command powers she could only ever have dreamed of. But this is a far from idyllic situation. The Heart Forest is under attack by strange creatures unlike anything she has ever seen before. And if the Animentals fail, the consequences run far further than she could ever imagine…” The book is illustrated in black & white by the artist known as Silent Ravyn, who has also uploaded a collage of illustrations to their Fur Affinity page.
We just caught wind of True-Tail, a new flash animation furry fantasy series in pre-production from the folks at Skynamic Studios. Can’t tell you much about it yet, other than the fact it takes place in Splitpaw, “… a land of magic, adventure, and fantastical creatures… where six unruly mercenaries must learn to work together or succumb to an ancient dark magic”. You can see their first preview video on YouTube, or find out more about them at their Facebook Page. Also, their main True-Tail page has sign-ups for a newsletter to keep up with progress on the production.
Waluk is a newly-published full-color trade paperback graphic novel, coming to us from Graphic Universe. Check it out at Amazon. “Young Waluk is all alone. His mother has abandoned him, as is the way of polar bears, and now he must fend for himself. But he doesn’t know much about the world—and unfortunately, his Arctic world is changing quickly. The ice is melting, and food is hard to find. Luckily, Waluk meets Manitok, a wise old bear with missing teeth and a bad sense of smell. Manitok knows many survival tricks, and he teaches Waluk about seals, foxes, changing seasons, and—when Manitok is caught in a trap—human beings. Has Waluk learned enough from his friend to find a way to save him?” Waluk is written by Emilio Ruiz and illustrated by Ana Miralles. It includes an essay from the author discussing the current plight of real-life polar bears.
What if Sherlock Holmes was reincarnated as a dog? Well, it’s an idea, anyway. Sherlock Bones is a new black & white manga series created by Yuma Ando and illustrated by Yuki Sato. The digest-sized trade paperback is available at Barnes & Noble. This is from the publisher, Kodansha International: “When Takeru adopts his new pet, he’s in for a surprise—the dog is none other than the reincarnation of Sherlock Holmes, the famous detective. What’s more, this “Sherdog” has decided that Takeru is the reincarnation of his long-time assistant, Dr. Watson. Takeru may think Sherdog (or he himself) is crazy, but with no one else able to communicate with Holmes, he’s roped into becoming the canine’s assistant all the same. Using his exceptional sleuthing skills, Holmes uncovers clues to solve the trickiest crimes.”