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Television

The Annie Nominations for 2018

Once again the International Animated Film Society (ASIFA) have released  their list of nominees for the 2018 Annie Awards — the Oscars of animation, to many folks. And once again, we’ve had a banner year for animation with Furry content — so there are lots of anthropomorphic movies, TV series, short films, and other goodies among the Annie nominees. By far the furriest film among the nominees for Best Animated Feature is Wes Anderson’s Isle of Dogs — which is also nominated for Character Animation, Production Design, and Voice Acting (Bryan Cranston as Chief). But nominees Early Man, Ralph Breaks The Internet, and even Spiderman — Into The Spiderverse (yes!) had their own Furry content — and each of them are nominated in several categories too. Among the nominees for Best Independent Feature is Tito & The Birds, while one of the nominees for Best Animated Special Production (limited release) is The Highway Rat. England is well-represented in the Best Character Animation in a Live Action Production category (whew!), with both Paddington 2 and Christopher Robin receiving nominations. In the Best Animated Short category check out Lost & Found by Wabi Sabi Studios, while the brand new Best Virtual Reality category includes Crow: The Legend by Baobab Studios and the game Moss by Polyarc. Over on the television side of things, the category of Best Commercial includes four nominees that are very Furry! The rest of the Television categories include a parade of familiar and new Furry titles, including The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle, Bojack Horseman, DinoTrux, Disney’s Mickey Mouse, Hey Duggee, Hilda, Kung Fu Panda: The Paws of Destiny, Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and Tumble Leaf. Needless to say there are too many cool nominations to list them all here, so head on over to the Annie Awards page and check them out for yourself! The Awards will be presented on February 2nd at UCLA.

image c. 2018 Fox Searchlight Pictures

Not Moose. Dog. And Squirrel.

Chances are you’ve seen (or at least heard about) Dog and Squirrel, part of Nickelodeon’s Animated Shorts Program. But have you met the creator, Andrea Gerstmann? Over at her web site you can see examples of her other works in character design, background painting, layout, and fine-art painting. Lots of animal stuff to see, plus a few humans thrown in for good measure.

image c. 2018 by Andrea Gerstmann

Aw, the Brits Get Everything!

This came out of nowhere, but we have an excuse: I appears to be a UK exclusive. Here’s what we got from Animation World Network: “Disney UK has announced that Paloma Faith, Miriam Margolyes, Ben Bailey Smith, Tameka Empson and Bethan Wright have signed up for a ‘spot’ on Disney Channel’s brand new animation series, 101 Dalmatian Street, and will be featured in the first season which is set to launch on Disney Channel UK early next year. Ahead of the season premiere, there will be a special episode, airing in December 2018, which will introduce audiences to the unique characters and world of 101 Dalmatian Street. The U.K. guest stars will be joining Josh Brener as Dylan (Silicon Valley, Star Wars Resistance, The Big Bang Theory), Michaela Dietz as Dolly (Steven Universe, Barney & Friends) who voice the eldest Dalmatian siblings… Aimed at girls and boys, the new series has been reimagined for the 21st Century and is set in modern day London in the borough of Camden. The series follows the adventures of eldest siblings Dylan and Dolly, their parents Doug and Delilah, and 97 younger puppies, whose names also begin with ‘D’, in an epic comedy about family life, multiplied one hundred and one.” The article has a whole bunch more about the voice actors and the production team. Who knows? Maybe Disney will let us folks in North America see this sometime.

image c. 2018 Disney Channel UK

2019 Could Get Ugly

UPDATE: As we mentioned last summer, both a feature film and a new TV series based on the UglyDolls line of plush toys have been in development for some time. Well now thanks to Animation Scoop and the Hulu Network we have the first trailer for the UglyDolls animated feature. And as it turns out, the film includes quite a roster of singers and well-known actors giving voices to the characters, including Kelly Clarkson, Blake Shelton, Pitbull, Wanda Sykes, and Gabriel Iglesias. The film is directed by Kelly Asbury (of Shrek 2 and Gnomeo & Juliet).

image c. 2018 STX

All The World Shall Be Your Enemy

How on Earth did we not hear about this coming up? Well thanks to The Nerdist we did — and just in time too, as the newly-animated Watership Down is due very soon! “The BBC and Netflix are releasing a new CG-animated version this Christmas, and in order to more accurately portray the book, it’s going to come in two feature-length installments. The cast was already all-star, with James McAvoy as refugee rabbit leader Hazel, Nicholas Hoult as the psychic runt Fiver, John Boyega as the intimidating fighter Bigwig, Olivia Colman as bereaved doe Strawberry (a gender-flip from the book), Ben Kingsley as villain General Woundwort, Tom Wilkinson as doomed elder Threarah, and Taron Egerton as the rabbit Christ-analogue El-ahrairah (meaning “prince with a thousand enemies”). But now, via an official BBC announcement, they’ve revealed even more: Peter Capaldi will play the bunnies’ seagull ally Kehaar, Daniel Kaluuya is warren destruction survivor Bluebell, and Rosamund Pike is the Black Rabbit of Inle, a death/Satan figure and counterpart to the rabbit deity Frith.” All that plus director Noam Murro, the man behind 300: Rise of an Empire. Look for it on Netflix this coming December.

image c. 2018 BBC

Under D Sea

And yet more animation heading to MIPCOM, looking for distribution. From Animation World Network: “Ken Faier’s independent production company, Epic Story Media (ESM), has signed major co-production agreements for two new animated series, Dolph-N-Fince and Haley & The Hero Heart, which both make their international debut at MIPCOM.” So let’s talk about the furrier, or rather, finnier of the two… “Dolph-N-Fince is a co-production with Canadian independent Neptoon Studios, headed by award-winning Todd Kauffman and Mark Thornton (Looped, Grojband, Sidekick) and Paris-based Samka Animation (Jamie’s Got Tentacles, The Marsupilami, The Sisters). Aimed at children aged 5-12, Dolph-N-Fince is a ‘fish out of water’ comedy about dolphin brothers who leave the ocean forever to live on land as guardians of Ocean King’s rebellious teenage daughter. The boys’ over-the-top personalities lead to crazy misadventures that always put Coral in the danger zone. If they blow this, their freedom and dolphin souls are on the line.” Shouldn’t that be cetacean out of water…?

image c. 2018 Epic Story Media

Three To Dream

Thanks to our friends at Animation Scoop, we found out about three new animated TV series that Dreamworks Animation is producing for Netflix. And guess what?  All three of them are anthropomorphic! First up is Archibald’s Next Big Thing, coming in 2019. “Inspired by the critically acclaimed children’s book from Tony Hale, Tony Biaggne, and Victor Huckabee, Archibald’s Next Big Thing follows the adventures of Archibald Strutter, a chicken who ‘yes-ands’ his way thru life. Though living in the moment often leads him astray, Archibald always finds his way back home.” Then in 2020 look for this: “Welcome to Gabby’s Dollhouse, the preschool show with a surprise inside! Created and executive produced by Traci Paige Johnson (Blue’s Clues, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood) and Jennifer Twomey (Blue’s Clues, Team Umizoomi), Gabby’s Dollhouse is a mixed media series that unboxes a surprise before jumping into a fantastical animated world full of adorable cat characters that live inside Gabby’s dollhouse.” And finally in 2020: “All aboard to DreamWorks Rhyme Time Town, where Daisy the Puppy and Cole the Kitten are ready to guide young children through a colorful and adventurous world filled with nursery rhymes and imaginative play.” Stay tooned!

image c. 2018 Dreamworks Animation

Solve a Mystery. Re-Draw History.

Fans of the Ursa Major Award-winning rebooted DuckTales TV series (and they are myriad!) have a new resource at paw, thanks to teacher and illustrator Zack Giallongo. His new book is called DuckTales Doodles. “Draw, color, and create with your favorite characters from the all-new DuckTales series. Every page is packed with character doodles, from Scrooge McDuck to Webby Vanderquack. Tap into your artistic talents to bring these hilarious and exciting scenes to life! Solve a mystery and re-draw history!” It’s available now from Disney Press.

image c. 2018 Disney Press

Coming Soon From Italy. We Hope.

And they just keep showing up… More from Animation World Network. Rai Com (from Italy) have acquired several new animation projects for distribution, and of course several of them are furry in nature. Woof Meow is a CGI series directed by Alexey Kotenochkin and produced in Russia by AA Studios. “The series features the funny and entertaining adventures of the two kittens, Binx and Lulu, and their puppy-dog pals Oscar, Snickers, Sparky, and Hopper the Inventor. Together, they play games, make up new inventions and start real or imaginary adventuresome trips to explore the world around them. In each episode, someone gets in trouble and needs the support of the group of friends to solve the situation.” Then there’s Dixiland, a more traditional 2D animated series for preschoolers. “Dixi, the small winged elephant who is the protagonist of the story, joins other creatures as they experience joy, fun and problems.” Both are headed to MIPCOM and looking for international distribution.

image c. 2018 Rai Com