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May, 2011:

Tom & Jerry Live on Stage

In Argentina (of all places!) the brand new stage musical Tom and Jerry Live recently premiered at the Teatro Lola Membrives in Buenos Aires. From there, the producers plan to take the show on tour through Chile and Peru for the rest of 2011. According to them, “Under the direction of Leandro Panetta, Tom, Jerry, Spike and the gang go on stage, recreating classic cartoons with songs, chases, jokes, games and stunts. Tom and Jerry travel from opera to medieval times, then run and chase from the living room into the garden. Actors, dancers, singers and acrobats on stage guide to the public in this magical world where Friendship is always the result of each and every encounter persecution.” Cartoon Brew says that the production is based on specific cartoon shorts, including The Two Mouseketeers, The Cat Above the Mouse Below and the Gene Kelly sequence from Anchors Aweigh.


image c. 2011

Sauron — The Dinosaur

Here’s another one for fans of super-villains, or dinosaurs: The Classic Marvel Figurine Collection now presents Sauron, swooping down this July. “Infected with a genetic virus, that forced him to drain the life essence of others to survive, Dr. Kyle Lykos was changed forever when he drained the mutant energies of the X-Man Havok. Mutating into a pterodactyl-like monster, Karl chose to use his powers for evil, naming himself after the arch-nemesis from Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings novels – Sauron! This special 20-page magazine comes with a hand-sculptured figurine with exclusive slipcase and double-sided poster.” Check out the figurine below, and visit Mile High Comics to find out more about ordering.


image c. Marvel Comics

Big Movie News for the Fall

A pair of big announcements from our friends at Cartoon Brew: Warner Brothers has just released the first teaser trailer for Happy Feet 2, set to premiere this November. No word yet on the sequel’s plot, but it has been confirmed that Elijah Wood, Robin Williams, and Magda Szubanski will reprise their roles from the first film, along with new voices Matt Damon, Brad Pitt, Hank Azaria, and Pink. Also from Cartoon Brew recently: “Simba, Mufasa, Nala, Timon and Pumbaa are back and better than ever this fall when Disney’s The Lion King roars into theaters and homes in breathtaking 3D. A special two-week theatrical extravaganza kicks off Sept. 16, 2011, showcasing the Oscar®- and Golden Globe®-winning film on the big screen in Disney Digital 3D™ for the first time ever, and its highly anticipated home entertainment debut kicks off October 4, celebrating the Diamond Edition release of the epic movie The Lion King in high-definition Blu-ray™ and Blu-ray 3D™.”

Meet the New Panda’s Director

Cartoon Brew has posted an article with pictures and a video interview with Jennifer Yuh Nelson, director of Kung Fu Panda 2 — which, to remind you all, is coming to theaters this Friday, May 27th. According to the article, Ms. Nelson may well be the first woman to direct a major Hollywood animated feature on her own. Ms. Nelson has already made quite a name for herself in animation — check out her resume’ from the studio’s press release! Most recently (prior to this new feature, that is), she directed the 2D dream sequence which opened the first Kung Fu Panda movie.


image c. 2011 Dreamworks Animation

Ducks from Long Ago

We’ll let the folks at BOOM! Studios explain what’s cool about their new trade paperback coming out this August: “In Disney’s Four-Color Adventures, BOOM Kids! cracks the Disney vault to find some of the rarest Disney comics ever created. This volume features classic Disney comics and gag strips — some of them over 70 years old — from such creators as Al Taliaferro (creator of fan-favorite characters Huey, Dewey and Louie), “Disney Legend” Jack Hannah, Irving Tripp, and many more, reprinted for the first time in decades”. Also on their way from BOOM! are the Walt Disney Treasury: Donald Duck Volumes 1 and 2, collecting the work of the great Don Rosa.

Across Thin Ice is Done

Across Thin Ice is the name of the newest full-color graphic novel created by the artist collective known as Blotch. It’s also the first volume in a three-volume series known as Nordguard. As  Blotch explain on the Nordgaurd web site, the story is an action-adventure following a band of sled-dogs and their daily survival and struggles in the arctic of an anthropomorphic alternate Earth. Thin Ice will be released this summer by Sofawolf Press, first at AnthroCon in Pittsburgh and then at San Diego Comic Con in… well, where else? The reason we’re telling you this now is: While the regular edition of Across Thin Ice will be released in softcover, there is a limited run of hardcover copies that will also be released — and pre-orders are being taken now at the Sofawolf Press web site.


image c. 2011 by Blotch

Little Queen of the Jungle

This is the story of is the story about a little girl named Cassandra, the ruler of the jungle Mwumba and all of the animals who live there. Everything in Cassandra’s world centers on her and that’s just the way she likes it! For the first time, a mysterious monster has come into her jungle and is not only breaking sacred Mwumban law by eating vegetables, but worse yet, is taking all of the attention that rightfully belongs to her! It’s all there in Mwumba, a new short graphic novel coming our way in full-color from Aracana Studio this July. It’s written by Bruce and Lizzy Brown, and illustrated by Eduardo Savid and Zoran Cvetkovic. Mr. Brown has a MySpace page where you can find out more about this and other projects.

The 2010 Ursa Major Award Winners

The winners of the 2011 Ursa Major Awards — for the best in anthropomorphic media, as decided by the fans — were announced on Friday, May 13th at Morphicon in Columbus, Ohio.  From the Ursa Major Awards web site: “More formally known as the Annual Anthropomorphic Literature and Arts Award, the Ursa Major Award is presented annually for excellence in the furry arts. It is intended as Anthropomorphic (a.k.a. Furry) Fandom’s equivalent of the Hugo Award ® presented by the World Science Fiction Society, mystery fandom’s Anthony Award, horror fandom’s Bram Stoker Award, and so forth. Anyone may nominate and vote for candidates for the Awards. These Awards are decided by the fans, not by a committee”. More than 1,300 fans from around the world took part in voting for their favorite furry and anthropomorphic media in ten categories. In reverse order, the winners for 2010 were:


Best Anthropomorphic Game: Disney Epic Mickey, Developed by Junction Point Studios.


Best Anthropomorphic Published Illustration: The cover for Shadow of the Father (by Kyell Gold), illustrated by Sara Palmer.


Best Anthropomorphic Magazine: Heat #7


Best Anthropomorphic Comic Strip: Housepets! by Rick Griffin


Best Anthropomorphic Graphic Story: Twokinds by Tom Fischbach


Best Anthropomorphic Other Literary Work: FurPiled #4 by Leo Magna


Best Anthropomorphic Short Fiction: Bridges by Kyell Gold (released as a novella by FurPlanet Books).


Best Anthropomorphic Novel: Shadow of the Father by Kyell Gold, published by Sofawolf Press


Best Anthropomorphic Dramatic Short Work or Series: Wallace & Gromit’s World of Invention, created by Aardman Animations.


Best Anthropomorphic Feature Film: How to Train Your Dragon, directed by Dean DeBlois and Chris Sanders, released by Dreamworks Animation.


Visit the Ursa Major Awards web site to find out more about the nominees in each category, and also how to participate in the awards yourself.


The Best of Berkeley Breathed

Early this year, the Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco made the following announcement: “The Cartoon Art Museum presents ‘From Bloom County to Mars: The Imagination of Berkeley Breathed’, an exhibition of original artwork featuring one of the most popular cartoonists of the past quarter-century! To commemorate this exhibition, the Cartoon Art Museum, in conjunction with IDW, publisher of Breathed’s Bloom County: The Complete Collection, will publish a limited edition, full color, 96-page catalog featuring original artwork from Bloom County, Outland, A Wish for Wings That Work, Goodnight Opus, and other childrens’ books and feature film proposals from Breathed, including Mars Needs Moms!, soon to be released as an animated feature film from Walt Disney Studios. In addition to full-color reproductions of original artwork, the catalog will feature exclusive content including essays by Bill Amend, creator of FoxTrot; Keith Knight, creator of The K Chronicles; Amy Lago, Comics Editor of the Washington Post Writers Group; and Cartoon Art Museum Curator Andrew Farago; as well as a lengthy interview with Breathed conducted by cartoonist and author Shaenon K. Garrity“. Now, this limited-run publication is being offered by IDW, starting this July. You may need to pre-order a copy, so visit their web site to find out more.


image c. 2011 Berke Breathed