Archive for the ‘LAIKA’ Category

Coraline Screens In Armenia

OCTOBER 22-26, 2011: Coraline screened at the 7th International Film Festival for Children and Young People, in Yerevan, Armenia.

Geared toward under-served children, last year’s festival – which is free to the public – attracted more than 31,000 kids from Yerevan and the surrounding regions of Armenia.  Films were screened from countries across the world, including Russia, Estonia, Turkey, Greece, Sweden, Norway, Italy, The Republic of South Africa, The Ukraine, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Germany.

LAIKA Nominated For Wheelie Award

SEPTEMBER 12, 2011: LAIKA was nominated for a Wheelie, an award that is given out every two years to a socially responsible Oregon-based company.

As a High Road Business Award nominee, LAIKA was specifically recognized for its commitment to the community and to the environment.  Two of LAIKA’s internal initiatives, Soul Corps and Gang Green, were singled out by the Bus Project, the organization responsible for the Wheelies.  Soul Corps, LAIKA’s community outreach program,  provides assistance to several nonprofits that support the arts and community enrichment.  LAIKA’s sustainability program, Gang Green, promotes ecology within the company.

The Wheelie Awards ceremony was held October 10 at 7:00 PM at Portland’s Gerding Theater.  For more information about the Wheelies and the Bus Project, click here.

LAIKA To Bring Colin Meloy’s Wildwood To The Screen

SEPTEMBER 7, 2011: LAIKA has optioned Wildwood, the debut HarperCollins children’s novel written by Colin Meloy, lead singer and songwriter for The Decemberists, with illustrations by award-winning artist Carson Ellis. The announcement was made today by LAIKA President and CEO Travis Knight.

Wildwood is a marvel, an exquisite, staggering and lyrical work of art,” said Mr. Knight.  “It’s an uncannily perfect fit for LAIKA, commingling the time-honored qualities of classic fantasies and fairy tales with a bold, contemporary sensibility.  Colin’s captivating, melodic prose and Carson’s gorgeous, spellbinding illustrations form a rich bounty of ideas, language and imagery.  Wildwood is a wonderful work of literature, and LAIKA is fully committed to honoring it with an exceptional, groundbreaking film.”

Wildwood, the first book in an epic middle-grade fantasy series full of magic, wonder and danger set in an alternate version of modern-day Portland, tells the story of Prue McKeel, whose ordinary life is changed forever when her younger brother is abducted by a murder of crows and taken to the Impassable Wilderness, an enchanted and forbidding forest on the edge of the city.

No one’s ever gone in – or at least returned to tell of it. Within this secret world, Prue and her friend Curtis embark on a rescue mission and find themselves entwined in a violent struggle for freedom amidst warring creatures, peaceable mystics and powerful figures with the darkest intentions.

Wildwood, filled with 85 intricate and beautiful illustrations by artist Carson Ellis, was published on August 30, 2011 by HarperCollins’ Balzer + Bray imprint. To view the animated trailer created by LAIKA/house for the book, please click here.

“Hands down, there is no other movie studio in the entire world beside LAIKA that I would entrust Wildwood to,” said Mr. Meloy. “Carson and I were prepared to stonewall any and all suitors for the movie rights, so close was this book to our hearts. However, when LAIKA came calling, our defenses promptly came down. There is no doubt in my mind that they will come to this story with the passion, imagination and general awesomeness required to make this book into a truly beautiful animated film.”

“I’m a stop-motion enthusiast,” said Ms. Ellis, “and I’ve been a fan of LAIKA since we saw Coraline a couple of years back. When we visited the studio and saw all the brilliant creative work happening there – someone building a waist-high New England village in painstaking detail, someone else sewing pinhead-sized rivets on tiny blue jeans – we were won over completely. It’s an amazing place staffed by patient, meticulous, super-talented people who wouldn’t work there if they didn’t love stop-motion animation. I’m so excited to see what Wildwood will look like in their hands.”

About Colin Meloy and Carson Ellis:
Colin Meloy once wrote Ray Bradbury a letter, informing him that he “considered himself an author too.” He was ten years old at the time. Since then, Colin has gone on to be the singer and songwriter for the band The Decemberists, where he channels all of his weird ideas into weird songs. This is his first time channeling those ideas into a novel.

Carson Ellis, who first rose to prominence for creating The Decemberists’ album covers, illustrated the bestsellers The Composer is Dead (Lemony Snicket) and The Mysterious Benedict Society (Trenton Lee Stewart), as well the notable children’s books The Beautiful Stories of Life, Stagecoach Sal and Dillweed’s Revenge.  Colin and Carson live with their son, Hank, in Portland, quite near the Impassable Wilderness.   For more information, click here.

Moongirl Plays Halloween Night In Wellington, New Zealand

OCTOBER 31, 2011: Moongirl screened as part of a presentation of short films in Wellington, New Zealand.  The short played at Capital E Main Floor and Civic Square. Curated by Square Eyes and the New Zealand Children’s Film Foundation, the film was shown for free at the McKenzie Theatre.  Capital E is an award-winning nonprofit organization based in the cultural capital of Wellington whose focus is on children and their creativity.  It is the only facility in New Zealand that gives children  access to a wide range of creative technology, live performance and events.  At last year’s Halloween screenings, more than 5,000 people attended.

Sapporo Festival Screens Moongirl, Mona Lisa

OCTOBER 5-10, 2011: The Sapporo International Short Film Festival screened a new collection of movies from its Sister City called “Made in Portland, “ten classic and contemporary shorts that will highlight many of Portland’s award-winning filmmakers. Oregon-based NW Film Center compiled the program of shorts. The films included Moongirl and Joan Gratz’s Mona Lisa Descending A Staircase.  The lineup also featured:  The Discipline Of D.E./Gus Van Sant; The Pull/Andy Blubaugh; To Remember That Our Skies Are The Same Skies/Chris Lael Larson; Wind/Chel White;  Portrait #2: Trojan/Vanessa Renwick; The Subconscious Art Of Graffiti Removal/Matt McCormick; And She Was/Jim Blashfield; and Summer Snapshot/Ian McCluskey.

Rapid Prototype On The Docket At World Science Fiction Convention

AUGUST 20, 2011: Brian McLean, Director Of Rapid Prototype (RP), addressed the 69th Annual World Science Fiction Convention in Reno, Nevada, discussing RP as it relates to the development of the technology during the making of Coraline.  The Changing Face of Animation, a one-hour presentation was held at the Reno-Sparks Convention Center.  For more information about the convention and related events, click here.

A Glimpse Of ParaNorman At Comic-Con

JULY 24, 2011: Writers got their first look at ParaNorman during Comic-Con this weekend in San Diego.  Among the buzz, USA Today and indieWIRE discussed the stop-motion feature, its unique cast of characters and voices — and the folks behind the scenes of the production.  The movie hits theaters on August 17, 2012.  To read the entire USA Today article, click here.

Moongirl Plays At Indianapolis Festival

JULY 31, 2011: Moongirl screened today as part of Animation Day at the Indianapolis Museum of Art.  Moongirl was featured with eight other animated shorts for kids.  Following the program, participants created and developed their own characters.  To read more about the Indianapolis Museum of Art’s festival, the Indianapolis animation community and the film schedule, click here.

Portland Theater Screens Coraline For 3D Center Benefit

JULY 28, 2011: Coraline screened in 3D at Portland’s Living Room Theaters as part of a fundraiser for the 3D Center of Art & Photography, an Oregon-based nonprofit organization.  In addition to the film, behind-the-scenes content and rarely seen time-lapses were shown.

indieWIRE Spotlights ParaNorman

JUNE 24, 2011: As part of its “Project of the Day” feature, indieWIRE writer Nigel M. Smith turned his attention to ParaNorman.  According to Mr. Smith: “Following the commercial and critical success of Henry Selick’s stop-motion animated dark wonder, Coraline, the film’s distributor Focus Features was quick to re-team with the group behind the hit 3D film, Portland-based animation studio LAIKA. Their latest collaboration, ParaNorman, opens wide next summer.  To read the entire article, click here.

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