Dreamworks Animation Closes PDI Studio and Cuts 500 Jobs

Posted by Ben Huber on Jan 24, 2015 in Animation

dreamworks

Things aren’t looking so hot for Dreamworks Animation right now. Their last couple films haven’t exactly performed well, so a lot of folks were expecting layoffs, however, I don’t think anyone thought they’d be quite so expansive. And closing the PDI studio is definitely sad to see happen as well. Apparently some artists are being offered a chance to work at the remaining Dreamworks Animation studio, but that’s small comfort when 500 people have just been laid off. They have now trimmed down their future releases, instead putting priority on their upcoming sequels like How To Train Your Dragon 3, The Croods 2, and Kung Fu Panda 3. A full list of upcoming films is below. Read more…

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Hasbro In Talks To Buy Dreamworks Animation?

Posted by Ben Huber on Nov 15, 2014 in Cinema, Hobbies and Collections

hasbro

The potential buyers for Dreamworks Animation continue to stream by! Back in September we heard that Softbank was interested in buying the animation company, but talks quickly died out. Now, toy giant Hasbro is currently in talks to pick them up. This is a potentially big deal because Hasbro would certainly love to put many of its toy brands into CGI animated blockbusters. And hey, the potential for a good Transformers film from the How To Train Your Dragon crew is pretty exciting to contemplate. I’m certain there’s also a desire to replicate the success of the LEGO Movie, which this could possibly do for Hasbro. We’ll keep an eye out to see if these talks go through! Till then, imagine what Hasbro toy you’d most like to see as an animated film! Read more…

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SoftBank In Talks To Buy DreamWorks Animation?

Posted by Ben Huber on Sep 29, 2014 in Animation, Cinema

Dreamworks

Here’s an odd tale for the day: SoftBank, as in the Japanese telecom, is in talks to possibly acquire DreamWorks Animation SKG. Apparently DreamWorks has been looking for new funding for a while now, but most companies haven’t been interested. DreamWorks films has been having a certain issue since it went public: its movies would open soft and then build up a huge final gross. Great, right? Well, investors don’t like soft openings, and shares would frequently plummet when a film would open. Sadly, shareholders don’t understand the movie industry, it seems. Thus, getting additional funding could help DreamWorks Animation quite a bit. No paper has been signed yet, but it’ll be interesting to see how this whole affair proceeds. Read more…

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Mr. Peabody & Sherman Unleash a Trailer

Posted by Ben Huber on Oct 27, 2013 in Cinema

peabody

Did you know Mr. Peabody is getting his own movie? Yup, Dreamworks has been working on the film for a while now, which is being directed by Lion King co-director Rob Minkoff. The movie is, of course, based on the Peabody’s Improbable History segments from Rocky & Bullwinkle. This time, though, it is its own entity and features original storylines and new characters. They’ve also (obviously) had to get different voice actors, which don’t seem to quite fit. That said, I’m still interested in this film, and if it actually does history right, then I’ll have no problem with some other changes. Watch the trailer here! Read more…

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Megamind: A Menial Mental Achievement from Dreamworks

Posted by Michael Pinto on Mar 19, 2010 in Animation

Dreamworks has a very solid business plan: Churn out as many second rate Pixar looking films as you can. Megamind perfectly embodies this tired formula by having well known comedy stars do the voiceovers to poorly done 3D animation that looks like everything else you’ve already seen before, and then add a soundtrack of songs that were all hits from twenty plus years ago. The irony of this is that I love Will Ferrell, Brad Pitt and Tina Fey — but while two of them are A+ comedy actors none of them are talented voice actors. And things like that which tell you that Dreamworks really has no respect for the art of animation. Read more…

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Dreck Comes to an End, Um I Mean Shrek…

Posted by Michael Pinto on Jan 16, 2010 in Animation

How is it that they’re making the fourth film in this retched series yet they still can’t come even close to the quality of animation that Pixar was doing ten years ago? Over time Shrek has come to represent everything that I detest about bad computer animation films: Stiff movement, flat lighting, lamentable scriptwriting, poor comedic timing for gags, lackluster voice acting, uninspired music, predictable plots and sequels that aren’t even good enough to go direct to video.

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Pixar vs. DreamWorks: Why Up Will Upstage Monsters vs. Aliens

Posted by Guest Author on Mar 16, 2009 in Animation

Pixar vs. Dreamworks Animation

Editor’s Note: In this column animation critic Joe Strike gives us his take on the upcoming Pixar film ‘Up’ vs. Dreamworks’ ‘Monsters vs. Aliens’.

And this one goes easily to our Pixar Pals of Emeryville CA, as their upcoming Up easily clobbers Katzenberg and Ko.’s Monsters vs. Aliens – and that’s just based on seeing the first half of Up vs. all of MvA. Read more…

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Monsters vs. Aliens: The Winner Ain’t the Audience…

Posted by Guest Author on Mar 15, 2009 in Animation

Monsters vs. Aliens

Editor’s Note: In this column animation critic Joe Strike gives us our first review of Monsters vs. Aliens.

A few weeks back Jeffrey K came to town to hype his latest, first-in-3D animated feature Monsters vs. Aliens. Did you know (Jeffrey does) 3D is the third revolution in motion pictures, right after the introduction of sound, then color? Neither did I; in fact the film seemed more like the old paddleball in your face routine – which is literally how it begins. OK, I enjoy a meta-gag as much as the next guy, but after JK talked up what they were gonna do with the technology, I expected more than visual quotes. (And yes, the 3D was very cool-looking all the way through.) Read more…

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Monsters vs. Aliens vs. King Kong vs. Godzilla and Godzuki

Posted by Michael Pinto on Nov 6, 2008 in Animation

Before I start trashing this trailer for Monsters vs. Aliens there are two things that I’ll admit to upfront (but if you’re a fanboy how could you blame me?):

1. Dreamworks has always been second banana to Pixar, and I’m not talking Coke vs. Pepsi but more like Coke vs. C&C Cola. In other words: If you thought that Shrek was good you don’t know what you;re talking about (unless by good you mean box office of course).

2. At this point in time if you’re going to do a CGI film you better damn well be ready to blow me out of the water because I’ve seen it all before — or — at least have a unique look for the film that I haven’t seen before.

Now I’m glad I got that out of the way! On paper the concept for this film sounds good, but alas the devil is in the details and from what I see here Dreamworks is determined to ummmm — well that’s a good question?

Read more…

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