One the perks of being an animator or story artist is it is possible to work from almost anywhere. Prior to the current situation, many major animated features and series were co-produced with teams working remotely around the world — making the recent adjustment relatively smooth. With broadcasters and streaming platforms unable to create live-action content indefinitely, the demand for original animation is poised to continue growing. Read more »
Top Animation News: Proud Family, Simpsons, Black Friday and more!
Top Animation News is a weekly column that rounds up the biggest, best and breaking stories from the animation industry. This edition covers November 22 to 29, 2019.
1. Disney+ to reunite The Proud Family
New episodes of The Proud Family will be coming to Disney+, Jo Marie Payton (the voice of Sugar Mama) confirmed this week. She said, “Yeah, Suga’s large and in charge. That’s all I’ve got to say — except for Suga Mama will be doing some new episodes come February.” Created by Bruce W. Smith, The Proud Family ran from 2001 to 2005 on the Disney Channel and was one of the few animated series at the time to centre on an African-American family.
Find more Disney+ The Proud Family revival details on Deadline.
2. Toon Boom’s Black Friday sale starts today
For three days only, artists worldwide will be able to purchase annual desktop subscriptions for our award-winning 2D animation software Harmony 17 and Storyboard Pro 6 for 50% off compared to regular monthly pricing. The Toon Boom Black Friday sale will run exclusively from today until December 1 at midnight. This promotion will only apply to annual desktop subscriptions purchased online.
Visit the Toon Boom Black Friday page for full details .
3. The Simpson: Thanksgiving of Horror is series’ longest episode ever
Not only was last Sunday’s The Simpsons the first-ever “Thanksgiving of Horror,” but also the series’ longest episode in its 30-year history — serving up 24 minutes and 45 seconds of comedic carnage. A riff on its annual Halloween “Treehouse of Horrors,” the new festive special was lauded by critics and fans alike. In the episode, The Simpsons found themselves thrust into nightmarish situations including half of Springfield being turned into turkeys (and subsequently being preyed on by the other half) as well as a sentient, skeleton-sucking cranberry sauce.
Dig into all The Simpsons: Thanksgiving of the Horror details on Screen Rant.
4. CBS All Access to launch kids’ content with Nickelodeon
As the streaming wars continue, CBS All Access is investing in children’s programming and animation further — doubtlessly to compete with Disney+. The platform is launching a kids’ lineup including original shows and library content as well as a selection of Nickelodeon series. It had previously licensed cartoons Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs and Danger Mouse for younger audiences, both of which are created using Toon Boom animation software.
Gain all the access to CBS All Access kids’ content info on TechCrunch.
5. How will YouTube’s COPPA rules impact animated content creators?
If you’ve been online recently, chances are you’re aware of COPPA and YouTube’s new rules that require channels to mark their future and existing children’s videos as “made for kids” beginning January 1, 2020. Marked content will no longer collect cookies or feature targeted ads, which could cost creators up to 60 to 90 percent of their revenue by one estimate as well as discourage engagement and reduce Google search traffic, but will also help prevent children under 13 from being tracked by the platform. The new rules are in response to YouTube’s $170 million settlement with the US’s Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).
Read up on how COPPA will affect YouTube creators further on Cartoon Brew.
6. And the most in-demand kids’ shows are…
According to Parrot Analytics, the top 10 most in-demand kids’ shows globally at the moment are Peppa Pig, SpongeBob SquarePants, PJ Masks, PAW Patrol, Masha and the Bear, Steven Universe, Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir, Naruto: Shippuden, Pokémon and Teen Titans Go! The research firm collects data by analyzing social media interaction, video views, online research as well as piracy figures.
Crunch the kids’ show demand stats further on Kidscreen.
Source: Warner Bros.
7. Peter Browngardt on his Looney Tunes Cartoons short The Curse of the Monkey Bird
Animator Peter Browngardt has had a celebrated career, with his latest role helming Warner Bros.’ Looney Tunes Cartoons for HBO Max already receiving acclaim — particularly the series’ short The Curse of the Monkey Bird, which is getting Annie Award and Oscars buzz. It follows Porky Pig and Daffy Duck as they venture into the Monkey Bird’s den looking for treasure. The Curse of the Monkey Bird is receiving praise for its animation, created by Browngardt and his global team of artists partially using Toon Boom Harmony.
Explore Peter Browngardt’s The Curse of the Monkey Bird interview on Animation Magazine.
8. Mark Simon has a new book out, Start at the Top – Stories to Help You Succeed
Prolific producer, director, story artist and writer Mark Simon has released his latest book, “Start at the Top – Stories to Help You Succeed” — a collection of inspiring stories and lessons from his more-than three decades in the entertainment industry. During that time, he has created animation and storyboards for films, television series (see: The Walking Dead), commercials and shorts as well as won more than 200 international awards, including a Prime Time Engineering Emmy for Storyboard Pro as part of the Toon Boom software team.
Get started on Mark Simon's Start at the Top – Stories to Help You Succeed on Animation World Network.
Source: John Basmajian
9. Animators brought a guillotine to the 1941 Disney Labour Strike
Nearly 80 years ago, Disney’s animators went on strike — marching out of the studio and into the streets over low wages and being blocked to unionize by management, including Walt Disney himself. Artists from other companies came to support the protesters, with the team from Warner Bros. (led by the legendary Chuck Jones) bringing a dummy of the House of Mouse’s attorney Gunther Lessing and a guillotine.
Want to know how this story ends? Take a trip into the Disney vault of animation history on Gizmodo.
10. Catch up on CTNX 2019
The Creative Talent Network's annual CTN animation eXpo (CTNX) was last weekend and Toon Boom was there! From Klaus director Sergio Pablos to WIA Vancouver's Five in Focus, see who our team met and what they got up to by following us on social media: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.
What Top Animation News were you most excited about this week? Was there something we forgot to mention? Let us know in the comments below!
Banner image source: Disney