Here’s another one that somehow slipped through the cracks: A group of fans have been working on their own to try and create a movie adaptation of the Spellsinger series of fantasy novels, having secured the rights from writer Alan Dean Foster in 2011. Live action? Animation? Their web site isn’t very clear on that. It also hasn’t been updated since June of 2012, but they do have some interesting development artwork to show. What, you haven’t heard of Spellsinger? Go check it out — and its numerous sequels — right away! It’s one of the most influential furry-themed fantasy series ever created. Trust us.
image c. 2012 by Chris Wahl
And with that, we wish you all a happy and safe New Year. Stay Furry!
Not many independent animation studios have a large staffs; fewer still are a one-person operation. But such is the case with Zandoria Studios — also known as animator William Sutton, working out of his home in Tennessee. While still working a day job, Mr. Sutton has found time to create CGI sequences for various independent films. Meanwhile, he’s been working on his own personal project: TAR of Zandoria, created using the popular Animation Master software. TAR, you see, is a barbarian hippopotamus, who spends his time wandering the wasteland in search of adventure, dancing girls, and fruit punch — but who must instead busy himself dispatching armies of hyenas and other evil-doers. A Kickstarter campaign to finance the first episode of TAR was unfortunately not successful, and so Mr. Sutton is seeking out other ways to bring his idea to life — and the screen. Check out the official TAR web site to find out the latest and see lots of background sketches — both computer-generated and traditional art.
image c. 2013 by William Sutton
Sheriff Callie’s Wild West is a new CGI animated TV series for preschool kids, coming soon to Disney Junior. Starring the voice of Mandy Moore (Tangled), it tells the story of Callie — a calico cat, the loyal and heroic sheriff of a little western town called Nice and Friendly Corners — and her friends and associates as they learn important little life lessons. There’s an article at Entertainment Weekly that includes a preview video of the show. Sheriff Callie’s Wild West is available now at WATCHDisneyJunior.com and the WATCH Disney Junior smartphone and tablet app. It debuts on the Disney Channel and Disney Junior in early 2014.
image c. 2013 Disney Junior
IDW just keeps expanding their own little corner of the My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic universe — and fandom. Now in January we have a new on-going series, My Little Pony: Friends Forever. “This collection, based on the animated hit series, My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, airing on the Hub Network, will be made up of one-shot stories that focus on different pairs of ponies getting into various hijinx and will feature a mix of new creators as well as old favorites.” Sorry folks, no “shipping” allowed! Find out more at IDW’s web site. The first full-color issue of My Little Pony: Friends Forever (featuring none other than Applejack and Pinkie Pie) is written by Alex De Campi and illustrated by Carla Speed McNeil (Finder) with a cover by Amy Mebberson.
image c. 2013 IDW Publishing
Merry Christmas and a Blessed Solstice to you all, from InFurNation.com ^^
How would you like to appear as a red panda character on Skype, Twitch, or other services that use a web cam? That’s the idea behind FaceRig, a new program under development at Holotech Studios which allows anyone with a web cam to appear as an animated character. In addition to the red panda, the current characters available include a leathery demon, an anime girl, and a beefy human soldier — but they have plans to add more characters as the program is developed further. It all works through cutting-edge face-tracking technology that the developers have created. Check out the demo video over on YouTube. Meanwhile the developers have an IndieGoGo campaign started up to help them get the venture capital they need to bring this program out on the market.
image c. 2013 Holotech Studios
A brand new trailer is making the rounds for Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, coming to theaters in July of 2014. It seems that the virus revealed at the end of 2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes did not in fact wipe out Humanity, though it gave it the old college try. Now the remaining humans and the tribe of evolved apes (lead, of course, by Caesar) have gone to war, and then formed an uneasy truce. That peace is fragile though, and war seems like it is always just on the horizon. Once again, Caesar the CGI chimp is modeled by the multi-talented actor Andy Serkis. Taking over the reins for Rise’s director Rupert Wyatt this time is newcomer Matt Reeves, perhaps best known as the director of the “reality monster movie” Cloverfield. Currently 20th Century Fox’s official site for the film only has the trailer up, but that will probably be added to as we swing into the new year. See what we did there?
image c. 2013 20th Century Fox
Antilia is described by its creators as “an MMORPG featuring a beautiful world, original races, unique gameplay, and an innovative storytelling system!” Brought about by Jeff Leigh and the crew at Right Brain Games, this new multi-player game is currently in the testing and programming stage — and has a Kickstarter campaign up to get things brought to the next level. According to Jeff, “With Antilia, we are creating a unique and beautiful science-fiction/fantasy world, populated by distinctive anthropomorphic races. If you’ve heard of Antilia before, it’s because we have spent several years refining our process and building the game’s foundation. Antilia has had public alpha tests for the past two years as we developed, and we are confident we can deliver a quality game.” Find out more by visiting Antilia’s web site, or by checking out the preview trailer up on YouTube.
image c. 2013 Right Brain Games
There’s a new trailer making the rounds for Blue Sky’s Rio 2, coming this April to theaters everywhere. This time we get to see a lot more of the plot this time around: Our heroes Blue and Jewel (and their kids) discover that they are not in fact the only blue macaws around — there’s a whole flock of them living in the wilds of the Amazon jungle. Guess where our city-bred bird who just recently learned to fly is headed next? Meanwhile, the villainous cockatoo from the first film returns too, this time with a doting poisonous amphibian at his side. It’ll all make more sense (possibly) if you watch the trailer yourself on YouTube. This new animated sequel is once again directed by Carlos Saldanha.
image c. 2013 Blue Sky Studios
This coming March, fans of Usagi Yojimbo will once again be able to check out one of creator Stan Sakai’s other well-known funny animal creations, Nilson Groundthumper (and his assistant Hermy) in a new full-color hardcover collection from Dark Horse Press. “Experience the rabbit action epic that might have been! More than just a precursor to Stan Sakai’s beloved Usagi Yojimbo, his tales of medieval un-wits Nilson and Hermy are every bit as funny, exciting, and beautifully illustrated as the saga of the familiar rabbit ronin!” Collecting Nilson and Hermy’s complete exploits, the artwork is scanned from Stan Sakai’s original black & white artwork and newly colored by Usagi colorist Tom Luth. Check out The Adventures of Nilson Groundthumper and Hermy (an pre-order it) at the Dark Horse web site.
image c. 2013 Dark Horse Press