Axel-In-Charge: "Secret Wars" Jam Session Talking "A-Force," "Ultimate End" and More
The Dancing Baby Groot sequence from Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy sparked a pop-culture sensation that launched a seemingly endless parade of merchandise and introduced a new generation (or two) to The Jackson 5’s “I Want You Back.” It also inspired stop-motion filmmakers Kyle Roberts and Nathan Poppe to collaborate on a new video.
Using a hand-drawn background and more than 1,000 photos of Hot Toys 1/4th-scale Groot and Marvel Legends 6-inch Drax, Roberts spent “dozens of hours” to recreate that scene (with a Jackson 5 cover by Denver Duncan). The result caught the attention of “Guardians of the Galaxy” director James Gunn, who commented this morning on their YouTube page, and then tweeted his appreciation for their work.
Decades before Frank Miller’s adaptation of The Spirit landed with a resounding thud in theaters, a group of young filmmakers that included Brad Bird, Gary Kurtz and John Lasseter hoped to bring Will Eisner’s crimefighter to animated life. Now, thanks to producer Steven Paul Leiva, we finally get a glimpse of what could’ve been in a 1980 pencil test “trailer.”
The worlds of Westeros and Hyrule collide in the best possible ways with this mesmerizing CG-animated video from MegaSteakMan that combines the opening credits of HBO’s Game of Thrones with the world map from The Legend of Zelda: Link to the Past.
“Netflix should hire us to do the intro for their ‘canceled’ Hyrule romp,” states the comedy group’s YouTube page. “I hope you guys like it, and remember: in the Game of Hyrule you win … or you look up the answer to that puzzle online.”
Last year, Spider-Man mulled a move to the suburbs in an animated short written by CBR’s own Brett White, but now the wall-crawler has forsaken the hustle and bustle of New York City for the restfulness of the countryside. Unsurprisingly, perhaps, he has trouble adjusting to his surroundings.
In the clever (if all too brief) short from Stodoe Studios, titled “Spider-Man Moves to the Country,” Peter Parker quickly discovers he misses those conveniently placed buildings and street lights.
Before Frieza reveals his new golden form in Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection of F, the iconic villain shows off his fierce dance moves in a new TV commercial for Kirin Beverage’s Mets grape soda.
Already widely considered the most powerful being in the universe, the galactic tyrant demonstrates there’s more to him death and destruction — namely, moves to rival Beyonce. I mean, just look at that choreography and those backup dancers!
Attack on Titan author Hajime Isayama has created new box art for the upcoming Blu-ray and DVD release of the first compilation film Attack on Titan: The Crimson Bow and Arrow.
The first 13 episodes of the blockbuster anime series were combined (and abridged) into a feature film that debuted Nov. 22 in Japan; that will be followed in June by a second film, Wings of Freedom, adapting the remaining episodes of Season 1.
Animators Paul Robertson and Ivan Dixon collaborated on an inspired tribute to The Simpsons that recreates the iconic opening using pixel art, right down to an incredible couch gag that rivals any seen on the show.
There are some wonderful touches throughout the nearly two-minute video, from the pixelated theme music recreated by Jeremy Dower to Bart writing “Pixel art is not real art” on the chalkboard to the nods to classic video games in the Kwik-E-Mart and sidewalk sequences. But that couch gag … you just have to watch it for yourself.
A lot happened in the nearly 17 years between the end of Sailor Moon and the revival last summer with Sailor Moon Crystal: The world ushered in a new millennium, governments rose and fell, the human genome was mapped, Pluto was downgraded to a dwarf planet …
It’s that last development, however, that most concerns the Sailor Soldiers in the latest video from ADHD (Animation Domination High-Def). It turns out there’s a pecking order in this team of magical girls, and now beleaguered Sailor Pluto is at the bottom.
To help dispel the belief “that bats are dangerous villains,” Amy Wray and the TED Ed team turned to an expert on bats — if not on the science, then at least on the symbolism: Batman.
In this breezy and informative animated video, the Dark Knight, Alfred Pennyworth, Jim Gordon and a handful of Gotham’s rogues — Poison Ivy, The Penguin, Two-Face and The Joker — are used to help educate about the benefits of bats to pest control, pollination and even recovering stroke victims.
“Batman might want to keep his identity secret,” the video concludes, “but a great way to help real bats is by continuing to learn about them and spreading the truth that they are real heroes — even if their good deeds are often unseen.”
The 88-second teaser trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens left fans with a lot of questions: “Is John Boyega’s character a Stormtrooper?” “Who’s the shadowy figure with the crazy/impractical lightsaber?” “What’s up with that crazy/impractical lightsaber?” and “D’aw, who’s the cutest droid ever?”
The latter, it turns out, is BB-8 (which Mark Hamill revealed isn’t created with CGI), and he’s already the star of his own fan-made video. Created by Julien Leterrier over four days, the 10-second clip finds the li’l droid speeding across a desert landscape, weaving between and beneath X-Wings. It’s effectively an extension of BB-8’s appearance in the trailer, which, like this video, was all too brief.
For decades, only 25 seconds was thought to exist of Empty Socks, the 1927 Walt Disney short starring Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. However, Agence France-Presse reports a near-complete copy has been discovered at a National Library of Norway facility in Mo i Rana, a small town near the Arctic Circle.
With an original run time of 5 minutes, 30 seconds, Empty Socks is notable as the first Christmas film produced by Disney. In the short, Mickey Mouse predecessor Oswald plays Santa for a group of orphans.
Eighty-six years ago today, Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse made their official debut in “Steamboat Willie,” the 1928 animated short that helped to launch an entertainment empire (their actual first appearance was in a May 1928 test screening of “Plane Crazy”).
To celebrate the occasion, Biography has released a history of Mickey Mouse (sorry, Minnie), highlighting the iconic character’s origins, his 1935 makeover, and his promotional role during World War II.
Disney, meanwhile, sent a rickshaw-driving Mickey on a trip across India for his birthday in a new animated short called “Mickey Mumbai Madness,” which debuted today on Disney Channel India (you can watch it below, along with “Steamboat Willie”).
As great as all of that crime-fighting and Batmobile-driving is going for the Dark Knight, it can be difficult to compete with someone who has his own spaceship.
It’s something that quickly dons on LEGO Batman when he drops in on Wyldstyle in this new video from How It Should Have Ended and Brotherhood Workshop, only to discover that Emmet, the Chris Pratt-voiced Everyman of The LEGO Movie, has changed into the buff, exciting Star-Lord of Guardians of the Galaxy.
“Oh, yeah, I’ve been hitting the gym lately,” Emmet explains. “I’ve come a long way from the days when I hung out at the park for recreation.
I can think of no better way to cap off the week than with the new music video for Swedish rock band Freak Kitchen’s “Freak of the Week,” directed by none other than Juanjo Guarnido, acclaimed illustrator of Blacksad.
A former Disney animator whose credits include Tarzan and The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Guarnido funded the project with a $140,000 Kickstarter campaign. As you can see below, the video features beautiful traditionally animated segments (hand-drawn by Guarnido, who’s also credited as art director, supervising animator and a producer).
Cartoon Brew has more, including details about the upcoming companion art book Freaky Project.
James Farr, who previously mashed up video-game characters with Star Wars, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Ghostbusters (and that’s only for starters), now turns his attention to the Marvel Universe with the animated parody “The Wiivengers,” in which “Nintendo’s mightiest heroes must assemble to defeat the galaxy’s puniest god, and recapture the legendary power of … the NESeract!”
My favorite is easily the Mighty Thorkachu, but Farr’s list is a bit longer: “Nick Kirby (was almost So-Nic Fury), The In-A-vinc-a-ble Iron Mario, Orange Widow, Captain Kakariko, The Mighty Thorkachu, The In-A-cred-a-ble Luigi, Waloki, Kid Hawkarus and … Agent Phil Toadson. Other characters have been saved for later. Maybe.”
OK, Phil Toadson is pretty good, too …