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Art Is Not Dead

Another artist we met at Lightbox Expo was Megan Brain — yes that’s her name. Her specialty is an unusual one: Cut and folded paper sculptures. Sounds simple enough, but wait until you see what she does with it! She has been creating amazing and unique works for customers big and small for a while now. And more recently she’s been recreating some of her paper works as collectible pins too.

image c. 2023 by Megan Brain

Warriors of the Night Return?

Amazing news out of Disney is making the rounds. We got this report from Variety: “Gargoyles could finally be returning to television, with a live-action reboot series currently in the works at Disney+. Variety has confirmed that the Disney streaming service is working with writer Gary Dauberman and James Wan‘s Atomic Monster to develop a live-action version of the beloved animated show. Dauberman would serve as writer and executive producer with Wan also executive producing. Disney Branded Television is the studio. The current logline for the project reads: ‘Based on the cult classic Disney animated series, Goliath is the last of a heroic race of gargoyle warriors who once lived among mankind. Free from a centuries long curse that turned him into stone, Goliath struggles to solve the mystery of his past while watching over modern-day New York City alongside police detective Elisa Maza.’ ” Here’s hoping that doesn’t mean the rest of the gargoyle crew won’t be taking part in the new project!

image c. 2023 Disney TV Animation

A Prehistoric Classic Returns

That title could be taken several ways, actually! Nervous Rex, written and illustrated by William Van Horn, first hit the stands more than 37 years ago. Van Horn would go on to work for Disney as an animator, but what really put them on the map was taking over the Donald Duck and Uncle Scrooge comic book lines. Now, It’s Alive Comics have reprinted the original Nervous Rex collection with Van Horn’s original cover. “Mild-mannered tyrannosaur Rexford doesn’t really fit in with the Jurassic age, as he’d rather just eat oatmeal and hang out with his friends. His wife Dearie is always after him to be a more aggressive meat-eater and add to the fossil record.” Take a look at Previews.

image c. 2023 It’s Alive Comics

He is the Screeching Fingernail on the Chalkboard of Justice

More Disney daring-do from Dynamite Entertainment: The new Negaduck spin-off comic series, written by Jeff Parker and illustrated by Ciro Cangialosi. “He’s the exact opposite of Darkwing Duck in every way… Evil, nefarious, dedicated to stealing lollipops from kids and not helping grandmas across the street! And now, he’s ready to begin a reign of crime and terror the likes of which St. Canard has never seen — except, dang it, all of the other villains are ripping off his ideas! What’s a criminal mastermind to do when the city’s thick with other criminals, stealing his shine? Why, take his villainy on the road, of course!” The first issue hit the shelves this month, with a variety of covers.

image c. 2023 Dynamite Entertainment

C’mon Now… What Did You Expect?

In case you missed it: One of the break-out ‘stars’ of the Loki TV series over on Disney+ was Loki… as an alligator. Yes. Popular enough that now he even has his own comic book! We got this from Previews: “Bow down to the reptile in a helm who has enraptured the Ten Realms…with his cuteness! First Alligator Loki chomped down on Mjolnir, and then he chomped his way into our hearts. Now, the beloved Alligator of Mischief finds – and makes – trouble all across the Marvel Universe in his very own comic! Collecting the hit Infinity Comics series from the Marvel Unlimited app, this one-shot includes a never-before-seen adventure in the life of everyone’s favorite swamp-dwelling scamp!” Wow, we didn’t know that app thing… was a thing. Alligator Loki is on the shelves now!

image c. 2023 Marvel Comics

Fly, Little Pre-Bird

This showed up recently at Animation World Network: “No Fat Ego’s Niels Juul has teamed with Sherman Theatrical Entertainment to adapt Inkas the Ramferinkas into an animated musical. The film, which follows a small flying dinosaur, pulls from a decades-long project from the Sherman Brothers, best known for their musical contributions to multiple Disney classics, including The Jungle Book and Mary Poppins. The upcoming film marks the only musical from the late Robert B. Sherman and his brother Richard M. Sherman. Before teaming with Disney, the brothers were focused on adapting Inkas, which began as a children’s record from 1951, into a film. In the mid-2000s, Robert’s son Robbie optioned the rights to the Inkas IP and worked with his father and uncle to pen a feature-length script.” The project has been on hold since 2008, but it’s back in production now. No release date yet, but we’ll let you know more when we do!

image c. 2023 No Fat Ego

Wild, Wild Planet

Recently made a visit to the L.A. Times Festival of Books in Los Angeles (of course), and as usual came across some interesting furry items we want to tell you about. First up is the Red’s Planet series of graphic novels by Eddie Pittman — a Disney animator who worked on films like Emperor’s New Groove and Lilo & Stitch, as well as TV series like Phineas and Ferb. Here’s the run down: “Meet Red, a quirky, headstrong 10-year-old who longs to live in her own perfect paradise far away from her annoying foster family. But when a UFO mistakenly kidnaps her, Red finds herself farther away than she could have possibly imagined—across the galaxy and aboard an enormous spaceship owned by the Aquilari, an ancient creature with a taste for rare and unusual treasures. Before Red can be discovered as a stowaway, the great ship crashes on a small deserted planet, leaving her marooned with a menagerie of misfit aliens. With her newfound friend, a small gray alien named Tawee, Red must find a way to survive the hostile castaways, evade the ravenous wildlife, and contend with Goose, the planet’s grumpy, felinoid custodian. Surely this can’t be the paradise she’s been hoping for.” Three hardcover books are out so far from Amulet.

image c. 2023 Amulet Books

Bears In Space?

We know intriguingly little about Good Morning Kevin… other than the fact it’s a popular meme phrase on the Internet. But this is something different: A new animated series created by Andrew Gordon, a 20-year veteran of Pixar. Now he’s started his own animation studio, Songchain. At their Twitter site, you can see lots of sketches of Kevin the bear interacting with various alien creatures — and a quick teaser of the new series showing Kevin animated in CGI. They tell us it’s coming out this May. We’ll let you know when we find out more!

image c. 2023 Songchain

The Annie Award Winners for 2022

This past Saturday the gala ceremony for the Annie Awards was held at UCLA in Southern California — the first time in three years the ceremony has been held live! The “Oscars of animation” are presented every year by ASIFA Hollywood (a division of the International Animated Film Society). This year, surprising no one at all, the stop-motion film Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio was the big winner of the night, winning in five categories including the top prize, Best Animated Feature. (Might be time to admit it — the film’s pretty much got a lock on the Oscar for Best Animated Feature at this point). Pinocchio also won in the Feature Film categories for Best Character Animation, Best Direction, Best Production Design, and Best Music. More surprising perhaps (at least to those of us who were behind the curve on the meme!) was this little film called Marcel, The Shell With Shoes On, which took home three Feature awards: Best Writing, Best Voice Acting (for Marcel’s voice and creator, Jenny Slate (Zootopia)), and the coveted Best Independent Feature. It was a complete sweep for these two though — some other (furry!) films of note were award-winners too. Over at Dreamworks, The Bad Guys got the award for Best Character Design, while Puss In Boots: The Last Wish was recognized with awards for Best Storyboarding and Best Editing. (All for features, of course.) Over in the TV categories, Dreamworks won Best TV For Children with their show Abominable and the Invisible City. Meanwhile, one of the big winners of the night was the animated video special The Boy, The Mole, The Fox, and The Horse, which took four Annies home to the U.K., including Best Special Production. It was not a great night for Disney, but there was one great furry note: Maurice LaMarche (Pinky and the Brain) won Best Voice Acting in TV for his portrayal of Mr. Big in Zootopia+. Cartoon Brew has a good article about the awards and a full list of the winners. (And now we get to remind you that voting for the Ursa Major Awards opens up this week!)

image c. 2023 Netflix