Monday, April 30, 2007

New Silver Surfer Trailer

Check it out @

Interesting how I read about this a while ago and now it's in the movie.

Don't be a galactic nuisance

found @ Dvorak

Carlos Baena Interview

Check out the whole interview @ cg-node

  • I did back in 98 I believe a little acting test with a dialogue from the movie "The Godfather". I remember closing myself in my room for hours, pretending to be Vito Corleone, and touching my chin in a thousand different ways while saying the line, to see if I could do something different using the dialogue, or trying to caricaturize the action to make it even more entertaining. It was definitely one of those moments that you realize the potential of whatever it is that you are experimenting with, and I had the best time doing that early test and those that followed.
  • When it comes to walks, I believe locomotion should serve the acting of the character. So therefore, you try to find ways so that your cycle doesn't just look like a cycle...but instead, it is the personality, the character, the age,etc, what's motivating the character's walk.
  • How can you animate the character so that it feels like lives in the same world surrounding him/her? The moment a character seems too cartoon in a realistic world (without a reason) or seems too realistic in an animated world, then there is something that's not quite right. It's a fine line. With each character you have to take advantage of the opportunities you are offered of the world this character is in from an animation/caricature/entertainment point of view.
  • In terms of tricks from one film to the next, for quite a while now, I try to learn as much as I can from my video references, combined with references from other places. I try not to watch much animation to be honest, and I try to learn as much as I can of real life stuff. Then I plan the animation using video, sketches, thumbnails and things that come to mind about the shot, notes, etc. Since Nemo, that has helped me tremendously.
  • It also helps to get on character as deep as possible, from an acting point of view. A lot of things come up that way. So for example, if a character is an angry character, and being upset is an important aspect of his/her personality, what other qualities can complement that personality? For example, he can be upset but almost acting like a little kid about it....or he can be upset and have many insecurities...or he can be upset and pretend he's not, with the following acting possibilities a situation like that would offer you. One of the parts I personally enjoy very much of this whole process is exploration...whether it's exploration of the character, the acting, the story, the to say something cinematically or acting wise without it being something that we've all watched 200 times before somewhere else. Exploring things that don't seem repetitive or haven't been done as much keep things and learning going, as opposed to being stuck.
  • The main thing for me is the acting, so depending on the personality of the character and its state of mind, you animate the character taking into account the physical characteristicsof it.
  • Carlos, if I ask you to share a point of view which has helped you to achieve your goals, what would be your advice for all CG-Node users?
  • Mostly patience and motivation. Things do not arrive from one day to the other, especially when it comes to animation. I've seen cases of people that show you things right off school with the intention of getting to Pixar or ILM right away. In many cases it's not about getting to a particular place what matters, but instead to try to have a great time whatever it is that you are at. Because if you are always waiting for that special place to arrive without enjoying the day to day, what a pain that'd be. So if you can find things or people in whichever place you are at, or have a good time doing whatever (even though sometimes it's not stuff we might enjoy as much), I think at least the process will be a lot more interesting than waiting to this or to that. We have all been there.
  • For a few years I had all my Pixar rejection letters by my bed, as I didn't want to give up. I knew I eventually would love to work there, but at the same time, I had some serious good times and made some good friends along the way, who I'm still in touch with. Now it's those places and those friends what I remember the most, not the fact that I made it or not. Also with time you realize how much you still have to learn in many ways...whether it's experience wise or knowledge wise. If things don't come at the first try, you try again in the future. If a short film, a shot, etc doesn't come out ok, it really isn't the end of the world...and you learn from the mistakes. Don't throw the towel and continue doing and learning more things.

Pirates 3 Character Designs

Check out AICN for more.

Star Wars: The Legacy

The History Channel will premiere it on Monday, May 28th, at 9pm ET/PT.

More info here.

Star Wars Kustomz Scout Trooper and Speederbike

Cool design as well. Question though, is it automatically edgy when you replace Cs with Ks? Kustomz?

Check it out

Limited Edition Animated Han Solo Maquette


I can't... resist... must... order... NOW.

Patton Oswalt Podcast

Another quick scoop by JV Pixar News.

Apparently AICN has a new "Ratatouille" Podcast about Patton Oswalt.

Martín Corujo's Lamps

Love it!

more @ Treehugger

Devorah Sperber

Cool art installation by Devorah Sperber.

Found @

McCallum On Young Indy & Star Wars TV

Dark Horizon got part of an interview with Rick MacCallum from the Dutch site toschestation. Check it out for info on The Young Indiana Jones DVD set and the Star Wars TV show.

  • Will "Young Indiana Jones" be used as a blueprint for the upcoming live action Star Wars television series?
  • Most people forget that it takes three and a half, four years to make a Star Wars film. It's long and that is why we are so excited to make the TV series because it's much more character driven, you make a mistake one week and fix it the next week. You got this extraordinary story of twenty years between Episode III and IV while Luke is growing up that needs to be explored. So, we are looking forward to it. One of the things we are also looking forward to is finding a new group of talent to work with on feature films very much the same way as we did with Young Indy. Almost everyone that worked on Young Indy stayed with us for seventeen years or longer and some are still with us. Now we're gonna start off with a new group, the next generation of filmmakers.

"Ratatouille's" Myspace page

Everybody and everything has a myspace page, including the newest Disney/Pixar movie "Ratatouille". There's tons of info on it though. To hear a little bit of the score from Michael Giacchino, visit the Disney Xtreme Digital site (who comes up with those retarted names?). And don't forget the 9min preview tomorrow!

Check out Animated-News for a lot more links!

Muppets Interstitials?

Check out Jim Hill Media via Animated-News for a report on what Disney has in mind for the Muppets.

  • " ... a Disney Channel series of shorts and interstitials, using the false documentary style of The Office, in which the Muppets try living and working in modern day Hollywood...."

"Iron Man" Facts

Straight from Jon Favreau:

"Let me confirm a few things: The movie will contain both the gray suit and the gold and red. The light you see in the photo on Robert's chest in the USA Today article is the chest piece glowing through his shirt. He is in captivity and forging the mask of the Mark 1.

Both suits have been built practically by Winston Studios and are busily at work as we speak. We are exploring ideas for teaser trailers, though no date has been decided. We are planning to attend San Diego Comicon. Bridges is bald and plays Stane. The movie is on schedule and could not be going better."

via Dark Horizon via the Iron Man blog

Wire soldiers

Lots more @ lobzik

found @

RFID Passports - Yay!

Check out Gizmodo for links to a NY Times review of the new US passport. The built in RFID chip has some roadblocks for indentity thieves, but that's not going to last long.

Electronic ID, soon e-money, etc. everything will be on a file on a computer, ready for manipulation. If someone decides to push delete, you're screwed, you don't exist anymore. The future is scary my friends, but only after July 4th, because once you've seen "Transformers" nothing else will matter. :-)

And yes, the new passport is fugly. Just sayin'. Oh wait, I'm not being a patriot.

It's beautiful.

"Dragon's Lair" - The Movie

Is the "Dragon's Lair" movie now finally coming? I hope so, I love the characters. I'm sure that's just because of childhood memories, but still, would love to see it as a 2D movie. Find out more @ IGN

Z Corp. ZPrinter 450 Introduction


found @

Swim Help

Fantastically nerdy, love it! $69.95

  • HomeSwimmer is easy to carry. At less than 5 pounds, just pack your HomeSwimmer and go… The entire system, in it’s own carrying tote fits into a carry-on bag! HomeSwimmer is also ideal for indoor/outdoor pools at hotels, apartment complexes, schools, fitness centers, and more.

found @ Gizmodo

Naked Bart Simpson a problem?

"That Bart is a cartoon character, and a defiant adolescent one at that, does make the cultural interest in his private parts more complex and intriguing," says Kim Blank, a professor of popular culture at the University of Victoria. "But the bottom line -- pun intended -- is that Bart, despite the little pixels that constitute his personhood, is an American icon -- a transcendent celebrity who defies age. And we, as a culture, are always interested in seeing naked celebrities, if only to confirm our fantasy that they have what we have."

You're kidding me, right? How can a naked Bart Simpson be such a big deal???

Not to everybody at least.

"To me, it's far more disturbing to see Homer hitting himself in the eye with a hammer (in the movie trailer) than to see a little boy skateboard naked," says Alberti. But Cory Silverberg, a sexual health educator from Toronto, believes critics are letting their jerking knees obscure the reality of the situation. "I'm always concerned when I hear about child actors being put into uncomfortable situations. But this is not a person, it's a cartoon," says Silverberg.

pic source

Darren Aronofsky doing "Noah"

Aronofsky tells British paper The Guardian that "Noah was the first person to plant vineyards and drink wine and get drunk. It's there in the Bible - it was one of the first things he did when he reached land. There was some real survivor's guilt going on there. He's a dark, complicated character."

More @ Dark Horizons

Mega Man ZX

Head over to GoNintendo for a link to a lot more pictures and game info on Mega Man ZX.

Mario 300

found @

Brionvega TV

Too bad it's only a concept. I'm in my orange phase right now and always a fan of retro sci-fi stuff and this TV concept hits all the right spots with me.

found @ Gizmodo

Space Jam 2

Had to come sooner or later.

I liked the first one though as a kid, haven't watched it since though.

found @ Animated-News via Moviehole

Dino Fight

And here's the show of these Dinosaurs

Dinosaur Workshop


Funny comments in the ... comments section. Flame war!

Visually it's great, but the story could be better. I'm a fan of slow and sad stuff, but even this short needs a bit more umph.

The animation needs some work, especially the breathing parts and the walks. I liked how he sits down at the end though, nice and tired.

I like the look though, very nice.

Evolution of Video Games has a little list of games and looks at their evolution. Some of them, like Metal Gear go way back, but they start with the PS1 version it seems. But apart from that, it's always interesting to see how a game evolves.

GTA2 was a lot of fun, I remember playing the demo for it on my old PC. Good times...

"Nottingham" - Ridley Scott & Russell Crowe

Crowe stars as the Sheriff of Nottingham in a revisionist take on the Robin Hood tale, with Nottingham as a noble and brave lawman who labors for a corrupt king and engages in a love triangle with Maid Marion and Robin Hood.

That's what Dark Horizons is reporting via Variety.

Walmart and HD DVDs

The great The Digital Bits has a great comment on Walmart and HD DVDs. Check out their site, it's to me the best DVD site out there. Here's the Walmart part:

It's no surprise that Wal-Mart is investigating making available in their stores the cheapest players possible, whether they be HD-DVD or Blu-ray. Driving prices in their stories down as low as possible is what they do. But here's the problem with cheap Chinese HD-DVD players that a lot of people are glossing over. The kind of people who might buy a $199 HD-DVD player at Wal-Mart are not the kind of people who are likely to want to have to deal with software glitches, firmware updates and disc/player incompatibility problems. Right now, Toshiba and Universal can't yet tell me why the HD-DVDs of The Good Shepherd and Children of Men aren't working in Toshiba's top of the line player. If Toshiba is having issues with their BEST player, does anyone really think a $199 Fuh Yuan player won't have even MORE problems? Who's going to do tech support for Fuh Yuan? Wal-Mart? One would also expect the kind of people who want a $199 high-def player are also going to be the kind of folks who might also want Disney movies for their kids. That's not going to happen on HD-DVD. Not to mention, with cheap Chinese players available at $199, what other major hardware manufacturer is going to want to try to compete with that? There's no profit margin. LG and Samsung are making combo HD-DVD/Blu-ray Disc players available because they rightly perceive that there's a market for such players with high-end enthusiasts. But those players are going to cost in excess of $1000. There's no incentive at all for companies like LG or Samsung to try and compete with the likes of Fuh Yuan on budget players at Wal-Mart. Meanwhile, the prospect of $199 HD-DVD players will force Sony, Pioneer, Samsung, Panasonic and the other major Blu-ray Disc player manufacturers to lower their prices faster (which, as Home Media editor T.K. Arnold pointed out in a recent editorial, may be an unexpected advantage of the HD format war). By the end of the year, a number of name-brand Blu-ray players will be available for $399 or less, with even cheaper models likely to follow in 2008. Cheaper players that WILL play those Disney high-def movies.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Poster

Closing off the previous Devolution of Movie Posters post, I present you the Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix poster, another step away from actual design work and a step closer to a complete photoshop batch job. Potter 6 will look like this:

DVD - Stranger Than Fiction

Yep, finally saw it. Loved it. Except...

SPOILERS - Read on after Amazon links...

... the ending. I'm always in favor of a non happy ending. The original book ending would have been more satisfying. But that' s just me.

Another great job by fellow Swiss man, Marc Foster. After Monster's Ball, Finding Neverland, another home run. Now I want to check out his earlier work.

Bloodrayne 2

You're kdding me, right??????

Ok, I have to admit that I never saw Bloodrayne 1. The trailer almost killed me. It was like the tape in "The Ring". If you watch the trailer then you will die in a week.

So imagine my fear when I heard that there is a sequel.

Are you brave enough? Watch it here.

found @

Space Invaders

Limited Edition run of 25, costing $25 each.

found @ Kotaku

Nintendo Wii Virtual Console Monday

Nintendo Press Release:

Castlevania® (NES®, 1 player, 500 Wii Points):

Step into the shadows of the deadliest dwelling on Earth. You’ve arrived at Castlevania, and you’re here on business: to destroy the curse of the Evil Count, once and for all. Make your way through six monstrous floors filled with bats, ghosts, zombies and every kind of ghoulish creature you can imagine. Use the legendary whip Vampire Killer and a host of deadly weapons to battle your way to Dracula’s chamber and the ultimate duel of good vs. evil.

The Legend of the Mystical Ninja™ (Super NES®, 1-2 players, 800 Wii Points):
In The Legend of The Mystical Ninja, take control of Kid Ying and Dr. Yang in an action adventure through feudal Japan. A curse has stricken the village of Horo-Horo, and its beloved princess has vanished. Together Kid Ying, a daring young mystical ninja, and Dr. Yang, master of the invincible spirit transformation, must overcome 10 levels of the Dragonbeast to save Princess Yuki. Each stage contains intense 3-D and 2-D zones where the duo must perform dozens of attack moves and solve magical problems and puzzles before advancing. Battle humorous enemies like the Carp Meister, who stuns victims with poisonous fighting fish, Tanaka-U-Out, a knockout artist who wallops opponents with a bone-crushing hammer, and the Sumo Tag Team, kings of the unbeatable belly-buster crunch. Collect coins to buy new equipment and to receive clues, spend some time playing minigames in the arcade or try your luck and increase your fortune at the Quiz House and Horse Races.

Shockman (TurboGrafx16, 1-2 players, 600 Wii Points):
It’s been two years since Arnold and Sonya were made into Shockmen. A message from the professor to return to their bodies has them head to his laboratory, but they are ambushed by a mysterious enemy along the way. After narrowly defeating the enemy, they catch a TV news flash announcing the Ryo Empire invasion. They find that the professor has been abducted and set out to rescue him. Shockman is a side-view action shooter that has eight stages, including Action Stages, where you jump and use special techniques, and side-scrolling Shooting Stages. This game expands on the well-paced story from the previous version and contains cooperative elements like shared life and a powerful Team Shockbeam that can be used during two-player simultaneous play.

Adobe CS3 video workshop

Lots of videos about the new prducts that CS3 is offering.

found @

Webcam Concept

How cute are these?!

found @ Gizmodo

The Shark is Still Working - Documentary

Head over to for an early review of the Jaws Documentary "The Shark is still working". Overall they say it's really good, covering all kinds of aspects that made the movie so popular. The movie hasn't found a distributor yet, which will hopefully change soon.

Whenever I go swimming, I always think of a shark fin coming up close to me. Should I sue Spielberg for emotional distress?

pic source

Battle for the Allspark

Check it out here.

Pixar really doing Live Action? Brad Bird Directing?

JV Pixar thinks so, and other sites around the web are reporting the same thing. But they think it's "John Carter of Mars". Rumor is though that Bird will be directing "Earthquake" (reported earlier on swench), which I believe is more likely.

Either way, it will be interesting for Pixar to do work using live-action plates. That's quite another challenge. Even worse when they will have non-Pixar directors as clients. I hope not, that can be a real pain.

Head over to The Daily Bulletin for a Brad Bird Interview.

Today's Fitness Tip: Exercise and Mental Ability

Did you know regular exercise can be good for your mental health?
Exercise can build self-esteem, enhance mood and increase mental
alertness. If you are looking for better mental health, consider
adding a dose of exercise to your day.

Today's Fitness Tip: Food borne Illness

To avoid foodborne illness, consider the following safe food handling
rules: 1. Wash your hands before and after eating; 2. Separate raw
meats and eggs from ready to eat foods; 3. Cook foods to the proper
temperatures to destroy bacteria; 4. Refrigerate and defrost foods
properly; and 5. Sanitize cutting boards and cutting utensils after
they touch raw meats and at the end of each use.

Today's Fitness Tip: Sodium Free Vegetables

Have you been advised to limit your sodium intake? Try to eat a
variety of raw, dried, and frozen vegetables. Most of them are
naturally low in sodium. On the other hand, canned vegetables often
contain a lot of added salt unless the label says “low sodium”.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Book Remote?

Check out this remote design (more info here).

Now why does it remind me of the Wiimote. Hmm... Maybe it's only the red power button, who knows.

Cat Pencil Sharpener

Another gem from Gizmodo... No words needed.

Robots in disguise

Optimus Keyboard

The Optimus Keyboard is a fantastic idea. OLED keys that can change according to the application. Think about languages as well, instant keyboard layout switch. Genius!

But all that sweetness will cost you $1564.


pic from and more info @ Gizmodo

3Dtotal Interviews Richard Rosenman

I remember those commercials, they were really cute. Check out the 3 page interview with Richard Rosenman @

The real computer mouse

This post @ Gizmodo cracked me up. Of course, why not? It's called a mouse after all!

David Goyer directing "Magneto" spin off

The story focuses on a young Magneo as he comes to grips with his mutant ability to manipulate metal objects as he and his parents try to survive in Auschwitz. Magneto meets Professor Xavier when the latter is a soldier liberating the concentration camp.

Magneto hones his powers by hunting down and killing Nazi war criminals who tortured him, and his lust for vengeance turns Xavier and Magneto into enemies.

That could actually be cool. Since they are younger, McKellan and Stewart won't be in it, but younger, fresher actors. Head over to Dark Horizons for more.

Stephen Hawking out of his chair

Good for him! Looks like he had a lot of fun. Check Kotaku for the full story.

First "Transformers" Review on AICN

Check out the whole thing @ AICN, here's the reviewer's short version. SPOILERS AHEAD.


First, let me say, I don't know how to write a review so stick with me, I have a lot of thoughts in my head about this movie so this could be all over the place. But I just HAD to write in, I am currently the most happyest fanboy on earth!

Here is the short version:


1) Screw you guys. The flames are cool. Nipples on batman = lame, flames on optimus = cool.

2) The robots in general are OUTSTANDING. I think ILM is doing them right? Whoever it is needs a raise - they look so real in the scenes its unbelievable (except frenzy or soundbyte or whatever he is. I’ll get into that later). They blend with the "real world" stuff so well, its awesome.

3) Optimus "lips" look bad and just piss me off. I can't imagine it will bother the general public, but anyone who has an attachment to "prime" will have issue with this for sure. There is no reason to give him lips. He speaks a few times with the shield up and it totally works….anyway. That is my only MAJOR gripe with the film. (but I doubt it's worse than "Cloudactus")

4) Shia Labuof is great as Sam Witwicky. I really wasn't sure how I would feel about him, but he nails it. He's got a great vibe on screen, I really wanted him "win". He's actually very funny as well. Great casting, he's legit.

5) Megan Fox (im sure that's no coincidence), I have no clue if she can act or not because I was fixated on her tits and ass whenever she was onscreen - pure sex (god bless you Michael Bay). I had to IMDB her after the movie because I had no idea who she is or what she had been in. I didn't care then and I don't care now.

6) Supporting cast is far better than I expected. Turturro is great as the quirky head of Sector Seven. The ladies in the audience im sure loved the beefcake tyrese and josh "las vegas" duhmel. Bernie mac and Anthony Anderson are very very funny in their small roles.

7) Action…seriously…you've never seen anything like this. Hate all you want on Bay, this is THE guy you want creating giant robot mayhem! And he does.


First production photo of Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark in IRON MAN

found @ AICN

Hot Jobs @ Lucasfilm


Located at The Presidio, San Francisco, CA


Lead Character Artist:

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Sr. Royalty Accountant:

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Located at The Presidio, San Francisco, CA


Web Application Developer:


No openings at this time.


R&D Engineer - Core Architecture:

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Located at The Presidio, San Francisco, CA


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Located at Big Rock Ranch, Marin County, CA


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Located in Singapore, SE Asia


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Located at Skywalker Ranch, Marin County, CA



Located at Skywalker Ranch, Marin County, CA


Pirates of the Caribbean - The HD Features

This is from The Digital Bits:

... Disney's forthcoming Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest Blu-ray Discs (due 5/22) will offer all of the previous DVD extras, along with some new features created just for the high-definition release. Among these: Curse of the Black Pearl will include the ability to select items of interest while watching the film, thus programming your own documentary to watch after the film, while Dead Man's Chest will enable you to play a game Liar's Dice with characters from the film. ...

It might just be me but HD DVDs really need better features than games or creating your own documentary. Remember the super sweet improvement over VHS? No more rewinding, chapter selection, subttiles, multiple languages, deleted scenes, making-ofs, commentaries, etc. etc. So many new features! And what is HD giving us? A nicer picture, better sound? That's sweet and all, but what else? Oh wait, you can color your car in "Fast and Furious". Wow. Most of the new releases don't even have the "old" DVD special features on it. Such a rip off. But who cares? With that stupid format war going on, HD discs will die out. Only because those retarted suits can't settle on ONE format, no, why should they learn from the past? Let's confuse the consumers and waste time and money because of that. Nice job, RETARDS.

Eric Roberts in "The Dark Knight"

Who could he play? A gangster?

More @ Dark Horizons

New "Shrek the Third" Images

Go to Animated-News for the link to more pictures and an interview with Antonio Banderas.

Mega Robot Returns

Devolution of Movie Posters

This subject came up at work, how the art of movie posters is fading and how it has become a photoshop exercise. A good example are the Harry Potter movies: